2 Sep

Obviously, by reading this blog, you love playing games.  But, do you like playing games WHILE doing other things?  Did you know there were such things?  Today we’re going to dive a bit into 5 games (that are really just 2 different games and variations on a theme) that fall into this category.

Before I get going, I wanted to make note of a couple special cases that were suggested, but didn’t quite fit the category.

Magic the Gathering: Shahrazad


Based on the character from the Tales of the Arabian Nights, Shahrazad forces players to stop the game of Magic they are playing, and play a subgame with whatever cards are still left in their decks.  The loser of that game loses half their life in the main game.  Playing 4 of these cards in a deck was one of the most evil things that anyone could do.

Gipf Potentials

GIPF is a 2-player abstract game (VERY) basically about pushing pieces around a board, trying to line up 4-in a row.  The GIPF Project is a way to combine 6 different abstract games by the same designer together using pieces called Potentials.  For example, if you want to use a Potential from YINSH in your current GIPF game, your opponent can challenge you…in which case you must must pause GIPF and beat your opponent in a game of YINSH.  If you win, you get to use the YINSH piece in the GIPF game.  It’s completely nutty, but if you’re a hardcore abstract game player, with a day to kill… give a full GIPF Project game a try.

I didn’t feel like these quite fit the criteria I had set aside for this post, but felt like they did deserve mention…if for no other reason that they are so strange, and I like strange.

I also didn’t want to focus on “car games” like Car Bingo, I Spy, the Alphabet Game etc.  They can be good ways to keep kids busy, but aren’t exactly interesting games.

The games I have found for this article fall into two different categories: Games to play while watching tv / movies and Games to play while playing a sport.

TV / Movie Games

ESPN Scorecards

002Scorecards is a deck of 120 cards with various things that may happen during the course of a televised football game.  Each player starts with a hand of 5 cards.  The cards can show everything from plays on the field, things the announcers may say, to fans you might see in the stands.  Whenever the action on the card happens in the game, you play the card, and score points.  Some cards also have negative points, which you play against your opponents.  A nice, unusual twist in this game is that you may choose to keep the card you just played.  So, if you just scored an “Incomplete Pass” card, you might hold on to it, hoping there will be another incomplete pass, or you can discard it and draw a new card.

004Obviously, a QB completing a pass to himself is rare, and therefore worth a bunch of points.




A couple things really annoy me about this game.  First of all, the card stock is miserable.  The cards are insanely thin.  You’d think ESPN would want their name on a well produced product, but this game is extremely cheaply made.  Also, there are a few typos… or at least I assume typos.

005The game redeems itself somewhat for including this Tim Tebow Memorial Card…although it REALLY REALLY should have been worth 15 points.

010This isn’t a bad diversion for a game day.  Especially if you don’t really care much about the teams playing.

Film Frenzy: Action Movie Edition

011This is a 120 card deck (sounds familiar) full of action movie tropes.  As you watch an action movie, when the events on your hand of 5 cards (!) occur, you play them for points (I sense a theme).  So yes, it’s basically the same as Scorecards with a few noticeable differences.  First of all, the cards are much nicer, with full color cartoon art.

012Next, there are “Bonus Cards” that will give you bonus points if special circumstances occur.

013There are action cards that can allow you to pause the movie in order to draw new cards, and a rewind card that can be played if you happen to draw a card for an action that happened earlier in the movie.

014There are also Reaction cards that can either be used for their printed effect, or can be used to cancel specific cards.

015Film Frenzy is a lot of fun, however you NEED the right kind of movie.  For one thing, the worse the movie the better.  The game fell flat with Terminator 2, because everyone got involved with the movie.  Gymkata though?  The game went over very well.  I’d like to try this with either of The Expendables movies.

Sadly, Film Frenzy got cancelled before the sequels for comedies, dramas etc. ever got made.

Games while playing a sport

Ript / Ript Revenge


Several years ago, I really got into the sport of disc golf (frisbee golf, frolf).  Sadly, due to a litany of knee and ankle injuries, I’ve had to stop playing.  Right at the end of my time in the sport, I found these card games, so I’ve never actually been able to play them.  Ript and Ript Revenge were made as ways to try and  enhance rounds of disc golf, by introducing various kinds of random events.  Each deck is 54 cards, and can double as regular decks of cards.    Cards show when they can be played.

018Before Shot cards tend to make your opponent have to throw a certain way, or using a certain disc on their next shot.  After shot cards can give you mulligans, or allow you to switch places with an opponent and so on.


Ript Revenge cards tend to be just a bit nastier than original Ript cards.  I love the “Force an opponent to use their mini for the next drive” card.  Minis are tiny discs mostly used in the same manner as a ball marker in regular golf.    While they are designed like their larger brethren, they definitely don’t fly the same distance.

I don’t know if Ript or Ript Revenge work well for very casual disc golfers, as they often refer to terms or shots that may not be known.  If you have a regular group, or a tournament, these could be fun decks of cards to play with.  However, I do feel like the cards would get mangled easily being carried around in pockets or disc bags for a couple hours through the woods.


017By the same company as Ript, Mischief is basically the exact same idea, but for miniature golf!  Now, I DO play miniature golf competitively these days, so this game hold more interest to me these days.  Just like Ript, there are cards that can be played before teeing off, or after shots have been played etc.

020There’s nothing too crazy here, but this might be a fun way to enhance a miniature golf round, especially if you have players of disparate abilities.  For example, the “Ace Switcheroo” card shown above – if a player gets an ace, they can switch scores with another player.  This can really swing a game in favor of a less-experienced player that may have gotten lucky on the last hole.

I hope you’ve enjoyed this look at games you can play while doing some other activity.  Are there games I’ve missed?  Anything you’d like to add?  Comment!  Let me know.

I usually like to post what my next topic is going to be, but I’m going on vacation for a couple weeks, and will be working on other projects for a while…so I don’t have a specific plan as of now.  I might make a post about a certain part of my vacation in a few days, and then some coverage of Buckeye Game Fest in a couple weeks.

Thanks for reading!


3 Responses to “Gameception”

  1. velocipastor September 3, 2013 at 7:05 am #

    Never knew these existed. Probably won’t jump to the top of my list but at least now I know they could be on it.

  2. Chris Lauria May 8, 2014 at 10:59 am #

    Thanks for the kind words on Film Frenzy! My name is Chris Lauria and I am one of the creators of the game. I also created many of the card images, and art directed the game. In all fairness, FF was released in 2003 – 6 years before the ESPN Scorecard game. I would assume they saw our game and borrowed our gameplay mechanics.

    We certainly didn’t “invent the wheel” with the gameplay. In fact, when we were pretty far along in development, we had discovered a similar sports game released by Mattel several years prior. The ESPN Scorecard game is almost identical to the Mattel game.
    Either way, these are all pretty much glorified drinking games 🙂 but it’s nice to see people still discover our Film Frenzy game and give compliments. Thanks!

    Just so you know, we are thinking about a relaunch and new versions in the near future.

    • scooterb23 May 9, 2014 at 2:24 pm #

      Thanks for the comment! I guess it does sound a bit like I made your game sound like a copycat…I didn’t intend that. I just chose your game second for the article, sorry about that. 🙂

      I’m looking forward to seeing the game come back, and new versions to appear!

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