I’ll be the first to admit, that when I go through the process of writing my spotlights and reviews, I dick off… A lot. One minute I am looking at a game’s BGG page, gathering information, then the next I’m magically playing a game of League of Legends. Don’t ask me how it happens; I really don’t know. However, I still manage to get my posts done, make dinner, and feed the cat.A few nights ago, I managed to dick off while playing League (gotta love alt+tab), and I began mindlessly searching Kickstarter for new projects to write about. I came across this game and I was like, “Yes. This. So much this.” A game about avoiding doing work? Brilliant!
Government Worker is a satirical card game about avoiding all of that bureaucratic work that comes with a government job. Having worked for my home town’s Parks and Rec department, I can totally relate to this, and I can’t wait to play a game about it!
What’s In The Box
There are 216 cards included in the base game and these are the types of cards you will see:
- Work cards– These cards will have assignments or jobs you have to do, and they will add time onto your work day.
- Dick Off cards– These cards will have various ways for you to avoid doing your work, and they will subtract time from your work day.
- Transfer cards– These cards allow you to transfer your work to another employee. Transfers can affect a single employee or multiple.
- Add/Lose Work cards– These are cards that cause you to add/lose single or multiple work cards.
- Specialty cards– These can have major impacts on the game, such as causing you to get rid of all of your cards, or ending the work day.
For those of you interested in the quality and size of the cards, they will be 300gsm poker-sized cards with rounded edges.
If It’s Good Enough For Government Work…
Government Worker is a social game that includes a little bit of luck, and a little bit of screw your neighbor, or in this case your coworker. It will accommodate 4-8 players and takes anywhere from 30-90 minutes. In the game, you are one of the many public servants doing their best to make it through the work week. However, you are also trying to do as little bureaucratic work as possible. At the end of the work week, you want to be the employee with the least amount of actual work time done.
At the start of the game, each player is dealt 4 work cards from the work deck. Starting with the first player, players will take turns drawing cards from the draw deck. Cards drawn from this deck will affect the amount of work you do for the hand. You could draw a Dick Off card, which will decrease the amount of work you do, or you may end up getting screwed by someone else’s transfer card. Special cards may also be drawn, causing you to lose all of your Dick Off cards or be shut down by the government.
The game is played over a series of hands. One hand is equal to a work day, 5 hands is equal to a work week, and 10 hands equals a pay period. A hand will end when a player has drawn the Time Card Due card. Players will then score their hand by adding up all of the hours on their work cards and then subtracting the sum of their Dick Off cards. Whichever employee has done the least amount of work at the end of the week is declared the winner. The game can be played as a series of 5 hands or 10 hands, giving players some variation on how long the game will take.
If you are interested in watching a quick overview of the game play, you can check that out here.
The pledge levels for this campaign range from $5 to $2,800 USD.
If you are interested in supporting the game, or are into making print & plays, then the $5 level will be a good fit for you. This level gives you a copy of the base game as a PnP. This is a good option if you are on a budget, or if you are interested in the game, but not sure if you want to get a physical copy for your collection. It might also be good for gaming groups to have on hand, so multiple sets of people can play at once. Get a few of your good friends together (these people must really love you, because making PnPs can be tedious) and put together a few copies for all of you to play.
The $23 level will get you a physical copy of the base game. For just $5 more, you can get the base game along with a 25 sheet notepad of Official Time Cards to keep track of your game scores. For $33 you will get everything at the $23 level, plus a copy of the 52 card Not Suitable For Government Work expansion. At the $38 level you will get everything at the $33 level, plus the Official Time Cards notepad.
The two pricier levels will get you a little something more for your buck. The $98 level is the Signature Red Tape Edition. This gives you everything in the $38 level, and you will also receive an additional signed copy of the game. This copy will be an adventure in unboxing. It will be placed in an upgraded collector’s storage box, then placed in a shipping box, and if that wasn’t enough, it will then be “haphazardly wrapped in over 50 linear feet of Bureaucratic Red Tape.” The QuitWork Games team is encouraging backers of this level to creatively film their unboxing adventures and then share them on social media. I honestly wish I had enough to spare to back this level, but I have already accepted that I might have to vicariously live through others.
The final pledge level is a whopping $2,800, and there is only one spot available. This level changes the “Earl” card, so that it is your name instead. This is a special change for the 1st edition printing. For reference, I have an example of one of the “Earl” cards above. You will also receive everything included in the Signature Red Tape Edition.
I think the $38 level gives you the most bang for your buck. It keeps the game under $50 and still gives you an expansion, plus the scoring notepad. It’s a pretty sweet deal. I’ve found that card games like this, especially if they are played frequently by the same people, tend to lose their appeal after a few too many plays. So, it is always a good idea to grab an expansion when you can, to keep your game fresh.
The QW team was inspired to make Government Worker by their own personal experiences dealing with federal, state, and local bureaucracy. One day, they decided to document all of the crazy experiences they’ve had while working for the government, and those experiences serve as the basis for this game. If you want to know a little bit more about their inspiration, one of the designers does a great interview with Derrick Blair, and you can listen to that here.
This campaign is QuitWork Game’s second attempt at getting Government Worker off the ground and onto our shelves. After having an unsuccessful first campaign, or as they called it “dumpster fire,” they have come back with lessons learned and a new game plan. So far, it has been a pretty good turn around. Even though this is a fledgling game company, I love that they were able to take failure and learn from it. I find that even some seasoned companies will continue to stick with formulas that don’t work, because they are unable to learn and progress to offer something better.
Lately, I find myself backing more of these lighter, social games. In my gaming group we seem to always be stuck in the limbo of deciding on a game, mostly because there are always too many of us that prefer to game together, rather than to break off into smaller groups. Games like Government Worker come in handy to fill the awkward space between longer, heavier games. Plus, it’s nice to have some variety.
I think this game is going to be fun and easy to learn, which is a perfect fit for an in-between-big-games game. This will also work well as a game to play with your drinking buddies, and should easily find its place among giants like Cards Against Humanity and Exploding Kittens. Even if you don’t back to get a physical game copy, it is definitely worth the $5 pledge do get a copy of the PnP.
As of right now, the campaign is fully funded and there are 21 days left to back this game.
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