Goats vs Llamas - a New Downloadable 3D Board Game

This game is an exploration of how much you can do by downloading a game - using both a paper-printer and a 3D printer.

Similar projects worth following
Goats vs Llamas is a 3D 'aztec-style tower' you can build using cardboard boxes (as like most of us here on Hackaday, you probably have too many boxes around the home from all your deliveries!).

Made by printing the graphics on paper, sticking to boxes, cutting out - then sticking together! It's intended to be family fun, but is as much about encouraging kids (and parents) to enjoy building things together, rather than just buying more stuff!

Developed by Jude Pullen & Mark Greenbaum, both have spent time working in toys / games, and have a few show-off names like LEGO and Spinmaster to their CVs, but mostly this was a story of two Dads who were frustrated at the lack of Game you can actually Make at home - with - your kids!

This is just their first attempt at providing an answer to what that might look like, and of course both care about creating less waste, and this is a fun way to recycle/upcycle card! We hope you have as much fun as we did!

The project has been designed to 'leave nobody behind' who does not have access to a 3D Printer, and as such, all the game components can be printed on thin paper and thin card if you have it. It is meant to be a provocation about what is possible if 'shipping' from 'Made in China' was not an issue. 

Did you know, most boardgames contain around 50-85% air. This game was somewhat a response to what it would be to not go through all that and just enjoy making it anyway. Indeed, much of the fun is also in re-making the game, and adding new ideas to it too!

Another shocking statistic was that in the UK just over 53% of our cardboard boxes are not recycled - and instead end up in landfill. The reasons for this are complex, but either way, if you are making something from it instead, you're not only avoiding landfill for a while, but not buying a cheap game which you may not have as much fun out of.

Of course Jude & Mark have made this free, so you might ask 'how is this a viable business' of the future...well, as much as you might be willing to pay $20-$80 for a boardgame you can simply play, we had wondered at what point would the Maker Movement need to grow to where people would be willing to pay for the Download of the PDFs to make it?

Although we doubt this will ever compete with the digital downloads of Music, Software or NFTs for that matter, perhaps it's also fair to say this is not always what motivates people to create things. Perhaps those who want to create - and share - will steadily develop a few examples, and that will inspire more. Perhaps we should have a Ko-Fi account if we do more, but for now, we just what to see what people think! Let us know...

CC: Attribution-NonCommercial-ShareAlike 4.0 International (CC BY-NC-SA 4.0)

Animals - Fine

Print Fine ideally, but Coarse is OK.

Zip Archive - 11.35 MB - 06/11/2022 at 17:14


Accessories - Fine

Print Fine

Zip Archive - 1.27 MB - 06/11/2022 at 17:13


Loot Crates and Medal - Coarse

Print Fine

Zip Archive - 321.31 kB - 06/11/2022 at 17:13


Action Cards-Goats-Llamas-Backs.pdf

Download and print on Good Quality Card - Double Sided

Adobe Portable Document Format - 3.52 MB - 06/11/2022 at 16:57


Goats and Llamas - Rules V1.pdf

Download and print on paper.

Adobe Portable Document Format - 5.46 MB - 06/11/2022 at 16:57


View all 15 files

  • 1 × Display Mount (3M) or Photo Mount Permanent Adhesive Spray
  • 1 × 1 or 2 Ply Corrugated Cardboard Like in Amazon Boxes (1Ply), or Grocery Boxes (2Ply)
  • 1 × Sellotape / Sticky Tape And Masking if you have it.
  • 1 × 3D Printer - with White or Coloured PLA/ABS Filament I use Ender 3 - this is OPTIONAL - can all be done in Card!
  • 1 × Scalpel and Ruler 10A Blade

View all 7 components

  • I made it! Super fun to play :)

    Mark Greenbaum06/13/2022 at 20:11 1 comment

    I'm the co-creator on this project. I followed the instructions listed here to do the build and am delighted (but not surprised) that Jude has been super thorough with the instructions. I love to build with cardboard but I always have at least 1 child hanging off me at any one time - so if I can do it - so can you! It is really easy to play and lots of fun. I had some great moments with my son. Lots of laughing and silliness mixed with a few sweet moments. I can't wait to see other people build this game! I started off with the basic version - and will do the 3D printed version next.

