Gateway Games: Introduction to Drafting GamesSeptember 25, 2018
Gateway Games is a series of articles aimed at helping you find the games that are right for you. Today, I am going to focus on one of my favorite genres – drafting games.
Drafting games are generally card games in which players draft and pass a pile of cards. This means you have to choose one card out of a subset of cards that are randomly distributed. Then, the piles are passed from one player to the next until all cards have been drafted. In the games I will be exploring today, drafting is the central mechanic of gameplay. I believe that once you have played one drafting game, others in the genre will become much easier to learn.
Here are some great drafting games of various complexity levels to try:
Citadels is a fantastic game to introduce drafting to someone who is unfamiliar with the concept. The goal of the game is to get the most victory points by building districts. To help with the construction of districts, each round players draft the character roles that they will play for that round. Each character has unique abilities and a determined order in which the players will take their turn. For example, the Thief above would be called as the 2nd player to take their turn. The Thief has the ability to rob one player of his gold. There is an interesting element of hidden identities in this game and trying to guess who is taking what role each round. Once you’ve played through a couple rounds, this game is fairly easy to pick up and fun to play multiple times in a row.
2. Sushi Go!
By far one of the cutest drafting games, Sushi Go! turns adorable sushi dishes into a fast-paced, addictive drafting game fun for all ages. I highly recommend Sushi Go Party!, which adds a game board, the option for up to 8 players, and the ability to change up the menu each time you play. The different cards can change the complexity level or make the game adaptable based on how many people are playing. In both versions of the game, you are drafting cards to try to get the most points from the assortment of sushi you’ve drafted – be that sets of sushi rolls, dumpling combos, or having the most dessert at the end of the game.
3. 7 Wonders
This is more on the complex end of drafting games, but it is an incredible game full of strategy and can be played fairly quickly after you’ve played through one game. 7 Wonders is a card development game in which you are drafting cards to complete your own Wonder and gain points by collecting resources of the same type or having a balanced development with a variety of different resources. One of the beautiful aspects of this game is that many strategies can succeed and there are many strategies to choose from. The one downside is a moderately complicated scoring system at the end of the game, but there’s an app for that.
I hope this was helpful for people interested in trying out some games beyond what they have already played and as a guide for turning your friends and loved ones into hardcore gamers.