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Sep 05, 2012

Introducing Guts of Glory: A Board Game About Eating

The creator of the iOS game Spelltower has created a board game that calls itself the best thing since sliced bread… if you lived in a post-apocalyptic wasteland with no slice bread.

The card game and board game in one, Guts of Glory, is set in a post-apocalyptic era, where what players have to do in order to win is quite instinctive—eat their way to the top.

Players start with an empty stomach and a plateful of comestibles. By every turn, they must cram the food in their mouth, chew them, then swallow them afterwards. Throughout the game, they will draw cards that will either bring them closer to their goal or farther to it. These are cards, so you do not have to literally eat them, unless of course, you and your friends decide to simulate the game in real life). There are also cards that will bring you closer to your goal, such as the double chew—allowing you to chew faster than everyone else in the game.

The goal is for a player to earn a total of seven glory points which are earned by eating one’s own food or that of the opponents. If there are need to eat but no longer have any room in your mouth, you will have to give up one of your cards, thereby curtailing what could’ve been a definite victory.

In the box there are 60 game cards, 11 glory cards, 30 wooden chews, 4 mouth boards, and a game board. The game is for 2 to 4 players.

The maker of the board game is Zach Gage, a conceptual artist, game designer, and educator. He has previously been featured in several publications, such as the NY Times, Edge Magazine, NY Magazine, and Neural Magazine.

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Aug 22, 2012

5 Reasons Why Board Games are Great for Your Marriage

Board games, good for marriage? I am not even kidding. There are plenty of reasons why board games will do your love shack good, but here are five:

1. Board Games Teach Couples How to Handle Losing

Board games will always have a winner and a loser—just like in marriage. There will always be some sort of winner in every marriage—be it something serious as one’s career or which spouse gets to pick the movie to watch for the night. Board games will teach the necessary ingredients—graciousness for losers and humility for winners—that will help make the marriage even stronger.

2. Board Games are an Excellent Training Ground for Teamwork

Whenever you and your spouse are on the same team, board games are an excellent time to work on your boding and strategy skills. Whether it is a game of Scrabble, Monopoly, or Settlers of Catan, board games can help couples work together towards a shared goal.

3. Board Games Reveal Another Side of One’s Personality

Who knows, a round of a board game or two will reveal something you would have never known about your spouse. For example, a round of The Newlywed Game is filled with questions that will allow spouses to get to know and explore each other more.

4. Board Games Mean Interaction for Spouses

In today’s fast-paced times, how often do you actually get to talk to your spouse? Sit down, face-to-face, and simply talk? Watching movies or television, or driving to work together, or having dinner together does not even count because interaction is just incidental to an actual goal. By playing board games, spouses need to sit down together and talk—that is a luxury you cannot easily find nowadays.

5. Setting Up for a Special Night

You gotta admit that there is a certain measure of sexiness that comes with the idea of winning and being in a position of power. Why don’t you try spicing up a round of Clue into something that can lead to an interesting night?

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Aug 09, 2012

Hasbro to Turn Your Favourite Online Games into Board Games

This fall, you finally get to play your four of your favorite online games as a board game. Thanks to Hasbro, your growing board game collection will expand with these four titles: Farmville, Cityville, Words with Friends and Draw Something. John Frascotti, the Chief Marketing Officer of Hasbro has said that “for the first time, players will be able to play Words With Friends, CityVille and FarmVille online and face-to-face.”

The company behind the social online games, Zynga has struck a deal with Hasbro to work on a perfect translation of these well-loved online games into face-to-face games.

Some details of the appearance and instructions on how to play the games have already been released. CitvVille Monopoly looks like a Monopoly version with the goal of building one skyscraper after the other—a total of four all in all. The first one to build four skyscrapers wins.

Hasbro will give the classic board game Hungry Hungry Hippos a FarmVille twist with the new Farmville: Hungry Hungry Herd game. What used to be hippos are now farm animals, including a pig, sheep, cow, and horse.

Words With Friends is really just a redefined version of the good ‘ol Scrabble game. What you get is a Word With Friends game board, complete with the double-score and triple-score tiles. You can also opt for the Luxe version that has a rotating board.

While the last three versions are really just spin-offs of board games that Hasbro already sells, what is more exciting is what Draw Something will look like. It will probably look more or less like Pictionary or some other board game from Hasbro. Nonetheless, it is quite exciting to find out how Hasbro will fit Draw Something in their current roster of board games.

The games are set to be released this October or November. Which of these games are you planning to get?

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Jul 18, 2012

Of Board Games and Obesity

Obesity has always been a national issue. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, obesity among children has tripled in the past three decades. Parents struggling for a solution may have finally found what they’re looking for in a new board game: Eat to Win.

Created by a mom who struggled to help her overweight child, Eat to Win seeks to encourage proper nutrition and exercise through an unconventional yet familiar method: a board game.

According to creator Jammi Roscoe, “child obesity in America has become a major issue. An unhealthy lifestyle is a common problem among children and adults. Eat to Win was created to help encourage nutrition and exercise in fun and active games.”

The game will requires two to four players, who will earn extra dollars in a land of food spaces. Each food space represents a snack or food and indicates the average number of calories of the food or snack. Kids must be careful not to land on the Chocolate Lava Fountain or the Banana Split Pit. It may sound fun, but it will cause them to totally lose altogether!

In the Do It spaces, players are supposed to perform a silly activity or dance!

Included in the game are 40 Eat It Trivia Cards, 40 Do It Activity Cards, 20 Challenge Cards, and 6 Mover Pieces. There are also 30Food Tokens, Fun Money, and a game board.

The Eat It trivia cards provide information on how to fight obesity. To inspire children playing the game, these cards are specially fit for children’s understanding.

Jammi Roscoe created the game after her son was asked to wear an XL football uniform, thus limiting his participation in the game. This prompted her to integrate calorie-counting in a fun and interactive way for kids.

Eat to Win is currently used within the Center for Nutrition Policy and Promotion, a department of the US Department of Agriculture. The plan is to take the board game on a national level.

This is another milestone for the board game industry!

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Jul 06, 2012

History Lessons Provided by a Boardgame

We have discussed the various benefits of playing board games in our blogs. Not only are board games a great educational tool, they also provide for a great avenue for socialization. But did you know that board games are also capable of conveying the hardships of communism? Last June 28, 2012, a popular Polish board game, “Kolejka” or Queue was slated for international release.

How Queue works

First released in February 2011, Kolejka or Queue is a board game that recounts how the Polish lived during the communist era. There are two to five players in the game with a single goal in mind: to go to various stores throughout the board to buy the items in the shopping list. Each player will then send out the family members comprising 5 pawns to five neighborhood shops. The problem, though, is that all the shops are empty.

The players will then line up in the stores without knowing which of the stores will be delivering the goods. It will then be revealed that there are only enough product cards for those who are nearest to the door. And because everyone wants to go home with what they need, a variety of queue cards are drawn to get ahead in line, such as “Mother carrying small child”, “Under-the-counter goods” and “This is not your place, sir” cards. There are also cards that players will have to watch out for, such as “Delivery error” and “Closed for stocktaking”.

Several objects from the communist era can be found in the game, like the Popularna tea, Relaks shoes, and other commodities.

International Release

The board game has already been released internationally and is currently available in 6 languages: Polish, English, Russian, Spanish, German, and Japanese. According to the Institute of National Remembrance, the game is a “history lesson in a box” and has garnered heightened interest in many places in the world.

The maker of the game is Karol Madaj, who has even won the Game of the Year 2012 by GamesFanatic.pl for his board game. According to him, he hopes the game will reveal the reality of what happened during the communist period.

Board games… A great way for students to take interest in history, huh?

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Jun 21, 2012

The Godfather: Monopoly now Released!

At a time when board games are being turned into movies, it just feels right that sometimes it is the other way around. This time, a movie is the inspiration for a new board game released by Hasbro: The Godfather: Monopoly.

According to the release, you can “buy, sell, and trade the likes of Wolz International Pictures, Moe Green’s Casino, Joe’s Diner, and Hyman Roth’s Home as you muscle your way to an empire. Make them an offer they can’t refuse as you vie for the Corleone Long Island Home and Corleone Lake Tahoe Estate.” Looks like The Godfather fans have a lot of reminiscing to do! This new edition will certainly give both fan of the movie and the board game a refreshing new perspective at how Monopoly can be played.

