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10 Down – Gen Con 2016

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What is it? A set-collecting game that reminds you of the card games you played with your grandma

The deets: 3-5 players, 20min

Designer: Odd Hackwelder

Publisher: CSE Games

Not every game is big and flashy and coated with thematic dressing. 10 Down is a simple, quick card game that looks just like the sort of card games you played growing up as a kid. Fortunately it plays maybe a bit more interestingly.

In 10 down, you have a hand of 10 cards. On your turn, you draw a card – either blindly from the deck, or from one of the three face-up discard piles. Then, you discard one of your cards back on to one of those three discard piles.

he shoots he scooooores
he shoots he scooooores

Your goal is simply to get a straight from 1 to 10, but you get more points for having streaks of a single color. Basically: if you have 3 or more in a row, you get a point, plus a point for each additional card matching that color in the same streak. When you have 10 cards, you can lay them down to claim your points. Then you get a new hand, everyone else keeps theirs, and a new round starts. First player to ten points wins the game.

You can also play with “mission” cards which give you more specific goals. For example, you might need to collect two points of green, four points of purple, and four points of blue to claim victory.

It’s definitely a simple game, but very family friendly. It has a little more strategy to it than, say, Uno, with the freedom to discard and draw from a variety of piles instead of just the random facedown deck of cards. The missions add a little replay value, but this seems like it could be a good game to play with non-hobbyist family or friends, or on a casual night when conversation is more important than the game.

Futurewolfie loves epic games, space, and epic games set in space. You’ll find him rolling fistfuls of dice, reveling in thematic goodness, and giving Farmerlenny a hard time for liking boring stuff.

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