Originally Published: December 12, 2018 10:09 p.m.
Join the Whiskey Row Game launch party at 3 p.m. Sunday, Dec. 16, at the Palace Restaurant and Saloon. The game is available at the Palace Saloon, Peregrine Book Company, Elks Theater, LeFebvre’s Boutique, Prescott Chamber of Commerce, and Prescott Trading Company.
A new board game taken from Prescott’s own Whiskey Row gives the Wild West a new meaning.
The directions lead off: “You’re all fugitives of the law – every last one of you worthless Wild West lawbreakers! Even you shifty lawmen.”
The objective of this board game created by illustrator and photographer, Julie Trainor, is to round up all four fugitives in one’s posse, along with their accomplices, travel around the board and escape to safety through a hideout.
Trainor, former art director for international marketing with Honeywell Aviation, has many talents. In addition to creating advertising for Aviation magazine, and publishing a children’s book, her illustration skills are evident in how she laid out the board game.
“It’s like a puzzle to figure out,” she said about incorporating all the pieces of the game together, including local historical buildings. She turned her contemporary photographs of important locations along the streets bordering the Yavapai County Courthouse into old-timey black and white renditions of early Prescott.
And just who are the people who live and work on the 1879 Whiskey Row of Prescott? The Outlaws, Citizens, Merchants, and the Law.
Each of four players takes on one of the above categories, each with its own four characters. The outlaws, for instance, include the Bartender, the Dealer, the Madam and the Gunslinger. Two to four individual players, or teams up to eight players, ages 12 to adult, can play the game which takes about 60 to 90 minutes to complete.
It is a game of chance and strategy that also involves cooperation because each fugitive needs an accomplice to move around the town/board, and accomplices are reluctant to help. They’d rather have their freedom, Trainor explains.
Players may be hauled off to the courthouse jail, run through haunted underground tunnels, or challenged to a duel.
Bribery is allowed at any time, getting a Go to Jail card could be advantageous, and “wheeling and dealing” can benefit any player, she added. “You can offer someone two of your cards for one of theirs. You can also pay an opponent to take another player prisoner.”
At the board’s four corners, players will find old-style photos of the Governor’s Mansion, the Hotel, the Theatre and the Cemetery – each with a ghost. The four sides of the board display photos of historic buildings, such as the former Sacred Heart Catholic Church on Marina Street (now the Prescott Center for the Arts) where the Preacher Man sits, or the swinging doors of the Palace Bar where the Bartender works. At the center of the board is the Courthouse, the Jailhouse, and places for the Marshal and Judge game pieces and the Wanted Dead or Alive cards.
Trainor said she worked with gamers at stores in Prescott and Prescott Valley to test versions of the game. In one early test scenario, she handed instructions to players and took notes as they struggled through them. She now offers improved full instructions, a condensed version, and how to play a shortened version of the game.
It makes a great gift for residents as well as anyone who finds this area of interest, Trainor said.
On the website, whiskeyrowgame.com, one will find existing establishments in their present-day form, along with photos and information for restaurants/bars, hotels, museums, theatres and the Frontier Days World’s Oldest Rodeo. Additional links will take visitors to websites for activities and things to do around Prescott, Brad Courtney’s book, “Prescott’s Original Whiskey Row,” and to read and article about the Yavapai County Courthouse Plaza in Travel and Leisure magazine.
For those familiar with the real Whiskey Row, the question whether this is a drinking game might cross their minds. The answer is no. However, this game is about the Wild West, so “drinking may be a creative option among adults,” the website states.
Customers will find the game for sale at Peregrine Book Company, LeFebvre’s Boutique, the Palace Restaurant and Saloon, and the Elks Theater. Prices run about $38.50. For more information, visit the website Whiskeyrowgame.com.