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Subject: Games About Language? rss

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Jason Thompson
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I'm curious... are there any board/card games out there in which players' language use (choice of spoken words, not swearing -_-) is a mechanic?

Maybe this would lend itself more to a RPG: I'm thinking for instance of "Land of Og," in which "words" are a precious commodity, and if you're speaking in character you're only supposed to draw from your tiny pool of 2d6ish words which you 'own' (i.e. from my limited memory of playing: "Green Big! Big big big! Ball! Ball!") Or The Dying Earth RPG, in which characters get bonuses for uttering randomly predetermined phrases at appropriate times.

But since the mechanic could be decoupled from 'roleplaying,' I'm curious if there are any games which use something similar as a mechanic -- a game in which the player's choice of words, and speaking those words, is a trigger for actions or powers? I couldn't find any out there, but I'd be surprised something doesn't exist.
 
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Serpent's Tongue might be what you're looking for, sort of. It's kind of like LARPing (live action roleplaying) combined with Mage Wars Arena. Players have binders full of spell cards they play at each other, but if they cast the spell by reading its name in a made-up language they get a bonus. Higher-level spells are harder to read--their names are longer and they are written in a made-up script rather than phonetic English.
 
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Bryan Thunkd
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Not sure if these are quite what you're looking for but...

Ugg Tect (maybe mispelled) has a made up language that you have to remember to communicate how to build something (I think, I've only seen it played and not played it myself).

In Ogga Booga you have to repeat a chain of nonsense words based on what cards are played.

In 25 Words or Less you have a limited number of words, the amount you get is decided on who bids the lowest, to get your partner to guess the words on your card.

 
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Marco
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¬°New Amici! uses translating of words to and from spanish. It's actually all that the game is about.
 
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Mark McEvoy
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The goofy-for-fun expansions of Magic the Gathering, Unglued and Unhinged, had abilities that triggered on word usage.




I could tell you about common rules of the game Mao that involve mandatory or prohibited speaking, but then I'd have to issue myself a penalty card.


In UNO, failure to say the word when you're at one card is a penalty.
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Jason Thompson
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Thanks everyone!! These are great suggestions; I think Ugg Tect will probably be the first one I pick up.
 
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Pete
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Taboo of course serves the "forbidden word" half of this mechanic.

Pete (states the most obvious)
 
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