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Thief's Market» Forums » Reviews

Subject: These gems are mine! - Reviewing Thief's Market rss

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Dr. UDO
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Chandler
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Recently received my kickstarted copy of Thief's Market and wanted to share my impressions.

The Game
You and your fellow "professionals" have finished the job and now need to split up your haul. Each thief can have as much as they want, as long as no one takes it from them. Once you have your share, use it to build up your network or do some individual jobs on the side. Be the most notorious thief and win the game!

Components
As expected in a TMG production, the components are high quality. In a small box, you have your deck of cards, 13 dice, a start player marker and tokens for infamy and gold. You also have some player reference cards that you can use to hide your resources from your neighbors.

The dice are top notch and it is easy to see what has been rolled, even from across the table. The costs on the cards are also clearly labeled with "clear" effects (more on this in a bit), the art is a bit dark though and I found myself wishing it stood out more like we see in the cards in Harbour. The tokens are sturdy and should stand up to wear. My only issue with them is that the infamy tokens come in two denominations that aren't easy to sort out. They are printed purple on black and have the same design except one has a "5" in the center as opposed to the basic infamy symbol. This was very hard to see and making the token larger or in a different design would have been a welcome change.

Rules
The rules consist of a single folded sheet of paper. They are well laid out and clear on the first reading with sections clearly labeled if you need to reference them. That being said, they don't really give you all the information you need. On the backside of the rule's sheet, there is a comprehensive list of all the cards and what their effects are. This is necessary because the effects are all written in symbols. These symbols won't take long to decipher for someone used to playing games but they can be a real roadblock for people who aren't used to parsing information this way. Luckily, there is a code cheat sheet on the back of each player aid, but you will need to be prepared to explain each of the cards when it comes out.

Game Play
Game play is done in two stages:

Stage 1: Split the loot
The start player takes all the dice and rolls them. He then looks at those dice and decides what part of them he wants as his share. Each subsequent player can choose part of the loot on the table (including the start player token) or steal someone else's share from them. If you steal, you must return one item to the center (the start player marker or a die). If you return a die, you roll it when adding to the center. Once everyone has a share of the loot, you move to stage two.

Stage 2: Blow the loot
Now you may use your loot to purchase the items or services that are out on the table. These might include special abilities that you can use in later rounds or items worth victory points. After everyone has had the opportunity to buy a card, the dice move to the new start player, the market is refilled and a new round starts.

When the market cannot be refilled, the game is over. The person with the most gold get's three bonus points, the people with the most and second most number of henchmen get three and one bonus points respectively. Add up your points and see who the greatest thief is.

Thoughts
This game was a lot of fun to play. The ability to steal from each other made it a hit with my game group and I know we are going to play this one again soon.

Pros:
- Fun to mess with other people's plans
- Great art and the fantasy world of TMG's other games continues to be interesting.
- great tension in trying to decide just how greedy you can be and get away with it.
- No plan is foolproof as you never know what the dice will show.

Cons:
- The infamy tokens need to be better differentiated.
- There is nothing to do with the stack of gold tokens. In real life, I would imagine a stack of gold coins would open many opportunities for a thief. It just feels like you should be able to do something with that stack of coins in front of you, especially if you have pulled in a bunch of them. (Note: There is one card that lets you use gold to get points but it isn't guaranteed to be in the game.)
- Art is a little dark (in color, not content)
- After a couple plays, it appears that someone who misses out on getting some of the early buildings may not have many options in later rounds. This is just a preliminary reaction though.

I'm glad I kickstarted this game and look forward to playing it some more
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Rich Bright
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Rancho Cordova
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Gold tokens can be used as wild card gems to purchase cards.
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Dr. UDO
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That would have changed our game significantly. That is what I get for reading rules after 11 PM. I'll try it with the right rules and see what that does for it.
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Greg Wilson
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Yeah, gold is important. Must have been a real struggle to buy the later cards without gold.
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Dr. UDO
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Exactly. I had a pile of gold but none of the cards to manipulate gem types. I'll try it again this weekend correctly and update my post above.
 
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Brad103
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Nice review! I think the fact that you enjoyed the game without using the gold 'wild card' says a lot! I think I would have been too frustrated without that rule.
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Austin
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"Let each man pass his days in that wherein his skill is greatest" Propertius Sextus
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Summary: Gold Bags turn into Gold Tokens at the end of your turn. You can use these tokens in lieu of gems to buy a card (but not the turn you get them).

With enough gold, it is possible to just take the starting player token and be guaranteed to get whatever card you want most.
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Jon Ward
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Little Hedgehog,

Great to see you on the Geek! Loistavaa sanottavaa!

I was able to con two of my kids to play this game with me, and we had an enjoyable time. We don't usually play "take that" games, but I'm hoping this one will be okay since it's such a significant part of the game. Also, since there are so many turns and they occur so quickly, even if you are blocked a time or two (or even more), you should remain competitive for a while.

-Jon
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Dr. UDO
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Good to see you too tough guy.

I haven't tried it with my daughter yet but she wants to learn to play it. I think that you are right, the take that element makes sense and doesn't feel mean in this game because you are all thieves.
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Brad103
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darthnice wrote:
With enough gold, it is possible to just take the starting player token and be guaranteed to get whatever card you want most.


I did this exact thing on my first game of Thief's Market. On the last round Loyalty Program (Points/Card Owned) came up, and it was worth 10 points for me. I just took the first player token and sat back and waited...and then lost by 1 point...shake
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