188 – Play This, Not That, AGAIN – The Family Gamers Podcast

Play This, Not That!
Play This, Not That!

After some technical difficulties, we’re back, and talking about more games for you to play with your family. Tired of UNO and Life? We’ve got suggestions for some substitutes.

This episode is sponsored by First Move Financial.

What We’ve Been Playing

We’re looking forward to Quests of Yore from The OP – based on the role playing game featured in the movie Onward.

Abandon All Artichokes (from Gamewright) – it calls itself a “deck-wrecking” game. Strategically, you could win by stuffing your deck with non-artichoke cards and hope for a good draw, or by cycling through your (lean) deck quickly, eliminating artichokes ASAP.

Zoo Year’s Eve (from XYZ Games) – bluff your animal cards into the “party” (a face-down discard deck). Some animals are easy to get in (ie. monkeys) but others won’t be allowed in unless they’re in disguise (ie. elephants)!

Squire for Hire (from Letiman Games) – an ingenious “bag-building” (inventory management / tile laying) game with 18 cards. It plays either solo or two players. A new favorite date game! Check out the Kickstarter for “core set 2” – a new game that can be played by itself, or expand the first set to play with up to four players! (It’s only $9 – we’re definitely backing it!)

Dungeon Drop (from Gamewright) – Play on a surface with some give, or use some sort of walls around your play area. You literally drop cubes onto your play surface!

Skulk Hollow (from Pencil First Games) – We are big fans. Review coming soon. The asymmetry and the art are just perfect.


Looking for something else to do while you’re stuck at home?

Foodstirs makes junk-free baking kits for kids. We really enjoyed the one we tried with our kids, and you can subscribe to get kits every few months.

We’ll be putting up a video soon of baking with our five-year-old. (He’s nuts!)

Go to foodstirs.com and enter CODE: FAMILYGAMERS for 20% off!


Congratulations, “bn100”! You’ll be getting a copy of Animal Upon Animal.

Our next giveaway, sponsored by First Move Financial, is Brandon the Brave. Enter now!

Play This, Not That – Again!

We got great responses from our first Play This, Not That segment.

Instead of UNO

Let’s keep the number matching and colors, but add more strategy and community-building. Blank from HUB Games feels like UNO mashed up with a legacy game, with a little bit of Fluxx mixed in. Every game has “rule cards” (chosen at random) to change up the play. Over time, you’ll make the game your own creation, customizing both rule cards and regular cards.

Interested? Read our full review of Blank.

The customized nature of the game also makes it a great gift! Customize a few cards then give it to your friends.

(Thanks to Wyeth who asked for UNO substitutes, and suggested Piña Pirata.)

Instead of The Game of Life

The Game of Life is a tough one. Kids want to role play at being adults – having a job, paying the bills, getting married, having kids. Why not give them a better role playing game, where choices really matter? We like Hero Kids, No Thank You Evil, Stuffed Fables, Starport (which we saw at this year’s Boston FIG), or Tales of Equestria. Find Hero Kids, Starport, and other print-and-play options at drivethrurpg.com.

If you really need that roll-and-move feel with some light role playing, why not a cooperative game – Ghost Fightin Treasure Hunters from Mattel or Mole Rats in Space (now renamed to Space Escape) from Peaceable Kingdom. Both of these make us think a bit of LIFE, because your pawns have backpacks that physically hold items you need to win the game!

If your kids are a bit older, Horrified would also be a great choice. Cooperate to defeat classic horror monsters, moving around the board and completing minor quests along the way.

(Thanks to Katie who asked for an alternative to The Game of Life.)


Cheree suggested Outfoxed as another choice to replace Guess Who. It’s a great deduction game, and an easier place to start with young children.

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The Family Gamers is sponsored by First Move Financial. Go to FirstMoveFinancial.com/familygamers to learn how the team at First Move Financial can help you pile up the victory points.

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