Tuesday, September 27, 2016

LS Review: Gubs

LS Review: Gubs 
What is a Gub? I’m not exactly certain, but I feel as though they may be the creatures who are created after a nuclear explosion. They look like anthropomorphic slugs, which is something I never knew I didn’t need in my life, and they seem to be led by an Esteemed Elder Gub. They are also the center of today’s reviewed game.

Gubs is a card game, made by Gamewright and sold in the MKTabletop.com store (find it here). The box recommends 2-6 players, ages 10 and up. We played with 4 players, the youngest of which was 8 and she had no problems following the rules or reading the cards. Occasionally we needed to clarify when she wasn’t sure if playing a card would help her or not, but for the most part she did good. The guess of a 20 minute play time seemed about right for us, but as usual I would guess fewer players would take longer, more players would probably go faster. The goal of this game is simple: have the most free Gubs when the game is over. Hold on, I’m getting ahead of myself here. Let’s start from the beginning.

The supplies for this game are simple, just a deck of 70 cards. In this deck you will have 13 Gubs, plus the Esteemed Elder Gub. You will also have 13 ‘barricade’ cards which protect your Gubs. These barricades can be important. See once you have a Gub in front of you, that is no guarantee it is going to stay there. There are also ‘event’ cards, ‘hazard’ cards, and ‘trap’ cards. These can all be used to take other people’s Gubs, either for yourself or simply to put them out of play.

Yeah, if you are doing the math here, this is a competitive game which allows you to target other people. But don’t worry too much about that yet. Even if other people are targeting your Gubs, there are also ‘tool’ cards to undo problems, or ‘interrupt’ cards which can stop it from happening to begin with. I know it is getting complicated, but stay with me. There are only three more cards that you need to know about, the letter cards. These three, G, U, and B, are shuffled into the deck. When they are all drawn, they will signal the end of the game. Are you ready to play?

All right. Everyone gets one Gub to start. This is nice, since it means at one point in the game, everyone will have had at least one. The letter cards are removed, everyone gets three cards, and the letters are then shuffled back into the deck. You can choose to draw a card at the beginning of your turn, or not, and you can play as many cards as you like. If somehow you end up with more than eight cards in your hand at the end of a turn, you must discard down, but you cannot discard just because you don't like your cards. During your turn, you can put down Gubs, protect your Gubs, or attack other people’s Gubs. Any event cards or letter cards that are drawn, must be played immediately and all players must obey. If you draw an event card that does not end the game, you are allowed to continue your turn afterwards. Basically, get your cards, follow what they say, and get a tribe of Gubs.

Cons: I am sure a few of you could see this coming... this is a game that is not only competitive, but also allows you to specifically target other players. I hate that. A lot. But surprisingly, it wasn’t an issue for us.

When we started the game, for some reason everyone chose to name their Gubs. We had Jade, Bob, Susan, and of course Fart, (all of the letters in this Gubs name were silent... and deadly). Because they had names, instead of attacking each other, we were acting on behalf of the Gubs. For example, I wasn’t targeting a specific player, however I could have a blood feud with the entire family of Jade, and my daughter could (and did) spend the entire game avenging the loss of Jade the Gub. This simple trick turned the game from Advanced Competitive into silly and fun.

As far as the pros go, it was simple enough to play, well paced, and, well, fun. There wasn’t anything specific about this game I liked more than other games, and it is never going to become my favorite game. But, I like it. It was fun enough and everyone in the house was able to enjoy it. For that reason, I have to give this game a thumbs up. I mean, seriously, no matter what the cons are, if everyone has a good time playing that is all that matters.

So, add this game to your collection, collect your Gubs, and share in the comments what you choose to name them.

Happy Gaming everyone.