Growing up, my family’s board game closet pretty much just consisted of Candyland, Operation, Life, Monopoly, Connect 4 and UNO. Very basic and entirely ineffective at triggering ye ol’ gag reflex.
If you walk the aisles at Walmart or Target today, though, you’ll discover a whole new genre of kid games. Gross games are a wildly popular craze — each one more nauseating than the next.
Get ready to scream, “Whyyyyyyyy?” as I give you my top five.
1. GOOEY LOUIE. This one’s a real prize (insert barfing emoji here). Each player sticks a finger up Louie’s nose and pulls out a “gooey.” If the player picks the wrong “gooey,” Louie’s eyes will pop, his head will flip open and his brain will fly out. Oh, what fun! Picking a nose and crossing one’s fingers that the slimy booger they retrieve is the right slimy booger. Could this game be any more delightful? It’s as if they gave a room full of 8-year-old boys bottomless energy drinks and pixie yardsticks and then asked them to create a fun game.
2. FLUSHIN’ FRENZY. This gem is a little more complex. Players flush the handle on the toilet to roll the die, and when a number comes up, they have to plunge the toilet that number of times. But players must beware — after any given push of the plunger, the piece of brown plastic feces that is lodged in the can may come flying out of the toilet. And, as much as it pains me to say this, the first player to grab the poop earns a token. For reals. If you are quick enough to catch the flying turd, you position yourself to win the game. (I cannot believe that is actually an accurate statement.)
3. PIMPLE PETE. Beyond gross. I mean, are they kidding with this one? How many pimples can you pop without bursting the mega zit? Zero, because if I watch my children squeezing even water-filled, fake rubber zits, I will probably lose my lunch. Santa will definitely not be getting cookies if he leaves this nightmare under my tree.
4. GASSY GUS. Um, this game comes with an extra belly. That alone should be enough of a red flag to send you screaming away from the toy section. Players are about to get so rough with good old Gus that he will need a new abdomen. The game is simple. Each player uses cards to shove gaseous foods into Gus’ gut. As they pump Gus with gas, they watch his belly grow bigger and bigger. The first player to get rid of all their cards wins. But the caveat? Watch out for the big blast of gas! Um, no, thank you.
5. PULL MY FINGER: THE FARTING MONKEY GAME. A classy name, sure, but the game is so much more than just its distinguished title. This game comes with a monkey whose backside is exposed so you can “watch his butt inflate with every pull.” This is not a joke. This had to have been the brain-child of a fraternity bonding exercise during pledge week or something. No one with kids would ever come up with such an icky idea.
These were my top five, and by top, I mean the ones that horrified me the most. However, take heart if they don’t float your disgusting game boat because there are many more to choose from. Honorable mentions included Don’t Step In It, Doggy Doo, Toilet Trouble, Gas Out, Stinky Pig, What Did I Step In? and Pop The Pig.
Lynn Kirkle is a writer and lives in Omaha with her husband and five children. She writes twice a month for momaha.com, and can be found on Twitter @LAPainter.