For Sale The Game of Property & Prosperity
For Sale is a simple yet brilliant auction game pitting players against each other as property tycoons attempting to become the richest estate mogul. Players bid and bluff their way to purchase the most valuable real estate for the lowest amount of money then turn around and sell those houses for as much profit as possible. Whoever makes the most amount of money wins!
How To Play
Depending on the player count give each player either starts with $18,000 in coins (3-4 player game) or $14,000 in coins (5-6 player game). The first phase of For Sale is a blind auction where players bid on properties. There is a total of 30 property cards and each is numbered 1 – 30. Property cards are turned face up at random and equal to the number of players. All face up property cards are now auctioned so that each player receives one. Each player has the choice to bid or pass.
If a player elects to pass then they take the lowest value face up property card. While if a player chooses to bid then they must bid more than the previous highest bid at an amount that doesn’t exceed their current value of coins. If a player passes and has already bid they must still pay half of their bid rounded up. For example if a player passes having previously bid $5,000 then they would still need to pay $3,000 for their property card. Whoever is the last person to pass must pay the full amount they have bid if any.
All money paid goes to the bank and is removed from the game. Depending on the player count, play proceeds until all auction rounds have been completed and players have amassed their property portfolio of cards. All unused coins will be added to players profits at the end of the game.
Phase 2 is similar to phase 1, however, instead of spending money to bid on properties players are using their property cards to compete for profits. The same number of currency cards are turned face up as there are players. These currency cards range in value from $0 – $15,000. Each player takes their property cards and places one of them face down. All cards are turned over simultaneously and whoever has the highest numbered property card takes the highest value currency card. This continues until all property cards have been discarded and players count the total of their left over coins and currency cards. Whoever has generated the highest number in $ is the winner!
The theme of this simple game is property trading, however, due to this simplicity there is a limited amount of opportunity to experience this theme. The auction mechanic does allow for players to feel like they are bidding on properties to develop and then resell for a profit. The unique artwork is of a high standard and complements the game well, featuring unique property art on each property card. The theme does work with the mechanics but another theme could easily be used for a different game.
Although this is an auction game it is also very much a bluffing one. In order to succeed players need to look for maximum value and just pay the minimum for property cards and then select those property cards at the opportune moment in order to make the highest amount of profit. Players will have the chance to interact with each other and will want to take advantage of these opportunities in order to manipulate their opponents into over spending on low value properties thus increasing their own chances of victory.
With approximately a 25 minute play time, regardless of whether you play with 3 – 6 players, For Sale offers plenty of replay-ability with it working as either an introductory game to get the party started or as a more prominent part of the entertainment with players wanting to play again and again.
The component quality is good. The chits and cards are all of a solid industry standard that is acceptable for a game of this type and price. The cards each have their own dwelling artwork ranging from a dog house all the way to a space station. I always sleeve my games where appropriate and this might be necessary here depending on how often you play as you do not want any marked cards.
For Sale is a bluffing auction game and by its very nature there is a good level of player engagement. Those that wish to be more tactical they can try and remember how much as previously been bid by other players and which cards are yet to have been revealed. While those looking for a more casual experience find For Sale allows players to compete even if they are not totally concentrating on the game. This is a personal favourite for our gaming night and often used as an introductory game before the main event.