Choose a Theme and Give Clues: Similo Animals, History, and Harry Potter | Casual Game Revolution

Choose a Theme and Give Clues: Similo Animals, History, and Harry Potter

Similo Animals, History, Harry Potter

Find the secret animal, dive into history, or take a trip to the world of Harry Potter to find the right magical character!

Published by Horrible Guild, Similo is a cooperative clue-giving game for two or more players, ages seven and up. We have reviewed the Fables and Myths editions in the past, but today we are taking a look at three more.


In all versions of Similo, each card in the deck shows a character. One player is chosen as the clue giver. The clue giver draws one card from the deck and looks at it secretly. This is the secret character. He then draws 11 more cards, shuffles them all together, and lays them out face-up. Next, he draws a hand of five cards.

The game is played over five rounds. Each round, the clue giver will play one card from his hand as a clue, and then draw a new card. He will either place his clue card vertically to imply something about the character he is playing is similar to the secret character, or he will play it horizontally to imply that the secret character is somehow different from the character he is playing.

All the other players then discuss and choose one or more characters to remove from the table. The number of characters removed is equal to the round number, until the final round when there are only two characters left, and players remove the final character. If the secret character is ever removed, the players lose the game. If the secret character is the last character remaining after all rounds, then they win the game.

Players can use two different Similo decks, by using one deck to draw from for the characters in the center of the table and one deck for the clue giver to draw the clue cards from.

Similo Animals


Animals feels like the deck best suited for playing with children and families, or potentially even a group where everyone doesn’t have the same level of English skills. These cards aren’t going to need a lot of explanation. These are all common animals of which everyone is likely to have roughly the same level of knowledge. This makes for an even playing field and doesn’t require a great deal of dependence on people being able to read the descriptive text.

The art style Similo uses works quite well here. The animals look adorable. Clues can be challenging depending on what cards the clue giver draws. He can either get really lucky, or very unlucky, and it feels harder to make those connections with this deck if he does get unlucky — but that can also be part of the fun of this one.

Similo Harry Potter

Harry Potter

This deck is going to be the one where enjoyment of it is going to be mostly dependent on how much players enjoy the theme. If someone isn’t familiar with the Harry Potter franchise, this deck is going to fall flat. By contrast, for the history deck, you might not be a big history buff, but most of the people featured will be at least a little bit familiar, and the descriptions are in a context that players are familiar with. With Harry Potter, the descriptions don’t serve as that bridge in the same way. 

However, for players who do like Harry Potter, this one is quite enjoyable. The artwork is original rather than photo stills (although the character art represents the films) and is quite well done. This deck was our favorite for playing with other Similo decks. Using the animal one to give clues for Harry Potter characters was especially amusing and led to fun discussions.

Similo History


Thematically, we weren’t as excited about this one initially, but once we started playing, it was intriguing to figure out ways these historical figures were and weren’t similar to one another. Most of them are pretty recognizable, and the text on the cards is quite helpful for giving a little extra background to help make those connections. It even led to learning some fun little extra bits of historical trivia.

Since we were checking that text more often, we did notice that it’s actually pretty small writing, and if you’re playing around a large table, someone’s going to have to either read it out loud, or the cards will have to be passed around.

The history deck ends up with some intriguing connections being made, and interesting clues to ponder. For a deck we initially weren’t excited for, it ended up being one of our favorites.

Overall Review

Similo is a great filler party game to get your group talking. It's so easy to teach and quick to set up, yet it still packs a fun clue-giving punch similar to games like Codenames. The art style is always nice, and the ability to mix and match decks gives the game variety and replayability. Not all of the themes are for everyone, but there is enough variety in the different decks to suit many different groups. So, pick your favorite themes and give Similo a try!

Pros: Ability to mix and match decks, artwork style

Cons: Not all deck themes will be equally interesting to all players, the descriptive text is fairly small

Disclosure: we received a complimentary review copy of these games.