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Subject: Review - small quiz game with ok questions but a questionable mechanic rss

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Fnorbl Fnorblobson
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I got the german version of the game (called "Arschkarte") as a present. The company that created it is swedish. There might also be an english version of the game, but I'm not sure about that.


Contents:
On the inside of the box are the instructions printed. So, apart from the box, you got a pile of cards, each of which having four questions on one side and the four correct answers on the other. Despite the small box and even smaller stack of cards, there is quite a number of questions to have, due to there being four times as many questions as cards. In addition, there are nine or so "Dumstrut" cards.


Quality:
The cards are ok, the box is ok too, nothing special. Nothing is flimsy, but nothing is great either.


Art:

The box art is average, and else there is no art whatsoever, just black text on white cards, while the "Dumstrut" cards are red with white border and a number.


Gameplay:
Setup - Each player needs something to write down his/her answers, be it pen or paper, a mobile phone, or whatever. Also, each player is given a red card ("Dumstrut") with a number of it. The purpose of the number is to be able to link the card to the player who got that number.

Turn cycle - One player reads out loud one of the four questions of the top card of the pile. Each player puts then his/her red Dumstrut card in front of another player. Then each player secretly writes down the answer to the question. Next, the answers are revealed. The player who is the closest gets three points, the one who is second closest two points, third closes one point, and the others nothing. Also, all players, who put their red card in front of the player who did the worst in answering that question, gain an additional point.

You play the game until a player reached a certain score, the game has run for a certain time, or you just feel like playing something else. The player with the highest score wins.


What I like about the game:
- quickly explained
- quite a number of questions (they are in the likes of "in how many years does the sun burn out" or "how many spikes has a mature hedgehog" or "how many condoms have been sold in the year 2010" and so on)
- without the box, but just a rubber band or something around the cards, it fits into a pocket


What I dislike about the game:
- The box is two to three times as large as needed. Yes, this way you can print the rules on the inside of the box, but it's still a waste of space. I'd have preferred the box to be smaller and the rules to be an added leaflet. Also, it might be a fun game to take to some pub or a park to play with friends, but there size matters too, so I'd just put a rubber band around the cards and leave the box behind.
- Out of curiosity I checked what the game is sold for, and on german Amazon it's about 20€, which I think is far too much. 10€ at most seems to make more sense.
- So, slapping the red Dumstrut card in front of a player equals you stating: "I'm sure that of all people participating in this game, you know the least what this question is about." If all players are about equal in matters of knowledge, then that can work. But if one player is less knowledgeable than the others, then, to win, other players will keep slapping the red card in front of him/her quite often. And telling a person over and over during a game "you know less than we do" is not what I consider as fun. Basically, I'd just ignore the red cards and play it as a simple quiz game without extra rules.
- Players are basically never the same knowledgeable. So, for such quiz games to work, I think that they need a way to help less knowledgeable people out. For example, the popular quiz card game Anno Domini allows players to bluff. So even if you don't know that much in a number of areas, you might still win, by more accurately finding out bluffs of other players or being better in bluffing yourself.


Summary:
I'd suggest you to pick up the game, if you see it on a fair like Essen on your way out in a "each game just 5€ to 8€" box, so that you got something to play on your way home. If you really love quiz games of all sorts, then 10€ is also fair, but 20€ is too much in my opinion. The game is not bad, and when we played it in a pub, without score points or the red cards but just asking the questions and having people attempt to answer them accurately, it was fun too. But I dislike the "point out the player who will fail the most likely" mechanic, and the lack of alternatives to score points.
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