Donut! is a game I put together by refining the rules of a game that has been in circulation in my family for decades. It is one of the cleanest and simplest trick-taking games I have come across who’s rules and origins are difficult to pin down.
The rules my family has played with over the years have slowly changed based on who has been playing and when I developed this version I considered all the variations I have experienced and then tweaked things a little farther. One of the common problems this zippy little game has had over the years has been game length. There can be a lot of tug of war with the points and a lot of stall tactics with the leaders and this has lead to arguments and games that have lasted way too long. When I developed this game I made sure to plug these holes and refine the rules to make the game tighter and quicker. Themeing the game has helped a lot in this regard. Moving from a generic card game to a themed game help players with less experience to visualize what is happening and where they stand and it also helped create a comprehensive method of managing the gameplay.
I also didn’t go overboard on the art keeping everything clean and simple.