16th November 2019
Gaming night at 'Matakishi's' continues.
The final game of the night was 'Ringmaster: Welcome to the Big Top'.
Step right up! Step right up! Come and see which player can creates the most magnificent circus.
Watch! As players become catastrophically confused by cunning card-plays of weirdness Gasp! As players are perilously perplexed by uncannily unpredictable game mechanics.
Yes Sir! All the fun of the circus!
What's in a game?
Ringmaster is a card and all it has and needs is a deck of cards.
All the cards are illustrated with nice and occasionally humorous pictures. Many of the cards are tongue-in-cheek.
Finally, the game comes with a nifty little draw string to to carry the game in, if you don't want to lug the box about. It's a cool little addition.
How's it play?
First, the deck is shuffled and 3 cards are dealt to each player, the remaining cards from a draw deck. A first player is then determined.
The active player draws a card from the deck and then plays 1 card.
There are 4 types of card in the game:
I can't really explain much about the rules, because players simply do what's written on the card they're playing.
There are no endgame conditions in Ringmaster! OK, that's a bit of an exaggeration, but the endgame is determined by cards that are played. This means that different players will most likely have different winning criteria.
This makes Ringmaster unpredictable and the game tends to end very suddenly and abruptly.
Ringmaster ticks the right boxes! Easy to learn, quick to play and fun.
As well as random ending conditions, there are cards that occasionally completely change the game, forcing all players to discard their entire hands or every card they've played etc.
Ringmaster can be random and chaotic, but retains enough strategy to still engage players.
If you've just spent the last 3 hours playing a monstrosity of a game that's made your brains dribble out of your ears. Then Ringmaster makes a great finisher for the evening.
I play, I paint.