Affectionate: Cats & Cuddles – with all the new stuff!

Affectionate: Cats & Cuddles
Advanced Rules & Treat Time Expansion
Published by Blue Heron Entertainment
Designed by Trevor Heron
Artwork by Nayaki Anadin

NOTE: Cat Pawns and Cat Mats are prototypes and may differ from the quality of the finished components.

Affectionate: Cats & Cuddles, is a game for 2-5 players, where you roll the dice to try to get as many Cuddle Tokens (hearts) as you can. You can also use Silly Tokens (mice) to re-roll, or make someone else re-roll their Cat Dice and change their Cat Action. When the Cuddle Tokens run out, only Cat Tokens (cats) remain, and one is given to the person with the most Cuddle Tokens. The person(s) with the most Cat Tokens after the amount of rounds that you decide, is declared the Sweetest Cat(s) in the house.

The base game alone is not only absolutely adorable (especially if you’re a cat person, which I am), but it’s actually a bit more challenging than it looks on the surface. It’s very easy to set up, and one of the great things about it, is you can determine how many rounds you’re going to play. The rounds don’t have much lag to them, so there’s very little downtime between turns. It can get a little tough when the Silly Tokens come into play. Someone can throw three Silly Tokens out and make you re-roll your Cat Dice, sometimes completely messing up the awesome Cat Action that you managed to roll, but you can also spend two Silly Tokens to re-roll your own dice if you don’t get a desired Cat Action. The entire round is giving and taking Cuddle and Silly Tokens.

Treat Time Expansion
NOTE: This expansion only accommodates 3-5 players.

The Treat Time Expansion brings in the use of Cat Mats and Cat Pawns (these are prototypes as mentioned). I chose to be Moku, and by the end of this, you will  see why. This expansion brings in worker placement (one of my favorite mechanics ever!) and dice drafting mechanics.

One player starts with a Cat Token. Everyone rolls their Cat Dice and immediately places one on their Cat Mat. The player with the Cat Token then takes a second die for their mat, and it doesn’t have to be their die, it can be anyone’s! BUT, if someone uses your Cat Die, you get to take a Silly Token, up to three. You can spend your Silly Tokens to re-roll if necessary, then, counter-clockwise, starting left of the person with the Cat Token, players place their Cat Pawns on an unoccupied mat. You then resolve the Cat Action next to your Cat Pawn, and once everyone completes that, the Cat Token gets passed to the player on your left.

The worker placement of this is easy to grasp, it really would be a great game to use to introduce someone to the mechanic, especially the younger ones. My Padawan is 10 and is familiar with worker placement from some slightly heavier games, but really enjoyed the ease of this one. Mr. Token isn’t a board gamer but easily grasped the mechanic from this game, and this is his first worker placement experience. Dice drafting, who doesn’t love dice drafting?! It’s another of my favorites so it was great to have a combination of the two, in what was a pretty seamless game!

Advanced Rules for Affectionate: Cats & Cuddles Base Game.

With the Advanced Rules, you’re using the dice drafting mechanic, so your setup is a bit different. You’ll be bringing in the Cat Mats, one player will start with a Cat Token that gets passed after each round, and for games with just two players, you’ll need one extra Cat Die (for a total of five). Any dice can go with any mat, so you’re free to choose what color and cat you want to be.

Everyone rolls at the same time, and places one of their Cat Dice on their mat. After that, starting with the player with the Cat Token and moving clockwise, players choose a die to place on their mat. If someone takes yours, you get a Silly Token.  Players then resolve their Cat Actions, and the round continues.

This is such a fun, easy example of the dice drafting mechanic! The Cat Mats are not only adorable, they also make it easy, but you can play this set of rules without them. This is something that’s fairly portable, and could easy be taught to anyone that’s played using the basic rules.

The General Consensus

When I received this game, I was immediately in love with the packaging! I love that it comes in a nice, soft bag, that feels like it will hold up well. All of the tokens are very well made, adorable, and you can’t help but want to play with them! The dice are easy to read, and with the Cat Action cards, there’s no confusion on what you’re supposed to do once you roll or draft.

This is a very well put together game. The rules and mechanics are solid, and I just can’t help but adore the theme. Any cat human would easily relate. You can definitely tell that the creator is a cat human! I loved it, Mr. Token loved it, The Padawan loved it, and I think just about anyone I introduce it to will also. I highly recommend anyone giving this one a shot, especially as a nice filler game, or one you can easily play with non-gamer family and friends.

This is coming to Kickstarter on October 28th, 2018, so keep your eyes peeled! You can also find out more about Blue Heron Entertainment here, or visit Affectionate: Cats & Cuddles on Facebook.

One Last Note

When I got to the end of the rulebook, I found the sweetest thing I think I will ever see in this industry. I just want to give the creator, Trevor Harron, a little extra love for this. This was amazing, loving, completely heartfelt, and I think it’s wonderful that you added this! I would be lying if I said I didn’t get teary-eyed when I read it. It definitely added to my love for this game, because I got to see your inspiration, and a little piece of the heart you put into it!