• majesticunicorn

Jaipur - 2nd Edition

- Impress the Maharajah to become Jaipur's finest trader

Players: 2 Playing time: 30 minutes Designed by: Sébastien Pauchon Published by: Space Cowboys

Jaipur is back with a brand new edition, featuring the same multi-award winning fun, fast gameplay, but this time with a completely new art style by Vincent Dutrait. You and your opponent are two of the most powerful traders in the city, but only one of you will be invited to the Maharaja's court. Buy, Sell and Exchange at better prices to beat your competition and win over the Maharaja. But watch out for those Camels!

It's a set collection game at heart, but this comes with a risk. Players must assess the ever-changing market and collect as many cards of one of six resources and sell them while they're still worth the most money before your opponent does. With a hand limit of only seven, players must decide to play it safe or take a risk.

Components:

- 55 Goods Cards - 38 Goods Tokens - 1 Camel Token

- 18 Bonus Tokens - 3 Seals of Excellence

- Limited Edition Metal Coin

Jaipur is a combination of cards and tokens stored in a small, compact box which is great for portability. All cards are complete with beautifully illustrated artwork, good thickness and a linen finish, making them feel high quality. This is a must when you're selling Diamonds and Gold.

All of the Goods Tokens are thick, sturdy cardboard and depict artwork from their corresponding Goods Cards so players know which tokens to take when purchasing goods. Tokens also have a numerical value on them which shows how much money a player receives after they have sold that type of Good.

A nice touch to the second edition is the Limited Edition metal coin that is included. If you're anything like me then you're a sucker for a metal coin. It's a great weight and made extremely well with Jaipur printed on one side and the Space Cowboy's logo printed on the other.

As much as I love the inclusion of the metal coin, it's not used in the game and regularly gets kept in the box and forgotten about when playing. It would have been a lot more interesting if the coin had a purpose in the game, such as used as a Seal of Excellence token, which is awarded to the winner of each round.

I think it would have been great for the tokens to be upgraded in this edition of Jaipur. A lot of people have been hoping the new edition would swap out cardboard components for poker-style chips. I understand that this would have increased the price and would probably put off a lot of people, but for those who already own the first edition of Jaipur, there isn't much incentive to buy the new edition.

Gameplay:

The aim of the game is to make the most money, lots and lots of monies. The player with the most money at the end of each round is awarded a Seal of Excellence token. After three rounds, the trader with the most tokens will be invited to the Maharajah's court. So how do you do it? Making money in Jaipur is simple... in theory.

The set up of the game is straightforward, with a great image in the rulebook to show you exactly how to do it: create the Market by placing five cards in between both players and set up all of the tokens to the right in descending order in their respective colours. Players start with a hand of five cards. This is their current stock of Goods, but be careful because those sneaky Camels could be hiding in the stock of goods. Whenever you or your opponent find one of these Camels, immediately place it in front of you and this is referred to as your herd!

Camels can be both a help and a hindrance in Jaipur. The trader with the most Camels in their herd at the end of each round is awarded the Camel Token which grants them an additional five points when scoring. So, you want to keep the Camels in your herd to make sure your opponent doesn't start collecting them but they also become really useful because you can exchange Camels for Goods during your turn instead of Goods from your hand.

During the course of the game, players will choose to either Take Cards or Sell Cards on their turn. If you choose to Take Cards you have the following options:

  • Take Several Goods - you can take as many Goods cards from the Market as you wish but they must be exchanged with Goods cards from your hand or Camels from your herd (it can be a combination of the two).

  • Take one single Good - simply take one card from the Market and replace the missing card with one from the facedown Goods deck.

  • Take the Camels - take ALL of the Camels that are in the market and replace them all with facedown cards from the Goods Deck.

or you can Sell Cards by following these steps:

  • Sell as many cards from your hand as you want (they have to be the same type) and place them face-up on the discard pile.

  • Take as many Goods Tokens, of the same type as cards discarded, from the supply and stack them in front of you.

  • If you sell a set of at least three cards, take the corresponding bonus tokens. These will give you extra points at the end of the game, the points are hidden until then.

Each player takes their turn back and forth until the end of the round, which is determined by either 3 types of Goods Tokens being depleted from the supply or when there are no cards left in the Goods Cards deck.

The player who has the most Camels left in their herd receives the Camel token and all players turn over their bonus tokens and count how much money they earnt this week (round).

There are so many possible strategies available for a small box game. One of my favourites is to go for the Camel tokens! It's usually better to take a lot of Camels when your opponent already has 7 cards in their hands. This means that while you are opening up the market to them for potentially high-quality Goods, they will have to discard cards from their hand to get them.

Pros:

  • A fun, quick game that can be played in less than 30 minutes.

  • Easy to learn and teach. The rules can be learnt in less than 5 minutes, but this doesn't mean that it is an easy game.

  • A small game that packs a lot of punch, so many strategies available and ones you have to adapt depending on what your opponent is doing.

  • A visually stunning game. Even if you prefer the art in the 1st edition, there's no denying how well this artwork is done.

  • Accessible to all age ranges.

  • It's a nicely balanced game for two players and whenever I have played it, there's never been an obvious winner due to the random points on the back of the bonus tokens.

Cons:

  • If you already own the 1st edition of Jaipur, there isn't really much incentive to get this one unless you're a really big fan of the art.

  • Some elements of the game are left down to luck and this could be frustrating for some people.

  • The price of the 2nd edition is higher due to the addition of the metal coin, which I love and is one of the main reasons I chose this version but it can be off-putting for people who don't care about this.


Final Thoughts:

Theme - a fun and colourful theme that fits really well into the mechanics of the game. The set collection aspect really makes me feel like I'm a merchant trying to get the finest goods on the market, while always making you feel like you're in direct competition with the other player because of the card drafting mechanics. Each transaction completed is quick which resembles the hustle and bustle of a marketplace.

Complexity - I wouldn't call Jaipur a complex game. The rulebook consists of half a dozen pages that can be read in under five minutes. It's easy to learn and even easier to teach to new players. Those playing it for the first time against an experienced player may struggle in the first couple of rounds but will come to grips with their own strategies soon enough.

Replayability - it's got a lot of playtime on my table. I love this game and can't get enough of it. It's a fun one to show new players and a great gateway game to longer games with similar mechanics. There are so many strategies to test and try out that I always find myself reaching for this one off my shelf.

*Jaipur 2nd Edition was not gifted in any way to me and this review is not in association with Space Cowboys.

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