Bad Medicine: Second Opinion - Expanding the hit party game! project video thumbnail
Replay with sound
Play with
sound
$12,548 pledged of $23,000 goal
backers
$12,548 pledged of $23,000 goal
backers

About this project

Bad Medicine is a raucous party game in which you are a pharmaceutical company making horrible drugs. It launched on Kickstarter in February 2015, made four times its funding goal, and delivered to backers in September and October. Since then, it's received praise from The A.V. Club and HuffPo, and sold out in a matter of months.

With your help, we can bring it back!

In Bad Medicine, you and your opponents are huge pharmaceutical companies. Your goal is to create names and advertisements for new drugs to cure the current Malady, while downplaying any side effects that you'll never know about ahead of time.

Each card in the game has a little bit of a drug name, a little bit of a description, and a side effect. There will be one card dealt in the middle of the table; its side effect is the Malady to cure this round.

You'll formulate a drug to cure the Malady. Then you'll pitch it to the other players. Of course, your drug will have a side effect.

If your pitch gets the most votes, then your drug's side effect will be the Malady to cure next round!

When playing with 5-8 players, you'll team up with a different player every round. One of you will formulate a drug, and the other will pitch it without looking at the cards first!

Here's a video of the game being played with four players. NOTE: This video was shot last year with prototype components, before the game came out. The game now comes out with punchboard bits for voting!

And here's a video of the game being played with five players. Again, this was shot last year with the game prototype.

Want to try the game? Download a limited print-and-play, with enough cards for one round!

I'm running this Kickstarter to fund two items: a reprint of the base Bad Medicine game, and a new expansion, Bad Medicine: Second Opinion.

Bad Medicine: Second Opinion will be 100 extra cards (possibly more if we hit stretch goals), and a new mechanism, Complications, that can add surprise cards to your pitch.

As you're pitching your drug, if you use this card in your drug's description, you must draw a random card and use its Description text in your pitch. If that card has a Complication icon, then you must immediately draw another card. In this example, you'll have to figure out a way to pitch "cleansing cartilage." It has a way of making your pitch memorable... one way or another!

I demoed this game at Essen Spiel '15, and I met a lot of French and German speakers who told me, "I really like this game, but it has too much English for my game group."

So I am offering a downloadable Print-and-Play version of the game in French and German, as well as English! Simply pledge $5 or more, and I will send you a PDF of the game in the language of your choice!

Here are the game's rules, translated into French and German. Note that these are drafts; they haven't been touched by graphic designers yet.

(IMPORTANT: the choice of languages applies only to the PDF. The print version will remain English-only, although physical versions of the game in French and German could be unlocked in late stretch goals if this campaign raises enough money... :)

"A cheeky and sweetly cynical game." - Huffington Post

"Bad Medicine is terrifically funny and cleverly written. There are tons of cards to create daft-but-plausible names, and the benefits are ripe for unusual interpretation. Side effects are quite specific but plenty silly by themselves, especially in the right combinations. We managed to solve the obesity crisis by making our patients unable to swallow, although it led to their teeth falling out and being replaced with tiny tongues." - A.V. Club

"Bad Medicine is the kind of game that can be learned in moments, played in minutes, and enjoyed for hours. In no time, our pitchmen were hilariously trying to sell the drugs that the developers had slapped together. Bad Medicine is a perfect party game - clear, simple rules, minimal fussing with components, and constantly and consistently engaging gameplay - everything you need for a raucously good time." - Gameosity

"If your party is suffering from anxiety, boredom, or constipation, then Formal Ferret 'Pharmaceuticals' brings the cure with Bad Medicine. This party game features clever drug pitches, thousands of possible naming combinations and outlandish side effects to make everyone at the table bust a gut laughing. Bad Medicine is a must-have for any game collection." - Who, What, Why

"An uproarious game of making drugs and pitching them! How you present the drugs, and getting through them with a straight face is half the fun." - Gamers on Games

"It's a party game that allows you to bring your brain and have some good laughs... If you're a gamer and want to add a party game to your collection, this one will fit in." - Punching Cardboard (listen to the full review here)

"This game is great fun and I think it spans almost any type of player, from the picky miniatures gamer... to casual Munchkin gamers, to strategy gamers who are just looking for something light in between the heavy thinking games. Or you know, if you think you’re a comedian after a few mai tais." - Game and a Curry (read the full review here)

Want multiple copies? Message me! 

