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Cypress Hill’s HotBox Game a Welcome Distraction from the Pandemic



A not so “Insane in the Brain” card game partnership has world-renowned hip-hop group, Cypress Hill, capitalizing on quarantine cannabis use and boredom.

Cypress Hill, iconically known for encouraging cannabis consumption with its elevated jams throughout prohibition during the ’90s, has officially partnered with FITZ Games on a weed-inspired card game sure to preoccupy pot enthusiasts during the pandemic, called HotBox.

“As we were developing HotBox, we shared the concept with friends for feedback,” FITZ Games Founder Mike Rosenbaum tells DOPE. “One person we connected with was Sam Sklover from Primary Wave—the team that manages Cypress Hill. Sam and the team loved it and our partnership with FITZ Games was born.

“We met with the Cypress Hill guys and they loved HotBox,” Rosenbaum adds. “We had a few collaboration sessions with B-Real, Sen and BoBo to make the game what it is. The Cypress Hill guys know cannabis inside and out and you can really see that in the creative output of HotBox.”

“As we were developing HotBox, we shared the concept with friends for feedback.”

The iconic hip-hop group boasts multi-platinum ’90s hits, including “I Wanna Get High,” a song that—nearly three decades later—is still a buzzworthy tune for tokers. The legendary lyrics highlight the group’s passion for recreational cannabis during an era in which getting high was still taboo.

Rolling Stone reported that during a “joint” statement announcing the game, Cypress Hill’s members said, “You just need three things for a good night in quarantine: HotBox’s Cypress Hill expansion pack, a video session with your friends and weed.”

Cypress Hill’s B-Real told Forbes, “It is pretty outrageous. It was just so funny that it got people involved, even though they weren’t necessarily a part of the game.”

HotBox offers hilarious “answer cards” that players use to fill blanks of “question cards.” But the main difference—besides the topics—is that this game incorporates “dare cards” that have players perform embarrassing or strange actions that can include others.

The game goes beyond what’s expected of similar card games, bringing in others who aren’t actually playing. For instance, a “dare card” could involve taking a shot of ranch dressing. But it also might require you to FaceTime with an ex.

In most cases, all players have consumed or are consuming cannabis in one way or another.

B Real explained, “You know if stoners are playing, they’re smoking while they’re playing. Me, I’d be smokin’ a joint, most likely. But other people would probably be doing bong hits, or they’d be doing dab hits.”

The HotBox game’s cannabis inclusion is summarized in bullet points, pointing to how it pairs well with “Indica strains for a night-in” or “Sativa for a higher energy time.” Of course, the game is meant for players ages 21 and up.

HotBox’s base deck includes 420 cards and retails for $25. But expansion packs with themed bonus cards are available to purchase at an additional cost. These expansion packs focus on topics that include the munchies, other drugs and Cypress Hill’s music and history.

The partnership is a first for Primary Wave Music, the music publishing and management company representing Cypress Hill.

“Our branding team is constantly looking for ways to move the needle for both our management and publishing clients,” a Primary Wave representative told Rolling Stone. “We’ve made deals with American Greetings for a digital card and Shinola for a watch, [both of which incorporated] Smokey Robinson’s songs. We were also the company behind the Aerosmith lottery scratch-off and Kurt Cobain converse sneaker.”


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