Monday, 25 July 2011

Toyologist Review: Pig Goes Pop

£16.99 from Toys R Us.

I went to university for…well, it was a long time.  It was there that I met my wife (this is good) and Andy (this is…well, he’s left the country now. Phew!). While I was there, in between eating Snickers Pie, ‘working from home’ and dressing like a crazy person, I did quite a lot of Research.

Before this game arrived I did some Research on the internet. I found the official website and discovered the following –
‘Quite a few throws later, the ever-expanding pig will have reached max in the digestion stakes - and 'explodes', to everyone's delight!’
It may just be because I’ve watched quite a lot of horror films, but I was quite scared by this description. First, that this pig was going to ‘explode’ all over my living room, and second, because 2-6 players aged 4 & up would be ‘delighted’ to see this rather messy event.

With this in mind, and a letter of complaint at the ready, I nervously extracted this suicidal pig from its box and set it up for play. After a quick practice with players aged 18+, I was relived – though, if I’m honest, a little disappointed – to find that the greedy pig doesn’t actually fling a mix of half-digested food and internal organs everywhere, it was all just an exaggeration on the part of the game manufacturers. All that goes ‘pop’ is his chef outfit.

So we had another go with the kids...

I judge children's games on the length of the instructions - specifically, if you actually need to read any before starting to play. This is why, despite owning a bunch, I've never played any Games Workshop games.

Pig Goes Pop is incredibly simple. Roll die. Pick up coloured burger as dictated by die. Feed Pig & press on his head as many times as shown on burger. Repeat until 'pop'.

Food goes in here.

We had 2, 4, 29 & 30 year olds playing. 2 year old had no problem at all understanding the rules, although he wasn't strong enough to push Pig's head down by himself. We thought it was great fun, although after one game the official rules were abandoned and the boys simply resorted to just pushing Pig's head until he popped.

Over and over and over again...

There is an instructional flaw with the game. After Pig's gone pop, the instructions state that you must 'twist the pigs tail to let the air out of his tummy'. What it doesn't state or indicate in any way is that the tail must be twisted until it clicks. Simply turning until the air is let out is not enough to reset the game. For a time we (and we weren't alone thinking this) thought that Pig Had Broken. Thankfully this wasn't the case.

The other problem is that the box is HUGE compared to the size of the Pig.

The game deserves its 'Game of the Year' award. It's simple, great fun, and kids will keep going back to it.

Inspire by Pig Goes Pop and similar games, I've thought up some exciting new variations based on real-life experiences...
  • Baby Goes Sneeze! - Feed baby...well, baby's will eat just about anything, but stuff it into her until she sneezes and sprays it all everywhere!
  • Boy Goes Burp! - Feed Boy fizzy pop until the inevitable happens. Usually in Dad's face.
  • Student Goes Bleugh! - Fill Student with beer until...

All games are (c) Damian Johnson.

In today's review we encountered a pig who ate burgers until he exploded. This may be fun when dealing with a plastic animal, but trying the same thing with a real pig is neither clever nor funny. Obesity among swine leads to heart disease, diabetes and even cancer. The next time you come across an overweight hog, do the right thing: hand him a lettuce leaf and point him in the direction of a gym.

Until next time...

Other Toyology reviews can by found in the Toys R Us Toy Box on Facebook.

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