Have you tried searching for the small card game called “The Game?” It's hilarious, you just end up with every game invented. Anyhoo, The Game is a small card game I have wanted to try for a while, after hearing mixed things on podcasts and the like, I was interested in what it was and how it played. In a nutshell, it is basically a co-op version of Ohanami, which I do enjoy now and again when I am in a chilled sort of mood and want a game with minimal rules overhead.
Simple, So So Simple
Gameplay in The Game is very simple. Perhaps a bit too simple at first glance. After dealing cards to players depending on player count. You set out the four reminder cards that let the players know which piles are which. What are these piles you ask? Well, these piles are everything! These piles dictate whether you, as a team will be assigning cards in ascending or descending order and keep track of how far between one and ninety-nine you have reached.
The aim of the game is to get rid of the whole deck by shedding cards from your hand into these piles, as a team, without busting. YOu bust when no one in your team can place a card on one of the piles. The first few games do make you feel like this may be impossible but with a bit of communication (which is allowed in certain ways) and the addition of a very special rule expanded on below, eventually, you will see it as not only not being impossible but very possible indeed.
Quick Fire Turns
On your turn, you have to place at least two cards but you can place as many as you like, on top of the four piles in front of you. You obviously want these numbers as close together as possible to try and elongate how long you can play for. This is, however, not always possible. The deck of cards and random chance will always try and bite you in the bottom and they often do.
The special rule that makes The Game, well, more of a game is the fact that you can play a card that is exactly ten above or below the current card on show, on any of the piles. This means you can reverse some of the piles, going back in time if you will, giving you more leeway and making the game slightly easier in the process.
Don't get me wrong, the game is still quite difficult, especially if you add the fire card or adjust the difficulty in any way. It requires careful planning, some clever card pay and a fair bit of permitted communication.
Well, it's just cards.
There's not much to speak of on the component front really, the whole package, both from a gameplay standpoint and a component perspective is very light. The small box includes a deck of cards and an instruction manual and that's it. The cards are of satisfactory quality, they are linen finish and are fairly thick.
I would have liked better artwork on the card though as they are fairly plain. This does help in reading and playing the game but I would have liked something a tad jazzier.
After playing The Game I can see why people like it. It will not set anyone's world on fire and is by no means anywhere near my favourite games. It is, however, a nice little exercise in communication and teamwork that can be played by anyone, no matter their gaming experience or skill level. Heck, I even taught it my mother, who plays very little in the way of modern hobby games
I enjoyed playing the game with my kids while waiting for food at a restaurant, it's great for short bursts of thinkyness here and there. Don’t expect the world and yo shall not be disappointed.