Some of the favorite features of this Francis Ford Coppola classic can be found in its monopoly version. The houses and hotels are called Hideouts and Compounds. On the other hand, the Chance and Community cards are called Friends and Enemies. A new feature of the game is the “Don” cards, where players can basically kidnap their opponents to launder money and ask for ransom. Who said the only illegal things that could be done in Monopoly include illegal parking and failing to pay the bills?

There are even recognizable places in The Godfather trilogy that can be found in the game as well, such as the Corleone Lake Tahoe estate and Joe’s Diner. You can even play now with a gun, a horse’s head, a Genco olive oil tin, Brando’s limo and a dead fish among other new features.

Monopoly: The Godfather Collector’s Edition was released to celebrate the 40th anniversary of the iconic The Godfather. The game is a collaboration among Hasbro, Paramount and USAopoly.

So, ready to play a rough round of Monopoly? We know we are!

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Jun 07, 2012

Are Women Interested in Board Games?

You can really learn a lot from the differences between men and women—especially when it comes to board games. And if you are a guy, should you even bring up the topic of board games? What if she is nowhere near interested? Fortunately, there is enough information that can help you figure out if there is a remote probability that your girl is interested in board games.

A Facebook study showed that more women are interested in board games than men. The study was conducted by Game Whisperer among 95,600 Facebook users in the US last 2010 who listed “board games”, “board game” and “board gaming” in their interests. Surprisingly enough, 63% of those who did were women, outnumbering the 37% men by far.

Of course, there is a huge margin of error involved in this raw study. For one, women may be more expressive of their interests in board games and would like to befriend people or maybe even date guys who are into it as well. Another conclusion is that men may be less likely to express their interests in board games, at least in their Facebook page.

The study also sorted out those who played board games based on where they live. 10.88% lived in California, followed by Texas (6.63%), then Illinois (5.6%), then New York (5.40%), Washington State (4.73%), Florida (4.23%), and Ohio (4.14%). Rounding the top ten states were Pennsylvania (4.02%), Michigan (3.97%), and Georgia (3.49%).

There are as many women as there are men who play board games in Utah, Montana, and New Hampshire. In Wyoming, West Virginia, and Delaware though, only 25% of men expressed interest in playing board games.

What does this 2010 study tell us about women and board games?

You might be surprised at how your date might turn out if you ask them about board games. But before doing that, you might want to check out their interests in their Facebook page.

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May 17, 2012

The Grim Histories of Some of Your Favourite Board Games

We always feel a little more passionate and fascinated whenever we learn the story behind something we love. Today, you’ll find out some of the weirdest origins of the most famous and all-time favorite board games!

1. The Game of Life

One of the fastest-selling board games when it was first released in 1860, The Game of Life remains a classic mainstay in most households. But did you know that the game’s original version had rather disturbing squares ranging from “Disgrace” and “Ruin” to “Crime” and even “Suicide”?

The creator of the game is Milton Bradley, a lithographer who sketched the board game and called it The Checkered Game of Life. Although much of the depressing squares are gone in today’s version, a rather grim reminder still survives: the end of life.

2. Clue

Who doesn’t love a round or two of Clue? Bet you didn’t know that it was actually released in England around 1949 with the name Cluedo. It was created by Anthony Pratt in the midst of the Nazi outbreak with the working title “Murder!” The game then included a ton of weapons including a bomb, poison, syringe, axe, rope, knife, and a lot of other weapons. When the idea was sold to the toy company Waddington Games, production was held for a moment because of the world war.

3. Monopoly

Having sold close to 280 million copies, Monopoly has definitely gone a long way from when it was first released in 1935. But did you know that it has been described and looked at grimly in the past? In fact, Wall Street guru Derk Solko said that it was “one of the most amoral experiences in the history of entertainment”. Why wouldn’t it be, when the main point is to crush the enemy to the point of poverty?

Monopoly is actually a ripoff of The Landlord’s Game, a game that was patented in 1904 by a certain Elizabeth Magie. How did The Parker Brothers manage to get hold of the game? By paying the patent for a measly $500.

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