Archive for May, 2013

Review: Rattus Cartus

Posted by James (admin) on 31st May 2013

Rattus Cartus gameRattus Cartus is a card game set in the world of medieval plague as is its sibling game, Rattus.  It should make it clear that Rattus Cartus is not a card game version of the original Rattus game as, whilst is uses the same theme and art style, it has its own game mechanics.

The goal is to earn the most victory points (VPs).  At the end of the game, players score VPs based on how much influence they have with each of the 6 different character classes (10 VPs for having the most, 5Vps for 2nd most, and 2 VPs for third most influence).  Some other VPs can be earned during the game too.

The game primarily comprises of character cards (6 types) and building cards (6 types each corresponding to a character).  During set-up 5 random character cards are laid out face-down – each card has 0-4 nuns on it – and these are called the ‘nun’ cards.  At the end of the game, any player who has more rats than the total number of nuns on these 5 cards is lost to the plague and automatically loses. Read the rest of this entry »

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Review: Libertalia

Posted by James (admin) on 17th May 2013

Libertalia game boatLibertalia is by Paolo Mori who designed one of my favourite games Vasco de Gama.  Libertalia is a very different game to Vasco de Gama as it is a simple and relatively quick, card-playing game.

Players are pirate crews who are trying to earn the most doubloons buy collecting booty.  Each player has a set of 30 cards each representing a crew member with a value (1-30), a special ability and a tie-break number.  Each player’s set of cards is the same except the tie-break numbers are different so that no two cards are exactly the same.  Each card’s special ability states if it will be used in the day, at dusk, at night, or at the end of the campaign.  To start the 1st campaign, one player randomly draws 9 cards from their deck, then all the other players draw the same cards.

The game is played over 3 campaigns, each consisting of 6 days when players will play one card each.  At the start of each campaign, booty tiles are drawn at random and placed on each of the 6 days on the board (one token per player).  Most booty tokens are simply worth 1, 3 or 5 doubloons, although treasure maps are only worth 12 doubloons combined if you have at least 3 of them.  There are also cursed booty tokens worth -3 doubloons, as well as saber and Spanish officer tokens which are worth no doubloons but have special effects (see below). Read the rest of this entry »

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Review: Rialto

Posted by James (admin) on 14th May 2013

Rialto gameRialto is yet another of this year’s game by Stefan Feld (which is a good thing as I like most of his games).

Set in Venice, Rialto is played over 6 rounds – one for each of the Venetian islands on the board.  Players are aiming to score the most victory points (VPs) which are  primarily earned by having councilors on the islands at the end of the game.  Players each have a marker on the Doge track and this splits all ties and determines some order of play.

Each island has 1 connection to each of its 4 neighbouring  islands.  During the game, these 12 connections each get filled with either a bridge or a gondola token.  Each bridge and gondola token has two values on it (one on each end) – bridges have values between 3-6 VPs; whereas, both values on gondolas are always value 1.  This is important because the final VPs gained by players with councilmen on each island are based on the total of each island’s 4 connections’ values.

At the start of each round, several (number of players + 1) rows of cards are laid out each consisting of 6 face-up and 2 face-down cards.  In Doge track order, players select one row of cards, add any extra cards they may have (such as from the previous round), and discard down to 7 cards.  The player may own some buildings which allow them to have more cards to select from, or keep more than 7 cards) but players must pay 1 gold for each building used.  Read the rest of this entry »

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