Black Hole Buccaneers brings an exciting drafting game experience, where your objective revolves around amassing an array of ancient collectibles. The game contains a collection of 99 distinct cards, Featuring a wide variety of things like spaceships, toys, time machine parts, shapeshifters, robots, artefacts and relics.
The spaceship cards tend to have high value but also have a high weight.
The toys tend to have a value similar to their weight but the player with the highest total weight of their toys receives a minus six weight card.
The time machine parts, while not very useful by themself increase in value and decrease in weight for each different time machine part you own.
Shapeshifters will have the weight the same as the last shapeshifter you have played.
Robots are really powerful cards with high value and low weight but if another player plays a robot on the same turn as you the robots switch their value and weight.
Artefacts and relics both have powerful game changing effects for you to discover.
In Black Hole Buccaneers each card has two important numbers. The first number shows the value of the card that will be used to determine who gets the most points during the scoring phase of the game. The second number is the card's weight used to decide if you can escape safely with your loot or if you might be pulled into the black hole along with everything you collected.
The ultimate aim of Black Hole Buccaneers is to escape from the clutches of the black hole, all while hoarding as much valuable loot as possible. Collecting more loot means getting more points, which helps you win. By making smart moves, good choices, and a little luck, players try to succeed in the challenging world of Black Hole Buccaneers and come out as winners with lots of treasures.
How To Play
The game unfolds over 3 rounds with 3 different black holes with varying weight limits and the amount of cards being dealt to the players.
To set up the game you will shuffle all the black hole cards and then place three of them face down in a stack in the middle of your play area and reveal the top card.
Shuffle the space trash cards and deal each player a number of cards equal to the lower number on the revealed black hole. Place the remaining cards face down as a draw deck.
Finally put the score card, direction card with a random side faceup, the value card, weight cards, threshold cards and the score pad nearby.
Each round consists of 3 phases. The selections phase, scoring phase and a cleanup phase.
During the selection phase the players will choose which card they wish to put into their display from the cards available in their hand and use their effects. After each player has chosen a card to play they will be revealed and their effects will be activated. Afterwards each player will pass their remaining cards to the person on their left or right depending on what direction the direction card is showing. The players will repeat this process until everyone has only one card left in their hand which can now be discarded and you will proceed into the scoring phase.
During the scoring phase the players will check if they exceed the black hole weight limit and if they do they do not participate in the scoring phase meaning they will gain no points this round. The other players, if they do not exceed the weight limit, will add up their cards' value points and see who has the most. Then you will refer to the scorecard to determine how many points each player will receive.
During The cleanup phase you will prepare for the next round of the game. This phase is skipped on the third round as no more rounds will be played.
After you have played all three rounds each player adds up their points and the person with the most points wins.
Black Hole Buccaneers is a great game, offering both high-quality playing pieces and impressive artwork. The game's rules are easy to understand, yet it maintains its challenging nature whether you're a newcomer, having only engaged with it a couple of times, or an adept Black Hole Buccaneer. Personally, I find that while the game can be played with as few as three players, my preference lies in participating with the maximum allowable player count of six.
Moreover, the game's affordability and its compact, user-friendly box contribute to its appeal. This small packaging not only makes storage effortless but also enables convenient portability, allowing you to carry the game along during your travels. All of these elements combined make Black Hole Buccaneers one of my preferred board games to play.