HashIn Japan, there are toy dispensers called Gashapons. They are similar to live ball machines, but have probably cooler prizes than standard American live ball machines. It’s been a while since I’ve used either of these machines (do they still take up a quarter?). But today we’re taking a look at Gasha, a new set-collecting game (from 25th Century Games, designed by Jason Levin) in which you try to collect sets of random toys from those famous dispensers.

Gameplay Overview:

Hashi cards
The back of the Gasha cards will give a clue as to what may be on the front.

During your turn, you will have two options: either draw 2 cards, or exchange a set of Gasha cards for a reward card. If you draw cards, there will be 4 stacks of Gasha cards to choose from. The back of each card gives you a clue as to what item may be on the face of that card.

When you’re ready to cash in on an item set, you discard those cards and claim a reward card worth a certain amount of victory points. Some cards also include half tickets. If you collect 2 ticket halves, you can also claim a bonus token that will be worth bonus points or give you the option to use. If both of your ticket halves are the same color, you’ll also get a free Gasha card.

The game ends when all reward cards or bonus tokens are claimed. The player with the most points wins.

Gasha gameplay
Draw cards from the Gasha decks and use them to fulfill the conditions on the reward cards.

Game experience:

Gasha is a filler game through and through, but that’s okay if you go in with those expectations. It’s a simple set-collecting game that has the advantage of being very approachable, both in theme and game mechanics. In particular, the theme is really well implemented. You don’t always know what you’re getting from a Gasha card, but the back gives you a clue, almost like looking through a car window trying to see what’s near the gutter opening.

Hash set
The items on the card will be needed to collect reward cards.

As for the gameplay itself, Gasha is standard collectable fare. And that’s probably one of the biggest hits you can take against the game. While it’s fun and looks good, there’s really nothing here that you haven’t seen before—probably a dozen or more times. You collect X to exchange them for Y, hopefully before someone else takes what you had your eye on. This is Ticket To Ride without the board. Gasha also suffers from feeling like the game just plays itself, and you have little chance to steer the game towards your chosen strategy. You take the cards, see if you have a reward card set, and collect. If not, draw more.

But despite the lack of innovation, we still enjoyed the game. For a light filler to start or end a game night, it beats the hell out of it. Sometimes you just want to turn off your brain, score points and perceive something casually. At such moments, you can take Gasha to the game.

Final thoughts:

There really isn’t much more to say Hash. It’s a fast-paced game with cute graphics and a well-implemented theme. Its price of around $15 seems about right. Any more and I don’t think it would hit enough to justify the cost. But at under $20 and taking up minimal shelf space, it’s a decent filler to grab when the neighbors come over for a drink or you want something light to play with family members. I don’t expect this game to get much table time in my gaming group, but when non-gaming friends come over, it’s not bad.

Final score: 3 Stars is a light collecting game that, even though it doesn’t take it to the next level, is still quite fun.

3 starshits:
• Easy to learn rules
• An interesting topic that is well implemented
• Fast playback and takes up minimal shelf space

• Not much new here
• You can feel that he is playing himself

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