Monday, July 19, 2010

Reiner Knizia's High Society

Highly Recommended

Although this beautiful strategy card game has the same game designer (Reiner Knizia), same developer (Skotos Tech), and uses the same game engine as Money, High Society is an enjoyable game experience unto itself. Using an open, progressive auction format, players bid on a series of paintings that are worth a varying amount of victory points. All players start on equal footing with the same complement of cash cards in different amounts, so the trick is knowing when and how much to bid. But it isn't enough that a person amasses the most victory points for, if doing so renders that player the poorest at game's end, he/she automatically comes in last place. Throw in some point-multiplier cards to bid for and some detrimental cards to bid against, and you have a game full of interesting choices to make.

It should be noted that the game features no way to play against other humans, and the in-game manual doesn't give you all the information that it should. But the different levels of AI mitigate the former complaint, and a play-through or two will render the latter complaint moot. Neither is a reason to neglect this gem and I can happily recommend to all.

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