Aarrgh, avast ye matey, I spy a new card game on the horizon called Guns or Treasure. Coming to Kickstarter on August 2nd, 2022, this is a fun pirate-themed game by Castillo Games (makers of Rescuing Robin Hood). So weigh anchor, because you won't want to miss this treasure!
Title: Guns or Treasure
Release Date: Kickstarter Campaign beginning August 2nd 2022
Suggested Audience Age: 8+
Number of Players: 2-6
Time to Play: 15 minutes
Availability: Will be coming to Kickstarter in August 2022
Recommended for fans of: Rescuing Robin Hood, Jaipur, Gnoming-A-Round
Geek to Geek Media was provided with a review copy of this title
What's The Story
The card above pretty much says it all. In Guns or Treasure, you are a pirate heading out to gather the most treasure. You begin by building your fleet of ships, hiding guns and bombs, or stockpiling treasure on your boats to bring home. Once you hit the seas, you are battling other pirates to try to steal the treasures they may have hidden on their ships while hoping that you have more guns than they do.
What the Guns or Treasure Gameplay Feels Like
Guns or Treasure is essentially a light family game with bluffing and strategy mechanics. The game is designed in a way that you can make it more or less difficult by choosing some optional variants or removing certain cards (the Captain Cards for example). This allows you to not only cater to the ages and abilities of all the players but also helps in easing into learning the game.
The game is played in three phases: Shipbuilding, Marauding, and Scoring. During the shipbuilding phase, everyone has 4 rounds of drawing cards and adding to their fleet of ships. You can start a ship by placing a card face up on the table and then build onto it by adding cards face down onto the boat. Importantly, this makes the items inside the boat hidden from the view of the other pirates at the table, whether they include guns, treasures, or even a bomb.
In the Marauding phase, players attack each other to steal the treasure from their fellow pirates' boats. Undoubtedly, this is where the bluffing becomes important. Does your ship hold treasures, or is it a warship in disguise?
Finally, you make it to shore and can count up how much treasure you were able to return with during the Scoring phase. The pirate with the most booty wins!
What I liked about Guns or Treasure
Along with their previous game, Castillo Games has completely knocked it out of the park with Guns and Treasure.
This game is quick and easy to learn, as well as to tweak to match the abilities of the players at the table. There are optional variants to make it simpler, longer, more difficult, more focused on bluffing, for example. Additionally, you can play with or without Captain Cards which add additional abilities for each player. You can also combine more than one copy of the game to play with large groups of people. So much customization means that it is easy for everyone to enjoy this game.
Have you seen how bright and cheerful the cards are? Simply take a look at some of these pictures. This game is colorful and happy, with a fun theme (really, who doesn't like pirates?). The quality of the art, cards, and box is incredible. Even the rulebook is easy to understand and beautifully designed.
Parrots and Monkeys Expansion!
Yes, there's an expansion! I was lucky enough to also receive the Parrots and Monkeys expansion deck for Guns and Treasure. This fun little deck adds some cards to the game with either monkey cards which take away 5 treasures, or parrot cards which can be used very creatively for bluffing strategies. The parrots sneakily count as the same value as the bow of the ship when placed facedown, or will count as the first hidden card when they are used in the bow.
So go check out the Kickstarter!