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Game Overview: Everything on 1 Card, or The Title Tells You What To Do

W. Eric Martin
United States
Apex
North Carolina
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Board Game: Everything on 1 Card
In a comment on my April 24, 2021 post, someone complained that Rolling Dice — the name of a game in which you roll dice — "might be the most unimaginative name for a game I've ever heard." That user might need to re-assess their statement after checking out the title featured here. Anyway...

•••

I've written about my love of Steffen Benndorf game designs several times in this space, as with this introductory post about The Game from March 2015 and this long, meditative post on the first three titles in The Game series.

Benndorf designs quick-playing games with a strong wave of randomness that you must try to ride to victory, and I've had great success teaching his games to dozens of people over the years. The rules are short, so you jump into playing right away, and while sometimes the randomness swamps you, at other times things come together for you perfectly — whether through luck, skill, or a bit of both — and you feel a burst of euphoria that sticks with you later, regardless of winning or losing.

His newest release — the 2021 title Everything on 1 Card from his frequent publishing partner NSV — has all the hallmarks described above and most resembles his 2012 design Qwixx because players take turns being the active player and rolling dice, but everyone has the chance on all turns to mark spaces on their personal player sheet based on the die results. As in that earlier game, the challenge is whether you can use the same results as everyone else to either score more points or score quickly and end the game before someone else can score more points.

From gallery of W Eric Martin
End of a two-player game, with my wife crushing me

In more detail, on a turn as the active player, you roll the dice up to three times, freezing what you like, then everyone chooses one of their two cards and marks off spaces matching the colors rolled — except that if you can't use ALL of a color, then you can't use ANY of that color. In the image above, for example, I couldn't mark off the single purple space and single green space on the card in the lower middle since the dice show two purple and two green.

(The dice are dual-coded with color and shape to make it easier for individuals with color recognition issues to play the game, but NSV goofed by making the hexagons red and the pentagons orange because both the colors and the shapes can easily be mistaken at first glance. Ideally the pentagon would have been blue and the triangle orange, but that's not the case.)

From gallery of W Eric Martin
Managed the perfect roll here!

As soon as you complete three or more rows on a card, you score it, then get a new card; the turn that someone completes their fourth card, the game ends, and you tally points on your scored cards and the completed rows on unfinished cards to see who wins.

I've played Everything on 1 Card five times on a review copy from NSV, and it delivers what I expect from a Benndorf design, with you constantly moving toward completion turn by turn, whether via short rows that make you wonder whether you should be completing them at all or through a lucky roll like the one above that locked in 25 points — the maximum score on a card. I run through several turns and discuss the gameplay in more detail in this video overview:

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