Recommend me a game for a medical doctor

This is a bit on short notice… but I am looking into a gift for a friend and I stumbled across 3 games

  • Clinic – probably too compliated, Ian O’Toole illustrations suggest high complexity :wink: (and so does BGG)
  • Dice Hospital – ???
  • Rush MD – mostly unavailable and I have a thorough dislike for this kind of activity / mini game thing. It might be fine as a joke but…

Are there any small games that would be a good fit that aren’t immediately obvious?
(I have an alternate gift, it is for a housewarming party so salt and bread always works, but a game would be a nice touch due to reasons and I am “scheduled” to visit FLGS today after my final dentist appointment)

PS: friend also has 2 cats so maybe Isle of Cats is an idea. But she is also starting a new job at a hospital…

@RogerBW really like Dice Hospital so maybe that’s recommendation enough?

I’d steer clear of Clinic. Boring and overly complex. I sold my copy after 2 plays, @lalunaverde played once and hated it. Others might have a counter opinion but who knows.


If he does his BGG rating doesn’t reflect that (6.5 for me is a rating just shy of “I am selling this”)
And the rest of the buddy analysis (thanks Luna & pillbox for your respective BGG education) is similar.

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I keep lower-rated games in my collection… I’ll start a different thread about that.

Actually the latest podcast may be relevant; I lent DH to @cornishlee after we talked about it in the last episode, and he didn’t get on with it, in part because of the theme: it’s definitely medically unethical (leave some patients untreated in order to achieve your goal of getting as many as possible discharged on the same turn, kick out patients to die in order to accept more new patients) and generally over-worked and under-resourced. I’ve heard the same sort of comment on Healthy Heart Hospital, which I haven’t played.

On the other hand there aren’t a lot of medical-themed games.


Have you thought of buying Operation as a joke present?


Is your friend a gamer?

If not and you want to buy a game then Codenames, Azul or Lost Cities. If it has to be medic themed then Pandemic is the one that jumps to mind.

If they are a gamer then I think you’ve got it covered.


But wired up to the mains, because surgery is no joking matter and they’re a professional.


There is Rush MD which being the sister game to kitchen rush get alright reviews. I’m not sure if it’s a gimmick more than a game personally.


The question makes me think about some very funny books written by a doctor about the utterly crazy things they’d experienced in their job, and then someone telling me to never give those books to an actual doctor because they would see past the surface humour and into the sometimes-appalling situations behind them, because if you understand everything that’s going on behind the scenes, it can be quite depressing.

I don’t know whether a game about doctors and hospitals is the right thing to give to a doctor working at a hospital. A game about something they don’t do might turn out to be more enjoyable.


She has been an avid participant in our covid online game nights (we mostly played The Crew, Codenames, Concept and the likes) and she was at the recent game night where I planned to introduce Rallyman GT but we only ended up playing Lama Dice. She eyed my game collection with enough curiosity that I think I can safely skip the Codenames/Azul level but not enough to hand her Clinic for example.


It’s a little more science lab than practicing doctor, but if it’s available Antidote would probably be a good fit. Quick playing, small box, deduction game.


You are absolutely right. And that’s why I am asking so I get that reminder :slight_smile:

So I won’t try too hard for a professionally “appropriate” game. Isle of Cats or or Calico might still be a great fit with the cats.


That looks neat and might be perfect but probably unavailable. (Antidote | Board Game | BoardGameGeek - 2020 actual release but not released in Germany). But she worked in a lab for the past few years… this might be one I could hunt down for another occasion :slight_smile:

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I’m rather fond of it though you need to rebuild several decks for each different player count.


So does Scapegoat and we love that one here :slight_smile:

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So guess what I came home with?

  • Arboretum for my cousin whom we are going to visit
  • Under Falling Skies for myself because I’ve been eyeing that for a while and frankly: I deserve all the games I buy for myself
  • Isle of Cats for the cat loving doc :slight_smile: I’ll obviously include a demand to invite me over for a game :smiley:
  • happy FLGS :smiley:

As an inexplicably qualified meditrician, this is the best advice.


If it says anything, a medical doctor created The Champion of the Wild. I’ll echo the general sentiment that a game related to a person’s career is probably not the best choice and instead suggest considering their hobbies as a place to mine thematic ideas.

I wasn’t 100% thinking it had to be related to the career… but maybe something that might be related to the same types of thought processes. As a software dev I appreciate games with logic puzzles or generally puzzly things (weirdly I hate stuff with math or that makes me do computations in my head)…

But I am glad I asked and got advised to think in a different direction. I might have landed there on my own or I might not have and I’d rather appear thoughtful in the final result even if I didn’t get there all on my own :slight_smile: