Your Curmudgeon is having a difficult time figuring out how to deal with this one. We’re all accustomed to seeing the Discovery Institute seizing upon the most trivial items and claiming they mean another victory for their “theory” of intelligent design. But this one is different. It’s titled Evolution — The Board Game, written by Klinghoffer. Here are some excerpts, with bold font added by us for emphasis:
Look what I stumbled on at the local community center: it’s Evolution, the board game, from North Star Games. I have not played it, but I will say it’s cute, quite pretty actually, and seems durably and intelligently constructed.
Then he quotes from the manufacturer’s description:
In Evolution, players create and adapt their own species in a dynamic ecosystem with hungry predators and limited resources. Traits like Hard Shell and Horns will protect you from Carnivores, while a Long Neck will help you get food that others cannot reach.
With over 12000 different species to create, every game becomes a different adventure. So gather your friends around the table and see who will best adapt their species to eat, multiply and thrive!
Very nice, but what does it have to do with anything? Klinghoffer tells us:
From the Amazon reviews [here ya go], it sounds fun and challenging, with plenty of strategy and choices available to players. Make the smart decisions, adapt your animal and equip it with all the right traits, such as Cooperation, a Long Neck, or Intelligence, and your species will thrive. Players may also spawn or create new species, following the same procedures.
Where is Klinghoffer going with this? Be patient. He continues:
Wait a minute… choices, decision, strategy, options… Adding features like Intelligence or a Long Neck, you “create” your species and “adapt” it… In Darwinian evolution, species may “adapt” (an intransitive verb) but an outside agent does not “adapt” (transitive sense) much less “create” them through deliberate choices. These are not my words, but those of North Star Games. Does all this sort of make you think of anything?
We think we see where he’s going. Here it comes:
A reviewer on Amazon, Tung Yin, took the words out of my mouth.
[He quotes the review:] Yes, this game is actually more like intelligent design than evolution. I played one time with my kids where we couldn’t pick what traits we wanted to assign; everything was random. Boy, did we get some hilariously bad creatures! It was interesting to try that way once…. [Emphasis added.]
Klinghoffer put that reference to intelligent design in bold font. Let’s read on:
Well, well. I bet it was interesting, but it sounds like the reviewer wouldn’t want to try the Darwinian way again.
Right. That’s because Darwinism is for fools! Another excerpt:
Evolution the board game, when played with something more like the actual rules of Darwin’s theory, fails “hilariously.” When played as an exercise in intelligent design, it succeeds.
Aha! Another triumph for the Discoveroids’ “theory.” Klinghoffer ends his brilliant post with this:
Another reviewer, who says she teaches seventh-grade science, urges, “GET THIS FOR YOUR CLASSROOM!!!” since the game “truly teaches the actual principles of evolution.” Does it, now? Ha. What else can I say? Ha.
The Discoveroids have triumphed over Darwinism yet again. Impressive, isn’t it?
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