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Five Nights at Freddy’s – Night of Frights Review: Perfect For Young Teens!

Rating: 8/10 ?
  • 1 - Absolute Hot Garbage
  • 2 - Sorta Lukewarm Garbage
  • 3 - Strongly Flawed Design
  • 4 - Some Pros, Lots Of Cons
  • 5 - Acceptably Imperfect
  • 6 - Good Enough to Buy On Sale
  • 7 - Great, But Not Best-In-Class
  • 8 - Fantastic, with Some Footnotes
  • 9 - Shut Up And Take My Money
  • 10 - Absolute Design Nirvana
Price: $25
Five Nights at Freddy's Night of Frights board game front of box and figures
Sarah Chaney / Review Geek

Pizza party with creepy animatronic characters, anyone? Five Nights at Freddy’s – Night of Frights is a simple, easy-to-learn board game that’s suitable for kids ages eight and up, and the perfect icebreaker for any party.

For those who are unfamiliar, Five Nights at Freddy’s was originally a horror video game created by Scott Cawthon and released in 2014, suitable for ages 12 and up. In the game, you take on the role of a security guard and have to survive five nights in Freddy Fazbear’s Pizzeria while fighting off and hiding from hostile animatronic characters. This first video game was the start of a wildly popular indie media franchise, which went on to include more video games, spin-off games, and even a novel trilogy and anthology series.

In the board game from Funko—titled Five Nights at Freddy’s – Night of Frights—you get to play as one of the animatronic characters trying to capture the security guard to win. This simple board game is way less scary—in fact, not scary at all—compared to the video game. It’s always more fun to play the villain—something I’ve learned from my recent obsession with the Villainous franchise. Here’s all the good and bad about my time playing Five Nights at Freddy’s!

Here's What We Like

  • Instructions are easy to learn and follow
  • Love that each character has unique abilities
  • Games could be quick or super quick

And What We Don't

  • Might be too simple for some
  • Winning depends more on chance than strategy

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Design & Pieces

First off, I love that the board game box resembles a pizza box with its red and white checkered design and the way it lifts open on a crease rather than having a separate top and bottom piece. Inside, all the game’s components are made of cardstock and cardboard, except for the painted character figures.

close-up of Five Nights at Freddy's Night of Frights character figures
Sarah Chaney / Review Geek

The animatronic characters are painted well, super small, and able to stand up on their own. They’re neat, but not anything special. Many of the other elements are tiny, which is almost equally cute and annoying. I kept accidentally turning over some of the circular item tokens when I was picking up a nearby token, just because they’re so light and easy to flip.

Also, I wish that the security camera was a solid plastic piece in the box, and not a piece of cardboard you had to stick into a plastic base. One time that I put the security camera together, the cardboard bent a little bit, so I could see it potentially breaking if kids are rough with it. There was plenty of room in the box for an extra plastic piece, so it seemed like an odd design choice.

Setup & How to Play

The very first time I played Five Nights at Freddy’s – Night of Frights, it only took about fifteen minutes or so to read through the instructions and get going. All the rules and instructions are simple, and I imagine it’s easy to learn even for young kids. By the third time I played, it took less than five minutes for me to set everything up by myself.

There’s the main game board where your item tokens and character figures go, and then a circular piece of cardstock called the Scare Tracker. After you place the game board and Scare Tracker next to each other, you “build” the security camera and put it in the Dining Room on the game board.

There are 36 tiny item tokens—with images of pizza, cake, soda, and cookies—that you shuffle and flip over to show the black backing. Then, before the game officially starts, five of these item tokens are revealed and placed in the numbered room that matches the number on the token. For example, the room above the dining room has a number 12 in it, so any item tokens with a 12 on them would go in this particular room.

Five Nights at Freddy's Night of Frights board game contents spread out on desk
Sarah Chaney / Review Geek

Action cards give you a leg up throughout the game, and Event cards are played before trying to capture the guard to boost your—and the other player’s—chances of actually catching him. Both sets of cards are shuffled before starting, though there aren’t that many. There are 18 Action cards and 12 Event cards, though you only play with all 12 if you have four players. Two players use only 6 Event cards, and three players use 9 Event cards.

Each player draws three Action cards at the start of the game, though Freddy’s ability allows him to draw four Action cards. Unlike other board games where you replenish your hand of cards at the end of every turn, that’s not the case with Five Nights at Freddy’s – Night of Frights. Instead, you only draw up to three (or four in Freddy’s case) Action cards after you attempt to catch the guard.

The 19 Miss tokens and one Guard token are thrown into the included paper bag with Freddy Fazbear’s Pizzeria logo on it. When you try to capture the guard throughout the game, blindly drawing tokens from this bag is how you’ll do it. Certain Event cards can make this task easier by letting you permanently remove two Miss tokens or adding one extra Guard token.

After you choose a character to play, you put their animatronic figure in the Dining Room on the game board, their character token face down on the 0 space of the Scare Tracker, and their character card in front of you. If you’re playing as Chica, the yellow duck, you also place the Mr. Cupcake token face up next to your character card. Each character has a special ability that makes playing them unique:

  • Freddy: You can draw up to four action cards at the beginning of the game, and each time you draw cards after trying to capture the guard.
  • Bonnie: Once per turn, you can move for free (without using an action token) after you pick up items.
  • Chica: You can use your companion, Mr. Cupcake, in place of a cake item token when spending items. Once you do this, he gets flipped face down, and only flips back over after you try to capture the guard.
  • Foxy: Using up one of your action tokens, you can jump to room 1 or 2—which you have to be in to try to capture the guard—at any point during your turn.

