Cranium board game rule dispute

Ok, plating cranium and the sculpting option… Someone has ‘shoulder pads’ fashions shoulder pads out of the play doh and places on their shoulders. is rhis a gesture and are they considered to have won the question??

It’s been a while since I played Cranium, but if I remember correctly, the deal with the sculpting option is that it is sculpting only, no gestures to assist, yes? If so, then I would say that putting the “shoulder pads” on their actual shoulders qualifies as a “gesture.” For it to be a legit win, you’d have to recognize that the items were shoulder pads without being placed on the shoulders. In my opinion.

It always helps if the wording of the card is posted; we don’t all have the game next to us at the computer.

However, if the card says “no gestures” then this is a no-brainer; of course it’s a gesture.

I disagree. If the clue was an action relating to putting on shoulder pads, then I’d say it was a rule violation, but merely putting the object in context is not.

For example, if the person put on the shoulder pads, then performed a football action, I’d say that was a rule violation, but putting the pads on in and of themselves is not.

If all actions were ‘a gesture’ then you wouldn’t be able to sculpt the clay at all. You’d have to perform the gesture of ‘deformation’ to accomplish that.

Agreed with sache. Placing an object is not a gesture. If there were no clay involved, and the person pantomimed putting on a set of shoulder pads, that would be a gesture. Taking the formed clay and putting it on your shoulders is no more a gesture than setting it back on the table would be.

It’s a gesture, sure. Making a clay person and putting the pads on them would be kosher, I’d think.

Isn’t the point of playing to have fun though? Not get excessively carried away with the rules?

I agree with this. The point of the “no gestures” rule is that the little clay sculpture should be all anyone needs to look at it and guess what it is. Putting it on your shoulders is, IMO, a gesture and violates the letter and spirit of the rules.

This argument bugs me. On the one hand, nobody likes a rules lawyer who spends half the game looking up some rule to see if someone else is in technical violation. But I play a lot of games, and if someone doesn’t care about playing by the rules, or is intentionally breaking rules, using the argument that, “It’s just a game, why are you so obsessed about rules?” then that really lessens the fun for everyone else playing. This is more of a philosophical point in general, though, and not specific to this Cranium issue. :slight_smile:

Seems we get a fair number of Cranium rulings around here - were they that bad at writing the rules? I know it’s a think-outside-of-the-box game, and with that comes some thinking-outside-the-rulebook.

I’m the type of player that can poke holes in a lot of rules, and I tend to find where they break down. As such, I’ll try to fill in those gaps before the game - but people don’t want to spend 2-3 minutes hashing out ground rules, even when I tell them it will most likely result in a 25 minute argument. “No, it’ll never happen.” Of course it’ll happen - I just told you what the loophole is. If anyone is going to exploit it, I will exploit it.

I’m a real delight to play games with.

So why didn’t the player just put it back on the table?

Placing it on the shoulders is the use of a physical form of communication beyond the form that is sculpted. The idea is to convey the clue only through the sculpture.

I think it obvious that the move is unquestionably against the spirit of the rules and the clear intent of the game.

Maybe the rules specify that you cannot put the object in “context.” It must be judged, or guessed, on the merits of its creation alone. If a player is supposed to fashion a gun but ends up making what looks like a clay vibrator, using the creation in a shooting motion, or placing the creation in a “holster” will make the answer obvious, regardless what it looks like. This would render the spirit of that portion of the game meaningless.

The game has enough clay to make shoulder pads!?

It’s cheating. You can’t use your own body as a prop to help complete anything, nor can you use any other prop, such as a pencil, wall, cup, or die. I mean, what if it was “apple” and I happen to have an apple sitting there on the table? Could I just take a dab of clay and stick it to the apple? Of course not! Same logic with “shoulder pads”.

I guess my group of friends simply play by looser rules. Stuff in the room, especially other players, is ‘in play.’ If you are fortunate enough to have an apple in the room and get the clue “apple” well lucky you.

I would consider it a violation. Along those same lines, one could simply sculpt an arrow and simply point it in the direction of anything in the room that helps solve the clue. You’re not “gesturing”, simply holding your sculpture.

The rule we usually play with is that the clay can only interact with other clay (and the sculptors hands, of course). For example, if you had sculpted a little person and put the pads on THOSE shoulders, it would be legit.