One Board Family: Bugs on Rugs Review
Remember the days of collecting insects and dropping them into glass jars or your family’s Tupperware? You would bring your new friends into the house just to have a parent tell you that bugs belong out doors. Bugs on Rugs is a new set collection game published by Kids Table Board Gaming.
The Best Bug Collection
In the game up to 5 players are drafting bugs from the center of the table. Unlike a game like Sushi Go, everyone can see what insects you take as everyone chooses two bugs from the table during a round. If players pay attention, they can pick up on patterns when opponents are drafting specific bugs.
At the end of each round of Bugs on Rugs, a single bug will escape and go to the “wall”. This is a row of cards where a special ability is triggered that affects the whole table. These abilities are shown at the bottom of each bug card using iconography.
Some bugs will force players to pass a card to their right or left, another will force players to swap out a bug in their hand with a bug on the wall. The active player is often left with a choice as to which bug will go to the wall. I really love this mechanic because someone is in control of what happens to everyone, even if they are holding a perfect hand of cards. Nothing is more satisfying than passing a card to a player that throws off a perfect set of four lady bugs or pair of beetles.
Each of the nine bugs earn the players victory points in different ways. Spiders are worth 7 points, if you discard a fly. Lightning bugs earn you 1 point per different color rug you collect. Lady bugs give you 25 points, only if you have exactly 4 lady bug cards. Otherwise they are only worth 1 point a piece. The player who earns the most victory points wins the game.
Bugs on Rugs has such smooth gameplay and the open drafting system is fantastic for players who want to strategize against their opponent. The game has beautiful illustrations from artist Shawna Tenney. Each bug has real personality and had my teenage daughter laughing every time she picked up the incredibly cute larva card.
While Bugs on Rugs is a fantastic “family-weight” game, the iconography for the wall abilities was a headache every time we sat down to teach this to a new player. After playing the game three times, I understood what each card meant and how it could be played. New players regularly had questions or got confused about the icons on the cards they were holding.
This issue clears up as players come back to the game for two or three games. Kids Table Board Gaming did a great job explaining every icon in the game booklet. You’ll definitely need this as a reference when you first sit down with Bugs on Rugs.
I really love the way this game plays and how it engages both adults and kids. The artwork is so fun and cute that it’s hard not to smile while playing this game. In my opinion, this game is going to replace the original Sushi Go in our game collection. I think the wall abilities and different set calculations offer a deeper experience while still being a light weight game.
Bugs on Rugs is a great release that has crept it’s way into our hearts and our game shelf. You can pre-order the game now ahead of its release in Spring 2019.
Kids Table Board Gaming provided us with a preview copy of Bugs on Rugs ahead of its release. This in no way influenced our opinion of the game.
Fun abilities offer a mild “take that” experience
Beautifully illustrated cards are a great fit for this family game
Open drafting works really well and is easy to teach
Variable end game card works very well
Iconography can be tough to understand the first couple games
Butterfly scoring seems extremely under powered