Jason Elliott
United States
Hilliard
Ohio
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Dump The Ump, Kickstarter by Al Barnes, Reviewed by Jason Elliott from PaladinElliott Productions

What are the recommendations for this game?

Number of players: 2+
Time of game: Not listed (from my experiences it can average 30 minutes and this includes learning and teaching)
Age recommendation: 8 and up


The back story: It is time to go play Baseball, but for whatever reason you can't, it's too hot, it's too far, not enough people getting together and so on. Well, with this little streamlined version you can play whenever you want, and you can take it with you easily, as it all fits in a cup (with lid)!




What comes in the game? (Note: Basing this off the prototype copy)

Rules Sheet
One fabric board (makes it take up less space)
1 Plastic Cup ( 1 lid for it as well)
1 six sided die
5 plastic pawns in five different colors (red, green, purple, yellow, and blue- these represent 5 types of batters: The Power Hitter, The Stealer, The Contact Hitter, The Extra Baser, and The Bunter)
6 red plastic chips
1 black batting chip (one side is Swing, one side is Take)
1 white pitching chip (one side is Strike, one side is Ball)




What is the end game objective? What am I striving for?

You want to have the most runs by the time the 3rd Inning is over. Another way to win is to be the first to hit 10 runs.

Special Note: If the players are tied at the end of the 3rd Inning then continue play by adding one more inning, and if the tie persists, then again add one more inning.


How do I set the game up?

Each person takes their position to the left or to the right of the board so that everyone playing has a good view. You will use the six red plastic chips to track the inning (broken into the top and the bottom), score for each team, balls, strikes, and outs. You will need to determine who is visiting team (going first) and home team (which closes each inning). The game rules have the player who rolls the highest on the die will have the choice of visitors or home team. Through each half of an inning, players will switch their tokens as one team goes on the offensive and the other goes to defensive (and continuing to switch). In this switch you will also trade the five types of batters. The current pitcher will control the scoreboard.




Now to play:

When you are the team that is up to bat, you will select a batter from your active pool and place it on home plate to denote which one is the active batter. These batters have different advantages if they get to roll the die. Each player is going to secretly choose how they are going to display their chip on the game table. This is known as the Pitch, and must be revealed by each player at the same time. You are not allowed to alter the placement of the chip, if you do as a Batter it automatically defaults to Strike, and if the Pitcher does it will automatically default to Ball. This would be in circumstances of the chip being knocked off or changed by accident.

Here are the four outcomes based off of the Batting Chip (Swing or Take) and the Pitching Chip (Strike or Ball):

Batter Swing + Pitcher Strike = Roll the die
Batter Take + Pitcher Strike = Strike
Batter Swing + Pitcher Ball = Strike
Batter Take + Pitcher Ball = Ball

So getting four balls means your batter is walked so you will move that batter on base, and move any runners accordingly if they are pushed on the bases. Getting three strikes means the batter is out, so you will add an out. If you get to roll the die the outcome is based on which player is at bat.

The Power Hitter Die Results

Die Roll 1 = Triple Play, so up to 3 outs, depending on number of runners with the batter. If this is the third out, then change sides.
Die Roll 2 = Double Play, so up to 2 outs, depending on number of runners with the batter. If this is the third out, then change sides.
Die Roll 3 = Out, remove the batter, and add one out. If this is the third out, then change sides.
Die Roll 4 = Home Run, move any runners to home, and score appropriately.
Die Roll 5 = Home Run, move any runners to home, and score appropriately.
Die Roll 6 = Home Run, move any runners to home, and score appropriately.


The Stealer Die Results

Die Roll 1 = Out, remove the batter, and add one out. If this is the third out, then change sides.
Die Roll 2 = Out, remove the batter, and add one out. If this is the third out, then change sides.
Die Roll 3 = Single, move to first base, push runners if necessary.
Die Roll 4 = Single, move to first base, push runners if necessary.
Die Roll 5 = Single, move to first base, push runners if necessary.
Die Roll 6 = Single, move to first base, push runners if necessary.

Special Note: The Stealer is the only batter than can steal bases. This pawn must make it on base to attempt this special power. You must declare before a pitch, and then you are attempting to steal the next base (2nd, 3rd, or Home). You roll against the pitcher. If your roll is higher you take the next base. If the pitcher has the higher roll, then the Stealer is out, remove the runner from the board, and add an out.


