A 2F Spiele Friedemann Friese Game for 2-6 players aged 13+ Plays in about 60 minutes Costs around £20.00
This version also contains the variant "Demolition Contractor" which is playable with Power Grid: The Card Game, and all maps for Power Grid and Deluxe Power Grid.
Graphically POWER GRID: The CARD GAME has the usual happiness inducing, clearly defined, artwork from Harald Lieske which along with the rules has been superbly put together under the watchful eye of Henning Kröpke.
The components are created from good strong card and sealed professional print that will stand up to a lot of use without fading or fraying which is always useful with a game that is going to be as popular and well played as POWER GRID: The Card Game.
I am not surprised that 2F Spiele have released a Card Game edition of their most popular board game but I am a little surprised about its packaging. The box is 8" x 8" square and just under 2" deep which is rather large to be easily portable and the amount of table space required for playing it is almost as much, if not equal to, the room required to play the version with a board, but it plays in about half the length of time to its Big Brother. Now don't take those words to mean that we don't like POWER GRID: The CARD GAME because we thoroughly enjoy playing it, and I am not complaining about the packaging, it is great to have the game in such an impressive box, it's just that card games are generally, by their nature, the genre of game that you throw in your travel bag to take away on vacation etc because they are light and small and usually require very little table space, and in our opinion POWER GRID: The CARD GAME defies all those regular attributes for a card game and is definitely not small and light.
POWER GRID Resource cards are square and numbered around the edges from zero to three, these being the current state of supply. Thus if you have a Resource on the table in front of you with the number #2 at the top of the card then you have 2 of that Resource available to spend on running your Power Plant(s) that use this particular Resource - noted by colour and illustrations.If you only need to use one of that Resource then you turn the card from #2 so that the number #1 now shows on top, informing you that there is still one Resource left on the card. If, when turning a Resource card the next number is zero the Resource supply has been exhausted and the card is discarded.
The game is originally set up in a described pattern, randomly selecting player cards for turn order and Resource cards in three columns under the 1, 2, 3 & 4 Price cards, leaving the column for the "1" Price empty for the time being. The Price number above the column is the cost that players have to pay in money to obtain Resource cards from each column, thus Resources under the 2 column cost 2 Elektro each, those under the 3 column cost 3 Elektro each and those under the 4 column cost 4 Elektro each. Players may only purchase Resources for Power Plants they own that can use them, though they are allowed to stock a certain amount more than is actually required. The "1" Column comes into the game during play and allows players to buy Resource cards that have only one unit of fuel available on them.
Elektro's are the monetary currency of Power Grid. Power Plants are bought at Auction from the top row of the two rows of Power Plants on display. Power Point cards have two different shades of Green on their flip side, with Dark Green denoting lower value Plants and Light Green Higher value Plants. These two lots of Power Plant cards are shuffled together to form one stack from which four Power Plant cards are randomly dealt out onto the top row and four randomly dealt out for the bottom row. Once all 8 cards are dealt they are rearranged from lowest to highest with the lowest valued Power Plant being on the far left of the top row. Each Power Plant has a minimum bid value on it and players may never bid under this amount unless the Power Plant is the first card in the top row and it has the #1 wooden marker on it which indicates that the bidding can start at 1 Elektro no matter what the value of the Power Plant card. All Power Plants, except Eco (Wind Turbines) require fuel (Resources) to run them. The amount of fuel required, the minimum cost and the Elektro value are all clearly shown on the Power Plant cards - the Elektro value also counts as Victory Points at the end of the game.
Players of the POWER GRID board game will have no problem relating to the Rules and components and game-play of POWER GRID: The Card Game. Players new to the POWER GRID family will find that the Rules, illustrations and examples are expertly laid out in just 12 pages (only 8 of which are actual game rules) so that you can be playing in just a short time after opening the box for the first time. There is a variation for the game called "Demolition Contractor" which uses a separate set of 5 cards (supplied with the Card Game version) that basically earns players a few extra Elektro when they discard unwanted Power Plants. POWER GRID: The Card Game plays like a dream, is fun and competitive, logical and thoughtful
As I stated earlier, this is quite a large game in need of a large space for playing, but as an introduction to the POWER GRID board game(s), if you want to play a shorter version of POWER GRID because game time is a little short, or you are using it as a competition game (for which it is ideal) then POWER GRID: The Card Game is one you should definitely have in your game collection.