Snake Oil Party — A Schoolhouse Review

I cannot believe this is the last one. The final review of the year, for me, with the Schoolhouse Review Crew.  Of course I will be back next year –  but how quickly this year has gone by. And what amazing folks I have gotten to know; some fabulous materials we have been blessed with too! 🙂

For this very last review; it was nothing BUT fun!  Snake Oil from Out of the Box Games is probably the best game we have played. Fun for all of the ages, together. Let me say upfront too, I do not like games. Never been big on ’em. So this as quite a treat for my board game loving family to find one that even I enjoy! (and enjoy does not begin to describe it really!!) In case you didn’t know in the Old West, sly snake oil salesmen had a special talent and that was their ability to get even the most skeptical customer to buy the most dubious product. In the game of Snake Oil, that’s just what everyone gets to do!


Snake Oil is recommended for players 10 and up, although I  think it could be used for all ages (mine are 9, 5, and 3).  We teamed up our little ones, one with mom and one with his older brother, and they had a blast!! It’s really is fun for everyone !  And Snake Oil is only  $19.99. That’s a great price for the hours of fun that come from this box!
The game can be played by 3-10 players and takes about 30 minutes to play (although it can go longer; how involved do you all get? how crazy can everyone be)!  I will say there were a couple cards we chose to remove from the game to make it a bit more appropriate for our family but that did not take away from the fun or experience at all.  There are so many customer cards,  and word cards, provided for the game, removing a few was not something anyone even noticed.  But this really is a very family friendly game; all ages can enjoy.

To give you an idea as to how this one is played: one person is a customer (green and blue cards) or  seller (purple card).  The Customer draws a green or blue card, each card has two sides to it.  The Customer gets to choose which side he wants to use.  For example, the customer could choose between being a cowboy or a nurse.  My son chose cowboy, ever since we saw the Lone Ranger…That’s what he wants to be.  He even has the bandana over his face. All the time.


Then there is the seller (these are the players who are not a buyer) and each of them draws 6 purple word cards.  From those, the Seller chooses two cards to create a product which the seller then must pitch to the the customer.  This is basically the “selling snake oil” part.  They can be as crazy ad silly as they like as they attempt to sell their”product”.  The seller who convinces the customer to purchase their “product” wins the customer card and the player with the most cards at the end of the game is the winner.  Crazy, creative…..Sounds great right?!?


My oldest son came up with some interesting ones to pitch: the stick brain, a slide hood, pizza butter… My five year old son on the other hand chose things like: booger magnet, fart soap, brain gum, and poop candy…..After those I am sure you can guess at the ones we removed before we played any future games. Boys…..LOL  My daughter who is 3 ( we played together) picked things like: music slide, doll blanket, glitter mirror…even at the age of three she is able to put these things together and in her own way “sell” her product. It helps she has such a cute smile and all those curls….how can anyone say no to her?



There are also lots of variations to the game that can be played. My oldest son (to help with his speech class) started to play the Snake Oil Live version where you pitch to a larger group. They recommend there be a host and three contestants; we did that once and then a few times, for the sake of improvisation, chose a couple cards for him to sell us, on the fly. This is a really good way to encourage public speaking if you ask me.  There are also lesson plan ideas you can use!!


Want to see the game in action? Click here:



We really did have a blast with this one and plan to use it as the next big family game for coming get togethers. The kids grandparents and great grandparents are big on table games and they always enjoy new ones. Especially those they can play with their grandchildren. So I am sure this is going to be such a treat in coming gatherings. And in the meantime, this one is definitely going to continue to be out around here, to play in lots of different and fun ways! 🙂



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