Tuesday, June 6, 2023

Gudetama: An Egg Yolk With a Butt Crack Turned Into a Trick Taking Game

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Gudetama – The Tricky Egg Card Game is a trick taking card game for 2-7 players. The goal in this game is to avoid winning the final trick. The core gameplay is actually similar to an existing game, Cucumber, but with some changes added by Oni Games to make things a little more interesting as well as a re-theme around Gudetama, one of Sanrio‘s most popular characters alongside Hello Kitty and Aggretsuko. The game plays over 7 rounds, with only the last round counting for points toward whoever wins.

What’s in the box?

  • 63 cards numbered 1-14
  • Rules

That’s all? Yep, it’s that simple

Gudetama cover art

How Does it Play?

All 63 cards are shuffled, and 7 cards are dealt out to each player. The game plays in multiple rounds, and each round consists of 7 tricks. A trick is when each player plays 1 card out on the table and the highest numbered card wins and gets to lead the next trick. 

At the beginning of Gudetama, a random player is chosen to start, but later whoever wins the last trick will start unless they win with a number 14 card. In that case, they will choose any other player to start the trick. 

After the lead player plays a card from their hand, all subsequent players will have 2 choices. They will choose one of the 2 choices in a clockwise order from the starting player. The active player can play a card with an equal or higher value than the highest card played so far in the current trick, or they have to play their lowest valued card. Players don’t have to play a card in their hand that is equal or higher, they can choose to play their lowest, but remember the last trick in a round gives out points which you do not want. 

Players play 7 tricks and whoever wins the last round, they take the card that they win the trick with to count for points, adding it to their scoring pile. These scored card wont ever return back into the deck and will count as points scored for them. 

If a player ever plays a 1 card in the final trick, then all players will score the card they played in that trick including the player who played the 1 card. 

Players continue playing round after round until a player gets or exceeds 21 points. At that time, the player with the lowest point total is the winner. 

Gudetama hand limit of 7 cards

The Verdict

I personally love trick taking games. When growing up, with all the face card game that I played, trick taking games were the best because they required the most strategy, yet were easy to play and teach. Gudetama is similar yet totally different. It holds true to trick taking but the only trick that counts is the 7th one, or your last card in each round.

The fact that ONLY the last trick counts for points can be frustrating and forgiving at the same time. Players will be setting up their hands, getting rid of high cards or being forced to get rid of their lowest.

Is there that much strategy in the game? Well the spin (whisk?) that Gudetama puts on the game makes the game a lot more forgiving, so there is definitely less strategy than other trick taking games, so if you want full packed in strategy, this isn’t your game. But if you want a more relaxed game where players can get lucky with cards or just go through the motions while you hang with family or friends, then this might be the game for you.

If you are competitive in your games and need everything to mean something, you will need to look elsewhere. This game can tend to feel like it drags on because you’re playing and winning tricks that essentially don’t matter, they are just all setting up the last trick in the round.

I actually enjoy the game more with my kids as this is a better game than other, similar games they would play. Plus the art and theme on the cards helps set a relaxed atmosphere, I mean an egg yolk with a butt crack and some arms and legs, you just can’t help figure out what’s happening on each card.

You can grab Gudetama: The Trick Taking Game on the Oni Press shop or on Amazon.

Pictures either taken by author or provided by Oni Games

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  • Brody Sheard

    Brody is a huge board game fan who loves games both simple and complex and he loves how they tickle the brain like nothing else does. Brody works as a cardiac travel nurse, soon to be nurse practitioner and enjoys being healthy, active, knowledgable, and a fan of many topics.

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