Do you enjoy playing trick taking games, but find games like Spades and even Hearts (though it is slightly different in strategy) to be too repetitive and boring? Well then Rage might be the perfect game for you. In this game you play as individuals with up to eight people playing in a game. The game is a little longer than some because it includes 10 rounds, but each subsequent round is shorter than the other.
The playing deck is rather simple. It has 6 different colors, with ranks of 0 through 15 in each color. There are also sixteen different “action cards” which are made up of 5 different varieties to add a twist to the game. To start the game each player gets 10 cards. You will play 10 rounds total. In the second round you start with 9 cards, in the 3rd round you start with 8, and so on until on the 10th round you begin with just one card each. Before the play starts for each round everyone bids on how many tricks they think they will take. If you can guess the exact number of tricks you will take you get a bonus at the end of the round, if you are wrong you get a penalty.
To play the game the first player plays a card, everyone else must follow suit if they have that suit and the highest ranking card will win the trick. However, if you can not follow suit, you are able to play either a trump card or an action card. How is trump decided? Rather easily, before you bid you flip over the top card left on the deck and that is the trump suit (ignore the card if it’s an action card). During the game keep in mind though there are several things that action cards can do, including changing the trump suit. This could make it difficult for you to take the tricks you bid to take if you don’t consider the possibility of the trump suit changing at some point in the hand. Other action cards include ones that affect scoring and add or subtract points from the winner of the trick.
Speaking of adding and subtracting, at the end of the round you have to do that to score the round for everyone. First, anyone that got the exact amount of tricks they bid gets a 10 point bonus. But, if they fail to get the exact amount they bid they get a 5 point penalty. After that everyone adds one point to their score for each trick they took. Finally, look at the action cards you took in the tricks you won for adjustments to your points, add and subtract as directed. The game continues until after the 10th round which is a one card round.
There are other little variations in the rule book you can add to your game if you want to spice it up a little bit more as well. At the end of the 10th round, add the scores for everyone for all 10 rounds and highest score wins! Overall this is a game with limited strategy, but a fun game. One of the major advantages is 8 players can play individually at the same time which is rare for a card game. It’s a fun game that is a good time killer. You can find this game at a relative bargain price of $8-10 on average, even though it can be hard to find at retail stores so you might have to buy it online.