Smile Politely

Local game designers launch two Kickstarters

Last weekend, CUDO Plays held its Grand Exhibition for Season 3, allowing the public to play all the games that had entered the final judging, and awarding honors (and prizes) in eight categories. 

In addition, there were two notable non-participating games on display, both of which are complete and currently seeking funding on Kickstarter: Sabotile, Islands of Hexoté and Houdini’s Poutini

Presented by local design team, Grizzly Forged, Sabotile is the winner of three awards from CUDO Plays Season 2, and having played it several times, in several variations (including the one in which I beat Josh Cooper of Volition), I can tell you that it is very fun and very replayable. The basic concept is a mix of a tile-laying game and capture-the-flag, so while it is always different, I find the major variable is who you play it with. Whether your group is polite or competitive, the game itself can also sabotage you. With setup being part of the play, it’s very easy to jump in, but a good read of the rules can reveal some finer strategic points. Watch two of the designers play through, below. Then go give them some dollas! 

Andrew Stengele submitted a game to Season 3, but also showcased his finished venture. Houdini’s Poutini is a card game that is also easy to jump into and can vary highly depending on who you play with. I love the backstory, which is that Harry Houdini has invited all the magicians he knows to a dinner party, but he is a terrible cook, and you are trying to escape from the most famous escape artist ever. The mechanics of the game are interesting, because it feels like a combination of rummy and a trick-taking game… you randomly draw a goal to achieve, and then try to draw enough cards to fulfill the conditions on the goal card. Do that enough times to help five “guests” (NPCs) escape, and you win! Of course, in the meantime, other players can use various magician-y skills to steal, swap, and sabotage your cards, and if Houdini comes to talk to you, it would be impolite to escape right then. It’s a quick, fun game that I can see playing at home in the evening, or with a group of friends at a bar. Watch the creator play through, below. A small donation gets you a copy!

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