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Review: Libertalia (board game) by blackwater 06/17/2014, 11:52pm PDT
Pretty much the first comment everyone makes about Libertalia is "is this going to be about Libertarianism?" Actually, though, this is just a pirate-themed board game in a fantasy setting. So basically... yes.

Anyway, Libertalia is an auction-based game with a few interesting aspects. Play takes place over three "missions" (or something like that) that are each broken up into six days. When you're setting up the mission, you put out one treasure per player per day. So each day has a separate set of "booty" tokens equal to the number of players. The booty tokens for each day are visible to everyone. Some are worth a lot more than others.

On each day, all the players simultaneously, and secretly, play a character card from their hands. For example, you could play the "captain," or the "parrot", etc. etc. All the cards are revealed simultaneously. Then you get a chance to perform the special actions on each card.

The advantage to playing a card with a high rank is that you get to choose your "treasure" earlier than people with lower-ranking cards. This matters because treasures count for points. Some treasures are actually negative points (cursed relics). Once you have played a character card, it goes in front of you (there's a term for this, but I forget... in the "mess hall" or something?)

The game sounds simple enough, but there are a lot of interesting special abilities on each card. For example, some character cards assassinate other character cards. Some character cards are worth point if you can keep them alive until the end of the week. A lot of cards allow you to collect points based on how many treasures or characters you already have.

There are a lot of characters in the game (I think there's like 50 or something?). But at any one time, you'll have a pretty small subset of those in your hand (I think like 9). Everyone gets the same set, so it's fair (mostly). I say mostly because in order to avoid ties in rank, some colors get slightly better or worse variants of each card. As you might have guessed, this game has a scoring track, and that's what you're trying to advance on each mission. The missions are fairly self-contained.

I liked the pirate theme more than I thought I would. It's also a bit lighter than some of the other games out there. A lot of other bidding games (like Ra, Amun Re, or Modern Art) just feel like you have to commit to a strategy early on and stick to it. I suppose it is because those other bidding games place a premium on collecting "sets" of things. With Libertalia, there is one treasure that you can collect a "set" of, but it's not the decisive factor. Mostly, it just seems to be about being clever and a bit lucky with the cards you are stuck with, which are also the same as what other players get. I didn't feel like I had to lock myself into a master strategy early on. I just had to play as best I could in a single week. I haven't played this that much yet, though, so it will be interesting to see if more strategic depth emerges later.

