Continuing my exploration into two-player tabletop gaming, this week I want to highlight Jaipur. Jaipur is a card game that is designed for only two people. It is simple to learn, easy to set up and fast to play. Most importantly, it is incredibly fun for how simple it is. This game makes a great addition to any game library.
What it is
In Jaipur, two players are pitted against each other as powerful traders trying to outwit their opponent to become the richest in the land.
A simple, strategic trading game, Jaipur really doesn't have a lot of the complex rules of other games. What you see is what you get, making it very quick to set up and play without struggling over the rules.
Easy To Play
The point behind Jaipur is simple. You are collecting different types of materials (gold, leather, diamonds, spices, silver, or cloth) to sell for rupees. If you can sell 3 or more of a particular type of good at one time, you can get bonuses for your sale.
To gather the goods into your hand to later sell, you can either get them from the market one at a time, or you can exchange goods from your hand or camels from your herd for multiples at once. Yes, there are camels! The camels are a fun strategic unit as they do not add to your total at the end necessarily, but they are very useful for trading. You can get a bonus by having a large herd at the end of the game, but again it depends on your own strategy as that is very risky to count on!
(Side note- my husband kept relying on the strategy of having more camels. He lost every game.)
Fun and Quick!
Jaipur is just fun. It has enough competitiveness to be interesting, without arguments happening. It has a quick enough pace that you can both be engaged in what is happening and still have time to laugh and talk. In fact, each person only has one action per turn, which keeps things clipping along very quickly. As I said above, the setup for the game is easy and quick… which also is convenient when your cat continues to play with the tokens and chew on the cards and you have to keep fixing everything.
Beautiful and High Quality
The first time I ever opened the box for Jaipur I commented on how high quality the cards and tokens are. They have a weight to them and are not just flimsy and cheap. The artwork is beautiful and everything feels high quality. While this may not matter as much to some people, it is a mark of distinction in my mind when a game is well designed and produced.
Basically… get this game
If you are looking for two-person tabletop games, I would absolutely recommend Jaipur. While it isn't an incredibly deep and complicated game, that is part of its charm. In fact, this would be a great game for a date night with that special someone. You spend more time talking and laughing together than you do reading over the rules. Alternately, it would also be a good game to play with a child. The math is very simple and the concepts easy to grasp. There really isn't even any reading. As long as they can think ahead enough for simple strategies, this could be a great one for them as well.
Bottom line, go get this game.