Looking for an absolutely ridiculous game to play with your kids? Several years ago there was a company called Cheap*** Games that made cheap games. Their theory was you bought the game, and just the game. You supplied any dice, tokens, or anything like that needed for the game. Jeff and I bought several of their games, and one Jeff didn’t particularly like, but I thought was hilarious was The Unexploded Cow Game. I shared it with Superman, who shares my sense of humor, and he thought it was hilarious and must be added to our gameschooling rotation.
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The premise of the Unexploded Cow Game
You’ve got a farm in France, but there are a bunch of unexploded land mines from World War 2, and maybe even World War 1. Over in England, they’ve got Mad Cows. You’ve come up with a brilliant solution, why not use those mad cows to find the unexploded land mines? Each land mine blown up gets you a bounty, because France doesn’t want those mines just hanging around forever.
Don’t play this with a kid or friend who won’t think the premise is funny. I would never play this with my daughter.
How to play Unexploded Cow
Each player starts off with $5000, but you immediately pay in $500 to the pot. You start with 3 cards in your hand, and start off with a city in the middle all of you are visiting.
On you turn, you draw 2 cards from the draw pile. Then you can play as many cards as you want.
You could play a cow into any field, whatever field the cow is played into, is who pays for the cow. This is a great strategy for you to give someone a terrible cow or to mess with their general lineup. If you have the money, you could play lots and lots of cows. That can be a plan.
You could play an event. Events also have a cost, and they happen immediately. They could cause everyone to move their cows to the field next door, or they could allow you to steal a cow from someone else’s field.
Once you’re done playing cards, you make your bomb roll. You roll the die and count that many cows over. Pretend you rolled a 5, you would count 5 cows and that cow blows up. You get the money for that cow, and then it’s the next player’s turn. If the number you rolled is the number of the city currently out, you’ve won that city.
There’s some additional rules for the dice roll, but that’s the basic idea.
The strategy of Unexploded Cow
Unexploded Cow actually has a high amount of randomness. First, it’s going to depend on what cards you draw, and then it’ll depend on what number you roll.
This means, you can have the perfect strategy and still lose because you had bad dice rolls, or someone else drew just the right card.
But in all honesty, I don’t have a clue what to say.
The kids and I all disagreed on what is the correct placement for bad cows, or do you try to have cows blow up so you can get more money, there are so many different ideas.
Modifications to the game
To play the full game, you go through all 12 cities. The obvious modification is to make the game shorter by taking out a few cities.
Next up, up the money, we discovered we ran out of money in the pot somehow, which was annoying as all get out, so we thought to up the money you put into the pot to start the game.
Why I like Unexploded Cow
It’s hilarious. The cow names are puns, the descriptions are hilarious. The randomness can make me laugh.
Picking up Unexploded Cow
There are two options, as a company, they no longer produce the cheap versions, which makes me sad. But, you can download the game for free. That means you have to print the game off, and you have to find a way to store it, I put it in manila envelopes since we lost our original game from a few years ago.
Unexploded Cow is also available as a normal game that you can buy from Amazon or your local game store.
That’s your call, I printed it off because I had a hard time rebuying a game I bought once before.
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