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[GR] Uglydoll Card Game

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  • Tom Vasel
    Ugly is certainly a matter of perception, as we all know. So when a game called Uglydoll (Gamewright, 2006 - Jason Schneider) came up, I doubted seriously
    Message 1 of 1 , May 1, 2006
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      "Ugly" is certainly a matter of perception, as we all know. So when
      a game called Uglydoll (Gamewright, 2006 - Jason Schneider) came up, I
      doubted seriously that Gamewright, a company known for making games
      aimed towards children, would make a game about hideous creatures -
      and lo, I was correct. After doing some research on the internet, I
      found that Uglydoll is a brand name of supposedly hideous creatures
      sold as stuffed animals. Truth be told, they aren't really that ugly
      but come across as rather cute (at least to my children and others).
      In fact, Uglydoll is quickly becoming one of daughter's favorite

      And for good reason! I would never bring out Uglydoll with a group
      of adults, as it's certainly aimed at children. But with children
      involved the game becomes a riotous, fun time. I don't know how well
      the cards will hold up over dozens of games (they've done well through
      six), but games can be wild and silly; and this makes the game a
      tremendous one for children as young as four years old (even though
      the rules recommend six and older). It's a frantic, fast-paced game
      that is more exciting than Memory Match, bringing delight to

      Gameplay is extremely simple. A seventy card deck, which is composed
      of seven cards each of ten different "Uglydolls", is shuffled; and
      five cards are removed from play. The remainder of the cards is
      scattered face-down across the table, and the game is ready to begin -
      starting with the player who most recently took a bath.

      On a player's turn, they simply flip any card on the table over
      quickly. Play then passes to the next person, who does likewise. If,
      at any point, there are three identical Uglydolls face-up on the
      table, then everyone races to grab the three cards and place them in a
      pile in front of them. If two people grab the same card
      simultaneously, then the first one to shout "Ugly!" three times in a
      row keeps the card. Players who grab cards at incorrect times must
      lose one of their cards from their personal pile. The game continues
      until all cards have been turned face-up, at which point the player
      with the most cards in their pile is declared the winner!

      Some quick comments about the gameā€¦

      1.) Components: The cards are of a very durable quality, with
      gigantic white borders surrounding the cartoon drawing of the Uglydoll
      on one side, and a large cartoon eye on the other. This is for good
      reason, as cards are being grabbed and mishandled constantly
      throughout the game. I can see a bit of wear and bending on some of
      the cards - and I can't see how this wouldn't happen, given the crazy
      nature of the game. I think that as long as one isn't playing with a
      complete maniac, the cards will last for scores of games - unless two
      people are so intent on a tie that they rip a card. The cards are
      stored inside a plastic insert in a nice sized small box.

      2.) Uglydolls: As I said, I never heard of these cartoon creatures
      until I got this game, but my daughter fell in love with their
      pictures, and calling them "ugly" wasn't really part of her
      vocabulary. I can see how the fan base of these dolls would be
      interested in the game. But really, the cartoon artwork is very clean
      and cute, and most young kids will probably enjoy the cute little

      3.) Speed: If you don't like speed games, then avoid Uglydoll,
      because it's all about quickly grabbing the cards in the middle of the
      table. It is possible for older kids to dominate smaller ones through
      sheer quickness and aggressiveness, but I've found that it's fairly
      difficult to get all three cards for yourself. As soon as one player
      lunges for a card, everyone else realizes that they must grab cards,
      and there's a mad scramble for the other two cards. The monsters are
      all distinctly different, yet they have some of the same
      characteristics, occasionally causing some confusion when grabbing
      (which is a good thing).

      4.) Fun Factor: I don't think that the game makes any pretense on
      being anything other than a silly, fast, fun kids' game. It's easy to
      play, and everyone has a blast grabbing cards and shouting, "Ugly!
      Ugly! Ugly!" (Although in the advanced version, you can shout the
      specific name of the monster - something I passed on). Young children
      will be enamored with the colorful, cute monsters, and the gameplay is
      something they will understand and enjoy.

      If you have young children between ages four and ten, I think they'll
      be delighted to play this game. It's a game that causes them to
      constantly scan the table, looking for matches, and more importantly -
      is a lot of fun for them. When I play my six-year old daughter, we
      come out almost in a tie each time - as we are evenly matched, despite
      my so called intellectual superiority. But we laughed together and
      had fun together - the goal of a good family board game. And since
      Uglydoll can handle up to six players, the fun is big enough for all.

      Tom Vasel
      "Real men play board games"
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