Bottom line: I give this a thumbs up, especially if you like saying the word "booty."
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Boardgame roundup: Vol. 1 by FABIO 04/26/2005, 10:56pm PDT
    Re: Boardgame roundup: Vol. 1 by Entropy Stew 04/27/2005, 12:08am PDT
    Volume 2, right now! by FABIO 04/27/2005, 3:30am PDT
        Re: Volume 2, right now! by Choson 04/27/2005, 6:47am PDT
            Re: Volume 2, right now! by theemu 04/27/2005, 11:52am PDT
                Re: Volume 2, right now! by FABIO 04/27/2005, 1:43pm PDT
                    Re: Volume 2, right now! by Choson 04/27/2005, 2:40pm PDT
                        Re: Volume 2, right now! by laudablepuss 04/27/2005, 2:56pm PDT
                            Re: Volume 2, right now! by Choson 04/27/2005, 3:01pm PDT
                            laudablepuss says dice are random NT by binkbot 04/27/2005, 4:57pm PDT
                                Like football! I also said that. Also ballooning. And then I said comma. NT by laudablepuss 04/27/2005, 5:09pm PDT
        Re: Volume 2, right now! by mark 04/27/2005, 12:10pm PDT
        Wow by Arbit 04/28/2005, 12:27am PDT
            ARE YOU GOING TO TAKE THAT FABIO NT by the CROWD 04/28/2005, 12:43am PDT
                *shrug* NT by FABIO 04/28/2005, 12:54am PDT
    Re: Boardgame roundup: Vol. 1 by Bill Dungsroman 04/27/2005, 7:54am PDT
        Re: Boardgame roundup: Vol. 1 by FABIO 04/28/2005, 2:44pm PDT
            Fortress America in ACTION! by FABIO 04/29/2005, 1:20pm PDT
    Re: Boardgame roundup: Vol. 1 by mark 04/27/2005, 11:56am PDT
        Re: Boardgame roundup: Vol. 1 by FABIO 04/27/2005, 1:52pm PDT
        Scott Orr disagress with you! by FABIO 05/09/2005, 9:20pm PDT
            Man who made game that sucks, sucks :( NT by mark 05/09/2005, 11:10pm PDT
        Memoir '44 by fabio 01/24/2012, 9:50pm PST
    No Dark Tower? No Stop Thief? by laudablepuss 04/27/2005, 12:31pm PDT
        Re: No Dark Tower? No Stop Thief? by mark 04/27/2005, 1:02pm PDT
            Re: No Dark Tower? No Stop Thief? by FABIO 04/28/2005, 2:45pm PDT
                yes. by mark 04/28/2005, 3:20pm PDT
    Mark's Boardgame Roundup part 1 by mark 04/27/2005, 12:50pm PDT
        For the love of God can no one stop these boardgame roundups??? by Ray of Light 04/27/2005, 1:16pm PDT
        Re: Mark's Boardgame Roundup part 1 by theemu 04/27/2005, 1:22pm PDT
        Mark's Boardgame Roundup part 2 by mark 04/27/2005, 6:11pm PDT
            Settlers counter rebuttal by FABIO 04/27/2005, 6:35pm PDT
                Re: Settlers counter rebuttal by Quentin Beck 04/27/2005, 6:47pm PDT
                    actually that was me (that's the new mysterio name? I thought he was a poster) NT by mark 04/27/2005, 6:47pm PDT
                Re: Settlers counter rebuttal by Choson 04/27/2005, 7:55pm PDT
                    Re: Settlers counter rebuttal by Pre 05/10/2005, 11:14am PDT
            I can't believe I never heard of Arkham Horror before. by Fullofkittens 04/28/2005, 9:28pm PDT
    Re: Boardgame roundup: Vol. 1 by mark 04/28/2005, 12:32am PDT
    Vol. 3 by FABIO 05/09/2005, 11:29pm PDT
        Thanks! by laudablepuss 05/10/2005, 7:21pm PDT
        suggestions by my$terio 05/10/2005, 9:20pm PDT
        Dark Tower sells for hundreds on ebay? by extarbags 05/12/2005, 4:08pm PDT
            I shot mine full of BBs. Along with all my classic GI Joes. :( NT by laudablepuss 05/13/2005, 11:11am PDT
                I demolished my star wars toys in my sand box or fed them to my guniea pig :( NT by Mischief Maker 05/13/2005, 1:58pm PDT
                    "Putting away childish things" turned out to be a really stupid idea. by laudablepuss 05/13/2005, 4:47pm PDT
            Mine sold for $130 by fabio 05/26/2011, 11:14am PDT
    Arkham Horror: Making Pen & Paper games obsolete by FABIO 02/13/2008, 9:51pm PST
        That should read 1d8 people :( by Erratard 02/13/2008, 10:05pm PST
        Wait'll you discover "How to host a murder mystery!" NT by Mischief Maker 02/13/2008, 10:22pm PST
            ^ roleplaying =( NT by FABIO 02/14/2008, 4:20am PST
        My group hit a bunch of obstacles with Arkham Horror. by Last 05/25/2011, 7:14pm PDT
            Re: My group hit a bunch of obstacles with Arkham Horror. by fabio 05/26/2011, 12:06pm PDT
                My group is having fun now with a play-by-email setup in google docs. by Last 07/27/2011, 9:16pm PDT
    Boardgame roundup: Pandemic, Longshot by Last 05/26/2011, 10:33am PDT
        +1 on Pandemic, it's very fun by Fullofkittens 08/07/2011, 6:14pm PDT
            Apparently the expansion is worth it if you like the core game NT by Lizard_King 08/07/2011, 8:29pm PDT
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        Re: Battlestar Galactica by fabio 08/04/2011, 12:58am PDT
            Re: Battlestar Galactica by Lizard_King 08/04/2011, 5:41am PDT
                Re: Battlestar Galactica by fabio 08/04/2011, 8:31am PDT
                    Re: Battlestar Galactica by Lizard_King 08/05/2011, 4:32pm PDT
        Tried Exodus by fabio 08/25/2011, 11:52am PDT
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        Re: Cosmic Encounter by NDD 08/28/2011, 5:31pm PDT
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    Review request: REX by fabio 02/24/2012, 5:56am PST
        Haven't played it, but I have no faith in FFG NT by mark 03/13/2012, 8:33pm PDT
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    Going Cardboard by Souffle of Pain 02/24/2012, 7:10am PST
    Ever wish there was a simplified version of Arkham Horror? by fabio 03/23/2012, 12:41pm PDT
    REX, aka Dune 2.0, aka Cosmic Encounter Obsolescence by fabio 04/12/2012, 8:01pm PDT
        UPDATE: default rules broken, needs fixing NT by fabio 08/23/2012, 8:42am PDT
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        How is that different from the boardgame version? by Last 08/23/2012, 9:14am PDT
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                Oh, I have the version set in Europe and they fixed that. by Last 08/23/2012, 1:42pm PDT
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        Re: Gaming with family by laudablepuss 08/04/2016, 8:45am PDT
            Re: Gaming with family by laudablepuss 08/04/2016, 8:47am PDT
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                        What kind of family get togethers mandate boardgames? by fabio 08/13/2016, 6:16pm PDT
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    Hey this game is coming out with an expansion. Look at the scenario writers by skip 08/13/2016, 7:59am PDT
 
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