Dragon’s Hoard: A Treasure Game
Hunting for treasure in the card game of Dragon’s Hoard will not only result in having heaps of riches, but having heaps of fun too! Each player takes on the role of a formidable dragon who wants to gather as much treasure as possible.
Sheep from the farmer’s field are collected and then strategically used by Dragon’s (players) to try and amass the most valuable lair of all. But don’t underestimate a Dragon to be only concerned about satisfying his desire for sheep and treasure. They can be quite clever as well. And so players must beware of obstacles, like Angry Mobs or Thieves, that other Dragons may put in a player’s path to hinder successes.
As can be guessed, Dragon’s Hoard is a thrilling game. It is for 2 to 4 players (ages 8 and up) and was recently published by Mortensen Games. The card game can be purchased through Mortensen’s website or on Amazon. Small in size, but packed full of adventure, I plan on putting a few of these packs in Easter Baskets or Christmas Stockings. It’s a sweet treat that gives again and again.
Basic game play consists of trying to acquire the most treasure by using a deck of 90 cards. However, because of the cards unique double sided feature, the game actually engages twice that amount!
Every backside of the Dragon’s Hoard’s cards is displayed with colorful sheep (shown farthest right). There are 18 of each color of Blue, Purple, Yellow, Orange, and Red. The front side of a card is displayed with either a Treasure or Action scene (50 treasure/40 action). Both sides of the cards play a key role for winning the game.
This double sided feature causes Dragon’s to be sometimes left with difficult decisions to make. Which sides should he use and when is the best time?!
To begin, player’s are dealt 4 cards each. Another four cards are placed in the center of the table to form the ‘Farmer’s Field’. This Field displays sheep cards of the various colors. With Sheep side facing, the remaining pile of cards are placed beside the field and are used to replenish sheep in the Farmer’s Field immediately upon the taking. (At the start of each Dragon’s turn, a player takes two sheep (of any choice of color) to put in his hand.)
There are different treasures for a Dragon to hoard. To become the wealthiest Dragon and win the game, Dragons must place treasures in their lair. More expensive treasures require the playing of more sheep cards that have been collected by players. For instance, adding a treasure of gold coins (worth one point) to a Dragon’s Hoard calls for only 2 sheep of any color to be discarded from a player’s hand. However, adding a ‘King’s Treasure’(worth 6 points) calls for 4 sheep. Three of these sheep must be of a certain color making it more difficult to achieve. In the sample card shown below, the King’s Treasure requires 3 Purple Sheep and 1 more of any color. The icons down the side of the cards indicate the price for adding to a Dragon’s Hoard. (also shown is the gold coin treasure card)
As previously mentioned, the flipside of the Sheep are the various Treasures to collect, and they also include the Action cards. A player has the option to play one of these per turn, in addition to the hoarding of a treasure.
In order for a Dragon to add Treasure to his hoard, he uses Sheep. Because the double sided nature of the cards, this use of Sheep involves the sacrificing of other Treasure and Action cards since they are on the flipside of Sheep. This brings an amazing strategic element and depth to the game. Dragon’s are in constant thought of what is best played during each turn. He can even decide to sit still and wait until his next turn to act.
More complete instructions for playing can be found at DragonsHoardthecardgame.com.
Every time I play this game, I love it more and more. Of course, I may be partial because I love the gathering of treasures, and of all types. Especially the gathering of treasured family and friends for sharing laughs, adventure, and fun!