Friday, April 20, 2012

The Gaming Corner: In a Pickle

Jess and I picked up In A Pickle because it looked interesting, and boy was it. Let's start at the beginning and work our way through.

The Box

The box is very fun. It is also made of a high quality hard cardboard which will last through at least two more accidents than the boxes of many other games we have in our closet. It clearly states that it is a family game for people age 10 and up and that rules for solitaire play will not be included (it isn't lying either).

Inside the box

Other than the paper instructions, you get a nice black plastic cardholder and four packs of cards, which you will promptly open and shuffle together and separate into two piles so they will fit nicely into the card holder. This brings up the first oddity of the game, two draw piles, but we will get more into that later.

The Cards
At the start of the game, each player is dealt five cards. Here are an example of what a hand could be. Each card has noun and a downward arrow. Both of these will come into play when it is your turn and you wish to play a card. Again, I am getting ahead of myself.

The playing area

Play starts with four cards being dealt into a plus like shape with their arrows pointing out. From here we get into the fun of playing the game.

Game Play
When you play a card it must either "fit inside" the card you play it under, or "fit around" the card you play it over. This may make no sense right now but pay attention and I will try to clean the window of understanding for you.
Let's start with a card:

The next card played will either have to fit around a shoe (the shoe fits in it) or fit in a shoe. Take a bedroom for example. A shoe obviously fits in a bedroom, though some of you parents out there may wish that they didn't.

I put the bedroom card crooked on purpose. Normally, the cards are lined up.
You could have played a card labeled food and slid the arrow portion of that under the shoe instead.
Note: You cannot add a card between two played cards as shown below. That is cheating and may get you tossed out of the house.

Now the fun part of the game - if you ever get a row of four cards, a pickle round begins. Pickle rounds are special for a few reasons. Once a pickle round starts, play continues with each player playing a card only on the arrow of the pickle. Then, when every player has played all the cards they can or will play, the player whom started the pickle has a chance to take it back. If he or she doesn't, the player whom played the last card collects all the cards from the pickle and starts a new pile from the draw pile in its place. Each player then fills their hands and play continues.

This game gets very fun and a little argumentative when someone plays that universe fits in a book but since it can be found in a dictionary and a dictionary is a book... I think you see what I mean.

Please enjoy!

-Gamer Jason

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