The Lady Gamer

Articles   Archives   The Gamers   Contact Us   Store

Review: Run For Your Life, Candyman! (A Cookie’s Last Game)

by Tonya Foust

Run For Your Life, Candyman! Is a game from Smirk & Dagger Games. It is a self described "twisted board game parody for 2-6 mean spirited players". It is recommended for players ages 12 and up. The game was designed and illustrated by Curt Covert. Suggest play time is about 30 minutes.

Box cover

Based on the cover, you may already be shaking your head. Wait, there is more. While yes, at first glance, this is Candyland, it is also so much more.

The game consists of a Game board, 25 Gingerbread Status Sheets, 6 Gingerbread Tokens, 68 Dash N Bash cards & 30 Special Treat cards. To start each player places their Gingerbread Token on the START space at the Candy Keep. Shuffle the 68 Dash & Bash cards as well as the Special Treat cards. Flip over a card from the Dash & Bash pile until you get to one with a single symbol on it. This is to indicate what candy piece will allow a draw from the Special Treat pile.


The game starts with the oldest person going first. As in Candyland, they draw a card and move to the first space showing that candy. However, there is a twist. Some cards are double. This means you get to move to two places. Figure out which piece is closest and move there first, then move to the second piece on the card. You can move either forward or backwards on the path. This will become important later.

If the card chosen shows a character on it, move immediately to the corresponding space on the board. Simple enough, yes? But now it gets twisted.

Each player has a status sheet with the six parts of their gingerbread person, each corresponding to a piece of candy (for example, the head is peppermint candy) and with each piece having six points of damage. Every time one player passes another on the track the passing player draws a card and deals one point of damage to the corresponding part or parts shown on the card. If any section takes six points, that player then rips the destroyed piece off their sheet and gives it to the attacking player – kind of like a trophy! As you might, imagine this gets quite bloody!

Now, every time a player draws a movement card that matches the one designating the Special Treat, she gets to draw a special treat card. Special Treat cards allow players to really do some damage to their opponents with effects such as "Krunch Bar", "Red Hot Foot", "Atomique Fireball", and the extremely nasty arm-rending, heart-tearing "Ginger Snap". Needless to say, these cards will not endear players to each other.

There are also the "Candy Cage Matches" on the board, and ending the game by trying to sneak by the fury of the four attacks of the "Twins" at the end of the board. This definitely ain't your kid’s candy game! All you have to do to win is get a piece, any piece, of your body over the finish line.

Given the premise of the game, it seems that there would not be a whole lot of replayability to it, but when I played with some friends at a convention, we laughed ourselves silly at the whole concept as well as how fun the game actually was.

There were a few things that we questioned, mostly rules that we thought needed to be clarified. Such as when attacking another player with a Ranged Special Treat card, do the bridges count as spaces for figuring distance or is it the long way around? Another question we had was in regards to the Defense Special Treat cards. Do they get discarded after a single use if not otherwise stated? And finally, we thought that arrows indicating the direction the players are supposed to move to get to the end would be a good addition. In a couple places, especially after having been bounced around by Candy Cage matches or Character jumps, it was difficult to remember the correct path to the end of the board.

Despite these quirks, we all enjoyed the game and had a wonderful time playing it. I would highly recommend this game to my friends, family and all gamers who often feel the need for some good clean, but twisted, fun.

Liked this article? Hated it? Have questions? Tell us directly

Copyright 2004-2007 The Lady Gamer. All rights reserved.