Friday, 12 December 2014

#27daysofgames - Day 12 – Most memorable game played - Perudo

The best games are the ones where you have the right people in the right state of mind playing the right game, and those don’t come along too often.  The games I remember most are the simplest ones when most of us weren’t in the most serious of moods, and all we were doing was kicking back and enjoying things. The game that most sticks in my mind was a few years back at Expo when we were still in the Strathallen Hotel in Birmingham rather than being over at the Hilton and in the evening, when things started to calm down, we had chance to get in a game or two.

The game on this occasion was Perudo...

Perudo is a simple enough game, sometimes called Liar dice, sometimes Devil Dice, but always the same game.  Every player has five dice to begin with, everyone rolls the dice and keeps their result secret, and then players take it in turn to bet on the amount of a certain number that’s present, with one of two different actions.  Either call the previous person on the number and amount that they called, or raise the total and pass the buck to the next person.  The number one is wild and can count for any number, so when people call one’s, they can bid half the previous number, but when increasing on one’s, they have to double the amount and add one. 

For example, if someone called three ones, the next person would have to call four ones, or seven of any other number.  If someone had called three sixes, the next person could call four of any number, or two one’s, both of which would be an increase on the previous bid.

What made this game so memorable was the number of people that were playing it at the time.


Some of us a little merry, some of us a little tired, but because there were seventy dice on the table to begin with, bids the likes of which none of us had seen began stacking up quickly and then came trying to keep track of how many dice were still on the table and considering what would be a good bid to follow up on.  The first game only took us forty minutes to get through, the second took us more than an hour because it devolved into all of us randomly throwing out numbers to confuse the person whose turn it was, rather than playing fair and keeping the numbers correct.  As anyone who’s ever played games with friends when not all of them were on an even keel will attest, the game either falls apart quickly or holds together with everyone laughing with each other, rather than at each other.

So it was with this game.

I can’t tell you who won the games, I know at least three who will claim they did when they were the first ones to hit the deck, but I can’t remember who won (I know it wasn’t me), but on those occasions when you’re so busy playing the game you no longer care who wins or loses, only that you keep playing...

Those are the best times, those are the ones you remember in the years to come...

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