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Box of The Texas Chainsaw Massacre by Trick or Treat Studios. Leatherface with a chainsaw features and screaming people in the background

Diving into the world of horror-themed board games, the Texas Chainsaw Massacre game emerges as a thrilling adaptation of the iconic 1974 movie, designed to captivate fans of the franchise. Crafted for 1-4 players aged 14 and up, this game promises a spine-tingling experience of 45-60 minutes, where strategy, luck, and a strong nerve are key to escaping the grasp of the notorious Sawyer family.

With its unique, story-driven ending and an intriguing objective system that enhances replayability, the Texas Chainsaw Massacre board game stands out as a must-have for both avid gamers and horror enthusiasts alike. Offering a blend of beautifully crafted game tokens, map, and the creepy flesh bag it provides an immersive dive into a world of suspense, making it a standout addition to the collection of any board game aficionado.

GEN CON 2023 Experience

Ol’ Jimbo was lucky to run into the Trick or Treat Studios booth once again at Gen Con. Ok, so he has a permanent quest to find the booth each year after seeing the fantastic designs, masks, and board game concepts from that first magical moment of ‘WTF HORROR HEAVEN IS THIS?’.

Trick or Treat Studio’s group has a decent sized demo area with great staff on hand to answer questions and give you a run-through. Part of the magic of Gen Con is seeing game producers like Trick or Treat Studios bring life to their games and give each person a ‘instant new friend for life’ feel. I really enjoyed my time at their booth talking and playing with Joe Stoken. If I can ever find my iCloud drive photos (oh, Apple…we used to be so tight!) I’ll have some of the footage coming out on our YouTube channel.

If you do get a chance to get to GenCon this year, you need to check out their booth. I know they are my first stop, and soon you will know why they should be yours, too. (Quick note: When I was putting the link to their website in this review, I see they have pre-order available for GHOSTBUSTERS!!! Holy crow! I think my credit card just squeeled! You have to check their site out


Overview of Trick or Treat Studios

Let me tell ya, Trick or Treat Studios is not just any run-of-the-mill company. These folks are the real deal when it comes to spooking the bejeezus out of you, and their Texas Chainsaw Massacre board game? It’s like they’ve channeled the spirit of Leatherface himself into a box!

  • What’s the Deal?: First off, this game’s all about teamwork. You and your pals band together to dodge Leatherface and his creepy family. It’s like thanksgiving at your uncle’s house…ermm…I mean a horror movie you get to live out. And the best part? You can go solo if your friends are too chicken. This really was a game clincher for me. As someone who grew up 35 minutes by car away from his nearest friend, having a game to play on my own AND with friends means I can enjoy this every day. It brings me back to my childhood in multiple ways and I wished more games had a solo mode for us (especially given what happened in the pandemic)
  • The Feels: Now, let’s talk immersion. Ever heard of the “Hideous Bag”? It’s this gnarly sack where you draw tokens that decide your fate and Leatherface’s moves. It’s tactile, it’s suspenseful – it’s like you’re really rummaging through some dark, forbidden place. It is also a great conversation starter. I am pretty sure as soon as we saw that at the demo, my wallet leapt to my hands.
  • The Gang’s All Here: This game’s got character – literally. You’re not just dodging Leatherface; Grandpa, the Cook, and the Hitchhiker are out to get you too. It’s a full-on family reunion from hell.

And before you ask – yes, it’s all about escaping in a van or ending up on meat hooks. Grim, I know. But hey, that’s the charm of the Texas Chainsaw Massacre board game. Trick or Treat Studios has outdone themselves, making a game that’s not just a plaything but a dive into horror lore. So, grab your game face, and let’s survive the night!

