It’s fun to watch Shark Tank and see the business owners pitch their sometimes-ridiculous ventures to the panel of Sharks, and now it’s time for you to be both a shark and an inventor in one go.
With Mattel’s Silicon Valley Startups, players are challenged to think on their feet to craft investment-worthy startup companies using a bit of luck, hilarious antics, and quick thinking as your game night goes from the living room to the boardroom.
By the luck of the draw, each player (or teams of players) will draw facts about a potential startup and use creativity and ingenuity to turn a seemingly random idea into a genius pitch to get the investment point from the round’s judge. If the premise seems at all easy, just wait until you’re trying to pitch a company titled “Your Astrological Sign” + Rage (although Pisces Rage does has a fun ring to it) to fashion designers in the televangelism industry that also incorporates health sensors. You must think on your feet to turn the weird topics around and into a winning hand.
To play, each entrepreneur will draw two Company Name, Target User, and Industry cards. Looking at the two cards per category, an entrepreneur will pick just one to play, discarding the other. Using those three cards together, each player must create a cohesive and persuasive pitch that seamlessly brings the three themes together. You are pitching a new company as a whole, not an individual product in a bid to secure funding (aka win the round’s point). Time to get started pitching your company Elbow Wax that targets people who wear tight pants in the health inspection industry. Can you pitch it successfully?
Not only do you have to pivot your three random cards into a plausible pitch, but the round’s investor (the judge) has an additional trick up their sleeve. The investor will draw two Hot Trend cards (and similarly only use one of the two) as they ask the entrepreneur how the trendy topic — such as robotics, e-commerce, or catfishing — will play into their pitch. Then, each entrepreneur must smoothly incorporate that into their pitch to win the round.
There’s no time limit to pitch your company, so this is your time to piece together a clever, attention-grabbing statement to show that your venture could be a success. The game instructions offer some helpful tips to make your pitch successful, including a big opening statement, making up details and data that sound convincing, and name dropping people. However you choose to pitch, do so with confidence. It doesn’t have to be the most logical company in the world (after all, it’s just a game), but pitch it as such to make it into a convincing venture if you want to win.
If you, as the CEO of your new startup, can passionately and convincingly present the startup, you’ll win the round. Each round’s winner will earn that Hot Topic card, and the game winner is the player who has collected the most of the trending cards.
This party game for players ages 14 and up will allow you to test your creativity and quick thinking as you dodge hilarious curveballs to craft the perfect persuasive pitch. Whether you get the investment or not, your network of entrepreneurs and investors is in for a laugh.