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Skull King Board Game Review 2024

Skull King Board Game Review 2024

Like Oh Hell!, Wizard, Euchre, and Spades, Skull King is a trick-taking game where players must predict how many tricks they think they’ll win each round. The simultaneous bidding in this game makes it distinctive in that rounds can occasionally be overbid or underbid. Winning too many tricks is exactly as awful as winning too few since players have to win the precise amount of tricks they bid for points. This creates fierce competition in which losing a trick can be just as thrilling as winning one.

Skull King employs a 66-card deck that includes five Escape cards, five Pirate cards, four suits with numbers ranging from 1 to 13, one Tigress card, and one Skull King card. Each player is dealt as many cards as the round’s number during the 10 rounds that make up the game. By simultaneously opening their fists and showing a particular number of fingers (or maybe a closed hand for a bet of zero tricks), each player bids on the number of tricks they believe they will take.

Shiver Me Timbers

Four suits are used in a typical trick take, with one being the trump suit. Parrots (green), Pirate Map (purple), Treasure Chest (yellow), and Jolly Roger (black) are Skull King’s four standard outfits. Oh no, this game also features pirates (Red), escape (Blue), a Skull King (ultimate pirate), and mermaids (Aqua). And this is just the standard game without the expansions that come in the box. The Jolly Roger is the trump suit, but not the top trumps.
The player with the highest card wins the trick. You still play your tricks the same way, with the start player choosing a lead color that all other players must follow. However, you now have to take into account the following scenarios in the event that the lead color cannot be followed:
Among the things that Jolly Rogers trumps are treasure chests, pirate maps, parrots, and mermaids. Among the things that mermaids trump are pirates, the Skull King, and pirates.
If you wish to lose the trick, you can play either the escape card (your choice) or a pirate who acts like a pirate. You may be wondering why you would want to lose a trick by now, and the reason has to do with scoring. Discover the excitement of other trick-taking card games like Spades and Euchre at BoardGameGeek.

High Seas Risk

Trick-taking games like Spades and Oh Hell were not a part of my childhood; instead, I was first exposed to them as an adult. I became enamored with the trick-taking mechanism at that point. I adored the concept of dealing cards while another player chose the suit, forcing me to either follow or choose the suit depending on my prediction of what the other players would play. It’s an amazing risk, process of elimination, and behavior analysis problem. Trick-taking is a classic mechanic that Skull King has preserved and packaged with some really cool theme art and some suspenseful twists.

You will be dealt cards in Skull King according to the round that you are currently in. For instance, there will be one card in the first round, two in the second, three in the third, and so on until the tenth round. You will view your dealt hand before placing a bid for the number of books you hope to win in each round. If you’re familiar with Spades, this reminds you a lot of that. But in Skull King, instead of bidding in clockwise sequence starting with the lead player, each player will make their bid simultaneously.

Unlike in certain trick-taking games, you won’t be able to exploit the information of bids made by players to your advantage. This results in some amusingly tense and thrilling overbids and underbids, as well as some thought-provoking “How did we do that?!” moments when the bid is exactly right. You accomplish all of this by placing your fist on the table and executing the “one, two, go” motion. Then, using their fingers, each person discloses how many books they believe they would win. In keeping with the premise of the game, you have to shout “Yo, Ho, Ho” and announce your bid on the third “Ho,” but it can be challenging to get people to do so in public.

Make them Walk the Plank

Trump cards abound in Skull King. These are the cards that occasionally let you disregard the suit-following requirement for the trick. The game has three colored suits: green, yellow, and purple. Additionally, there is the cheerful Roger suit, which is black and always prevails over the colored outfits. These cards can be played off suit when you are supposed to follow in a trick, or you can lead with them as the first player in a trick. There are a ton of pirates in the game! That’s five of them, precisely.