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Subject: Poo: Not a Complete Stinker rss

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Benjamin Hoy
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Poo: The Card Game

Players: 2-8
Playing Time: 15 min
Contents: 110 cards

Poo is a card-based game that pits monkey against monkey in a poo throwing fight of epic proportions.

Game Mechanics
The game mechanics are quite simple. On your turn you play a card from your hand and then draw a card to replace it. If you flung a poo card your opponent then has the opportunity to play block or mishap cards. These cards block the damage, redirect it, and/or cause the throwing player to miss a turn. If the defending player lacks block or mishap cards they are hit by the poo and the damage is recorded. Should a player ever reach 15 poo they are eliminated from the game. The only exception to this is that the first player eliminated receives a golden banana and returns to the game with 8 poo on them. In larger games (5+ players) 2 golden bananas are available. Players have a variety of other options such as cleaning poo off themselves or playing event cards. The bulk of the game, however, surrounds throwing poo and trying to block or avoid it. The monkey left standing at the end of the game is the winner.

Card Types

There are four main categories of cards in Poo: Poo/Special Poo Cards, Event Cards, Clean Cards, and Block/Mishap Cards. Poo and Special Poo Cards form the backbone of your offensive strategy. These cards allow you to target one or more monkeys and fling between one and seven poo at them. Special Poo cards allow you to target multiple opponents, combine poo cards together, or even cover yourself in poo to launch an unblockable attack against other monkeys.

Event cards have a variety of effects ranging from activating a sprinkle (cleaning all monkeys) to preventing players from targeting each other with poo until a condition is met (“The Tiger is Out”). These cards tend to prolong the game rather than offering any real substance to the game. The main exception to this is “Blaze of Glory”, which allows you to play all the poo and special poo cards from your hand just before you are eliminated. With the proper cards in your hand “Blaze of Glory” can be devastating and has turned a number of defeats into draws with all monkeys at the table ending up covered in poo simultaneously. There are few things more satisfying in this game than a well timed Blaze of Glory. The card may be over powered and its ability to force draws or to allow one player to become the kingmaker could annoy some people. In a light hearted game like this one, Blaze of Glory is just fun to play and that more than anything justifies its inclusion in the deck.

The next major type of card in the deck are the clean cards. These cards tend to be relatively generic. They either let you clean poo off your monkey or let you clean poo off monkey and give it to opponents. In a two player game these cards can be keys to victory. In large games, however, the amount of poo you can accumulate in a single round can limit the usefulness of clean cards. Even so, clean cards are crucial to keeping your monkey smelling like the summer breeze in the middle of (pardon the pun) a shit storm.
The final type of card in the deck are block and mishap cards. These are the first line of defense for your monkey. They let you dodge poo, block it, redirect it, prevent it from being fired in the first place or even force an opponent to lose their turn.

Art and Theme

The artwork and card names for poo are fantastic. Are you being attacked? “Cramps” or “Just a Fart” will make quick work of that. Better yet use “a Buddies Face” to inflict damage as you avoid it yourself. Need to do some damage yourself? Perhaps a “Mighty Joe Young Poo” will suffice. If not the dreaded “Big One” will certainly do the trick. The artwork and card names are what make the game fun. Without them the game would simply be: I attack you for 3 damage, you block. You attack me for 1 damage, I’ll redirect it to another player and so on.

Overall
Poo is not a terrible value for its cost (retails around 5-10 dollars). The theme is hilarious, the artwork spot on, and the cards themselves are fun to read. Unfortunately, I had more fun reading through all the cards for the first time than I had playing the game. There just isn’t much game here. You draw a card and play from a very limited range of options. The winner is determined largely by card draws and by who players chose to gang up on. For a lighthearted filler this isn’t necessarily a deal breaker. Games of poo, however, can drag out way too long turning a potential fun and chaotic game into a boring stalemate. I have found that Poo does work well with relatively young children (7-10 years old) who love the theme and aren’t bothered by repetitive game mechanics. The one downside I’ve run into is that the cards contain a reasonable amount of text. Young children are able to understand quickly what the vast majority of cards do because each type of card is colored differently. Even so I think the game would be more accessible (and for that matter more fun) for younger children if it had utilized symbols rather than oft-times repetitive text.
I don’t hate the game but its not one I can recommend except perhaps to someone looking for a game to play with younger children. I gave my copy of the game to my young niece. She’ll undoubtedly find the game a lot more fun to play than I have.

Pros

• Fun theme
• Great artwork
• Very simple mechanics (easy for children to follow)
• Golden banana’s limit player elimination
• A hit with children

Cons
• Using symbols would have eliminated a lot of repetitious text and made the game easier for young children to play
• Little to no skill required
• Games can drag on far too long for what they are
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Harvey O'Brien
Ireland
Dublin
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It's a great way to decide turn order for a more sombre, serious game to follow. Helps you not to take things too seriously thereafter.
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R Damm
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Having four children that think that farts and poop jokes are the funniest thing in the world, it didn't take long to buy this game after seeing it. It is a fun and funny game but I rarely win thanks to my children being able to extract revenge on me for making them do the dishes. After I am out, it is fun to see them chuckle and get upset when someone gets hit with poo.
All in all it is an enjoyable game but there have been some games that seemed to take waaaay too long.
Good review.
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