According to the rules, the last person who ate pizza gets to go first. On your turn, you draw two item tokens from the pool and place them in their corresponding rooms. If you forget this first step and another player notices, they get to draw an item token and immediately place it next to their character card. Then, it’s time to actually carry out actions.

Five Nights at Freddy's Night of Frights board game set up to play on wooden table
Sarah Chaney / Review Geek

You can take up to four actions, passing an Action Token to the player on your left after each one. The actions don’t have to be different and don’t have to be carried out in any particular order. Here are all the possible actions you can take on your turn:

  • Move: Each room on the board is separated by doorways, and using the Move action allows you to move through a single doorway to a connected room.
  • Pick Up: This action allows you to pick up all the item tokens in the room you’re currently in, and then place them next to your character card.
  • Play a Card: Any Action cards that you currently have in your hand can be played as an action on your turn, but you can’t draw more Action cards until you try to capture the guard.
  • Try to Capture: This is the action you have to take to win. In order to try to capture the guard, you have to be in room number 1 or 2 and the scary side of your character token has to be face up on the Scare Tracker.
  • Spending Items: This isn’t an action, per say, because it doesn’t use up one of your Action tokens. At any point during your turn, you can spend item tokens to flip your character token face up on the Scare Tracker and make yourself scarier, increasing your chances of capturing the guard.

If you’re in a room with the Security Camera, the only action you can take is Move. Certain Action cards instruct you to move the Security Camera after you do what’s on the card, so you can strategically place it in your opponent’s room and make it impossible for them to pick up or spend item tokens in that room.

The Scare Tracker goes from 0 to 10, and as mentioned above, you start out on the 0 of the tracker with your character token face down. To flip your character token face up and make yourself scarier, you have to spend item tokens, and each room on the game board has a unique exchange of item tokens and scare symbols. For example, in room 7, there’s a key at the bottom that reads “3 different = two scare symbols,” which means that cashing in three different item tokens while you’re in room 7 lets you flip your character token face up and move up to two spaces on the Scare Tracker.

Sometimes you may come across a room that requires you to exchange two cake item tokens for one scare symbol or—my personal favorite—a room that gives you three scare symbols in exchange for one of each item token, so cake, cookies, soda, and pizza. Making yourself scarier by spending items is vital to increasing your chances of winning because when you try to capture the guard and draw tokens from the bag, you can only draw the number that your character token is at on the Scare Tracker. So if you’re at the 2 on the Scare Tracker, you only get to draw two tokens from the bag (which has 19 Miss Tokens and one guard token at the beginning of the game).

When all the stars align—or, when you’re in room 1 or 2 and the scary side of your character token is face up on the Scare Tracker—you can use an Action token to try and capture the guard. First, you flip an Event card and do what it says, which could be adding a Guard token, removing Miss tokens, or drawing an item token for yourself.

Then, you shake the bag and draw the same number shown on your current space of the Scare Tracker. If you draw the Guard token, you win! If not, and you draw all Miss tokens instead, return all the tokens to the bag and flip your character token face down on the Scare Tracker. Before you try to capture the guard again, you have to spend item tokens to flip your token face up. Then, if you need Action cards, you draw until you have three—or four if you’re playing as Freddy.

The game ends when a player draws a Guard token from the bag and captures him, but there’s a way for everyone to lose too. If a player reveals the last Event card in the deck and fails to catch the guard, he escapes and all the players lose.

Playing the Game

Chica character from Five Nights at Freddy's Night of Frights board game set up to play
Sarah Chaney / Review Geek

I love a good strategy board game that challenges your brain and makes you think about your future turns as well as your present turn. That’s definitely not the kind of game Five Nights at Freddy’s – Night of Frights is, but it’s still an enjoyable experience. It’s not easy to sabotage other players, but it is possible, and you do have to use a small amount of strategy to increase your chances of catching the guard, but ultimately catching the guard is based on chance.

Because of this, the game could be super quick or just quick. Someone might end up finding the guard on their first try, ending the game in only a few turns. Or, you might almost get through the entire Event deck before finally capturing the guard. Since the game is pretty one-note, it’s nice to know that the game will be over when there are no more Event cards to play, so there’s no excruciating wait for someone to capture the guard. That said, the Event cards make it much easier to catch the guard after each attempt.

Replayability

Because each game is so quick, you can easily play multiple times within one gaming session, but it gets boring after a while. It’s also not a one-and-done experience, so the game can be played again in the future on another night.

Since each animatronic character has their own unique ability, you can easily employ a random chance mechanic, letting players randomly draw a character to play. That said, there are only so many different scenarios you can encounter. The game is very monotonous, like checkers, where the rules are simple and you can play over and over, but you probably won’t want to.

Verdict: Kid-Friendly and Simple to Play

Five Nights at Freddy’s – Night of Frights is a game where you don’t have to think too much about what you’re doing on your turn. There are only so many moves you can make, and your objective is simple. The franchise started out as a creepy horror game, but as its fan base emerged as younger kids and teenagers, its products seem to be marketed more towards that age group. This board game is appropriate for kids as young as eight, and it definitely feels that way, but it’s fun to play!

Rating: 8/10
Price: $25

Here’s What We Like

  • Instructions are easy to learn and follow
  • Love that each character has unique abilities
  • Games could be quick or super quick

And What We Don't

  • Might be too simple for some
  • Winning depends more on chance than strategy

Sarah Chaney Sarah Chaney
Sarah Chaney is a professional freelance writer for Review Geek, Android Authority, MakeUseOf, and other great websites. She has a Bachelor of Arts in English with a Creative Writing concentration. Her degree, paired with her almost two years of professionally writing for websites, helps her write content that is engaging, yet informative. She enjoys covering anything Android, video game, or tech related. Read Full Bio »