Cherchez la Femme
Oh Camel (C)up. Such a fun little game for all it's randomness. We played this one as the last game of the night. It was myself, my husband and my three friends. The three friends had never played the game before.
The rules are simple and easy to explain, so I get started, while my husband sets up the game. Something else, I noticed with almost every game of Camel (C)up, first time players always try and pick a colour. It was fun, having each of the new players trying to pick out their favourite colours and getting to explain, no you actually just bet on them.
Once all the rules are as clear, we let the race begin! The game was a little slow to start. I find that with new players it takes a couple legs to figure out when to grab a betting tile or how to place an oasis tile, so the first couple legs are a lot more dice rolling than anything else. This was true with this game, too. My husband and I were often grabbing the leg betting tiles while our friends kept picking up the pyramid tile to roll the dice.
After a couple rounds, though, they quickly realized that the only way to make more money, was to try and make some accurate bets. This is where the game picked up and it really became fun. Once everyone starts to get into the betting and making predictions, the game truly begins to feel like a race. Cheering, shouting! Rooting for a specific colour, cursing another one. It's just a fun time.
With this game, Blue ended up far in the lead, about 4 or 5 spaces ahead. It seemed like a shoe-in and we all started betting for him to win the whole race, and some tentative bets on who would lose. The loser was less apparent, as the camels in the back were all bunched up or stacked together. But there was and upset! Some strategic placing of a couple oasis tiles and just how the dice rolled, Yellow ended up stacked on top of Blue one spot before the finish line, and two spaces away there was a White and Orange stack. And both the Orange dice and the Yellow die had yet to be rolled. Blue could no longer win, all our bets in the pile for him to do so, were useless. Did any of us have Orange or Yellow left in our hands to bet on them instead? Could we play them in time before someone else rolled the last two dice?
We were all groaning and cheering, amazed at the comeback. The last two dice were rolled and it ends up Yellow moves in front and finishes the game as the winner!
The final points were totaled. It was a close game. I came in first with 36, my husband had 24, then my three friends were 29, 23 and 14. I had lucked out and in the first or second turn, I had bet on Yellow to win.
I think we now have 3 new fans of this game and all of us are looking forward to the next race!