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Merchants of Muziris» Forums » Reviews

Subject: 1 Order of Simplicity for 2 Players. It may surprise you both! rss

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Travis Morton
United States
Brackenridge
PA
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So, as 1 of the 2 games just released in September to DriveThruGames.com by Small Box Games, I had to order and check this out ASAP. Settle down for perhaps the easiest to learn SBG product yet.

Game Summary:
A 2 player only game of action selection, set collection, and the featherlight drafting that drives it. There are 4 Actions represented by 4 Character cards. They are:

1) Merchant lets you take a faceup good from the supply.
2) Advisor lets you discard a faceup good to activate its ability.
3) Customer lets you create an Order of 1-3 identical cards from hand.
4) Beggar gets you 1 card or 2 if the opponent has more

There are 10 kinds of goods in varying numbers and scoring values.

Active player picks 2, then the opponent picks 1. Roles switch.

Play continues until the deck runs out or there are 20 Orders between the players. Then the Characters flip over for end of game Bonus Points.

1) Merchant - Reveal any number of identical goods and get 1pt for each.
2) Advisor - Whoever has the most cards in hand gets 3pts
3) Customer - If you made the 20th Order you get 3pts
4) Beggar - Score points equal the number of different order types (1-10pts)

Initial Pre-Play Opinion:
Good look in the art. Simple to teach. Might be a good 2p Gateway Draft game.

1st Play:
Easy. There was some healthy back-and-forth, we can burn through the deck easily. Kind of annoying that the types do not list the number in the deck; i.e. 5 Cinnamon or 7 Limes. Probably need a Player Aid. Suprised that was an oversight?!?

Score 22-16

2nd Play:
Oh... Sandbag the Bananas, Limes, Mangoes, or Pomegranates for that Merchant Bonus. Also, the Beggar is not the automatic choice for the non-active player. Cards in hand matter a lot too.

This might be fun as 3 player with a 2nd deck mixed in. Maybe another Character.... Hmmm...

Score 26-21

Some Thoughts
Repeated plays and familiarity shows off the true brilliance of this lightweight gem. Perfect for Gateway, casual, or burnt out parents.

I underestimated just how well this game can hum despite the direct interactions the card abilities have. The back-to-back turn structure is huge for strategy. I can set myself up from my single action one round to the proceeding next round where I get a double.

Tactically, you need a few plays to understand when to make small orders to get that Beggar Bonus, or when to sandbag the 7's (Limes, etc).

Rating: 9/10

Variant: (brainstorm)
Because there are not numbers on the cards to denote the contents of the deck, another deck can be combined.

The number of faceup cards will have to be balanced, as in a 2p game I have cleared out the Supply (which does not refill till the next round) leaving my opponent no cards to take.

A 5th Character (or more) could be added for a 3p+ game.
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Justin Rizzo
United States
Hershey
Pennsylvania
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Thanks for the reviews of his new games! So quick, too!
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j clowdus
United States
Atlanta
Georgia
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Thanks for the review! I'm glad you enjoyed it!
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Andy Andersen
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Michigan
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Mine arrived today. thumbsup
 
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