DIG! by Syther Gaming

DIG! – Quick-Paced, Card Discovery… and Watch out for the Bombs!! – Syther Gaming

Players: 2 Players

Duration: 5-10 Minutes

Age: 12+

DISCLAIMER: I was provided a prototype copy of this game for the purposes of this review. These are early prototype components, and the final components may be different from these shown. Also, it is not my intention to detail every rule in the game, but rather to go through a general overview, how it plays and my reaction to it. If you’re interested in the game, be sure to back them on Kickstarter.

  • How To Play DIG!
  • The Good
  • The Other
  • Final Thoughts

How To Play DIG!

Provide digging tools to both players in order from lowest dig ability to highest dig ability. Shuffle the rest of the treasure and bomb cards and deal 11 equal piles between the two players. The recommended row setup is a 4-3-4 one.

Take turns peeking (or taking, depending on which dig tool you currently have) card(s) until you hit your tool limit. Whatever treasure you dig up goes into your personal treasure pile. If you happen to dig up a bomb, your entire treasure stash gets discarded and you have to start accumulating all over again.

Repeat actions until no treasure and no bomb is left in the center piles. The person with the highest treasure count wins.

The Good

The best part about DIG! is absolutely how much fun this incredibly simple game is. At first glance, my wife and I thought it would be like any other simple game, but oh boy were we mistaken. 

One of the most interesting things about DIG! comes from the fact that it teeters the line between a luck-based game (pick a pile, maybe there will be a bomb, but maybe not) with the feeling of control that you can have playing a game (I can pick this pile rather than that other pile). The more we played it, the more the game built up that short and intense spurt of endorphins you get gambling at Las Vegas. 

Throughout the game, we had ample opportunity to play mind games with one another. For example, after picking a bomb and ending my turn, I’d talk in depth about how mathematically speaking, the odds for more than one bomb in that same pile would be slim only to have my wife pick up a bomb there, too. Needless to say, the game drew out our frustration with one another alongside a ton of laughter.

We were very surprised how riled we both got just playing this card game. This is a definite plus in my book, especially considering that the game is 52 cards, just takes 10 minutes to learn and takes about 5-10 minutes of play. Many times we were down to just ONE card left in the entire game and the winner takes the victory by one point.

And last, but not least, in this section is that Syther Gaming made it a point to make the game inclusive, choosing colors and symbols that make it friendly for those who are colorblind. It’s heartwarming to see more games be conscious about the types of colors and iconography that they use in hopes of this becoming a more inclusive hobby.

The Other

One thing I would have liked to see more of is a stronger theme tie-in or a stronger story to wrap this all up together nicely. At the moment, we are supposed to be digging for treasure, but some of the actual “treasures” themselves did not flow well with the game i.e. why would we want to dig up scissors or a padlock? As such, the symbols used within the game itself did not really bring much relevancy into the theme of digging up treasures. 

Much along the same vein, weaving in an exciting story would add flavor to the game, especially when targeted to a younger audience. I can imagine this being a huge hit if this game started off with a story of pirates voyaging the great seas in search of bounty (treasures), only to find booby traps (bombs) along the way too.

The only thing that drew some confusion from our part is the cost to upgrade a tool. Instead of paying the cost on the card that is currently showing to upgrade, you are required to look under the card to find the cost of the next tool and pay that one instead. This made it a little awkward at times since we repeatedly had to go back to lift up the card and look at the cost of the next tool again.

Final Thoughts

At the end of the day, DIG! Is a phenomenal game for its price point. At only $7, you can get a lot of quick and exciting gameplay to the table. Since the Christmas holiday is coming up, DIG! would make a great stocking stuffer for those who enjoy a lighthearted 2P game every so often and younger kids alike. Although the box lists that the game is suitable for those 12+, I can easily see myself playing this with my 6-year-old niece so don’t let the age label deter you from snagging a copy for your young child. It is live now on Kickstarter.