The fine print:

For the LAB, MARKETER, and SURGEON GENERAL stretch goals, you will submit three suggestions and I'll pick one, or work with you to revise one of your suggestions. 

I will do everything I can to work with you if I don't think your submission fits, but I reserve the right to reject submissions I feel won't fit the game.

You must have your submission in by May 31, midnight EDT (that's really the night of May 30).

 ...and I have more stretch goals planned!

Bad Medicine raised over $30,000 on Kickstarter last year, and the print run of 2500 units sold out. So why am I coming back to Kickstarter, instead of funding the game with what I earned last year?

  • I made some money on the game, but not enough to fund both a reprint and an expansion. 
  • I decided to invest some money in Formal Ferret, like convention appearances and printing extra copies of my other game, The Networks. (And some money went to things like rent and groceries, of course!) 
  • Kickstarter is a great way to judge the potential popularity of a game. Bad Medicine was originally going to be 100 cards in a small tuckbox, but stretch goals helped it grow to over 200 cards and punchboards in a gorgeous 2-piece box. I want the same sort of feedback for the expansion. 
  • I get great feedback from backers about the game, and a surprising amount makes it in. For example, the backgrounds of the Drug Cards were originally going to be blue, but backers convinced me to make it cream-colored instead. It was the right choice.

    Kickstarter is so much more than a pre-order system for me! It's very important that I make sure the game I'm delivering is the game that backers want.

I am a board game designer and publisher based in Jersey City, New Jersey, with my girlfriend and two adorable ferrets. In my life, I've recorded indie rock albums, edited sound for film, programmed computers, written and performed comedy, and seen more theater and live music than I can remember.

Bad Medicine is my third published game, my first self-pulbished game (I'm in the process of publishing my second game), and my first game to sell out its original print run. Bad Medicine: Second Opinion will be my first traditionally-published expansion. 

If you want to know more about me, you can read my blog, follow me on Twitter, or sign up for my mailing list!

Scott Hartman is a freelance graphic designer and art director. He specializes in board games, but has worked on plenty of non-board game marketing projects. 

Scott has also worked with other well-known publishers such as Action Phase Games, Tasty Minstrel Games, and Arcane Wonders. Scott applies his extensive graphic design expertise and production know-how to deliver games that are both good-looking and functional.

I created Formal Ferret Games as an outlet for my game designs. I wanted to take advantage of the new tools offered to designers, and release my work directly to the public.

So far, it seems to be working. Bad Medicine was a hit, selling out its print run in a matter of months, and The Networks is already hotly anticipated by the board gaming community ahead of its retail release in August.

I believe that part of the reason for my success is that Formal Ferret Games allows me to demonstrate my passion for my games directly. People can see how much sweat and labor I put into what I do, and how great I try to make them before they hit shelves. 

Indie game design and publishing is a lot of work, but it's incredible work. I'm very grateful to be able to do it!

Risks and challenges

This campaign for Bad Medicine: Second Opinion will be my third Kickstarter campaign. At this point, I've built up a great deal of firsthand experience when running a campaign, and I have already seen the original Bad Medicine campaign all the way through to delivery. My second campaign, The Networks, is in the manufacturing process now, and will ship to backers in about 6-8 weeks.

There are many risks when backing a board game. We're dealing with mass manufacturing and logistics, so there's no way to eliminate all risk.

But I've learned enough to mitigate the biggest risks, from making sure all but the most trivial art is complete before launch to establishing relationships with fulfillment centers around the world to guarantee timely fulfillment of the game, without requiring backers to pay taxes or customs.

Between the connections I've made and the experience I've earned, I know I can fulfill this game close to its estimate of January 2017.

Learn about accountability on Kickstarter

Questions about this project? Check out the FAQ

Support this project

  1. Select this reward

    Pledge $1 or more About $1.00

    PLACEBO - Thank you for keeping an eye on my game! And as always, if you ever meet me in person, you get a handshake, a fist bump, or a hug.

    Less
    Estimated delivery
    17 backers
    $
    Kickstarter is not a store.

    It's a way to bring creative projects to life.

