I was happy to see Boomerang: Australia on Board Game Arena’s growing list. I played Alpal’s copy a while ago, and I thought Rabbit would enjoy the quick set collection game.
The idea is simple, but learning the ins and outs of Boomerang: Australia takes a couple of goes. Not because it’s hard to learn or play, but because there are lots of ways to score that becomes a balancing act.
The basics are simple enough. Deal out cards that show towns or landmarks around Australia, and pick one. Hand the remaining cards to your left, while receiving a new set from the player on your right.
Try and mark off every location in a state, and if you are the first to explore that state get a bonus of 3 points. Easy.
But to get the highest scores, you need to look at the set collection on the cards. For example, the animal sightings. Get a pair of an animal, and score points for them.
The green flora collections give you points for each different type you collect. But don’t score over 7! If you do, you can’t double the score!
Then there are activities. Each round you can choose to score one of four activities. You can do this only once though, so pick swimming first round and you can’t score swimming again that game!
And the most random of points, the Throw and Catch. The game is Boomerang: Australia after all! The very first card you pick has a value between 1 and 7. At the end of the round, subtract the value on your last card from the first. Get that many bonus points!
I don’t usually go into game rule nitty-gritty for why I played a game. It’s a gaming journal – I want to talk about how much fun you have. Boomerang: Australia is so simple and quick, I am hoping some people will jump on Board Game Arena with some friends and give it a try.
Even if you aren’t in the same room, using voice chat (we use a Discord room) helps make you feel like you are. And this is where Boomerang: Australia shines.
Gameplay is deep enough to feel satisfying, but light enough to let you chat away through the entire game. Quick enough to play many games in an hour, but if gameplay stops for a chat or break you don’t lose what’s happening.
I wouldn’t say Boomerang: Australia is Game of the Year material. I would recommend it as a light shelf staple for many collections.