Game Buzz: Tattoo Stories

Just a quick post today as we talk about

image by BGG user W Eric Martin

Tattoo Stories is a 2019 game designed by Eric Slauson and published by Games by Bicycle. It’s a 4-6 player drawing game where you’re tattoo artists trying to create body ink that tells the best stories.

Each player has a dry erase board and a marker. In each round, one customer is chosen, and they draw ten cards from the tattoo card box. These will give different words. The customer chooses five of these cards and presents them to the other players, who then must create a tattoo that tells a story. They have three minutes, and are allowed to ask the customer questions that will help them create their story. It is important to note that you are NOT allowed to erase a mistake. This is ink, and what you do is permanent.

After the time is up, each player pitches their tattoo to the customer. The customer then hands out the tattoo cards to the player he or she felt used that element best, which means someone might get all, some, one, or none of the tattoo cards. After each player has the most tattoo cards wins the game.

image from

Full confession – I’m not a party game person, nor am a tattoo person, nor am I really a storytelling game type person. But something about this seems like a lot of fun. It seems like it probably suffers from the same thing a lot of judging games do, and that is subjectivity. However, I like the idea of handing out cards for awards instead of just giving a single card to the “winner” of the round. I think that might help cut down on some of the gaming you see in things like Apples to Apples – in other words, that guy certainly deserve the card, but he has no cards, and if I give it to the guy who DID deserve it, he’s gonna win. Also, I like the creativity that this game looks like it brings, even though the tattoo connection seems a little tenuous. But overall, I think this looks like a pretty fun group activity.

That’s it for today. Thanks for reading!

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