Kulkmann's G@mebox - www.boardgame.de



Emely & Lukas Brand


No. of Players:
3 - 5



Gamebox author Ralf Togler writes about the game:

What can you expect from the debut game of an eleven year old boy and his nine year old sister? The answer is: quite a lot, at least if the parents are Inka and Markus Brand, the popular game authors of Village, Im Schutze der Burg, Der goldene Kompass and a lot of other successful games. The publisher DREI MAGIER SPIELE, specialised in games for children, has taken the idea of the two youngest members of the Brand family and have put the new game Mogel Motte (Cheating Moth) in the line of Kakerlaken Poker and Kakerlaken Salat.

Prepared with eight cards in each player's hand, the game can start immediately. When it is a player's turn, he has to place one of the cards from his hand on the discard pile in the middle of the table. All playing cards have a value of 1 to 5. The card played by a player must be one number higher or lower than the current card on top of the pile. The 1 follows the 5 and vice versa.


Quite easy if that would be all, isn't it? But the title of the game already indicates that there must be more. Right! Cheating, something that is normally inexcusable in a game, is explicitly allowed. All cards, except of the cheating moths, may be dropped, hidden, or disappear in other ways in order to get rid of them. However, to call a halt to this unpleasant way of play, one of the players is made a guard bug who has to observe the other players and who may accuse them, if he successfully can catch them in the act of cheating. Then the guard bug changes the owner. Of course, the player with the guard bug may not cheat himself...

To make the observing more complicate, a lot of the playing cards follows special discarding rules that involve all other players. So for an example, if a mosquito is played, all players must hit on top of this card as soon as possible. The slowest player is given a card from the hand of each other player. So, if in this case the player with the guard bug has only eyes for the other players, he will be the slowest and must take a lot of new cards to his hand. If however he is concentrated on the card played on the discard pile, it is an ideal situation for cheating for all the other players.


With the child-orientated design of the cards the target group of Mogel Motte are definitely families and smaller children. The playing age is given as 7-99, but even my five year old son had no problems with the game. But in my testing games for this review, I noticed that the game was loved by the grown-ups as well. Of course, the rather unusual theme and the mechanics of cheating make up part of the game's attractiveness, but also the quick and involving gameplay is a reason why people want to play again and again. At the beginning, everybody thinks that catching the cheater would not be very difficult, but if you look under the table at the end of the game, it was always a big surprise for the players with the guard bug.

A big applause to the two new talented junior authors and their funny and quick debut game!

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Copyright © 2012 Frank Schulte-Kulkmann, Essen, Germany