Did you know that the game of Clue was inspired by the British murder mysteries from the Golden Age of Detective Fiction?
It seems that Anthony Pratt, Clue's designer, was an avid reader and drew inspiration for his classic game from the mysteries he loved.
So, where did I learn this fascinating bit of bookish trivia?
It's All A Game: The History of Board Games From Monopoly to Settlers of Catan by Tristan Donovan is a fascinating read. Each chapter focuses on a different game from Chess to Scrabble, Twister to Risk, Trivial Pursuit to Pandemic. For example, I never knew that the Risk was inspired by the war games played in Prussia in the 1800s to help Prussian officers strategically prepare for battle, or that stores didn't want to sell Twister when it was first introduced because they weren't sure it was morally proper to play it. "This book is the story of these board games. The games that shaped us, explained us, and molded the world we live in." And I thought it was a lot of fun. It read pretty fast, too. And when I was done, I wanted to pull out our old game of Life and give the wheel a spin.
Happy Reading.... and game playing!