Episode 45: Chicago Dogs & Duck Heads

45: Chicago Dogs & Duck Heads

Release Date: December 24, 2007

Running Time: 93 min.

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ep 45

Holiday hodge-podge. Reports and interviews from CHITAG (Chicago Toy & Game Fair) plus a review of Piratenbillard, a game where players use duck headed mallets to pop cannon balls across a wooden grid.

News & Notes: 24 hour game marathon, CHITAG report
CHITAG Interviews: Quelf (Wiggity Bang), Knowbody Knows (Uncle Rez), Portrayal (Brain Cog), Big Sunday (Randolph Rose), Amuse Amaze (HL Games), Celebrity (G5)
The List: Piratenbillard
Name That Game: Win Archaeology from Adventureland Games
Game Sommelier:
Five games guaranteed to be re-gifted
Mail Bag:
Tipp-Kick, Agricola Animeeples, GITHOT

Complete Show Notes continue after the break.

Game News & Notes

24 Hour Game Marathon Coming in January!

Our first New Year's Resolution is to keep The List under 200. To that end, we're having a 24 hour game marathon early next month. We'll record our progress throughout the marathon in a special episode and do mini-session reports on the games we play


Francie and I made the short trip to the 5th annual Chicago Toy & Game Fair in November. The weekend long event emphasizes games for families and parties and is a great opportunity for the general public to try many games from smaller presses and find some great deals, too. In addition to the convention, Rio Grande Games sponsored an Essen game night, making available dozens of new games recently released at the Essen game fair in Germany. For a detailed account of the event, read my forum post here . In addition to the interviews, here are the links to the other items of interest mentioned.

Game Wave Official Site

Pieceless Puzzles Official Site

Essen Night Games Played

Antler Island Official Site | BGG Entry

Master of Rules Official Site | BGG Entry

Galaxy Trucker Official Site | BGG Entry

Ca$h -n- Gun$: Yakuza Expansion Official Site | BGG Entry

CHITAG Interviews

Quelf (Wiggity Bang) Official Site | BGG entry

Quao (Wiggity Bang) Official Site | BGG Entry

Flapdoodle (Wiggity Bang) Official Site | BGG Entry

Knowbody Knows (Uncle Rez) Official Site | BGG Entry

Portrayal (Brain Cog) Official Site | BGG Entry

Big Sunday (Randolph Rose Group) Official Site | BGG Entry

Amuse Amaze (HL Games) Official Site | BGG Entry

Celebrity (G5 Productions) Official Site | BGG Entry


The List

Piratenbillard BGG entry

Avast, matey! Use your duck-headed mallet to pop colored cannon balls across a linen covered wooden grid. But beware,your balls can be captured with good aim (and a little luck).



Game Sommelier

The Challenge: Find five games that are guaranteed to be returned or re-gifted.

Dave's List

Stephen's Vote

Survivor: The Board Game Thumbs Up
Munchkin Thumbs Down
Flinch Thumbs Down
San Gimignano Thumbs Up
Bean Trader Thumbs Up

Next Challenge: Five game-related New Year's resolutions

Mail Bag

Thanks to donors Brian "Rail" McBarron and Greg "Primordial Soup" Gurganus

Listener Oxymoron wanted us to know about Tipp Kick, a dexterity based soccer game from Germany. Each player has a mechanical leg that kicks the ball when you press down on a button on its head.


Special thanks to the mystery donor who sent us our very own copy of Tipp Kick!

John Gravitt invites us to GITHOT: Games in the Heart of Texas , a gathering of gamers Jan 11-13 including two of our favorite pasttimes: disc golf and games!

Walter Hunt reminds us about the special animeeples included in the pre-order edition of Agricola.

Travis Bryant puts in a vote for playing Dreamblade off The List sometime soon.


I'm sure there are some goofs in there somewhere. Let us know if (when?) you find one!


Thanks for the info on the CHITAG con. Sounds like an interesting show, since I have a soft spot for silly party games.

Portrayal in particular sounded very interesting. I may have to check that one out further.

