“Travel the Witch Works, it’s a treat.
Three mischievous witches, you will meet.
One is good, the other two bad.
A wilder trip, you’ve never had.
Travel quickly, always beware.
If you don’t, you’ll trip a snare.
You’ll love this wacky trio of witches.
If you permit, they’ll keep you in stitches.
A game of tricks and fun galore.
Play it once, you’ll be back for more.”
Which Witch is a classic childhood game for those who happened to be the right age when the game was published in the early 1970’s (the box says ages 6 – 12, but it really was more appropriate for kids 4 – 8). Its combination of a theme kids love (exploring a haunted house) with fun action/movement made it a huge hit, at least with kids who played games.
Game play is simple. Players roll the die and move their little boy or girl pawn that number of spaces forward on the path. If they land on an occupied space, they move forward to the next available space. After moving his/her pawn, the player draws a card, reads it aloud, and performs the action required. There are three different cards:
1) “Wanda The Wicked” – The player must replace his/her playing piece with the mouse of the same color. The player can no longer move. On his/her subsequent turns, the player only draws a card.
2) “Glenda The Good” – If the player is a mouse, he/she is turned back into a child and can move again on his/her next turn. Otherwise, no effect.
3) “Goulish Gerty” – The player must drop the “whammy” ball down the chimney.
When the whammy ball is dropped down the chimney it will come out and trip one of the snares:
1) "Broom Room" - a plastic broom which sweeps the pawns over
2) "Witchin Kitchin" - loose floor boards which pop the pawns up into the air
3) "Spell Cell" - a carpet which pops the pawns up, and a bucket which dumps the whammy ball onto the pawns
4) "Bat's Ballroom" - a moving wall which topples the pawns over and a staircase which the whammy ball rolls down
Any players on one of the “danger” spaces for the snare that is tripped, even if they are mice, are immediately moved back to the nearest “safe” space (a blue "X"). It doesn’t matter if the snare actually hits the player’s pawn or not, if the pawn is on an appropriate danger space it is moved back. Conversely, if a pawn is not on a danger space and a snare or whammy ball happens to run into the pawn, it is simply put back onto its space and not sent back. That is the official ruling, anyway. I remember us kids used to play where your pawn had to actually be hit by a snare or the whammy ball in order to be moved back, and you were always moved back when your pawn was hit whether you were on a danger space or not.
Anyway, the first player to move their pawn to the charmed circle at the top of the staircase (does not have to be by exact roll) has escaped the haunted house and wins the game.
OK, there are better kids games out there these days (a lot of the Ravensburger games come to mind), but for visual appeal and theme this is still one of the best. Sure, it’s not challenging, doesn’t have any tactics or decisions to make, and doesn’t develop any spatial thinking or mathematic skills, but the way a kid’s face lights up when he/she draws a Gerty card and gets to “drop the ball” is priceless. I highly recommend this game for anyone who has kids in the right age range. It’s 30 years old, so you have to go “treasure hunting” for it (garage sales, thrift stores, eBay, etc.), but it’s worth the effort. The best $3.00 toy I have ever bought for my kids.
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- red max(redmax)United Kingdom
- I remember this game being called "Haunted House"
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- Mark Chaplin(Yugblad)United Kingdom
Ice-choked tower, Mondavia, Nanglangka.
We played this a couple of days ago as Ghost castle - instead of cards we had a spinner.
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