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Get in My Belly Preview

Quick Look: Get in My Belly Preview

Designer: Shawn Wilson
Illustrated by: Sincerely Sam
Graphic Design: Board Game Design
Publisher: Shawnsolo Games
Year of Publish: 2019
No. of Players: 2–5
Ages: 16+
Playing Time: 45–60 minutes

Some games are delightfully deceptive. The look of Get in My Belly by Shawnsolo Games looks like it should be played by children, but the number of options for your strategy is for grownups. The material is acceptable for younger gamers—the write-ups on the backstory of the game, races, and the food are fun to read, and a younger crowd will find them hilarious. The multiple levels of strategy in Get in My Belly kept the players focused on what was happening with each round of play.

We had five players with a demo version of Get in My Belly. The developer is looking to be on Kickstarter soon. I also had the opportunity of playing a two-person round with the developer at the St. George Board Game Convention in 2018.

Get in My Belly is about aliens participating in eating competitions. The different characters players have available don’t provide any advantages to play, they are merely color selections that add a little flavor to your backstory. The main goal is to win eating competition trophies. Victory points are also earned by attempting to overeat during a competition, completing objectives, winning prizes, and advancing in “The Big Three” which happens as you advance in other areas.
On display at convention

Because of the multiple routes of earning victory points, players need to develop a balanced approach to their strategy, be willing to take chances, and be able to adjust as the game changes during the round. This complexity of play isn’t for everyone. This is a fun game for those who want to dive into a game that keeps them focused on what everyone around the table is doing. One subtle move by another player can change your winning play into a pointless pile in front of you.

I enjoyed playing Get in My Belly. I even lost, and I mean I came in last place with the winner having more than doubled my score. As a reviewer, this is a game I should've played and then gone back and taken notes. In other words, I missed plays by others and missed out on scoring. I’m looking forward to a rematch.

The complexity of Get in My Belly is in the strategy, not the set up. Setting up the game only takes a couple of minutes. Clean up is the same. There are not a lot of components needing to be organized. There are three decks, markers and meeples for each player, and second chance markers to set to the side.

Each player starts with 6 cards from the Food Deck, which is comprised of Action and Food cards. Then the Food swap area is filled and the rest are put in reserve. Objective cards are dealt to everyone and each person decides which ones to keep while the rest are set aside for later use in the game. Prize cards are turned over in the prize area for selection as people win competitions.

Here is where the strategy of the game takes place.

Each game moves through 6 phases. Phases 1 through 4 are repeated as a game turn. 5 and 6 are end of game scoring and declaration of the Galactic Eating Cup Champion.

One of the characters
Phase 1 is setup. During this phase the game is set up as above to play, or parts of the board are reset after phase 4 has been reached and the winning condition hasn’t been met.

Phase 2 is choosing benefits. Somewhat of a worker placement mechanic as each player selects a benefit and then a favorite food for the round. You also have the option of choosing a one shot benefit for the round. However, the one shot only applies to the round and you only get one per game. The final part of this phase is exchanging cards from your hand with cards in the food swap.

Phase 3 is the eating phase. This starts with each player making a concealed bid with the Food cards from their hand. Everyone reveals their bid at the same time. Then you have the option of attempting to overeat on one of the 5 competition foods. At the end of the eating phase, if someone has consumed 6 of any one food, then the game moves to phase 4. If not, hands are replenished to 6 Food cards and Phase 3 continues.

How you play your cards is important because beside the count of food on the card there are additional trophies and advancements that can be won.

Phase 4 is scoring the round, collecting trophies and prizes, and advancing the Big Three. The board is resent (Phase 1 stuff) and the next round is started with Phase 2.

Phase 5 is started when a player has won 12 trophies. Final scoring takes place and the grand champion of culinary consumption is crowned.

Theme and Mechanics
Aliens discovered a derelict mining ship from Earth and from the records they recovered come to believe that food (especially tacos) and eating competitions were highly regarded by the human race. They then developed their own eating competitions which has led to the creation of the Galactic Eating Cup, a highly prized award.

Another Character
There are several mechanics used in Get in My Belly. I tried to give a feeling for each as they are used during gameplay above. You have private objectives to work for, hand management and play, and a selection of benefits by claiming prizes and advancing choices on your score card. I didn’t mention there are combinations of these strategies for end of game scoring. All which need to be considered while making choices of what to choose and what to play while the game proceeds.

Artwork and Components
You have alien races eating alien food. The artwork is fun and builds on the theme and the backstory of the game. Each has its own write-up giving a smorgasbord of delights.

I played with developmental components. At this stage they are good, but were designed to be functional for demonstrating and playtesting. Based on the artwork and past history of the developer I expect everything to be a quality that can be proudly displayed on a game table.

The Good
  • Complex strategy. This game made everyone think.
  • A theme that created fun, interesting, and sometimes obnoxious table comments and noises.

The Bad
  • Complex strategy versus the look, younger players wanted to play and didn't fully comprehend all of the options. Or they became overwhelmed with the choices.

Final Thoughts
All 5 of the players enjoyed Get in My Belly. The complexity was a little harder to grasp at the start and required referring back to the rules, and some table discussion. All agreed they would gladly play it again. Having the chance to first play a 2-player round, and then a 5-player game, I would suggest this works better for more than 2 players.

Players Who Like
More complex games requiring you pay attention to what is happening. It is not fast paced, but there is a lot going on with all of the options.

Check out Get in My Belly on:


Daniel Yocom - Reviewer

Daniel Yocom does geeky things by night because his day job won’t let him. This dates back to the 1960s through games, books, movies, and stranger things better shared in small groups. He’s written hundreds of articles about these topics for his own blog, other websites, and magazines along with stories, after extensive research. His research includes attending conventions, sharing on panels and presentations, and road-tripping with his wife. Join in the geeky fun at guildmastergaming@blogspot.com.

See Daniel's reviews HERE.
Get in My Belly Preview Get in My Belly Preview Reviewed by Guild Master Gaming on July 08, 2019 Rating: 5

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