I consider myself an aficionado of card games. I play all sorts of styles and even create new card games to give away for Christmas gifts. I’m the guy who when it’s his turn to deal on poker night always comes up with new variations of hands. I love card games.
I say this to preface the fact that until Briscas came to me for review I had never heard of this game. This surprised me because apparently it is very popular in several countries. I was very excited to try this out.
My excitement went from 11 to 13 when I read the description on the app store page that talked about epic battles for religion, government, armies, and militia. Then they talk about rivers of blood, fearing the wrath, and being given hell before my final sigh. Wow…- all of that in a card game?
Okay…- there is none of the blood and wrath in Briscas, but there is a great card game that is very fun and quick to play, and one that will have you saying, “just one more hand”, over and over again.
The rules to the game are very simple. Briscas is a trick taking game at its heart. A trump suit (cup, coin, sword, or baton) is set up at the beginning of the hand and the highest card played within that suit wins. If you or your opponent starts off by laying down a card that is not of the trump suit it becomes a secondary trump. This means that if “coin” is the trump and you start by laying down a “cup” card your opponent can only win if they put down any “coin” card or a higher “cup” card.
Points are awarded for cards that have a value. This includes Threes, Jacks, Knights, Kings, and Aces. I will tell you that I had to play one hand –- and get my butt kicked in the process –- before I had the hang of how to play. After that, I was able to devise several different strategies and the game really became fun.
One of the really cool things about the game is how well the cards look. These are all designed with a look that makes me wish I had a real set of these cards to use on poker night. For a simple card game I was very impressed with the work put into it’s visual appeal.
The real plus for this game is the achievements. The list for these is very long and it seems that they’ve figured out just about every winning and losing hand combination to make up the list. I’ve found that even in hands I lose I’m still checking to see if I unlocked one of the achievements. I was very impressed with this function.
The game is also available in English, Italian, French, Portuguese and Spanish. This is nice, though it’s just a card game so pretty soon the language is only needed for the achievements.
There are a few things that I think would make this game even better. A quick tutorial of the game would help, but it really only took a hand to figure it out myself. Also, there is no multi-player function with the Briscas. This was sad because after a few hands I had to bust out some real cards to show the game to my wife. Sure that is what makes for a better marriage, but it seems that there should be some way for them to allow for either two player versions or allow for wi-fi play.
Sure, there is no rivers of blood, but Briscas is one of those rare games that really lays claim to the old line, “Minutes to learn, a lifetime to master”. In fact, it just might take a lifetime to unlock all of the achievements. Highly recommended to lovers of quick play card games.
Fun game and easy to play
Lots of achievements
Great card graphics
Rules could be better explained
No resume feature for interrupted games
Free Flash Version Below