As you may be aware, Mrs Ready Steady Roll (Charlotte) is currently over 39 weeks pregnant. Ready to pop at any moment. Since this stage of pregnancy can get a tad uncomfortable, we decided to test the often asked question – Can a Board Game induce Labour?
There are lots of old wives tales and theories about what can start labour, from Pineapples to a bumpy car ride, to strange positions and getting a shock. With this as our research, we devised a highly scientific experiment to test our theory that Games could hasten the arrival of Baby Ready Steady Roll.
4 games were chosen which involved various different actions and themes which we hypothesise may be most likely to induce labour.
The first game who chose was Happy Salmon.
Each player has a hand of cards and must get rid of each card by finding another player with a matching card and do the corresponding action, whether it’s a high five or the fun “happy salmon” move (slapping your hands against each other’s forearms. The first player to get rid of all their cards is the winner. We hoped that the excitement, movement and hijinks would be all it took to start the first contraction.
Like Twister, but on your body, players take it in turns to pick a card with an action on it, such as “Place this card on your nose” or “Put one hand on your knee”. As the game progresses, players get “in a bind” as they have to move into increasingly strange positions. We hoped that the unusual positions and laughter at each other’s ridiculous poses would encourage the baby to come and join in.
The third game we chose was Go Cuckoo.
In Go Cuckoo, players take turns building a nest and laying eggs, like a reverse Ker-plunk. If you knock an egg off while building the nest you have to take it back into your hand. The first player to lay all their eggs, and place the cuckoo on top of the nest is the winner. We hoped the nice theme of creating a nest and laying eggs would sink into Charlotte’s subconscious and let the baby know that we are ready for his arrival.
The fourth and final game we chose was Escape from the Cursed Temple.
This real time game sees players working cooperatively to escape the temple by frantically rolling dice and placing gems with a tense soundtrack in the background which plays for 10 minutes. If all players have not escaped by the end of the soundtrack all the players lose together. This game can get very tense (especially for Charlotte who REALLY likes to win), so we hoped the pressure and adrenaline would help kick-start labour in no time.
Charlotte is still pregnant. None of the games induced labour.
Based on our scientific test, we conclude that games cannot bring on labour.
After the High Fives, Switcheroos and Shouting in Happy Salmon there was still no baby. Maybe with more players, the excitement would increase (as Happy Salmon is best with 5-6 players) which would improve its labour inducing properties further testing required at higher play counts. The Switcheroo cards proved the most troublesome for the subject as the bump generally got in the way.
In a Bind, while fun, again had no impact. Charlotte seemed to get easier cards, further testing ensuring more convoluted cards required. The subject has disputed this, however, suggesting she won ‘fair and square’. She claimed that ‘[her] cards were just as tricky as everyone else’s, I think if anything this “experiment” has shown that I am the BOSS at board games”. I am not convinced.
After Charlotte won Go Cuckoo, building a strong and stable nest in which to lay her eggs, we theorised that it was a sure fire thing that Charlotte’s subconscious would allow her to go into labour, but no contractions occurred.
Finally, after losing Escape the Cursed Temple, this game may have affected Charlottes Subconscious (unlike Go Cuckoo), resulting in the baby being ‘trapped’ in the womb as we were trapped in the temple. The subject was not best pleased with this conclusion – ‘This is an absolutely horrendous thought. I would like to point out that I managed to escape the temple but since it’s a co-op game I had to lose with my team mates. Maybe it’s the mother bear survival instinct in me but I would have quite happily left team mates behind so that I could escape and be declared the ultimate winner….er…I mean…so that I could escape and keep the bump safe….”
To conclude, none of the games induced labour in our subject, however, it was fun and distracting. One interesting note was that the pregnant subject won all of the games, even in the cooperative game, she was the only player to escape. Does this suggest that her senses were heightened and her skills improved due to her pregnancy, or that people go easier on a pregnant lady? I think I know…