Game Mechanics and Player Experience

Diving headfirst into the Texas Chainsaw Massacre board game, you’re not just playing; you’re living a horror flick, but with the luxury of popcorn breaks. Here’s the lowdown on what makes this game a bloody good time:

  • Press-Your-Luck Mechanics: Feeling lucky, punk? The game’s all about drawing tokens from the Hideous Bag. You’re hunting for keys and gas, but pull three Leatherface tokens, and it’s game over, man. It’s a thrilling gamble that keeps you on your toes. This mechanic keeps the game fresh and adds something that dice throwers can’t manipulate (we know who we are…you know, the 6 is the other side of the 1, so if you have the skills you can easily…SHHHHH I’ve said too much!).
  • Character Roles & Abilities: Choose your fighter – each of the 1-4 players picks a character from the iconic 1974 film, rocking unique abilities. Whether you’re the brains, brawn, or just insanely lucky, your role is crucial in outmaneuvering Leatherface and his gruesome gang.
  • Sawyer Family Shenanigans: It ain’t just Leatherface you’re dodging. Grandpa, the Cook, and the Hitchhiker are on the prowl, each adding their spice of horror to the game. And let’s not forget the unique gating system for the family that ups the ante as the Sawyer family’s pursuit intensifies.

So, buckle up, buttercup. Whether you’re strategizing with pals or braving it solo, this game’s a rollercoaster ride through the Texas countryside – minus the actual risk of ending up on a meat hook.

Artwork and Design Elements

Stepping into the grim world of the Texas Chainsaw Massacre board game, the artwork and design elements are a horror aficionado’s dream come true, meticulously crafting an atmosphere that’s as chilling as it is captivating. Here’s a deep dive into the visual feast that awaits:

  • Faithful to the Original: The game’s artwork nails the grungy, sepia-toned aesthetic of the 1974 classic film. From the board designed to mirror the eerie Slaughter family property to the detailed components, it’s like stepping right into the movie. I won’t mention other games here–but let’s just say Trick or Treat Studios blows them all out of the water. This game is the Hamlet’s dad and all the other versions are Claudius–ohhh bet you didn’t think I’d be whipping out them Shakespearean insults now wud ye?
  • A Closer Look at the Components:
    • Character and Fam Standees: The pack includes artful recreations of the movie characters, bringing Leatherface and his macabre family to life on your table.
    • Horror in Detail: The draw bag, mimicking human skin, and a diner-style food tray as the game tray, amplify the thematic horror experience. Seriously this bag has to be felt to be believed.
  • Immersive Experience: The game’s design doesn’t just pay homage to the film; it plunges players into the heart of its terror. Every aspect of the game is designed to enhance the horror and suspense, making for an unforgettable gaming experience.

This board game isn’t just about strategy and survival; it’s a journey into the heart of horror itself, masterfully blending iconic imagery with engaging gameplay.

Why THIS Game?

When it comes to horror-themed board games, it’s a whole universe out there, and the Texas Chainsaw Massacre board game by Trick or Treat Studios is throwing down the gauntlet. In the end, there can be only one (unless you are true collector then knock yourself out!). My reasons for picking Trick or Treat Studios game:

  • Gameplay Dynamics: Here’s the scoop. Trick or Treat Studios’ version is like being in the movie – immersive, with a dash of strategy and a sprinkle of luck. This is as close to the real thing you’ll get this side of the Texarkana boarder.
  • Replayability: The Trick or Treat Studios’ game has you coming back with its story-driven endings and achievements that unlock new cards for future plays. You really can replay this game just for the endings and not be disappointed. I think that is the hallmark of a great game–will you have fun after seeing the game in action a few times. For this game the answer is a resounding YES!
  • Unique Features: Trick or Treat Studios’ version pulls you into the horror with fine details in their artwork and mechanics. This was one of the most immersive table top horror games I’ve played. They are, after all, THE Place for horror prop masks. Let everyone else try something that resembles a pale Temu version of The Texas Chainsaw Massacre–Trick or Treat Studios slays it with the real deal. The only thing they missing is the smell of chainsaw fumes…

OK–But is Solo Really an Option?