The Contact Hitter Die Results

Die Roll 1 = Foul Ball, add one strike unless you are already at two ( you can't foul out).
Die Roll 2 = Foul Ball, add one strike unless you are already at two ( you can't foul out).
Die Roll 3 = Single, move to first base, push runners if necessary.
Die Roll 4 = Single, move to first base, push runners if necessary.
Die Roll 5 = Single, move to first base, push runners if necessary.
Die Roll 6 = Single, move to first base, push runners if necessary.


The Extra Baser Die Results

Die Roll 1 = Out, remove the batter, and add one out. If this is the third out, then change sides.
Die Roll 2 = Out, remove the batter, and add one out. If this is the third out, then change sides.
Die Roll 3 = Single, move to first base, push runners if necessary.
Die Roll 4 = Single, move to first base, push runners if necessary.
Die Roll 5 = Single, move to first base, push runners if necessary.
Die Roll 6 = Single, move to first base, push runners if necessary.


The Bunter Die Results

Die Roll 1 = Sacrifice Bunt Out, this is an out, but it advances the runners one base further, if this is the third out, then change sides.
Die Roll 2 = Sacrifice Bunt Out, this is an out, but it advances the runners one base further, if this is the third out, then change sides.
Die Roll 3 = Sacrifice Bunt Out, this is an out, but it advances the runners one base further, if this is the third out, then change sides.
Die Roll 4 = Single, move to first base, push runners if necessary.
Die Roll 5 = Single, move to first base, push runners if necessary.
Die Roll 6 = Single, move to first base, push runners if necessary.


Special Note: You cannot use a certain type of batter until it has returned to the available pool. So in other words, you can't switch out who is on base, and must wait until that batter scores or is out to use them again.

Special Note: Other than what has been mentioned above this, you are allowed to bat in any order, as long as the batters are part of the available pool.




Are there any variations for this game?

You could add more than two players, where you start to assign batting roles to different players. You could also alternate between innings, switching in and out players as needed. You can also allow players to create teams, and create brackets to allow for tournaments and play offs. You could even go as far and create your own types of batters and pitchers, because the rule set is in good order, allowing for creativity to flourish and add to the game.

Some game results:

Our games so far have been easy to play, quick to jump into, and easy to move around. This is a game that can be in a collection, or easily classified as a travel game. Heck, you could have a tray set up in the back seats as you are taking the family to a ball game, and playing this on the way there! With this being said, one game was a 5 to 0 shutout. The game had been quiet through two innings, and then the visitors opened up with a double, and then a single. The Power Hitter was up and belted a three run homer, and then The Contact Hitter got on, and the Power Hitter again hit another homer to make it 5 runs in the top of the third. Three outs followed in a row, and then the home team was quiet in the bottom of the third, and that ended the game. The later game had Team Ladies winning 5 to 3 over Team Gents. The game experienced stolen bases, walks, and a 2 run homerun!




Final Thoughts:

I would first score this in terms of family playing with kids. If you take this into account then I score it a 10 (using a metric such as BoardGameGeek.com) for ease of play, the bluffing mechanism teaches kids a whole new aspect of game play, and that there is strategy in not only trying to figure out what the other player is going to do with their chip, but how you want to play your own chip. The game is deceptively easy to teach, easy to play, and yet allows for older players to add whatever they want in terms of homebrew rules and add-ons. Our kids really enjoyed playing the game and are already asking to play again tomorrow.

In terms of scoring for adults only, I would give this a 7. It is a great filler, it could easily be treated as a beer and pretzels game, and I know people that as soon as they see this game are going to build brackets and have playoffs. It is not a heavy game, though, if a tie persists it could become a long game. It is after all possible.

In conclusion: If you like games with a strong Baseball theme, like short filler games, like games with great play mats, like easily accessible travel games, like bluffing games, and games that can be played with kids, then I recommend this game to you. I for one say I have enjoyed playing this game with my wife and kids (7 and 5, son and daughter) and I love the fact they could easily jump into the game action!


Thank you so much for reading this report on Dump The Ump!

Make sure to check it out on Kickstarter!

I hope you will check out my PaladinElliott Blog at:

https://paladinelliott.blogspot.com/

check out some of my videos at:

https://www.youtube.com/channel/UC58qYf_vaCaCnu6qvd-WpKw

and check out my Ready To Game Podcast at Soundcloud and/or Itunes:

https://soundcloud.com/jason-elliott-641636807/ready-to-game...

https://itunes.apple.com/us/podcast/ready-to-game-podcast-ep......;ign-mpt=uo%3D4

and remember I am always....READY TO GAME!!!



RET. SSG Jason L. Elliott (PaladinElliott)
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