    Learn more about accountability.
  2. Select this reward

    Pledge $5 or more About $5

    PEER REVIEW - Get a Print-and-Play download of the base Bad Medicine game AND the Bad Medicine: Second Opinion expansion in English, French, or German! Includes the PLACEBO pledge level.

    Less
    Estimated delivery
    50 backers
    $
    Kickstarter is not a store.

    It's a way to bring creative projects to life.

    Learn more about accountability.
  3. Select this reward

    Pledge $19 or more About $19

    SECOND OPINION - Get a copy of Bad Medicine: Second Opinion shipped to you, with all stretch goals! Includes the pledge levels PEER REVIEW and PLACEBO.

    Note that this level does NOT include the base game, only the expansion.

    SHIPPING:
    USA - FREE!
    Canada - $5 USD
    EU - $7 USD
    Rest of world - $15 USD

    Less
    Estimated delivery
    Ships to Anywhere in the world
    159 backers
    $
    Kickstarter is not a store.

    It's a way to bring creative projects to life.

    Learn more about accountability.
  4. Select this reward

    Pledge $28 or more About $28

    CONTROL GROUP - Get a copy of the Bad Medicine base game shipped to you! Includes the pledge levels PEER REVIEW and PLACEBO.

    Note that this level does NOT include a physical copy of the expansion or its stretch goals.

    SHIPPING:
    USA - FREE!
    Canada - $5 USD
    EU - $7 USD
    Rest of world - $15 USD

    Less
    Estimated delivery
    Ships to Anywhere in the world
    16 backers
    $
    Kickstarter is not a store.

    It's a way to bring creative projects to life.

    Learn more about accountability.
  5. Select this reward

    Pledge $44 or more About $44

    TAKE 2 AND CALL ME IN THE MORNING - Get BOTH the original Bad Medicine game AND the Second Opinion expansion! Includes all stretch goals as well as the PLACEBO and PEER REVIEW pledge levels.

    SHIPPING:
    USA - $3 USD
    Canada - $8 USD
    EU - $10 USD
    Rest of world - $18 USD

    Less
    Estimated delivery
    Ships to Anywhere in the world
    154 backers
    $
    Kickstarter is not a store.

    It's a way to bring creative projects to life.

    Learn more about accountability.
  6. Select this reward

    Pledge $59 or more About $59

    MARKETING DEPARTMENT - Name a bit of a drug! You get to come up with the top text on a card, subject to restrictions (see main page). Also includes the pledge levels TAKE 2 AND CALL ME IN THE MORNING, PEER REVIEW, and PLACEBO, as well as all stretch goals.

    SHIPPING:
    USA - $3 USD
    Canada - $8 USD
    EU - $10 USD
    Rest of world - $18 USD

    Less
    Estimated delivery
    Ships to Anywhere in the world
    Limited 4 backers
    $
    Kickstarter is not a store.

    It's a way to bring creative projects to life.

    Learn more about accountability.
  7. Select this reward

    Pledge $99 or more About $99

    LAB - Come up with a side effect! You get to come up with the nasty bottom red text on a card, subject to restrictions (see main page). Also includes the pledge levels TAKE 2 AND CALL ME IN THE MORNING, PEER REVIEW, and PLACEBO, as well as all stretch goals.

    SHIPPING:
    USA - $3 USD
    Canada - $8 USD
    EU - $10 USD
    Rest of world - $18 USD

    Less
    Estimated delivery
    Ships to Anywhere in the world
    Limited 2 backers
    $
    Kickstarter is not a store.

    It's a way to bring creative projects to life.

    Learn more about accountability.
  8. Select this reward

    Pledge $149 or more About $149

    SURGEON GENERAL - Come up with AN ENTIRE CARD! You get to supply a drug name, description, and the side effect of a card, subject to restrictions (see main page). Also includes the pledge levels TAKE 2 AND CALL ME IN THE MORNING, PEER REVIEW, and PLACEBO, as well as all stretch goals.

    SHIPPING:
    USA - $3
    Canada - $5
    EU - $10 USD
    Rest of world - $18 USD

    Less
    Estimated delivery
    Ships to Anywhere in the world
    Limited 2 backers
    $
    Kickstarter is not a store.

    It's a way to bring creative projects to life.

    Learn more about accountability.

Funding period

- (21 days)