Did that game box say solo?! Why, yes. Yes it did. Sometimes when a board game says solo it really means ‘crappy experience that makes you regret leaving that cat turd in your only friend’s lunch box’. Take it from the guy who used to play Dungeons and Dragons solo…this is a true solo enjoyment option.

When you play the game by yourself, you have a bit of a modified rules set. It isn’t too hard to learn the rules as you go, and Trick or Treat Games makes learning it a breeze. Doubt me? Check out their rule book here.

I set the game up by reading the game play directions. This was my first run though and, yes, I may have messed a blood splatter up–and maybe a Leatherface movement, but that’s ok. It was easy to get into the rhythm of the game. The set up of the board went pretty smoothly and everything is straight forward. I think this is the type of game where you can pick it off the shelf of your favorite gaming cafe and get right into it (unlike other games where you need to read and reread directions, google how the game board should look and watch 3 youtube videos just to make sense of first play-looking at you Catan…)

After the first round of survivor play, things became smooth. The mechanics really push solo play into the next level. Within 4 minutes, I was having a blast. The enemy movement mechanic is interesting and it lets you play solo with ease. The test-your-luck mechanic is a great way to ramp up the speed of the game towards the end.

In the end, I won (barely) and I would definitely play the game again. In fact, now that I have a solo game under me belt, I look forward to showing this to friends (as soon as they forgive me for the aforementioned cat turd).

The solo game from ‘learning to kill’ took about 55-60 minutes. It’s a decent way to spend some time winding down. I was so immersed in the game, I didn’t even realize the hour going by. I think if you add in 3 more players, some banter and beveratges, this game could last the night with either one long slow play session or a few regular paced games. The death and objective cards, along with the randomization of the token locations, makes this game easily replayable within the same night.



Through an intricate blend of suspenseful gameplay, immersive narrative elements, and stunning visual design, the Texas Chainsaw Massacre board game from Trick or Treat Studios carves a niche for itself in the realm of horror-themed board games. It seamlessly marries the enduring terror of the 1974 cinematic masterpiece with the interactive excitement of tabletop gaming, offering players a chance to navigate their way through the chilling confrontations and strategic escapes from the Sawyer family. This game not only recapitulates the hair-raising atmosphere of its film counterpart but also enhances it with unique gameplay mechanics and character dynamics, striving to provide an unforgettable horror experience for both enthusiasts and newcomers alike.

As we embrace the thrilling challenge and strategic depth offered by the Texas Chainsaw Massacre board game, it further underscores the captivating potential of horror within the board game genre. Considering its engaging combination of strategy, luck, and narrative depth, along with its respectful homage to the original film’s aesthetic and atmosphere, this game represents a compelling proposition for anyone looking to delve deeper into horror-themed entertainment. Whether you’re a die-hard fan of the franchise, a board game aficionado, or simply in quest of a thrilling game night adventure, make the leap and buy the boardgame today. Embrace the opportunity to experience the innovative and terrifying journey that Trick or Treat Studios has masterfully crafted.

Final Rating: 5 out of 5 stars (5 / 5)

P.S. Like Horror? Like 1000 Corpses? Like uhh.. Houses of them? Kickstarter on now!

Check out the newest invention from Trick or Treat Studios: House of 1000 Corpses table top game. Click the link to see the kickstarter. I’ve already backed it at the Miniature bonus level and so should you!

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1 Comment

1 Comment

  1. Jennifer Weigel

    April 21, 2024 at 9:24 pm

    This looks like a really well made game. And that bag… just wow. And I’m lad the rules were easier to follow than our experience with The Thing. That was a thing unto itself.

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Munchkin Big Box hitting Backerkit!



Hey, Munchkin Maniacs! Ready to level up your game nights? Dive into the ultimate Munchkin experience with the Munchkin Big Box! This collector’s bounty is packed to the brim with over 600 cards decked out in John Kovalic’s iconic art, not to mention the rad new gameboards, standees, and more surprises than you can shake a +1 Sword at!

