Exploding Kittens Review: A fun, quick, and destructive card game

Exploding Kittens is a standalone card game that started in Kickstarter. After its crowdfunding campaign, it became the most-backed game in Kickstarter history. It’s not just a card game but also a collector’s item if you’re a fan of illustrations from The Oatmeal man himself, Matthew Inman who is a co-creator along with Elan Lee and Shane Small. If you don’t know what The Oatmeal is all about, I suggest you visit his site before continuing.

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I was so excited when I promptly received my package. Kudos to the Exploding Kittens team for delivering the game without any fuss and on schedule. Love the awesome regular updates as well.


I chose the 2-deck game to back ($35 + shipping) so there’s the main Exploding Kittens deck in its beautifully crafted deck box, and also the NSFW version which is the not safe for kids version with its gory artwork and foul language on the cards. The NSFW deck only contains the cards and the manual though, no deck box.

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This nicely done and sturdy deck box is opened by a magnetic flap. Once opened, you will hear a cat meow. Cute, but it scared the hell out of Callie when she accidentally opened it for the first time. Hehe.

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Inside the flap is a slot for the single sheet of manual and beside it is where the sensor that makes the box meow is located. There’s space for two decks in this box so if you got the NSFW deck, it’ll have a home too.

The cards

Onto the cards. First and foremost, the card stock is of high quality which isn’t a surprise since this game shares the same manufacturer as that of the very popular Cards Against Humanity game.

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There are 56 cards per deck which is good for 2 to 5 players. However, you can combine 2 decks if you wish to add 4 more players. You can even combine the NSFW deck with the regular one since both have the same card back.

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Then there’s the illustration which is the main reason why a lot of people, including me, backed this game. I just love The Oatmeal, its humor and artwork is the centerpiece of this fun game.

You’ll probably going to spend some time going through each cards and its text.


Each Exploding Kittens game will last for around 15 minutes which is perfect for quick fun games for those who can’t commit to long hours during board game night. It’s fairly easy to learn and if you’re really interested, you should check out their tutorial video.

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I would say the game feels like playing UNO where you draw a card each turn and play action cards to mess other players’ turns. The object of the game is to not draw the Exploding Kitten card. Each player has one life to start the game in the form of the Defuse card which is the only thing that can save you once you’ve drawn the Exploding Kitten. If you end up using yours, you can then steal other players’ defuse card or pick used ones up using other cards.

Although the game can accommodate 2-5 players, try to have at least 3. Like most card games, it’s not that fun if there are only two players as you tend to know what’s in your opponent’s hand later in the game.

Well, there you have it. The game is simple enough to play but the artwork and humor is what boosted the fun meter on this one. The fact that the creators wouldn’t say if they’re going to do another run of Exploding Kittens made this a highly coveted card game especially for Oatmeal fans.

High-five to you if you backed this game too!

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