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1:03pm on Tuesday, 7th November, 2023:

Famous Cities


Not all the extra packs of cards that came with the job lot I recently bought feature examples of casual 1930s racism. This one is from a wholesome Famous Cities game.

It's basically Happy Families, except instead of having Miss Bunn the Baker's Daughter you have Edinburgh from Great Britain (United Kingdom).

It's easy to know what the other cards in a regular Happy Families set are, because if you know the surname/occupation of a set then you know all the cards in it: Mr, Mrs, Master, Miss. This may offend modern sensibilites regarding breadwinners and nuclear families, but given that you can play Happy Families with a standard pack of cards anyway it's a simple matter to switch to something more abstract instead.

It's not obvious what the other cards in a set of famous cities for a particular country might be, of course, which is why they're helpfully printed at the bottom.

Famous Cities could be a mildly educational game except that unfortunately, not all the supposed cities are actually cities. The cities for the USA set are San Francisco, New York, Washington DC and Zion National Park. I'm dubious as to whether Zion National Park can be considered a famous city. One of the cities in the Switzerland set is Castle Chillon on Lake Geneva; I guess there must be other Castle Chillons elsewhere, hence the specificity, but it still doesn't give the appearance of being a city.

It would also be more educational if all the city names were pronounceable by non-locals. I don't know how the city of Örebro in Sweden is pronounced, but I do know that it isn't pronounced however I might try to pronounce it myself.

Oh well.

One of the other finds in my job lot was a box containing two packs of regular Piatnik cards with "Edwardian Ladies" on the back. Well, I'm sure it contained two packs when it was manufactured: it actually had more like 46 cards in each pack, with random ones missing. This was educational in the sense of teaching people that you don't half get some rubbish when you buy job lots of playing cards. Still, I'm sure the recycling centre can make something of them.

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