Review: University Games

At this years Toy Fair I had the pleasure of meeting representatives from University Games and they introduced to a slew of games that they were putting out. Out of the games I was able to get a quick demo on, there were three that caught my attention: "Man Bites Dog", "Dirty Words", and "Dumb Ass". These three caught my attention because they were geared towards more young adult audiences; these were games that adults could enjoy as well. I was lucky enough to get my hands on all 3 games and have some fun with them along with a few friends.

Man Bites Dog

Man Bites Dog is a game where you create newspaper headlines from the various combination of words in your hands. Each player receives five cards, each with words describing a person, place, or thing or an adjective. On the board are 3 verb cards that the player can use at anytime to create their head line. The headlines don't have to be realistic, but they do have to make sense. While there may not be punctuations, you can assume there are when creating your headlines. And of course you can challenge someone's headline by having a vote with other players excluding the person that created the headline or you can just argue over why it does or doesn't make sense. The fun in the game definitely comes from trying to create a fun or somewhat unique headline. Of course winning makes it more fun too; the first to 500 points wins the game. The best strategy to accumulating points is to use all your cards, or as many as possible, in a single turn. While it may not go as far as "Cards Against Humanity" in terms of content, it is a game that is filled with laughs and enjoyment for young adults and adults in general. It was by far the most fun out of the other 2 games. It can be enjoyed with just 2 people or in groups. The speed of the game is quick, but that also depends on how long each person spends on creating their headlines. Jumping into this game was easy, definitely readily accessible to anyone with a simple explanation and just watching one person start the game. This was definitely a 5 Star game.

Dirty Words

Dirty Words is a game that is best enjoyed in groups of 4 or more. The way it's played is each team has 2 minutes to form sentences with as many of the word dice as possible. While the phrases that can be formed are a bit too tame, it still has some enjoyment in terms of innuendo, and just the silliness of the sentences themselves. At the end of three rounds, the team with the highest combined score wins. The game isn't as fast paced, but as one my friends said not a game you can play drinking. You definitely need to be sober for this game. The bigger the groups of 2 the more enjoyable the game becomes. The one thing I would suggest for this game is that they get some more dirtier words in there. For a game that is 18+ it can definitely be played by young adults without question. This game is 3 out of 5 stars; Having to wait for other people in a game like this can be boring unless you can regularly get groups of friends over.

Dumb Ass

The last game of the night we played was "Dumb Ass", it's a trivia game where you have to either guess the answer that doesn't belong or guess the right answer depending on which card is drawn. Each player has a set of tokens with the letters A, B, C, & D on them that they use to indicate their answer for each multiple choice question. The questions aren't all based on general knowledge. They definitely go deeper than the typical trivia board game. At one point I drew a card that was all in french relating to dance movements. While that was unique, it was not something you'd expect a lot of people to know. It had some great movie and TV trivia, but the majority of it were questions you really needed to have deeper knowledge of as opposed to general knowledge. The way turns were taken was a bit confusing; even though you started with the oldest person at the table first, each turn required a question answered to see who would roll the die. If you're someone who is looking for trivia questions that do deeper than which of these guys was not a U.S. president, then this is the game for you. But for family or friend get togethers, this was not something that you could jump into without having to take a few rounds to fully understand the game. While the questions were challenging, the game can end fairly quickly. I give this game 3 out of 5 stars because while it was a bit of a challenge to get going on this game, it was a game that was challenging and could be fun for those that want that type of challenge. 

All three games were definitely unique in their own right. The gameplay varied from game to game, giving players something new and fun to work with. If you have a mixed group of friends you'll definitely have a game for them that they will thoroughly enjoy. I would have to say "Man Bites Dog" is their best game, because of the fact it's easy to pick up and lots of fun can be had with it. An expansion pack would be cool to include fictional characters or celebrities. While cards against humanity is a more adult game, these games provide great times for a wider audience.