Why Sheriff of Nottingham is a must for all Gamers. A second chance to grab with the second edition coming soon!
Hopefully some of you read my review on Horrified and have come back for more. As previously mentioned, my tact with these reviews is to focus on the game from both an adult and family perspective.
So hands up…. Who didn’t want to be Robin Hood as a kid? Steal from the rich and give to the poor with awesome bow skills, although I was never one for the green attire myself.
First off, I will be reviewing the game as the second edition will be released soon and will be available on the Zatu Website. The fact there is a second edition on the way should already tell you this game is a winner and for me brilliant!! But how brilliant? And does it suit the family too? Well read on and find out….
Theme & Setup
For me, Artwork is crucial in a game. With such a high volume to choose from, a great game can easily be missed if it has an uninspiring cover! Sheriff of Nottingham certainly doesn’t disappoint in this area. As you can see from the pictures, this game delivers high quality Artwork with a sense of fun and mischief, exactly what you get from playing this game.
Again, setup must be simple and a good clear rulebook is a must, especially with a game such as this which can come under the bracket of many types of game including bluffing, social deduction and party game. The game does exactly that, setup is easy and engages all the players straight away, you get your hand of cards, some coins and your goods sack for the first round and the rulebook quickly and easily explains how the game will work. Win win, let’s get on and play!
Let’s Play – The Game in a nutshell
Firstly, you are a simple merchant who wants to move their goods through Nottingham but the corrupt Sheriff wants their cut. You must bluff your way past the sheriff with as many goods as you can muster or dare to stuff in your sack and hope you don’t get caught with mountains of contraband in them. You can also just tell the truth and make the sheriff pay the price for not trusting you.
Players take turns being the sheriff. Each round the players place up to five cards in their bag and declare the contents to the sheriff. You must declare the correct number of cards, but you can choose to lie about exactly what the cards are. A player’s declaration must be a single type of good, apples, bread, cheese or chickens. The sheriff then chooses to either let them pass or open the bag.
Players can negotiate or bribe the sheriff to let them pass but once he opens the bag that’s it. This is where having the right type of players really makes this game king (or Sheriff). If the bag contains the declared cards the sheriff pays a fine to the player he accused, otherwise the player must pay a fine and have the contraband goods (those not declared) confiscated.
The risk and player engagement really set this game apart from others. You can have chaos or harmony each separate round as the Sheriff can take many forms throughout. There is laughter and suspense and, in some cases, contraband can be seen being thrown across the room! This for me is everything this type of game should be.
Sheriff of Nottingham is a game which deserves more recognition both for regular gamers and in terms of being a gateway game for non-gamers. Admittedly you need a certain bunch of players for this game to work. What I mean by this is that you need to get into the spirit of the game.
Suitable for Kids
First and foremost, yes we need to teach our kids that lying is bad! So, tell the truth and win! Or have fun, be cheeky, and yes, remember… IT’S JUST A GAME!
What can I say about this game, I love it and I love the fact our five year old son can play and have fun with it too. However, he always has to be the blue player at the moment! This game engages conversation and skills such as counting and visual learning whilst providing some good old fashion fun.
Anything that keeps my kids away from hours of endless screen time is a win! Our two year old even gets stuck in and seems to have a lot of contraband at the end with her mum!!! Hmmmm, suspicious!
Everyone should play this game and here is why. Whether you are a heavy, lightweight or non-gamer you cannot fail to have fun and a laugh playing this game.
Personally, I would say it is best with four players as with any more it can play a little long.
It’s a great ice breaker to introduce any new gamer to the hobby and the multiple ways in which you can win are endless.
You can lie through your teeth, backstab, bluff or even (believe it or not) tell the truth! In fact, the best success I’ve had with this game is by telling the truth as shockingly my wife and fellow gamers can never get their heads round the fact I am being honest when I declare my goods! They are shocked to discover that yes, I am not stuffing my bag full of Contraband!
What is certain from playing this game is that you will always have fun no matter the audience, young or old! A little lie never hurt anyone... right?