Game Name: Bug Out
Publisher: Out of the Box Publishing
Designers: Brad Ross, Max Winter Osterhaus, Ellen Winter, and Al Waller
Players: Two to six players
Playing Time: 5 Minutes
Genre: Children’s game
Retail Price: $9.99
My first game of Bug Out was at GenCon against Jeff and Leah Sugar, VP of Marketing at OTB. Leah explained the rules, and they really are pretty easy. Then she said “Go!” and we were off. By the time the smoke had cleared away, Leah had crushed us both. It turned out to be the only game I actually got a chance to play in the convention hall.
The game comes in a nice plastic box, and consists of all of 36 round bug cards and 36 matching square bug cards. There is of course a bug on each card, little drawings that make the bugs cute rather than disgusting, as I feel all bugs are. I especially like the beetle, as he is holding a guitar and is in need of a haircut. The bed bug is cute in his little bed too.
It is obviously a children’s game. The recommended age is 5 and up, but really my four year old daughter had no problem with the game at all, and actually beat me without me having to lose on purpose! (I believe I just stink at the game). She took her time though, and didn’t really get the whole “you have to go fast” thing. Plus she started helping me when she spotted one of my bugs, as I obviously needed it.
You scatter the round cards all over the table, and then deal the square cards out to each player evenly. The dealer then yells “Go!” and you flip over the top square bug card in your pile. You then need to look over all of the round bug cards until you find the matching bug. When you locate it you place your square card face down on the matching round card and then draw your next card. Repeat this process with each of your remaining cards until you run out of bug cards. The first player to get rid of all of their bug cards and yell “Bug Out!” wins the game.
This takes less than five minutes, and then you can shuffle the cards around and go again. I knew my daughter would love it and she did. We ended up playing half a dozen games in a row.
I know that Out of the Box designs their children’s games to encourage different areas of mental development. I can see that Bug Out will help develop pattern recognition and hand-eye coordination skills. I’d like to maybe see a version with words on the square card and pictures on the round ones, like “Cat” and “House”, to help teach some basic word recognition. Maybe I’ll make one.
Leah also mentioned another way to play the game in which you take the round cards and spread them around the room. Then when you yell “Go”, all the players have to run around the room looking for the correct bug card, and it sounds like a fun variant for the kids.
Bug out is a cute little card game for under $10, and I like it. Bug Out will be available in September.
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