I remember getting the game Don’t Upset Me for Christmas one year from my parents, and I’ll admit that when I first unwrapped the present I was a little disappointed. I had never heard of the game before, and the box that mine came in wasn’t quite as colourful as that shown here. However, you should never judge a game by it’s cover, as when I sat down later to play the game with my Dad and sister I soon realised it was a very good present after all, as it was a really fun game to play.
The game consisted of two large plastic pieces which sat one on top of the other. The bottom section consisted of eight chutes, whilst the top half looked like a cross between a roulette wheel and an octopus, with a channel for a ball bearing to roll around in, and eight holes for it to drop through into one of the bottom section chutes. Each hole covered the end of a freely moving arm, which would be fired up when the ball bearing dropped through.
The rules of the game were based loosely on Ludo, that being each player had a number of cone shaped counters (five if memory serves) that they had to move from a starting position unique to each player, round all the arms and back to the start position. At least, those were the rules we played to! The cunning part of the game, and what made it so thrilling, was that instead of rolling a die, you rolled a ball bearing around the top section. Eventually it would drop through one of the holes, pushing the relevant arm up to reveal it’s underneath, which showed how many spaces you were allowed to move one of your counters. Of course, this meant that any counters sat on one of the arms risked being shot into the bowl in the centre of the game, sending them back to the starting position.
I believe between each arm there was a safe spot where you could place your counters, assuming of course you had rolled a number allowing you to do this. The strategy was therefore to also try and minimise the number of counters you had out on an arm at any one time. An additional rule we used was if you managed to get one of your counters to land on top of another players, you could force that players counter back to the start as well.
Don’t Upset Me ended up being one of the games that my sister and I played most often, so thank you Mum and Dad for making such an excellent choice!