Our first review product of the year, a multi player card game called Pig Pile arrived and was immediately set up to be played. We were excited to see the glossy beautiful sharp cards and all of the little piggy’s. However, the directions for the game were really hard to remember and figure out. The rules for the game can be found online – they come in the box printed in booklet style – 8 pages long – maybe it was because our mail comes at 2:30 in the afternoon – but I just couldn’t get it. We did find some solutions to our questions – and have played it with several different groups of visiting children – and all of them really enjoy the play.
There are so many types of card changing /game changing rules; it engages the player. Using a mindless game played out as the cards are dealt is no longer challenging in our home. I just asked Jon – my 10 yr old – if he’d like to share his opinion of the game – and he shouted – “Best Game Evaarrr!” “Really”, I ask him, “for truth for the review?” “Yes,” he replies – “I really like playing it!”. Which must be true – as every visitor in the last few weeks as been asked to join us to play a few rounds!
Here is how we play the game:
Dealing Cards: 3 cards face down to everyone on the table, then above that place 3 face up, then deal 4 cards to everyone to hold in your hand. You cards, holding some in your hand, some on the table face up, some on the table face down. We had a hard time on 3 occasions with neighbor kids trying to explain why we’d deal cards they couldn’t see or touch. These were kids in the 10-13 year range. It started the game on the wrong foot, and we couldn’t see why it would make a difference to deal this way.
Solution: We deal 7 cards to each player to hold in their hand.
Game Length – No Piggy’s: Each round does not take very long if you play with more than 3 people – however, with 2 or 3 players it can drag on. Put down one card, pick up one card – makes it hard to go out if you have your cards stacked to not pick up the pile. The only way to put the piggy’s in play is at the end of a round, Winner =3, 2nd place = 2 Rest = 1. If you only have time for one or two rounds – the pigs stay in the bag.
Solution: We found various ways to pass out pigs. We settled on – If you play the 3rd or more card in a row to create a Hog Wash – you get to pick up a pig. It also helped the boys want to place multiple cards down, shortening the game.
What happens when you hit 12: The cards are numbered 1-12. The rule is that you have to play a same or greater numbered card on your turn. If you do not have a card to play – you scoop the discard pile up – and place those cards into your hand. We tried to play that if it hit 12, like in other games, you’d re-set the number. What we found, was this was boring. Creating sets of 12.
Solution: We stuck with the game’s rules. If you can’t play a card – you scoop the deck. So – if a 12 is showing on top of the discard pile, you’ll need to have either a 12 or a Hog Wild to continue play on your turn – or – scoop the pile. Which, isn’t a bad deal – as having a 12 in your hand gets you out of trouble the next time.
Every Family is Different: Based on the ages of your kiddos – we found on the TOS Crew while chatting it up – that many of the families changed the rules to fit their playing times, abilities, and family sizes. Each family came up with ways to earn or use the Pigs. We tried a round where one could use a pig earned to get out of scooping the pile for instance. The sky’s the limit – just play! Read to the bottom of the review to find the link to the Crew’s list of reviewers and see how the other’s have tailored this game to their home!
R&R Games is graciously offering a 20% discount to anyone purchasing Pig Pile or Flea Circus through the TOS Homeschool Crew reviews. Just enter the coupon code, CREW20, to receive the discount now through December 31, 2011.
From r & r Games –
The jig’s up! The pig squealed! Over 39 Pink Pigs crammed into a little box! Now it’s up to you to let them out! No mud slinging allowed in this fast-paced family game where players compete to corral the most pigs. Get rid of your cards first and be awarded the prime pile of pigs. Sounds easy, but pigs can be slippery! The more cards you have, the better your chances of calling out HogWash! and clearing away the deck! But don’t hog the cards too long or you’ll get stuck. The player with the largest stockpile of swine after the final round wins. Quick thinking and clever card play determine how high you’ll heap your hogs.
Created by award winning designer Richard Borg
3-6 players Ages 7 and up
Contents: 80 cards, 40 Pink Pigs, illustrated Rules
Petra School received the Pig Pile Game – in exchange for using it in our school and writing honestly about our experience and opinions on the Petra School Blog. The boys and I think that this would be an excellent addition to your game collection – and encourage you to check out r&r games! You may want to read how many other families used and incorporated this game into their school at our This Old Schoolhouse Homeschool Crew Blog – http://homeschoolcrew.com/784028/ .