We tried out SINS by Cortadoo and thoroughly enjoyed it. Excellent fun and ridiculously engaging and competitive! It was fast paced, and had a wonderful amount of push your luck. You could make calls early and risk wasting efforts, or force guaranteed wins through patience. Take that was the centre of it and it made it great fun! The only qualm we had was the theme. For clarity, we loved it; it hit the theme on the head and demonstrated the game for what it was within itself. Thematic and centred around take that. But the theme was the seven deadly sins… a topic oriented around the darker actions and temptations of the human experience. These are not exactly child friendly, nor are they presented in that way in religious contexts. It missed out on the wider appeal!
Gears, by Jack In The Box Games, is the answer to that child friendly accessible play SINS is missing. It’s SINS, but with a whimsical theme and friendlier art style. It has undeniable appeal!! Again, it’s push your luck and oriented around forcing defeat upon your opponent. Then calling out when you want to see if you’ve managed to do enough to claim a despair against your opposition. The terminology is also focussed on a more gentle state of play, without removing the competition or take that focus. What’s more is that each of the six decks centres on different play styles. The actions of one deck may lean more towards a different style than another. However, all these decks are combinable and can be used interchangeably and to increase player count, too!
This is what we feel SINS needed to be to appeal to families and more casual players. The theme just appears more accessible and friendly. We prefer SINS on theme alone (being huge fans of horror and Lovecraftian games). But we cannot deny the appeal and whimsicality of Gears, and were we more family oriented gamers, this is what we’d choose over SINS. The Kickstarter has less than a day remaining, so if you haven’t checked it out… do it!