‘Unreal Estate’: Real Fun in Unreal Places

Reading Time: 3 minutes
Unreal Estate Cards
Unreal Estate Cards

With just a few days to go on the Kickstarter campaign, you better rush over to Unreal Estate’s page to get in on the fun. For just $18 you can get a full copy of the game, but I went with the $25 option to get a copy of the game and the companion art book. They’re already funded but still have some pretty sweet looking stretch goals I’d like to see unlocked so I can get my eager little paws on them. Read below to see a high-level walkthrough with pictures. There are pictures of all the art and a video guide to the rules on the Kickstarter page, as well.

Game Setup

The Proposal Board
The Proposal Board

Setup of the game is quick and easy. Shuffle the deck well, leaving out the 6 blue Special Cards and deal two cards to each player. Depending on how many players you have you will begin the Scrap Pile with three, four, or five cards. For my first demo we completed this step but in the second where I snapped the photos we neglected to set up the starting Scrap Pile but it still progressed nicely. My demo was a two player match so I should have started the scrap pile off with four Building Cards so just pretend you see that in the early pictures. Turn up five cards on the table to act as the drafting section known as the Proposal Board. Then add the 6 Special Cards and reshuffle for the draw deck.

Playing A Round

Scoring
Scoring

Per round each player will take one of three actions. In a two player game, each player will go twice, one after the other before completing the round but in a three or four person game, each player takes only one action. The choices are to either draft a card from the table, play a Special Card, or Score by playing a building card and matching it to other building cards in the scrap pile. I noticed the rules say the options are Draft, Score, Play a Building Card but I think that is just a typo as the instructions on the Play action are clearly for a Special Card not a Building Card. I’ve lifted the below from the rules on the Kickstarter page but noted where I think the typo came into play:

  • Drafting
    When a player opts to draft, they may take a single card from the Proposal Board and put it into their hand.
    There is no hand limit.
  • Scoring
    Play a card or cards from your hand that matches one or more Building cards in the Scrap Pile. A player must
    play all like cards and you may only play a given card if at least one card in the Matching Row matches the
    cards you play. Discard all matched cards after scoring to the discard pile.
  • Play a Building Special card
    Some Building cards are drafted into your hand and may be played on a later turn. Play this card to the discard
    pile and carry out its effect.

For scoring purposes, each card you play is worth the value listed on the card multiplied by the number of cards in the Scrap Pile. Note with pen and paper what each player scores each round.

For example,  Jane has 2 Magic Items Shop cards in her hand each with a value of 4. In the Scrap Pile, there are 3
Magic Items Shop cards that match. So, 4 x 3 = 12 points and she played 2 cards so it becomes 24 points scored.

After each player takes their action the remaining cards in the Proposal Board are moved to the Scrap Pile and five new cards from the draw deck are added to the Proposal Board. The next player in line gets to go first this round and the same steps are followed.

There are no hand limits and you alternate which player goes first as the first player always has the best set of options available.

What’s the Verdict?

That artwork, though!
That artwork, though!

I love having a lot of quick playing and easy to learn games on hand. They’re good for starting off a game night, keeping young gamers occupied, or something for folks to do during a short break at another event. This one is quick and easy both to learn and to play. I’d say you should back it based on that alone but the absolutely gorgeous artwork by Corinne Roberts seals the deal for me. A fun to play game that is also fun to look at? I’m in! And you should be, too.

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