Review – Biñho

Crokinole meets Foosball

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Designer Nick Witherill

Publisher Binho Board

Category Dexterity

Length 15-20 minutes

Release Date 2019

Player Count 2-4

Biñho is a soccer-inspired flicking game that combines elements of Crokinole and Foosball to create a wholly unique 1v1 experience that requires no setup or teardown, and the only language dependence is on the specifics of passing out yellow or red cards. So is it worth a quick flick? Read on for the review!

Review

At the start of the game, each side has 10 “players” represented by metal pegs that screw into the turf – as players receive penalties, they may start to lose players making it easier for the other side to score. Penalties can come from accidentally moving the board, flicking the ball off the playing field, touching the goal, or double-touching the ball. Play consists of taking turns flicking the hard plastic ball once, trying to get the ball completely into your opponent’s goal (if it’s on the line or not 100% inside the goal, it doesn’t count). Shots that go completely in and bounce out count as goals. When a player receives a yellow card, their opponent gets a free kick from the center field circle. A second yellow card becomes a red card. A red card means you lose a defender, and your opponent gets a free kick anywhere behind the midfield line. Which defender you lose is determined by the coin flip. If the infracting player wins, they get to choose, and if the other player wins, they get to. 

The sides of the playing field are bordered by elastic bands that make it easy to keep the ball in play, assuming you don’t flick too hard and send the ball airborne. Instead of that, players will do well to attempt to use angles to their advantage, as it’s much easier to score from the side instead of head on. Head on, the gaps are only about a ball width so it’s not impossible but improbable with all the defenders in place. That being said, in just a week with the game I’ve seen some nigh-impossible goals bounce, spin, and roll from kickoffs, corner kicks, and “oh you’re never going to make it from there” situations, so really anything is possible. 

The components themselves feel nice and sturdy- the ball is solid plastic, as is the penalty coin, and the pegs holding the elastic bands don’t move or wobble at all. Defenders stay nicely in place when they’re screwed in, and don’t have any play in them. My only note on components would be that I wish my board came with an actual mesh net, but I looked online and you can purchase one or a set as an add-on. In fact, if you want to customize your board, you can get different colored side bands, goals, balls, defenders, and scoring pegs. Also the turf itself feels just like a section of astroturf, letting the ball bounce and roll nicely. All in all, the components give the feel that this can stand a lot of gameplay before anything would start to wear out. 

So why would someone like this game? It has zero setup once all the pieces are in place, customizable turf, colored pieces available for purchase, and will appeal to almost anyone with even a passing interest in soccer (or football for non-Americans). It’s incredibly fun to go head-to-head flicking the ball around on the turf, and the randomness of how the ball bounces off defenders and walls levels the playing field nicely. For example, I got my wife to agree to an abbreviated game to 3 points (a full game is played to 7) and before I knew what was happening, I’d lost 0-3. 

Point being is the game has appealed to everyone in my house from the youngest to myself, even if my daughter tends to get a few more yellow cards than anyone else thanks to her spirited flicking style. I would highly recommend Biñho to anyone looking for a fast, fun, flicking game that’s easy to get to the table. The only downside I can possibly say is the price, but if you compare it to a similar quality Crokinole or Foosball table, it’s a steal. 9/10, would flick again, and looking forward to playing it again and introducing it to my friends and family. 

A review copy was generously provided by the publisher.

The Bottom Line

9/10, would flick again, and looking forward to playing it again and introducing it to my friends and family.

 

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Author: Andrew Borck

Christian/Husband/Dad/Gamer/Writer/Master Builder. Jesus saves and Han shot first.