Parks and Recreation first introduced The Cones of Dunshire to the world in Season 6, Episode 9 when character Ben Wyatt, played by Adam Scott, decided to use his week of unemployment in between jobs to create a new board game. The fictional game clearly riffed on real-live strategy games like The Settlers of Catan.
Strangely enough, now life is imitating art as the company behind The Settlers of Catan, Mayfair Games, has launched a Kickstarter campaign to bring The Cones of Dunshire into the real world.
"Is the whole thing a joke? Yes and no, but mostly no," Mayfair's Charles Rice told Polygon. "All along, this game has represented the ridiculousness of Ben Wyatt's vision of a game. This Deluxe version of the game is as close to the on-screen version of the game that you see in season six of Parks and Recreation as we can manage (and for us to be comfortable about the playability of it)."
The object of the game is extremely complex, verging on confounding. Just watch Ben try to explain the game to his wife, Amy Poehler's Leslie Knope, in this clip from the episode.
Unfortunately, the description of the game on the campaign's Kickstarter page doesn't make it that much clearer. What we do know is that you'll be able to play as one of 17 characters, each with their own special set of powers, from the Wizard to the Arbiter to the Duchess. Coins, dice and, of course, lots and lots of cones are also involved. So. Many. Cones.
In order to get a somewhat better sense of what we're dealing with here, you can see the full contents of the game over on the Kickstarter page. And yes, the box for this game will be ginormous.
Buyers beware, however, as this real-life version of The Cones of Dunshire is really only for the truly dedicated fans. Only a pledge of $500 or more for the campaign will get you the game. That pledge amount will also get you the coveted Ledgerman hat, so you know, worth it.
But don't think Mayfair is crazy for putting out a fake game which no one really knows anything about. The company organized a charity game of The Cones of Dunshire at the gaming convention Gen Con 2014, which marked its debut in the real world. Scott even filmed a special message for participants as his Parks and Rec character.
It's hard to cope with the fact that Parks and Rec will be all over come the Season 7 finale on Feb. 24, but knowing that somewhere out there, someone is always playing The Cones of Dunshire may just help us get through it.