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3 Adorable New Games to Warm Your Heart this Winter

Ok folks, I admit, last week was a little dark. Was it the pandemic? Maybe. All my dark synth playlists on Youtube? A strong contender. But this week we’re putting that behind us and looking at three games that put the “Awwwwww” in “Awesome!”

Corgi Butt – Kickstarter 2022

Trademarks and visuals belong to their rightful owners.

Time and again, history has proven that dogs are just about the most perfect animal in existence. And Corgi Butt might just prove to be the perfect game for your upcoming holiday gathering. It’s simple enough for just about anyone, and the internet is full of empirical evidence that corgis (and their butts) have a wide appeal. The base game is for 3 to 8 players, so it should accommodate everyone who wants to play. But the designers say that the game is good for up to 16 players, so grab an extra copy if you want to squeeze in all of the cousins.

The game is a bit of bluffing and a lot of push-your-luck. Players choose from one of 8 dogs, taking their 3 face cards, 1 butt card, and 1 mischievous cat card to form their hand. Players then take turns playing cards face down until someone places a bet. The bet is simple: how many cards can you turn over without showing a butt? Once an initial bet is placed, a flurry of activity begins because players can now try to raise your bet. For example, if you bet that you can flip 3 cards butt-free, Aunt Shelby can raise and bet that she can flip 4. Betting continues until no one else is feeling brave, at which point flipping commences. Avoid any butts, and you get bones equal to your bet. Find a butt and you’ll lose a card. Accidentally discover a mischievous cat, and the player that placed it steals your bet and takes over where you left off. Which, to be fair, seems pretty on brand for cats.

Chonky and Friends – Kickstarter 2022

Trademarks and visuals belong to their rightful owners.

Speaking of cats, Chonky and Friends is essentially the tabletop version of a cute cat video.

In this light area majority game for 2 to 4 players, each player is a cat trying to unravel a ball of yarn. Players take turns playing cards from their hands next to 1 of 4 balls of yarn. Once six yarn cards have been played, add up the scores from the various cards and the player with the most points on that yarn ball wins it. Be the first to 3 balls of yarn, and you win.

Of course, it can’t be that simple. Many of the cards have actions that must occur when a card is played which make things a bit more interesting. For example, some cards come with a mouse token that can reduce another card on the yarn ball to 0 points. There’s also the pesky “Doggo” running around. Wherever he goes becomes off-limits to cats, and cards cannot be played in that row.

Goblin Uprising – Kickstarter 2022

Trademarks and visuals belong to their rightful owners.

Anyone who’s ever played a fantasy RPG, tabletop or otherwise, knows that goblins are pretty low in the monster ecosystem. They’re the slow pitch, the kid gloves, the 1st level pillow fight that the GM uses to give your characters a confidence boost. But not anymore!

While Goblin Uprising isn’t the first game to feature goblins as the heroes, this new take on the idea certainly seems poised to be the best. The game puts 2 to 6 players in the role of a goblin hero intent on saving the land from the various factions of tall invaders, including humans, elves, merfolk, dragons, and the undead. Players will travel the magical land of Eldain fighting enemies, gaining loot, and making allies with various natural Guardians, all to prepare themselves to take on the tall boss who lurks at the center of the board. And while this might seem like pretty standard fantasy game fare, where Goblin Uprising really shines is in its player interaction and game play versatility.

For starters, let’s not forget that we’re dealing with goblins here. So yes, they’re looking to save the land and be heroic, but they’re also not above stabbing each other in the back to steal each other’s loot. This means players will have to keep one eye on the board and one on each other. But sometimes the game will force players to let bygones be bygones and join forces. For instance, when a player decides to make a play for victory and makes a run at the boss, the boss will suddenly gain a new rule set that could force players to have to join forces to defeat them. Or perhaps the boss now can only be defeated by a particular magic item that your neighbor just happens to have…

Trademarks and visuals belong to their rightful owners.

The game also just looks fantastic. The character design is adorable, casting goblins in a much more aesthetically pleasing light and the nefarious “talls” as hilariously cartoonish villains. The Guardians also have a simple and fun design element that allows you to combine your character miniature with that of your guardian. Not only does this let everyone easily see what buffs you now have, but it will look fantastic on a tabletop.

by Zane Messina

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