Spiel 2013 Preview: 21 Mutinies Arrr Edition

Posted by James (admin) on October 18th, 2013

21 Mutinies board

21 Mutinies is an intriguing, pirate-themed game.  Each turn, one player is the captain and they declare which of the various actions they are going to carry out.  Then, in order, players choose whether to do the action the captain is doing or they can perform the cabin action or mutiny.

The actions the captain can pick from are:

  • Boarding (trade routes) – Buy one of the jewels currently on display in this area with doubloons and rum
  • Boarding (non-trade routes) – As trade routes above but jewels are drawn randomly after choosing the action
  • Shipwrecks – Take one unseen treasure token (various benefits) if you roll dice high-enough. (Chances reduce after each player.)
  • Tavern – Receive a share of rum but the amount to be shared is randomised after picking the action – first-come, first-served.
  • Black market – Sell combinations of jewels for doubloons and prestige points.
  • Town – Gain one of various benefits like gain rum, buy prestige points, etc.

Many of the actions have slightly different effects and/or pay-offs depending upon which space within that action that the player places their action disc. So, whilst some actions are what you want to do, the remaining options when it is your turn to choose your action, may not be very useful or as good as others.

21 Mutinies box

If a player chooses not to do the action the captain has chosen, they can either (a) use the cabin action (gain 1 doubloon, 1 prestige point, or buy 3 points for 5 doubloons), or (b) mutiny. Players who mutiny can pay some doubloons to gain prestige points and the mutineer that paid the most doubloons during a turn draws a mutiny card and becomes the new captain for the next round. Some mutiny cards must be played immediately(but can be withheld at a cost of scoring -2 points at game end), some can be played when the player wants to, and some earn points at game end.

Once the 21 mutiny cards have been drawn, the game ends. Players cash in their remaining items (some elements score minus points) and the player with the most prestige points wins.

This sounds like a fun, light game and I like the unusual interaction between the players and there are various resources to manage.  The captain will want to stay in charge as they get to pick the action that best suits them, but that will take keeping the other players happy too, and there are too many incentives for them to mutiny for the peace to last long.

You can read the rules and see some details of the game on the game’s crowd-funding page using this link: bga.me/21mutinies


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