Of all the games I never expected to review here on Space-Biff!, Blob Lobber is pretty much at the top of the list. I can sum up nearly all of its gameplay in one sentence. Here, I’ll prove it: it’s about flipping flimsy cardboard discs to hopefully touch other flimsy cardboard discs — which, last I checked, you could do with a deck of secondhand playing cards and benefit from a heavier cardstock than these suckers provide. Blob Lobber was published by Steve Jackson Games, but it’s the polar opposite of their monstrous deluxe edition of Ogre. A game so small I’ve lost it in the couch cushions. Twice.
But here’s the twist: I’m going to give it a positive review. Positive-ish. Not glowing. I’m not insane. But it’s entered my regular rotation for one very dependable reason.
Back in December, I got my hands on a copy of the Designer’s Edition of Ogre. It weighed over twenty-five pounds, took hours to punch out and assemble all the hundreds of pieces, and took up more width on the couch than I do (Lies. I have a Dan the Hutt photo I’ll post here one day. —Somerset). Like pretty much everyone else who obtained a copy, I couldn’t help but post a bunch of very original pictures highlighting just how unimaginably bulky the thing was. You can find them here.
Well, since December, I’ve had a child. Taught her how to fly a kite. Nurtured her into adulthood. Got a pair of degrees from my friendly local university. Written about sixty articles. And still no word on whether or not I liked Ogre. It sat there for seven long months, taking up the entire laundry room, beckoning in the night like a green light flashing at the end of a pier.
Why didn’t I play it? It really comes down to intimidation, or maybe the fact that I can hardly lift the thing without pulling my back, groin, biceps, and hamstrings. All the hamstrings. But now, wonder of wonders, I’ve played it a few times, and I’m ready to tell you what I think.
Something came in the mail yesterday. Something strange and a little crazy and a whole lotta wonderful, and also over twenty-five pounds, set up against the screen door so I had to go around out the back and into the cold so I could retrieve it without knocking it off the porch.
I’d heard the stories, of course. Who with their finger on the pulse of the seedy underbelly of the world of board games hasn’t? Even so, I didn’t expect this. I didn’t expect Ogre to be such an… ogre.
There’s this card game from Steve Jackson Games called Ninja Burger. It’s supposed to be hilarious. I really don’t see it.
This is more a problem with humor in board games than just with this game itself — it’s hard to make a funny board game, especially one that will be funny even after you’ve become familiar with its mechanics and pieces. More on that below.