Cards are an essential component of many games. For me, card games were the first kind of games that I remember playing with any real frequency. Old Maid, WAR and Poker (yes, Poker – with a big jar of buttons) are some of my earliest game-play memories. Many of my school breaks were filled with days playing Rummy, Spoons and Crazy 8s. And of course, even classic games like Life, Racko and Monopoly have cards as a component.
At Mastermind Adventures, lots of our favorite games are card games. Read on to see some highlights.
Rick & Morty: Total Rickall
As the name suggests, this game gets its artwork and objective from the popular show, Rick & Morty’s Total Rickall episode where the family is infested with space parasites that implant fond memories in the brains of the humans of their long friendships. This is easily one of my favorite card games, where you draw action cards that help you figure out who is a real person and who is a parasite. This is a cooperative game (although there is also a secret deduction game variation where some of the players may also be parasites) where you try to coordinate your moves with other players to avoid making a mistake and killing one of your real friends instead of the parasites. Kill 4 real characters and your team loses. After each turn, a new character with a secret identity is added to the table, and things can really get out of hand, fast! This game is so much fun and can be played with 2-5 players, and takes about 30 minutes.
If you’re a fan of the show, then that’s an added bonus. There’s lots of jokes in the flavor text for R&M fans.
For those of you who enjoy a bit more of a challenge, Android: Netrunner is a game for 2 players that takes about 45 minutes with a futuristic setting. Play as “the corporation” or “the runner” and each have their own objectives. For the Corporation, they are trying to advance their agendas by securing and fortifying servers to protect against attacks from the Runners. Runners are trying to get enough resources to hack into the Corporation’s servers.
For people who like more complex game play and strategic challenges, this game is a lot of fun.
The Oregon Trail Card Game
“You have died of dysentery,” is your likely fate when playing The Oregon Trail. This card game is based on the 1980s text based computer adventure of the same name, where your objective is to make it from Independence, MO to Willamette Valley, OR, just like the early American adventurers! Also like the early American adventurers, you will face all sorts of awful challenges, like dead oxen, broken wheel axles, illness and starvation. Some calamities may be avoided if you have the right cards and work together. But more likely than not, you will all die before reaching your intended destination and have a witty epitaph written on your headstone by your dearest friend.
I can’t really explain why this is fun – I guess you have to have a dark sense of humor (which I do) or have lived long enough to experience the original game (which I have). But it is a lot of fun to see if you can beat the odds and make it to Willamette Valley.
This game is for 2-6 players and may take 30-45 minutes.
The Big Book of Madness
If you’ve ever wondered what it would be like to be a student at Hogwarts in a Lovecraftian-meets-Scooby Doo universe, this game is for you. In the Big Book of Madness, you play as magical students who have opened a book of monsters and have to make every effort to stop them from destroying the universe. This is a cooperative game for 2-5 players and is sufficiently challenging and fun. See if you can come up with the right spell combinations to defeat the monsters and their minions before the time runs out. Make sure you have a good mix of abilities for the best possible chance at winning, and enjoy the whimsical, fun artwork.
Game play takes between 60 and 90 minutes.
See what all the Masterminds say on our video wrap-up of What We’re Playing this week: Card Games