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Board Game Review: Disney Return of the Headless Horseman

Disney’s 1949 The Legend of Sleepy Hollow is a cool little animated short film that has Bing Crosby singing about the adventures of Ichabod Crane and the Headless Horseman. The tale originated in Washington Irving’s classic American short story. Now it has become a board game for ages 6+ and it is a perfect little treat to get kids into cooperative board games with more of a strategy slant to it. Plus it only takes about 15 to 20 minutes to play.

Sleepy Hollow comes to life after midnight and with Disney Return of the Headless Horseman Game, families can experience all that spookiness. In the game Ichabod is frightened and needs your help to escape the forest and its scary creatures to get to the covered bridge before the Headless Horseman heads him off! This fully cooperative adventure is a family game of frightful fun!

Funko Games and Prospero Hall are behind this new game and they sent me a copy to try out. It is a lot of fun for the whole family. You can even adjust the strategy of the game to make it easier or more challenging depending on who is playing it.

First of all, the quality of the game components is fantastic. The artwork is gorgeous with some vibrant colours that makes everything pop. The board and card stock is top notch and there are some lovely miniatures involved. There is also the spooky tree that slots into the board as a spinner.

It is super quick to set up and nice and easy to learn with a pretty decent rulebook. The Ichabod and Horseman miniatures go to their starting spaces. Eight Scare Tiles are placed face down next to the board and all players get four cards from the deck. Each card features two numbers between one to six. One number represents how many spaces Ichabod can move and the other shows how far the Horseman can move.

The aim of the game is to get Ichabod to the covered bridge before the Headless Horseman catches up with him. This is done by each player choosing one card from the hand. If two of the cards played have matching numbers then Ichabod moves that amount. If there are no matches then there is another round of choosing cards and this continues until there is a match.

Sounds easy, doesn’t it?

However, the Headless Horseman moves the total number of spaces on all of the cards. Therefore, the more cards that are put down, the further the Horseman can travel.

It is not just the cards that move the miniatures as the board has various spaces that feature shortcuts, icons that allow you to move an extra space and places that mean you have to flip over a scare token. If the Horseman catches up with Ichabod, you flip a scare token. Those different spaces on the board mean you will be looking at your cards as you want Ichabod to land on a short cut or extra move space, so you hope the other players are thinking the same thing and that they have cards to match the number you place down. It can end up being a devilish conundrum, especially as you run out of cards.

The scare tokens are basically the timer for the game. Out of the eight tokens, four make the face of the Horseman and if those four are all turned over then it is game over.

When you only have one card left, you shout out “Ichabod” and spin the tree to see how many new cards you draw. It gets loud and it just adds to the fun.

All in all, Disney Return of the Headless Horseman Game is a lot of fun to play. It isn’t always that easy to win, but a great game for all the family to play.

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