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Perfect Pitch Review

Quick Look:

Designer: John P. Van Valkenburgh
Year Published: 2018
No. of Players: 3-10
Ages: 14+
Playing Time: 15-30 minutes

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WARNING: This is a preview of Perfect Pitch. All components and rules are prototype and subject to change.

The world of movie making is a ruthless business. You should know—your boss was canned this morning, your coworker was suddenly thrust into the role of Studio Executive, and your previously green-lit project has been cancelled. Now, you and your fellow producers must come up with brand-new movie pitches by lunchtime. At least you've got a working title...

Perfect Pitch is a fast-paced improvisation party game. Players have only 90 seconds to use the cards in their hand to make a title and come up with a movie pitch, with one player acting as Studio Executive and deciding on the winning pitch. Once everyone has had a chance to act as Studio Executive, whoever has been a part of more successful pitches is the winner!

What screenplay secrets lay inside?


Rules and Setup:
Each round, one player will be the Studio Executive, and it's their job to judge the movie pitches of the teams of Producers. Each team receives six cards, each containing one adjective or noun, and at least two of the words must be used to come up with a movie title. Teams then have 90 seconds to plan their pitches. Once time is up, each team must present their pitch, the Studio Executive chooses the best of the pitches, and Producers on the winning team get a point. At the end of the round, the player to the left of the Studio Executive becomes the next Studio Executive, and the Producers get grouped into new teams. Once everyone has had a chance to judge the others' pitches, whoever has gained the most points from successful pitches wins the game.

As with many party games, setup is a breeze. Simply shuffle the cards (120 in total) and place them within easy reach of all players. Then, select one person at random to be the first Studio Executive.

A stack of cards and a simple sheet of rules are all you need to play!

Theme and Mechanics:
Perfect Pitch attempts to loosely embody the cutthroat world of Hollywood, and it does a good job of this. The short amount of time that teams have to prep their concept, the idea that the person judging your pitch changes each round, and even the fact that your teammates for one round may compete against you in following rounds—the mechanics fit the theme well. Even the font on the card backs helps establish the theme with the designer using Courier font, the industry standard for screenplays.

The mechanics will be familiar to anyone who plays party games. You get a hand of cards, choose which cards you want to use for the round, and a judge selects the best answer. The addition of improvisation and storytelling adds an interesting layer, forcing players to do more than just pick the funniest two cards in their hand.

Each card has a unique word on it. How many titles could you come up with using these?

We had five people in our group to play Perfect Pitch, meaning that there were two pairs of Producers competing to convince the Studio Exec to choose our pitch. Overall, we had a fun time coming up with movie plots based around the words we had for our titles, but it did seem a bit lacking at times. Only providing a handful of words for the title of the movie pitch means that the players have to do a lot of the heavy lifting, and if the players aren't particularly adept at improvisation, games can be somewhat lackluster.

That being said, if your group excels at improvisation, then Perfect Pitch can be a ton of fun. The rules allow for flexibility in the words available, so a card that reads "work" could be interpreted as working, worked, worker, or any other form of the word. There's also no requirement for the length of a movie pitch, so they can be as complicated or as concise as you wish.

Each card has its word repeated on both sides to allow for ease of reading.

Artwork and Components:
The designers of Perfect Pitch elected to go a unique route with the game, leaving the cards entirely devoid of art. This allows the focus to be on the gameplay, like most other party games, but a bit of artwork wouldn't have hurt, either.

There are 120 cards in total, along with a small rules sheet. Each card has a different word (usually a noun or adjective, but many words can also be interpreted as verbs), so there's a near limitless amount of options for movie titles. The rules sheet itself is clear and concise (perhaps one of the most clear and concise I've ever read), and the wording is a bit tongue-in-cheek, reinforcing the rules of the game by poking fun at the film industry. Be aware you'll also need something to mark points; whether you use tokens or a paper and pencil is up to you.

See the sentence regarding how to keep track of points for an example of what I mean.

The Good:
Perfect Pitch is a fun, fast-paced party game that takes seconds to prep and learn. The amount of cards means endless variety in movie titles and pitches.

The Bad:
The game caters to a relatively niche audience; those who don't enjoy party games will likely want to steer clear. A lack of artwork makes for a bland look.

Final Thoughts:
Adding a second part to the pitch, such as a "genre" or "featured actor" card, might make the game more accessible to the larger public.

Players Who Like:
Fans of party games, particularly those with a focus on improvisation, will likely find this a welcome addition to game night.

I am giving Perfect Pitch 7 out of 10 super meeples.

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About the Author:
David Jensen has tried his hand at everything from warehouse work and washing dishes to delivering pizza. Now, he writes reviews, edits a literary magazine, and works in a chocolate shop. When not busy procrastinating, he's playing tabletop games with friends and writing fiction.

Perfect Pitch Review Perfect Pitch Review Reviewed by David J. on December 06, 2017 Rating: 5

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