Spiel 2013 Preview: 30 Carats

Posted by James (admin) on October 16th, 2013

30 Carats box30 Carats is a game of trading but with an interesting twist.  Each player starts with one of each gem (one colour for each player) and some gold.  The winner is the player with the highest value of gems and gold at the end of the game.

The values of each type of colour gem are determined by cards which range from +30 to -30 each.  However, at the start of the game, each player only knows the value of one of the colours of gems because each player is given one value card each (and that’s the value of the gem colour that matches their player screen).  Gold nuggets are always worth +10 each.

Players takes turns and the game lasts 3 rounds.  On a player’s turn, they will offer a mix of gems and/or gold and the other players will bid some of their gems/gold in return.  If the player accepts one of these offers, the two players swap their offered gems/gold.  However, before the current player makes their offer, they reveal a transaction card which gives them some rules as to what the offer must contain and also whether the other player’s bids will be made simultaneously or sequentially.  The rules are things like using specific gem colours, or mixtures.

If the current player does not want (or is unable) to swap with another player, they can swap their offer with the bank.  The bank is a bag that is filled with some gems and gold at the start of the game.  The player pays a few gold nuggets to do this and draws items blindly from the bag so they receive the same number that they put in.  (In anything other than a 3-player game, a player can also pay gold to look at another player’s value card.)

When all players have had a turn at making an offer, the round ends and one of the unused value cards is revealed (so players gain a little information about what value the gems are not).  After 3 rounds, the game ends, players reveal their value cards and add up their total value.

I really like the idea of this game because most of your knowledge about the values of the different gems needs to be deduced from what other players are offering or accepting.  Sounds like some good mind play in that.

You can read the rules and see the details of the game on Grosso Mondo’s web site using this link: bga.me/30carats


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