Piranha Panic is a game that I had never heard of but my son had it as one of the few items that was not a video game on his Christmas list so I had to get it. The recommended ages for this game are 5 and up but it is really very easy to understand and to play so I'm sure even younger kids could play it with no problem. The box has warnings all over it about small parts so that would be my guess as for why the ages start at 5. It can be played with 2-4 players.
It is very easy to set up and like I said earlier, easy to understand and play. We have played several times and so far the average time a game takes to complete is about 15 minutes. My son is 7 and it holds his attention and as adults we like it because it requires little time to play, to set up and to clean up. There is minor assembly required. This is a stand up game, not a flat board game and it has feet that snap on the back to stand it up similar to the angle of a pinballmachine. It has a header that snaps into place on the top and a tray that fits on the bottom. Eac h player gets 3 small colored balls that look like fish. The fish swim up stream and hope to reach the top before getting eaten by the hungry piranhas. The face of this game is a series of little cups that your fish go in depending on the number that is rolled on the die. If the face of the die shows the picture of the piranha, that means the piranhas are going to attack. You then roll the die again todetermine how many of the 4 piranha marbles are going to be put in play. If the roll lands on the piranha picture again, it's Piranha Panic and all 4 marbles are used. Once you know how many of the piranha marbles to use, they are place in spots on the top of the unit. You then pull a handle on the side like a slot machine which drops the marbles into the base of the unit. On the way rolling down, the marbles zig zag their way down and flip over some of the cups and up pops a piranha head. If one of your fish is in the cup that pops, your fish gets eaten and has to start all over again. The first player to get all 3 fish to the top wins.