Creative Communication: A Review of Morphology

Morphology

If you enjoy party games that push you to think creatively, Morphology won’t disappoint.

Gameplay

Players split up into teams. Each team has a frog token which they place at the start of the board. There are nine spaces on the board. Everyone on your team will take turns being the Morphologist. On your team’s turn, the Morphologist draws a card. Each card has both an easy and a hard word on it. Players agree at the start of the game on which will be used. The Morphologist looks at the word and then reads aloud the hint right below it. The timer is flipped and the Morphologist must start trying to convey the word by using the pieces included with the game to build or show it.

The game includes a wide range of pieces, from a string and colored gems to blocks and wooden figures. If the Morphologist’s team guesses the word before the timer runs out, their frog moves ahead on the board.

Some of the spaces on the board dictate the rules of the round, but sometimes the space simple says "roll," in which case you roll the die to determine the rules for that space. There is Free Play which is what is described above. There is Everybody Plays in which case the other team can try to guess too while the Morphologist is building. There is Morph! which allows the Morphologist to also use themselves to convey the word, resulting in something closer to Charades. There is Interception, which means that if the Morphologist’s team does not guess the word by the end of the timer, opposing teams have a shot at guessing the word and moving their frog forward if correct. There is Pick 5, which means the Morphologist, after looking at the word on the card, must pick only five building pieces to use this round, and there is Ribbit Ribbit!, which allows the Morphologist to make noises to help her team guess.

The penultimate space on the board is a special space. Your opponents pick five pieces that the Morphologist is allowed to use. The Morphologist may then look at the word on the word card before picking a final sixth piece that he can use. The first team to reach the final space on the board wins the game.

Morphology Components

Review

Morphology pushes you to get creative. There’s a wide range of words and the hard ones really do get hard. There’s also a nice range of building pieces in the box and finding different ways to use them is half the fun, making the Pick 5 rule one of our favorites. The rulebook also suggests a variant in which each game, players select a different object from around the house to include as a building piece — it's a variant that’s definitely worth including.

The game is very flexible in player count which makes it a great party game. You can have multiple teams and teams do not have to be a set size (though ideally they will be small enough that every player has a chance to be the Morphologist).

Morphology has a lot in common with games likes Pictionary and Concept. It is a similar type of party game and just as fun. If you enjoy games that involve using things other than words to get players to guess correctly, then you’re likely to find Morphology a great iteration of that genre.

It’s always great when you can add new party game to your collection and a really good one can be hard to find. Morphology is flexible, creative and great for families and large game groups alike.

Pros: Great party game, flexible on player count, the range of components is fun to play around with

Cons: You may already have similar games in your collection