  • Personalised Cards

    jude_pullen06/11/2022 at 18:34 0 comments

    Following on from 'paint your own', we also wanted to give you the chance to create your own Action Cards! Having done a couple of these already with our sons - these are real 'keepers', and one can only imagine getting this out when they're 18 years old!! See Files for Templates!

    Likewise, please upload any that you think are awesome and want to share with everyone =D

  • Bombs vs Beetles

    jude_pullen06/11/2022 at 18:31 0 comments

    I grew up watching Loony Toons, with the likes of Daffy Duck having his beak blown off, and spun around to the back of his head, by the shotgun of Elmer Fudd, as well as Wile E. Coyote attempting to blow up Roadrunner... The Simpsons both make comment on the conflict of Tom & Jerry, and then of course up the ante with a gore-fest in Itchy & Scratchy!

    We don't wish to presume what level of comic violence is ok in your home, be it implied or direct, but fundamentally, we wanted to add a game mechanic of a 'bad' Loot Crate, whereby you get something that is not a Gold Prize, but a setback. Ironically the *truth* about Caffeine and Chocolate is a subtle one; most kids would appreciate a Bomb (like in Mario Brothers), or TNT dynamite (in many late cartoons) would spell the end of their animal (or at least miss a turn!), but these consumables are just as deadly to Goats or Llamas - so as with so much in life, it's about context...

    We really didn't want to get preachy one way or another, but rather, make this an interesting debatable point of the game: you are the guardian(s) - and if you want want explosive in the game, because you feel your kids are mature enough to be comfortable with a little comic violence, that's fine by us - download and play as you wish.

    However, if you have young kids or simply prefer a non-lethal 'bad Loot Crate' alternative, we are also proud to supply you with files to print a Snake, and also for the nerds out there, a Blister Beetle - which is a small, yet deadly insect which if accidentally eaten (presumably on leaves) by either animal is toxic.

    Having worked at LEGO, who have historically deliberated and agonised over Star Wars' lightsabers, Medieval swords, and more besides - at great length... I can only say that at the end of the day it is a personal choice, but perhaps like fast food; if one can opt for something more wholesome the majority of the time, perhaps we're better for it?

    The choice is yours. Have fun together as a family whatever you choose =)

  • Added Base

    jude_pullen06/11/2022 at 18:28 0 comments

    After some consideration, having the 'base' out of thick card works much better.

  • Card Only Loot Prizes & Pieces

    jude_pullen06/11/2022 at 18:26 0 comments

    So nice iterations of the Paper-Only side of things...thanks to Mark's work here!

  • Backstory

    jude_pullen06/11/2022 at 17:30 0 comments

    In case you were interested in how this project came to be....? (Skip to 24:24)

  • Trailer

    jude_pullen06/11/2022 at 17:29 0 comments

    In case you were curious about how we pitched's the Trailer (or Sizzle Reel).

View all 7 project logs

  • 1

    Some essentials are Photo Mount / Display Mount, Cardboard 9single or double corrugated is fine), Sticky Tape, Hot Melt Glue, Scalpel and Ruler. 

    As mentioned, 3D printing is not essential, but you can get into that later, if you have / access to one...

    Disclaimer: Please note this is not a toy for young kids, and all builds should be supervised by an adult. We cannot accept responsibility for attempting to make and/or using this. Legal bit aside, if you're fine with this - we hope you have great fun!

  • 2
    Selecting Cardboard

    Sounds obvious, but you do not need to buy this stuff - I got mine from outside someones home, after they had just got a massive TV set. Once you get started looking for 'good card' you tend to see it everywhere...

  • 3
    Single/Double Corrugated is OK

    As mentioned - both thicknesses work fine. The guide has been designed to work with either - as it works by building with regard to the relative size (this will make sense later - trust me!).

View all 31 instructions

Enjoy this project?



Mark Greenbaum wrote 06/14/2022 at 13:55 point

This game ticks so many boxes. Made with sustainable materials, super customizable game pieces/board/actions and strategies, great silly 'get-up-and-do-it' moments, build it together pride, epic 3D presence and super easy to play!

Commit to building it, you won't be disappointed.

  Are you sure? yes | no

Similar Projects

Does this project spark your interest?

Become a member to follow this project and never miss any updates