Here’s the rundown:

  • Playable with 3-6 Players
  • Epic game time of 1-2 Hours
  • Perfect for ages 14+
  • BackerKit steal of $125
Picture courtesy of Steve Jackson Games – Disclaimer: Images Not Final and may change before game release

What you’re getting:

  • A mind-blowing 650+ cards including all your faves and new exclusives
  • A killer box that can hold over 2,000 cards and gear
  • Swanky card separators and dual gameboards for ultimate play
  • Six colorful dice, two Kill-O-Meters, and an updated rulebook to keep things spicy
  • 12 Standies in various colors, standie bases, and a playable bookmark because why not?
  • The cherry on top? A Limited Edition Spyke Enamel Pin and exclusive Munchkin decals!

Since its epic launch in 2001, Munchkin has been slaying at game nights worldwide. Now’s your chance to be part of the legend. Get ready to take a one-way ticket to Munchkin glory, and you need to do is click on to BackerKit and help this bad-boy come alive!

Picture courtesy of Steve Jackson Games – Disclaimer: Images Not Final and may change before game release

So, what are you waiting for? Summon your crew, back ’em on BackerKit, and let’s make the Munchkin Big Box a reality. Your adventure begins now – don’t miss out on the loot, the laughs, and the ultimate betrayal. Back it, unpack it, and start the munchkin madness cuz you KNOW HauntedMTL is up and ready to back!

Picture courtesy of Steve Jackson Games – Disclaimer: Images Not Final and may change before game release

Join the adventure on BackerKit and let’s slay this beast together! 🐉🗡️✨

Click here to back the Munchkin Big Box on BackerKit!

Don’t just play the game, BE the game. Let’s do this, Munchkinheads!


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Let’s! Revolution! @ PAX: Minesweeping Madness



Continuing with video games I got to try out at PAX East, I was delighted to demo Let’s! Revolution! the debut game by developer and publisher BUCK. BUCK has historically been an animation and design studio, notably having worked on Into the Spiderverse and Love, Death, & Robots. Let’s! Revolution! marks their first foray into the world of video game development. I found this so interesting, I spoke to the Creative Director for Let’s! Revolution! on his career and how BUCK navigated that transition (find it here).

Let’s! Revolution! is a roguelike puzzle game inspired by the classic game Minesweeper. In it, you play as one of six heroes fighting their way along the dangerous roads to the capital city. Once there, you can defeat the tyrannical king and save the kingdom from his reign. Released in July of 2023, the game has been met with high praise. Unsurprisingly, this includes the game’s artistic and musical direction (by the team at Antfood), which is both stylistic and beautiful.

Watch the console reveal trailer here for a taste of the delightful animation and music:

I had the opportunity to play a 20 minute demo of Let’s! Revolution! on the PAX East show floor. I played alongside the Creative Director and other people who worked on the game. It’s important to note that this wasn’t long enough to get a feel for all the characters or the replayability of the game. But, it was definitely long enough to be enchanted by the game and the passion of the people who made it. 


The core mechanics are inspired by Minesweeper. The player must use the power of deduction to uncover procedurally generated maze pathways to the exit. However, enemies are hidden along the way and can defeat the player before they reach their goal. Each character has their own special abilities that can help. Items and general abilities can also be bought or discovered to make your hero more powerful. All of these are limited in some way either by energy (your action currency) or limited uses per run.

A screenshot of gameplay from Let’s! Revolution!

From what I played, the gameplay is relatively simple with a mix of chance and strategy. I liked the cozy atmosphere, especially when combined with the ‘high stakes’ mechanics associated with Minesweeper. The UI was easy to understand and interact with while still being cohesive with the storytelling. And of course, the character design is exquisite and narratively driven, with many of the characters presenting as queer. 

Having released on consoles earlier this month (April 2024), Let’s! Revolution! is even easier to access than ever. Let’s! Revolution! is a perfect game for those who love cozy roguelites and beautiful (queer) aesthetics. I definitely recommend it for fans of roguelites looking to try something fresh. Look for it anywhere you game!

