The Famous Five Adventures Card Game played by Fiona

I persuaded Ewan to play this with me last night, and we fell into the same trap as Stef and I did. We drew a card on every turn (the instructions are not quite clear!) and made it pointless to score the rounds. I became the winner by default as I was the first to finish a story set.

The game is essentially identical to the 1950s version, but with updated illustrations and rather brighter colours used.


The box has a different design, the Five on the front clearly being modelled on the cast of the 70s TV series.


It also mentions the TV series on the side.


Side of the 50s box above the 70s one

The back however, and the backs of the cards are very similar. The children are in the exact same position.


The four stories are the same, as are the colours representing them on the cards. A vast majority of the cards feature the same scene, but a new illustration like below. I don’t think the Five look particularly like the 70s cast on the actual cards actually. Anne is the most similar but that’s probably because she has the iconic hair and alice-band of Jennifer Thanisch. The illustrator was uncredited but I think it’s safe to say it isn’t Betty Maxey. The jeans are too tight in the leg (and nobody is missing any limbs!).


The Five discover a secret room at Owl’s Dene

There are a few cases where the illustration is quite different, or indeed, swapped for a different scene.

In the Five on a Treasure Island set you can see that the 70s game skips Setting off in the boat, and goes straight to arriving on Kirrin Island. To make up for this, a card where Timmy rescues the map from the water has been added.


Likewise in Five Go Off in a Caravan’s set, Julian’s hiding place has been replaced with Pongo to the rescue.

Also in this set the Two Angry Men have suddenly become burglars in face masks. Card #1 probably the most identical to any of the originals though.


Then in the set for Five Get into Trouble two of the titles are switched.


As I noted last time card #3 should have read Something happens to Dick, not Richard. The 70s set has switched that title to card #4, but that scene is where the escaped prisoner changes his clothes and throws the prison uniform down the well. So card #3 makes more sense, but card #4 makes less sense. Irritatingly the annoying random capitals have been kept. Either capitalise all words like in a book title, or don’t capitalise at all. Don’t Capitalise only the Words that you think are Important! That was horribly to type and I apologise to you all for making you read it.

The General Danger card has also been changed. The danger is now being tied up and thrown in a barn rather than just having to look afraid.


The new set rather lacks the charm the original had, but clearly it was a clever move to tie it in with the TV series and re-release it for a generation of new fans.

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1 Response to The Famous Five Adventures Card Game played by Fiona

  1. Francis says:

    How nice to see them laid out like this – it is very illuminating. I have never played the game so cannot comment on the proper way to play it. Thanks.


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