Games Gazette Logo

This is a fast-paced, quick-thinking card game for 2-6 players aged 8 years and upwards. It takes about 20 minutes to complete even with the full compliment of players.

It comprises of 105 half-size playing cards, deeply black background on each with a selection of beautifully illustrated, colourful, cartoon-esque Zoo animals.

The small square rules book is in several languages, seven pages for each rules set and is itself colourful, clearly written, and well laid out for easy and quick play.

The game is played in Crocodile determined Rounds.

The 105 cards are made up of 20 of each Flamingo, Penguin, Tortoise, Camel and Zebra (each set of 4 animals is in 5 different colours; Pink, White, Blue, Green, Yellow) plus there are 5 Crocodiles - Crocs have their own special rules, but then they would because who in their right mind would argue with a crocodile ? 

Well it seems that EVERYONE has to argue with the Crocodile. When a Croc appears on the scene all player must immdeiately drive it away by hitting their hands hard and fast on the table. The last player to strike the table takes all the cards played into the personal deck and a new Round begins. 

This game belongs in the true Euro-Family genre where all players are dealt the same number of cards from the fully shuffled total number of cards; 2 players would get 52 cards each with one card remaining in the box, 3 players get 35 cards each with none in the box, 4 players receive 26 cards each and one in the box, 5 players 21 cards each and 6 players have only 17 cards each and 3 removed from play. These hands are dealt and remain face down, no looking at what you or anyone else has been dealt; your personal deck is left stacked in front of you until the game is ready to start. Then, as expected if you have played any of this game style, when all players are ready everyone picks up their own deck and holds it in the palm of one hand, always ensuring that it stays face down.

Play is simple and demands that in turn order the players place a card onto one of the three piles that form in front of them, and call out its significance to the row of three cards. The game is supposed to be played fast, turn over a card, place it on a pile, call out and it's the next player's turn. The call out is the most important as it is meant to be immediate with no hesitation; you aren't allowed thinking time, you have to act on your first impression/viewing. If you are playing with younger players you really should encourage them to think but give them that little extra time to do so. In fact I suggest that for your first 2-3 games you play it slowly, building up the speed so that you will be playing at pace within a very short while. After the call out, speed is the next essential ingredient. Think of DODELIDO as an advanced version of 'Snap!' with knobs on.

The idea is to quickly see if there is a match for animal and/or colour and whether there is a majority. This latter takes a little getting used to. For example in the rules book there is an example that shows a Pink tortoise, a Blue tortoise and a Blue Pelican. You have two matches, Blue, and Tortoise but no Majority (as there are 2 of each colour & animal). The call out for this, and all the others, is great fun for youngsters, super for slightly inebriated players, and possibly embarrassing for shy old folk; the call outs are listed below so you can see for yourself and think how you personally would feel about this part of the game.

Naturally the fist player in each Round will lay just one card and not be able to match anything. The players of cards 2 and 3, and from then on all cards played, may have a legitimate call though of course the second player cannot claim a Majority.

The Call-Outs: 
The first player plays any card and Shouts "Nought"
A simple match of a pair of animals you have to shout the "name of the animal" eg. a pair of camels (different colours) Shout "Camel"
Similarly a simple matching pair of colour, you have to shout the "colour" eg 2 different Green animals Shout "Green"
If there is a match of colour, for example, 2 Blue Flamingoes and a Blue Camel you would Shout "Blue" as Blue colour outnumbers the same animal type.
Similarly if there are 2 White Flamingoes and 1 Blue Flamingo the number of Flamingoes outnumber the White colour Shout "Flamingo"
If there are two matches, for example 2 Zebras, one Pink, one Blue and one Pink Camel there are matches of Zebra (2) and Pink (2) Shout "DoDeLiDo"
Similarly if there is a match of 2 same animals which are both the same colour, such as 2 Pink Penguins there is no majority so the Shout is also "DoDeLiDo"
Finally if there is a match of animal species that include Tortoises eg. 2 Tortoises (1 Pink 1 Blue) and 1 Blue Flamingo there are 2 pairs, Tortoise and Blue the Shout is "OH OH DoDeLiDo". Ane "OH" is only called out when a Tortoise is in play, one "OH" per Tortoise.

Now you see why we take it easy on the first few games and with children. It is hard enough seeing the cards and recognising a set but having to remember all the specific call outs makes it thrice as difficult.

This is a frustratingly amusing game but through our experience of playing you need one or more younger players involved. We played with a six year old and a young teen as well as us old 'uns and the enjoyment of the kids enthusiasm created a warm, fun atmosphere. Playing it with just older folk it didn't give the same merry experience - well not until a few bevvies had been imbibed (not by myself I add). I guess you just have to be in the right mood (at a certain age) to like banging tables and shouting out funny words.

Found online at between £12.00 - £16.00 the cost per fun factor doesn't truly line up. About £9.99 would be a fairer, more acceptable, retail price, in our/my opinion.


© Chris Baylis 2011-2015