THREE IS TOO MANY
A 25-minute card game from AMIGO Spiele for 2-4 players.
This is a quick paced family card game from Christophe Behre & Reinhard Staupe. It is similar in display, and not too far removedm from Wolfgang Kramer's excellent "6 NIMMT!" and it is a good game for younger players to enjoy as it promoted though and features colours and numbers; both of which are important for different reasons.
The basic idea is to collect cards, trying to ensure you do not pick up more than 2 of any single colour - there are seven colours in the deck plus some grey and black bonus and score cards.
The 0, 30 and 60 are placed on the table in a column, 0 at the top and 60 at the bottom (you can figure out where the 30 goes). Alongside these, three number cards (those in the seven colours) are placed, one against each and then sorted into descending order. This is the base setup for the game. Each player is dealt 20 cards - the remainder are not required for this game - which they shuffle and place face down as their own personal draw pile, from this they draw a hand of 8 cards.
On their turn, each player places one card from their hand onto the display. Where they place it depends on the number on the card they are playing. Unlike 6 NIMMT! where you have to play to the end of a row in this game you play the card where it fits according to consecutive numbers, so for example if the cards were 0, 5, 18 and you play the 16 card then you would play it between the 5 and the 18. Also, according to where you place your card and which number card (not card number) in the row it is you may collect cards from the row. You only collect cards if the card you play is the fifth card in the row, no matter what position in the row you place it. If you collect one or two cards in the same colour then they will score for you but if you collect a third card in that colour you have to discard them face down in front of you and they will cost you negative one per card at the end scoring.
Play continues until each player is down to just 2 cards and then it ends - the last two cards of each player is discarded - then you add up each players individual score and the winner is the one with the most points. There is nothing too taxing about the gameplay and the mechanic is simple enough to remember. All you have to do is keep in mind that the base cards, 0, 30 and 60, remain in place throughout and that they count as one of the cards in their particular rows; this is where we went wrong originally, as we were counting the fifth card we placed instead of the fourth card we played in a row and adding in the base card.
If you collect three cards of the same colour you lose all three cards, as explained, however if you later collect a fourth or even a fifth card in that colour then they count as a new beginning and will count for you. Collecting several cards in different colours will get you a bonus. You get this bonus immediately you have seven different colour cards in front of you - cards you collect to score stay face-up, cards discarded to later be negative scoring are always placed face-down.
This is a quick, easy to learn game that is fun for the 20-25 minutes it takes to play. Personally I don't think it is as good or as clever as 6 NIMMT! but then that has always been one of my favourite all-time family card games so I am a mite biased. However if you like the colours and numbers card games that make you think a little, but not too long, then this is another good game to have in your collection.
As always, AMIGO have made an excellent choice in card material and have gone for pretty pastel shades rather than bright and glaring colours for the number cards. Very well produced and fun to play, that's just how a card game should be.