4.5 out of 5 stars (4.5 / 5)

Check out my other PAX posts here!

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Interview with Creative Director Michael Highland: Let’s! Revolution! @ PAX



Another game I had the chance to play at PAX East was, Let’s! Revolution!, a Minesweeper-inspired roguelite puzzle game by animation (and now game) studio, BUCK. I talk more about the game itself in another post. Here, I wanted to highlight the conversation I had with Michael Highland, the Creative Director for Let’s! Revolution! and his journey through video game development.

How did you become involved in video game development?

I studied digital media design in college; this was before there were many programs dedicated to game development. After graduating, I self-published a mobile game called Hipster City Cycle with friends. Over the next few years, I slowly got more freelance work as a game designer, and eventually landed a full-time role at thatgamecompany working on the follow-up to their 2012 GOTY Journey. I worked my way up there and was eventually the Lead Designer on Sky: Children of the Light. Working at thatgamecompany opened a lot of doors professionally. I eventually wound up at BUCK, where I saw the opportunity to help establish a new game studio within a very vibrant existing creative culture.

What has been the most challenging aspect of the development process?


Each studio has its own unique issues based on the people involved. There are commonalities like the need to fight feature creep and building consensus around ideas early in the process when all you have is an abstract grey box prototype to react to. At BUCK the biggest challenge has been channeling the abundance of creative energy and talent into a shippable product. There’s a ton of enthusiasm for games within the company, and without clear product-centric goals (who is the target audience, what platform are we releasing on, what’s the marketing strategy), projects have the tendency to spiral out of scope. Another challenge has been building credibility with publishers. BUCK has an amazing pedigree for animation and design, maybe the best in the world, but when we initially pitched ideas to publishers, they all said the same thing: looks great, but until you’ve shipped a game, you’re too high-risk. That’s what led to us self-publishing Let’s! Revolution! Now that we have a well-reviewed game out in the wild, I feel confident we’ll have more luck with publishers. 

BUCK primarily has its roots in animation, what led the decision to start branching into video game development?

It started with a general excitement about the medium and a desire among the staff to work on a game. Leadership at BUCK is all about providing the staff with exciting creative opportunities, and getting to work on a game, is, for some, a creative dream come true. And putting BUCK content out in the world is a point of pride and a boost to morale. From a business perspective, the fact we can staff out game projects with the top animation and design talent in the world is a huge advantage. We’re already starting to see new opportunities for the service side of the business based on the success of Let’s! Revolution! 

The art, unsurprisingly, is delightful. What were some of the priorities during the character design process and how did those influence the final hero designs?

Our Art Director Emily Suvanvej really led the charge on the look of the game. There are obvious influences like Studio Ghibli, Moebius, and Steven Universe. My shared goal with Emily was to make something together that reflected the diversity of the team’s artistic and lived experiences. The artists put so much love into the character designs and animation, it really shows. 


Some of the primary game mechanics take inspiration from Minesweeper, what was the process like to create your own interpretation of those classic mechanics?

This article goes into depth on this topic. The TLDR is that we took a very iterative approach, at each stage trying to identify what was working about the prototype and lean into that. The initial game concept came together relatively quickly in part because our goal for this project was just to finish a game. We just focused on what was good and kept building on it. I wouldn’t say the final game is “perfect” – but we wound up with a much bigger and higher quality experience than I expected by not letting perfectionism get in the way of making good better. 

Is there anything else you would like to plug or that you think is important for people to know about Let’s! Revolution! or other upcoming projects?

The music and sound design for the game is stellar. We worked with a creative audio company called Antfood and they knocked it out of the park. The audio got an honorable mention from IGF, which I think is extra impressive because most of the other games were audio-centric titles with some unusual hook to the sound design. For the OST, Antfood reworked all of the music from the game into a continuous flow, like a concept album. It’s so good. I love working with them.

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