Also cool to find out you are fellow disc golfers (although I haven't played in a couple years) I received a miniature disc golf basket for Christmas, and have been enjoying using the furniture as obstacles, much to the chagrin of everyone else in the house.

I'm hoping to give Portrayal a full run through on New Year's Eve. We have people coming over for games and they are mainly party game people, so I imagine several CHITAG purchases will hit the table then.

Thos mini-baskets always look tempting! We did not get out nearly enough this past summer to play disc golf. I am certain my putting will suffer once it warms up and we get out and throw again.

I've been offline since Christmas Eve so only just caught up with the show (yes, back to the daily commute).

I loved the Sommalier section because, like Dave, I cannot conceive of actually passing a game on - no matter how awful it really is. If I don't like a game I tend to live in eternal hope that somehow I am missing something and it will get better.

Of course, the segment is bound to be controversial. In fact, I am suprised that you have not been hunted down by a hoarde of Munchkins. Criticising the game is probably as life threatening as picking up a duck in a dungeon.
I've played it a few times, it's ok - I wouldn't buy it for myself but I certainly would not pass it on if it came into my possession.

To me the ultimate sacrilige was the slandering of the playful "Bean Trader". I think that this is a fine little game - some interesting mechanics around bean supply and demand, the usual card order conundrum and a little bean cart. This is a game that needs a little more love IMHO.

I look forward to hearing the next sommalier - Funnily enough I have been pondering my gaming resolutions for 2008 and plan to post them on my blog later today. If I get around to it I'll post a link in the next show notes (I can't have you stealing any of mine !)

We don't stop playing games when we get old...... We get old when we stop playing games

I knew it would be a big task for Dave to come up with the Sommelier list. I guess I should have taken that challenge! He was wincing in pain at the mere thought of giving up a game in his collection. I just like to torture him. :)

No Munchkin fans have risen to defend it vociferously. Interesting since I think it is a fine little game. It has found an itch and it knows how to scratch it.

I've only played Bean Trader once or twice and it just seemed to be far afield (couldn't resist, sorry) from the other games associated with Bohnanza. As I remember it, the game didn't do anything that different or better than the card game. Just not sure why I would pull it off the shelf instead of Bohnanza itself.


I think Bean Trader has some neat ideas. They kept the card 'play from the bottom' trick but now you are struggling to get orders out before they cycle out of your hand.
But to get to the place to fulfill your order you have to cycle through your cards... or be pulled into a trade. Sometimes your opponent will know just how bad you need the 'free move to a trade' and will make sure the deal is pants for you.

As a result, I find the trading in Bean Trader a lot more ruthless.

I also like the Beanometer idea. Suddenly the beans you need have just rocketted in price because your opponent has bought all the cheap stuff. Or, better still, there is a sudden surplus of beans and they are cheap as chips.

All in all I find it a lot of fun. It's not Bohnanza but it does have its place.
We don't stop playing games when we get old...... We get old when we stop playing games

I know that Tom Vasel hates Munchkin quite a bit, but that may be a feature - not a bug. I've not played it, but have it and looked it over to introduce to our (now defunct) D&D campaign group.

Since I went to Rice University with Steve Jackson, played wargames with him, playtested games he designed at Metagaming, and am pretty sure that I taught him D&D from the white box set, I guess I'm indirectly responsible for Munchkin.

BTW, Steve is riding the Munchkin wave as long as he can - it is insanely popular and is his top seller. He'd like to do other stuff (like an Ogre/GEV reprint), but he's got to make a living.....

From outer space to getting Steve Jackson into D&D, your influence is truly far-reaching, echack! I bet you have some stories to tell about gaming days from that era. :)

I think Munchkin speaks to a very specific audience but that audience is obviously large enough to keep Steve Jackson Games rolling along with expansion after expansion. I've always enjoyed it. Like any niche community within the realms of geekitude, the intersection of rpg players and board/card game players is going to have its own vernacular and sense of humor. If you can't speak the language I can see how the game could fall flat.

geekitude ????????

We don't stop playing games when we get old...... We get old when we stop playing games