Taking the classic game of 20 questions to a sillier level, Hedbanz is a guessing game for players 7 and older. Two to six players can play at a time, and each is equipped with three plastic chips and an adjustable headband. Each player selects a picture card from the deck and attaches it to their headband so that they can't see it, but the other players can. The players then each take a turn asking questions about what's on their card in an effort to guess its identity. If you guess correctly before the timer runs out, you discard one of your chips; if you don't, you collect a new chip and take a new card for your next turn. The first player to discard all of their chips is the winner.
Hedbandz gets great reviews from owners who say it's a quick-paced, easy-to-learn game that kids can play with each other, though it's also fun for the entire family. We bought a copy at retail and played it over lunch here at ConsumerSearch. Our informal consensus? It's very fun, and often hilarious. We're not alone in that sentiment, as one mom posts to Amazon.com: "The pictures are so cute and crazy that it's hard not to laugh when you see that your spouse is a hot dog or that your daughter is a goat." Another owner sums up the inherent mass appeal, saying, "The kids had an amazing time with this. Kids include dad."
Other parents applaud the educational benefits they discovered while playing. As one owner notes on Amazon.com, "One of the keys to becoming a good writer in school is learning how to describe things and use adjectives. This game is great for developing this skill, because children have to ask questions about what they are -- and that takes thinking and creativity!" Another parent says, "The objects on the cards seem very simple and seem like they'd be very easy to guess, but it takes more thinking than you'd expect to figure out what the card on your head is!"
Some owners say that the timer runs out too quickly and can be a distraction, but some add that the game can easily be modified to remove the timer. Doing so also can be helpful for children who are too young to grasp the official rules, but still want in on the game time fun.
The only real complaint that reviewer have is that the game only comes with 74 cards, so if the game is played often enough, it doesn't take long to go through them all. Since the limited number of cards available is the main issue reviewers have with Hedbanz, parents may want to also check out the Disney edition of the game. There's even a Hedbanz for Adults edition available for those who want to play without the kids. More than one reviewer at Amazon.com suggests making your own cards with clip art or drawings to supplement the game deck.
No matter the age of the player is, there's a way to get them in on some version of the ridiculous fun of Hedbanz. Perhaps the most fitting summary of Hedbandz is this one posted by a happy customer at Amazon.com: "Simple but great."
More than 100 customers review Hedbanz on Amazon.com, and the vast majority gives it a 4- or 5-star rating, saying it's a sillier version of the classic game 20 questions. Almost all reviewers say it's an easy game to learn that's fun for players of all ages. A few complain that the timer is distracting or doesn't allow enough time for guessing, but the game can easily be adapted to house rules that eliminate the use of the timer.
Review: Hedbanz Game, Contributors to Amazon.com
About 15 customers review Hedbanz on Walmart.com and most give it the highest-possible rating, with all saying they would recommend the game. Reviewers say that it's an easy to learn game that kids can play with each other, but that it's also fun for the whole family. Parents also like that the game is flexible enough to be modified for the players' attention spans, so you can guess as many cards as you want.
Review: Hedbanz for Kids Board Game, Contributors to Walmart.com
More than 15 customers review Hedbanz on ToysRUs.com, with all saying they would recommend it to a friend. Several reviewers say that the game is great to be played with families as players of any age will be able to learn and have fun with it. The only negative comment that a couple of reviewers make is that the game will get tiresome for adults long before it will for children.
Review: Hedbanz Game, Contributors to ToysRUs.com
A few customers review Hedbanz on Target.com, and they all give it a high rating. All of the reviewers say the game is a lot of fun for people of any age, and that it can easily be adapted for kids who are too young to grasp the official rules.
Review: Hedbanz Board Game, Contributors to Target.com
Crystal Rapinchuk is a blogger and mother who covers various topics relating to teaching and parenting. She tries out the game Hedbanz at home with her two young children and has her husband play it in the second-grade classroom he teaches in, and the game is a big hit in both places. Both the kids and the adults enjoy playing it, and Crystal finds it to be a great way to build reasoning skills in children.
Review: Hedbanz Game Review, Crystal Rapinchuk, April 2, 2011