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Published on August 13th, 2019 | by Ben Rueter


Gen Con 2019: Bicycle Cards Wants To Offer More Than Playing Cards


You may have played with a deck of Bicycle cards without even knowing it because for more than 130 years Bicycle has been dealing out a variety of cards. However this time the cards dealt to you may ask an embarrassing question or carry a power up.


Games by Bicycle propped up a booth at Gen Con this year to show off three card games.


Gen Con, the largest and longest-running tabletop gaming convention in America, took place Aug. 1-4 in Indianapolis, Indiana. This year the convention brought in nearly 70,000 attendees to see more 538 exhibiting companies.


It’s Blunderful

This is a card game similar to Cards Against Humanity, but with an end in sight. While games of CAH can drag on for too long, It’s Blunderful features a scoring card for each player and ends when someone reaches 100 points.


Players will take turns reading a question to the party, offer three responses and then the party will bet points on which response the reader will choose.


For instance, someone reads a card that asks how they would react in a situation where they and another person say “goodbye” and then find each other walking in the same direction. Each person in the party will bet 5, 10 or 15 points to one of three responses.


The reader will then reveal how they would react and the players who guess correctly earn points and move up on their score card. Those who guessed incorrectly lose the number of points they wagered.


Brooke Schwartzman, influencer manager said it’s a game that offers opportunities for great storytelling and laughs about awkward moments.


It’s Blunderful is available now.


Shuffle Grand Prix

Inspired by cart racing video games like Crash Team Racing, Shuffle Grand Prix lines up 2-4 players on the grid for a wacky race to the finish.


Robert Newton, game developer said that he was inspired by arcade racing video games and tried to bring that excitement to the table.


“It’s definitely a very interactive game,” he said.


Players pick characters and each racer comes with special abilities. Once the race begins players lay down cards to slow others and sabotage their race.


Newton said that, as an example, someone could play a cardboard box card that would allow their cart to remain hidden for a moment or use a shield to protect from an incoming projectile.


He added that even if all is lost, a racer can make an incredible comeback. For instance, at Gen Con he said a player had spun out three times in a race and was still able to come back to win.


Shuffle Grand Prix is available now.


Tattoo Stories


This party game requires its players to be flexible as well as artful.


Tattoo Stories will gather a group of people together, each with a mini white board and a dry erase marker. One player will draw five cards. Each card has a word printed on it. The player that draws the cards will then ask everyone to sketch her/him a tattoo that incorporates all five words.


Then the timer starts. Three minutes to draw something that would hypothetically be itched into someone’s skin forever. The twist is that the one that isn’t sketching out the tattoo can add descriptions at any time in those three minutes to throw a wrench in everyone’s work.


Also, no erasing.


“You cannot erase so you have to figure it out,” Eric Slauson, game developer said.


Take for instance the game I was in at Gen Con. The five cards Slauson drew were a dinosaur, cyborg, instrument, tree and high heels. Right away someone asked about the instrument. He said he would like to see a flute. Then he said the dinosaur is a pterodactyl and later that he likes the look of a weeping willow tree.


All of this is communicated and discussed while you and others are frantically sketching the tattoo. And just to make things difficult, at the very end Slauson said that he wanted the dinosaur to look happy, which had me in the last seconds put a not-so-convincing smirk on my pterodactyl’s face (who was wearing a jetpack).


Everyone in my party then made their case to Slauson for how each element was incorporated into the tattoo. I forgot about drawing in the high heels so I stated that the jetpack’s thrust blew the high heels off. I didn’t get a point for the high heels, but I was awarded the card for incorporating the cyborg best into my tat.


If you can’t draw the best maybe you can at least tell the best story.


Tattoo Stories will be available in October.




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About the Author

Ben Rueter has been writing for a number of years ranging from video game pieces online to traditional journalism articles as well. Every since he got his hands on an Atari 2600 and learned his way around DOS, he’s been keeping up with all kinds of video games. Ben is also an avid movie fan from classic Sergio Leone to Charlie Kaufman movies.

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