Stuff Happens is a simple enough card game that we picked up on a whim while on a weekend getaway with a friend. It took us months to eventually play it, but we had a great time with our friends when we did so!
Honestly, I thought Stuff Happens was kind of like Cards Against Humanities. It’s not at all like that and when we read the directions I wondered how fun it would be. It turned out to be a lot more fun than I thought. You need to have a good, decent-sized group to play with, though.
There is a giant stack of cards that all have unfortunate incidents and circumstances described on them, ranging from “going bald” to “getting a nail stuck in your foot” and plenty of other scenarios. Each card has a rank depending on where it lies on the Misery Index, courtesy of the creators of the game. Each person starts with a random set of three of these cards to start the game off, creating their beginning range of the index.
Then you take turns picking up a card from the draw pile. When it’s your turn to pick up a card, you don’t say where it lies on the Misery Index, but just say what it is. For example, bleach in your eye. (Yes, I believe that’s actually one of the cards.) The person to your left then needs to guess where it lies on their timeline. If they have cards that lie on the index between 7 and 10 and they guess the card in question is either an 8 or 9, they point to where they think it lies. So, you’re not necessarily guessing the number, but gauging where it could be based on what you already have.
If you’re correct, you get to keep the card. If you’re incorrect, it goes to the next person to guess. If no one guesses correctly before the round returns to the person who read the card, then the the card i discarded. The first person who has ten cards wins. It’s a fun game, one that keeps everyone guessing, even if we didn’t always agree with the misery index that came with the game. For example, according to the game, your favorite local team relocating is somehow worse than falling into a septic tank.
If you guess correctly and get to keep the card, then you place it in your timeline where it belongs. This actually gets harder the more cards you collect. If you have a card that rank 1.5 and the card next to it is 1.7 then it’s hard to guess which card might land in the 1.6 spot. The wider the range, the more likely you’ll be correct.
There were definitely cards that are difficult to place regardless of what range you have in front of you. An interesting twist to this game may be for the drawer to determine where the card would end up on their personal “misery index” rather than the game’s list, and then for others to guess correctly. Either way, it’s a great game to play with a good group of friends.
It’s a much better game than I originally thought it would be. It’s fun to play with the right group of people and you certainly need a good-sized group. This wouldn’t be as intense with three people or so. When we played there were five of us and that was a good size. If you haven’t tried this game, put it on the list. You’ll be surprised at the fun you can have with it.
Stuff Happens gets a rating of…
Skip It | Try It | Buy It