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Poetry for Neanderthals: Board game created to be played through the Zoom video calling service

With all the advances that technology has brought to the video game sector, with increasingly sophisticated proposals at a visual level, and the implementation of virtual reality and augmented reality, one might think that board games are something of the world. last. Nothing could be further from the truth.

Yes, board games still refuse to be forgotten, and now more than ever they have become an item that millions of people have chosen to turn to in times where confinement due to COVID-19 has forced them to stay in their homes for much longer than usual.

This situation has been taken advantage of by the board game manufacturer Exploding Kittens, who has decided to launch a card game entitled Poetry for Neanderthals, which has the particularity of being played through Zoom calls.

With regard to dynamics, Poetry for Neanderthals is a word guessing game where the teams involved get points for each word or phrase correctly deciphered.

To do this, the players must correctly communicate the words and phrases assigned by the poetry letter to the rest of their companions who must decipher it in a time of 90 seconds, but, with the particularity of only being able to express one syllable.

It is so, for example, for the word bonfire a player could validly describe it as place where hot white cubes are roasted.

After the word has been deciphered by the partner, the team where they are both gets points for it, causing the poetry card to go to the opposing team.

If any rule is broken, the offending poet is hit with an inflatable stick, losing one point for his team and subtracting one from the opposing team.

In short, players will have to practice good diction or they will end up being punished with the inflatable stick. It should be noted that at all times players can only use the language of a cave person as a rule to generate clues that help the rest of the members of their team.

In reference to this, Exploding Kittens co-founder Elan Lee expressed You speak in single syllable words. And the result is hilarious. There are no more rules than that

Origin of the game

Regarding the origin of the game, Lee explained that it had arisen as a result of a suggestion made by his friends a year earlier.

Through an anecdote Lee told that his friends had come to mind the creation of the game during a conference in which they approached him and told him Hey, we have this crazy idea. You have to describe a life experience, but you can only use single syllable words

After that, Lee pointed out that during the game experimentation everyone made strange sounds as if they were cavemen in therapy or in the middle of a job interview.

Despite the originality involved in the development of Poetry for Neanderthals, the truth is that, due to its dynamics, the game can be considered as a variant of Taboo, another game released in 1989 that also consists of guessing words.

Lee regards Poetry for Neanderthals as a perfect game of air-gap, I term used to designate those games that can be transferred to a video chat platform and be played with a deck of cards without problems.

Regarding the manufacturing process, Lee noted that this was extremely difficult because the supply chain of his factories was interrupted despite the fact that they had resumed operations. This, as a result of the ports to which the game was sent were interrupted.

This situation caused Exploding Kittens to resort to finding suppliers who were willing to give them the help they needed to bring their game to life, a goal that was ultimately achieved, but with a reduced manufacturing margin. So far, Poetry for Neanderthals has only been sold exclusively in the United States through Target stores.