|TLDR: As with many games, we soon discovered that Stupid Deaths simply doesn’t work with two players. It feels as if the two player variant was an afterthought to make the game more saleable.
Stupid Deaths is a game that states on the box that is for 2-6 players, and costs around £20. ($26).
Players start the game with a True and a False Voting Card as well as an Extra Life Token. All the players begin on the Green space, half way around the board from the Red space where the Grim Reaper starts his chase. The first player takes the top Stupid Deaths Cards and reads it aloud, individually all the other players have to decide if the scenario is real or made up and turn over either their True or False Voting card. Each player who has voted correctly moves their player piece one space closer to home and away from the chasing Grim Reaper. For each player who voted incorrectly the player must move the Grim Reaper one space forward towards their own piece! When the Grim Reaper catches up, lands or passes a play piece, that player has been ‘touched by death’ and is out of the game unless they use their Extra Life Token to give them one more chance. It’s a race against Death to be the first player home and reach the Red space!
The cards are quite flimsy and are not of very good quality, I feel like after a few plays they could start to bend and crease very easily. However, you do get 300 cards which means it will take quite a few games to see all the questions. The Grim Reaper is also made of cardboard so if you take him out of the stand each time you pack the game away it also could break quite easily, so it is probably best that you leave him in the stand. The pawns are plastic but aren’t very well made and they don’t feel like they’re made to last.
University Games really haven’t thought about how to make the game interesting for two players, and as such they haven’t adapted the rules or the game mechanics. Death has no chance of catching up with either player once (meaning the Extra Life token won’t even be used), so that part of the game is pointless and means that there is simply no replay value for two players. Whilst it is possible to make up your own rules to create a more entertaining two player variant it is really not fair to have to do that when it states on the box that it is for two plus players.
Some of our suggestions for making Stupid Deaths give a better two player experience are:
- Start Death closer to your own start point, or move your own Start point closer to Death.
- Move a space backwards for incorrect answers, whilst the reader still moves one space forward.
- Move Death forward two places for each incorrect answer.
We have not wanted to play Stupid Deaths at all again since the first play because with only two players it really isn’t fun at all.