Cluster Puck

Brian Rogers
Rogers Rabbits
www.sunlive.co.nz

Board games are making a comeback during these uncertain times of pandemics and lockdowns. Families and friends are once again pushing the limits of frustration and patience by attempting to sit around a game, without the aid of electronic screens or devices, to play old-school entertainment involving dice, cards and leaving their destiny to chance. Many Monopoly boards have been upended over the last few months, as wannabe entrepreneurs have fleeced their families blind, just for a bit of glory in the playtime property market. And others have found it’s not the snakes amongst the ladders you need to worry about, but the reptiles in your own household. So it is with great pleasure Sun Media launches the latest project from Rogers Rabbits, a game we are so proud to share, we’re beating our community chest about it…

Welcome to the new board game, Cluster Puck.

The aim is to navigate your way around the board, staying out of isolation and avoiding the pitfalls of COVID-19 and the social disarray it causes.

First you choose a puck. You can be any one of many characters.  An epidemiologist, endemiologist, or even a geologist because it’s easier to spell; a doctor, a patched roadblock gangster, The Director General of Health, the Prime Minister, the sign language person, or simply the puckin’ germ itself.

You could make your own board of 10 by 10 squares, making a hundred spaces, (we don’t have room on this page for the whole thing) and randomly add each of the instructions listed below to individual squares. Set square number 10 aside as ISO.

Feel free to use bubbles, rather than squares, if you feel it’s more appropriate.

The rules

Here are some instructions to add to spaces randomly along the board:

You helped flatten the curve, by lazing on the couch. Move your puck an extra space forward.

Border control is out of control. Wait here in isolation until you throw higher than four on the dice.

Your PPE doesn’t match your outfit. Take a selfie and post it on social media asking for fashion advice.

Be kind. Swap puck places with the person behind you on the board.

Be kind. Send money to Rogers Rabbits retirement fund.

Be kind. Talk slowly to Green voters.

Community transmission breaks out. Go back to iso.

Roll the dice, move your puck along the corresponding places along the board, and live, or otherwise, with the consequences.

You followed the instruction, ‘Be Kind’.

Take an extra throw.

Your business takes a hit during lockdown.

You pivot. We’re not sure what that means, but go back three spaces, then forward two.

Go straight to isolation. Miss a turn.

You’re minding your own business on a quiet bush trail, when you’re mown down by the Health Minister on a mountain bike.

Find a new Health Minister and have a free throw. Pick up a free pack of face masks. Have an extra throw of the dice. A stranger coughs on the bus. Go straight to isolation.

You’re in iso but want to go shopping. Jump the fence and infect the lucky puck on the board in front of you.

They go to iso. Throw the dice, if it’s an odd number, you go back two and miss a turn.

You take social distancing a step too far, and fall off the board. Go back to the start.

You stay safe and at home, despite temptations and the voices in your head. Pat yourself on the back.

Your shares in a face shield manufacturer go through the roof. Take an extra throw.

You’ve been off sick for nine days but decide to take the family on a tour of New Zealand anyway. You infect the two pucks closest to you and form your own cluster!

They miss a turn, you miss two.

You sneeze at the back of the queue in the supermarket.  

Everyone else leaves in fear. Take an extra turn.

You run out of toilet rolls. Go directly to the supermarket.

You’re caught panic buying toilet rolls. Spend a turn in iso.

COVID testing people dig too deep up your nostril and scoop out the last of your functioning brain matter. Go directly to join Destiny Church.

Your region drops down an alert level.

Take double your next throw.

How to survive

Contactless delivery brings you noise cancelling headphones. Smile and nod to your bubblemates and hum the tune ‘I will survive’.

You deliberately leak private COVID patient details.

Slap yourself repeatedly and get the puck off the board.

You accidently on purpose leave the ‘n’ off the end of the Christian name of a Crown minister. She takes offence at being called Mega Woods, believing she’s been body-shamed. Go back to the nearest ‘Be Kind‘ square.

At the daily press conference, Mega Woods gets peckish and eats Dr Bloomfield. Miss a turn.

End in sight

You leave iso to go shopping and break the chain. Go five spaces backwards.

You fall for a conspiracy theory involving herd immunity. Go to the Gullibility Corner and don’t move until another puck passes by.

You actually believed there was a Gullibility Corner? Go wash your hands again.

Finally, on space 100 you get a vaccination and win the game.

Stay safe and sensible, people.

Congratulate yourself by bumping both your elbows together.

You actually tried that, didn’t you?

There may be no hope…

To play at home, click here to download the board.



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