About this project
Bears vs Babies is a card game where you build handsome, incredible monsters who go to war with horrible, awful babies.
It was created by the same people who made Exploding Kittens: Elan Lee (Xbox, ARGs) and Matthew Inman (The Oatmeal). The game takes a few minutes to learn, it's kid-friendly, and each round takes about 20 minutes to play.
THE ORIGIN STORY
I’ve always wanted to make a card game. A few years ago, I started working on a game based on my comic, The Oatmeal, where you connect heads, torsos, arms, and legs to create a variety of monsters based on characters from my comic, such as the Bear-O-Dactyl. The original version of this game was doodled onto paper cutouts, and had no functioning game mechanic other than “build funny-looking things.”
Two years ago I met Elan Lee, and he showed me a prototype of a game called “BombSquad,” which we renamed to Exploding Kittens. After Exploding Kittens launched, my creature-building game got put on hold.
After the dust from Exploding Kittens eventually settled, I asked Elan to help with the design of my monster-building game. I didn’t want this to be one of those games where you're trying to "out-comedy" one another; I wanted it to be more of a deck-building game, such as Dominion or Hearthstone, but without all the complexity. I wanted a monster-building game you could easily play at a party.
Up until this point, my version of the game had a big problem: when you played, you were on autopilot. You had no decisions to make and usually one correct action to perform on every turn. Elan has been designing physical and digital games for most of his career (he invented the genre of alternate reality games, and was formerly the creative director of the Xbox), so he put his gargantuan puzzle-solving brain to work and added a layer of much-needed complexity to the game. He tinkered a bunch and established the basic rules of conflict, construction, and the escalation mechanic that would define the core gameplay. The tricky part was keeping this simple enough to be a party game, but complicated enough to allow for depth and strategy. It’s easy to fall into two bad categories when designing tabletop games: either they’re easy to learn but completely random, or they’re very strategic but mind-numbingly boring. You have to walk a very thin line between the two. I think with Bears vs Babies we did that.
After months of pestering everyone we knew to play the game with us and tweaking the rules bit by bit, we finally got it to the point where our friends pestered us to play, instead of vice versa. And that eventually brought us here, to Kickstarter, where we’re now pestering the whole internet to play with us.
And so here we are.
Let the bear hugs and baby burping begin.
-Matt and Elan
Risks and challenges
Remember that one time two years ago when we built Exploding Kittens and shipped everything we promised to you ON TIME?
Seems like a pretty keen idea to try that again. We're going to use the same great folks at Ad Magic to print the game, and the same incredible team at Blackbox to get it over to you once it's printed.
The biggest risk is really just getting cocky. We know this won't be easy, and we know how hard we're going to have to work to get you your game in the timeframe we promised it.
Just like last time, we're going to keep things basic. We're not going to offer t-shirts, or posters, or anything else that will get in the way of us delivering the game to you as promised. We're keeping it as simple as possible: support our project and in return we'll send you the playable game.Learn about accountability on Kickstarter
Support this project
- (30 days)