Pullman native turns 2020 into party game

Professional musician tries her hand at card game to help people laugh at the craziness of last year

Many people would prefer to forget 2020 rather than relive it.

So, the idea of participating in a card game centered around the crazy events of last year may not seem appealing at first.

click to enlarge Joylissa Vleck
Joylissa Vleck

Yet, Pullman native and professional musician Joylissa Vleck discovered that people enjoy the shared experience of reminiscing and joking about the year the world turned upside down.

"The thing that’s crazy about this year is that we all shared in a huge event," Vleck wrote in an email. "It’s not too often that the whole world is affected by something at the same time. This game helps us to connect by not only poking fun but connect over shared experiences."

Vleck graduated from Pullman High School in 2010 and moved to Los Angeles to pursue her music career. She went from performing at open-mic slots at the Moscow Food Co-op and Cafe Moro in Pullman to playing in shows at Los Angeles venues like The Hotel Cafe and Molly Malones.

She continues to make new music, but last year shifted her attention to another venture with her partner.

"My then boyfriend, now fiance, and I were in the middle of the pandemic and we had just gotten done with a game night with my roommates," she wrote. "We were talking about how funny it would be if someone made a game where they had to go through the events of the pandemic and then it hit us! We should be the ones who make that game."

They continued to develop ideas until they found the right concept and game mechanics for what would become a new party game, Hindsight 2020.

The basic premise of the game is that each player is in charge of a made-up nation and must use the cards they draw to destroy every other nation. Participants draw cards that describe a major occurrence or policy from 2020 such as drinking bleach, building a backyard tiger zoo or unleashing a fire tornado.

They organized a Kickstarter campaign last fall, and Hindsight 2020 was released in January 2021.

The game is available to purchase at playhindsight2020.com and Vleck said there is more to come. They are working on an expansion pack.

“Because we wanted to get the game out near the end of 2020, we weren’t able to include the events that took place at the end of the year," she wrote.

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