A Party Game Review: Pass the Pigs – Roll them like Dice
ToysBulletin.com reviews “Pass the Pigs” a fun game for all ages from Winning Moves.
Are you ready for this one? If you have not already heard of this game, “Pass the Pigs” will certainly catch you by surprise. It is the type of game that will get a lot of laughs before, during and after you play. “Pass the Pigs” is not a new game, having first been introduced in 1977, and it has also undergone many name and color changes along the way. However, it is now being published by Winning Moves Games, and we are going to look at the “Pig Party Edition” of “Pass the Pigs.”
The game contents include eight small rubber like pigs (four pair each in a different color), a deck of Pig Roll cards, a nice carrying case and some easy to follow instructions.
The object of the game is for each player to roll a pair of pigs and try to match the position of the pigs as pictured on one of the Pig Roll cards. You should now be asking, ”How do I roll a pig?’ Well, each of the pigs is finely detailed to include a snout, ears, legs and tail, and when you toss a pig on the table, it can land in several different positions. In fact, the game has a name for each of the possible positions. Here is a list of those positions and the descriptive word used to identify each:
Trotter – the pig stands upright on all 4 legs
Razorback – the pig is upside down on his back, all 4 legs in the air
Sider – the pig is on its side
Snouter – the pig is face down, with only front 2 legs touching the table
Leaning Jowler – the pig is resting on its ear and 1 leg (very difficult to roll)
Points (5-25) are awarded based on whether a player can successfully roll the pigs and match the Pig Roll card. Players alternate turns rerolling their pigs, until a player matches the card and earns the points. The first player to earn 100 points wins the game. There are bonus points available and some other rules variations that keep the game lively and moving quickly.
We knew it would be easy to set up a focus group for “Pass the Pigs,” because players of all ages are so curious to find out how this game is played. We decided to work with a family once again for this game. The family consisted of a mom, dad and two teenage sons, and they had helped us on several occasions in the past. We set things up on a Saturday evening, and did not tell the family ahead of time what game we were planning to play, instead thinking a surprise might work best. Upon arrival, we told the group that we were going to play “Pass the Pigs,” and we definitely got some surprised looks. It turned out that they actually owned a copy of the game already. However, they were very agreeable to playing it again and offering their opinion.
They immediately noted the flashy new colors and carrying case. We reviewed the rules to refresh their memories, but basically we were up and playing in a matter of a few minutes. Even with these experienced players, a typical game lasted around 30 minutes, and we got in a total of 5 games before stopping for the evening.
The game did make them laugh, as it does seem a bit silly to be rolling a pair of pigs on every turn. They liked the pace of the game and also enjoyed the challenge of rolling a “Snouter” or a “Leaning Jowler.” The two teenage boys insisted there was a way to spin their hand, just before releasing the pair of pigs, that gave them a better chance at landing the pigs in a high-scoring position. The parents and we decided that to be untrue, but nodded our heads as they explained their strategy.
If you are looking for an unusual, fun party game suggested for ages 7 years old and up, this may be the one for you. “Pass the Pigs” retails for $17.95. Check it out at Funagain.com.
-- RJ Cullen