Western Legends: Showdown is a micro game from Kolossal Games. It was designed by Erwann Ricord. The game makes use of of the Western Legends theme and artwork by Roland MacDonald. My copy was given to me by the publisher.*
I always have at least one game with me and it is one of the reasons I like micro games- they are easy to transport and take anywhere. This game is somewhat outside of my own personal choice on micro games because it doesn't have a solo mode. However, it shouldn't. The game is a well designed duel of card playing where the cards are the points.
The first player will have the Reputation card which is worth a point at the end of the game. Each player draws a hand of three cards and plays them on one of three locations. Each card, numbered one through seven, has its own rules which allow the players to bend the rules in order to adapt and win points. The rules all fit onto a single, small sheet of paper, and they are very easy to learn.
What I like most about the game is that although the action and piece economies are very tight and limited in the game, there are still meaningful and different decisions each time I play. The small amount of interplay of moving cards from one location to another makes you wonder what cards your opponent holds at any time. The Reputation card held by the first player can also be used to pass without playing a card. This causes the other player to gain it and gain its respective point for the end of the game. However, passing can be extremely strategic.
I have played about 25 times now and it is a short enough game that it still holds my attention when I try to defeat my opponent. This game gives you a nice feel of being a quick draw in a duel- you better get your personal goal done quickly or your opponent will beat you to it. I have had that happen several times. Our immediate response (no matter who lost) was - "Want to go again?" That's the feeling you want in a game like this, quick on the draw, and "I'm ready to beat you next time."
With 7 different rotating locations, there is just enough variety and gameplay to make this worth taking with you if you have someone to play with. Kill some time while waiting and enjoy Western Legends: Showdown.
Western Legends: Showdown
Designed by Erwann Ricord, Art by Roland MacDonald, Published by Kolossal/Matagot
Time 20 Minutes
Mechanics: Competitive, 2 Player, Trick Taking
*My copy of the game was provided for free by the publisher in order to provide a review. No other compensation was provided and my thoughts are my own.