Have you joined the 2017 Secret Cthanta yet?
136 good quality cards. 32 cards used to form the timeline, 14 identities, 10 missions, and 84 cards for the laying deck.
The game starts by laying out the 32 cards of the timeline. Each player gets 1 mission, 1 identity, and 3 cards. The mission and identity provide ways to win or you can win by holding 10 or more cards in your hand.
Each turn you draw and play a card. Most of the cards allow you to modify the timeline in some way. They also allow you to draw extra cards or take extra actions. There are also artifacts which yu can recover.
A player wins by either acquiring the three artifacts of his mission, changing the timeline to match his identity or having ten cards in hand. If at any tiem there are 10 or more changes to the timeline which create paradox, the game ends and no one wins.
This review is part of a series of reviews I’m doing as I evaluate games my wife may use in her classroom or that I’m using with my Boy Scouts. Apart from the normal review, I try to identify the kinds of intelligence that the game will use. For an explanation of multiple intelligences, see: my blog post at: http://www.boardgamegeek.com/article/786097
There is a good deal of text on the cards and a number of the cards have special instructions. Being able to read and understand them is a key skill in winning this game.
The various timeline changes are classic cause and effect, so logical mathematical intelligence can help visualize the impact of changes.
Although much of the game focuses on linguistics and logic, the timeline is pretty visual and spatial intelligence will sometimes help to see what changes are made or are still needed.
In any game with one or more secret objectives being able to read your opponents is a valuable skill.
With experience a player with a strong Naturalist bent may begin to recognize a players mission or identity based on their actions in the game.
The cards are mostly fine for kids of ages 11 and up. There are some events that may provoke questions and the game can lead to interesting what if discussions.
The game is fun and relies on a number of different kinds of intelligence. The recommendation for ages 11 and up is probably about right and being older wouldn’t hurt. In the early game, it can be hard to see anything to do to help yourself, so the strategy isn’t that obvious. The stated playing time of 20-45 minutes is a little on the low side in my experience. The game is fun and has some good historical information although some of the changes clearly reflect a specific political philosophy.