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Subject: A Very Solid Filler! rss

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David G. Cox Esq.
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Don


Auction Card Game for 3 to 6 Players
Takes 30 minutes to play
Designed by Michael Schacht
Published by Queen Games (2001)



In Don you take on the role of a Chicago Crime Lord and your goal is to control more real estate than anyone else.

Alright – you got me! You’re really playing a card game and you are trying to collect sets of matching cards – but I think I had you going for a while.

I am prepared to stick my neck out and say that Don has unique mechanisms that make it totally different to other card games and auction games. And I will stick my neck out even further and say that although the game can be completed in less than 30 minutes it actually feels to have a bit of substance due to the decisions you make in the game it does not fall into the category of a ‘filler’ game which I see as being fairly light type of game.

Don comes with 30 cards and 72 large plastic chips – the rules are in German but the components are language independent so there is no need to worry or stress yourself out if you don’t read German.


The cards come in six suits – each suit is represented by a particular colour and has the name of a Chicago district (for example all the blue cards are New Town, all the olive cards are Park West, etc.). Two of my games group were quite concerned about the closeness in colour of the olive cards and the green cards but the rest of us didn’t have a problem with the colours. In the thirty cards there are three cards with a value of ‘0’, three with a value of ‘1’, and so on.

The aim of the game is to have more points than anyone else. At the end of the game the person with the most chips scores two points. Players also score points for each of the six districts. 1 card is worth one, 2 cards are worth three, 3 cards are worth six, 4 cards are worth ten and a full set of 5 is worth fifteen.

The key to the game is the auction and its unique mechanism. The first auction is for one card, the second auction is for two cards and the third auction is for three cards – this sequence is repeated until there are no cards left to be auctioned.

 

A key aspect of the auction process is that players need to be aware of the ‘last digit’ of the bid they are making and aware of the cards each player has. This has a direct bearing on the bid that you are allowed to make and who shares in the profits of the auction.

If a player has three cards in front of them with values of 3, 5 and 6 it means that they are not allowed to make a bid that ends in those digits – so if the current bid is four they would have to go to a seven as they would not be allowed to bid five or six. This means that the more cards you have with different numbers the more you are limited regarding your future bids.

The other important aspect of bidding is how the money is dispersed after an auction. Players who own cards with a number that matches the last digit of the winning bid get to share the proceeds. If no one owns such a card then the money is shared evenly amongst all other players and excess money sits in the middle of the table to be shared out after the next auction. If the winning bid is a 9 and one player has the majority of ‘9’ cards they will take all the money. If two or three players each have an equal amount of ‘9’ cards then the money will be shared amongst them.

That’s all there is to the game regarding mechanics.

It is quite interesting to play because you have to weigh up several factors when making a bid and ask yourself several questions such as: who is going to get the money, who has which coloured cards, are the cards in this auction going to limit you in future if you win, are cards being auctioned with numbers that you think are likely to be winning bids in future auctions.

The game feels quite meaty and is not a light game at all. I look forward to playing it again.

Well ‘don’ Michael Schacht!



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Don Eskridge
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Nice review, well thought out, well organized.

But is filler all I am to you!??

-Don
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David G. Cox Esq.
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Don E wrote:
Nice review, well thought out, well organized.

But is filler all I am to you!??

-Don


Don, Don, Don!

You missed the whole point of the review - the thrust of the article is that you are much more than just a filler. You are certainly in the mid-weight class and there is no way can anyone look at you and play with you and then call you a light weight.

Thanks for your interest.

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Sacha Spinks
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Hey David,

Glad you liked Don.

Cheers

Sacha.
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David G. Cox Esq.
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the_pirate wrote:
Hey David,

Glad you liked Don.

Cheers

Sacha.


Nice guy but he seems a little insecure.

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John Roach
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I share your enthusiasm for this game but only up to 4 or at most 5 players. It fails miserably with 6 IMO.
 
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Josh
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Phoenixgeek wrote:
I share your enthusiasm for this game but only up to 4 or at most 5 players. It fails miserably with 6 IMO.


any guess as to why that is, john?
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