Being a pirate is no easy task. The plundering. The looting. It’s all a lot of work! Being a pirate is made easier by having an excellent crew and maybe some pets to help you along the way.
Pets N’ Pirates is a 2 to 4 player card game that is beautifully illustrated and was created by Mario Brioschi and his daughter Clara. The object of the game is to be the player holding the Treasure card at the end of the game or be the last pirate standing.
On the Hunt for Treasure
Players start with 3 adventure cards and a captain card. Captain cards are very valuable because they each have a unique ability that can be used during the game. These captains can also be sacrificed when the Kraken appears during the game.
On a players turn, you can play as many cards as you would like. You rarely want to be left empty handed but playing multiple cards can be to your advantage. At the end of your turn, draw a new card. If this card is an event, it must be resolved immediately.
Event cards are easy to spot because of their red frame. Some of these events affect the active player and some affect all the players at the table. If the Kraken shows up, the active player must discard a captain or Galleons card to stay in the game. If the player is holding the treasure and neither of these cards, the treasure gets shuffled back into the draw deck.
These random event cards are one of the biggest reasons why holding a few cards on your turn is a good idea. If a player draws the single Treasure card in the deck, they must announce it to the other players which now makes them a target.
End the game with the Treasure card and you’ll be the greatest pirate at the table.
Cute Meets Cutthroat
Pets N’ Pirates is a fast and fun game that mixes light strategy and luck. It’s a game that keeps you on your toes because you know that the deck of cards are fraught with danger. While it can be exciting to be the player that draws the Treasure card, this can be a tough position to be in.
Many of the cards in the game target other players and have a “take that” feel to them. This is a style of game that really connects with our competitive family.
Players are able to collect crew member cards and play pairs to steal cards from other players. Collecting 5 crew members will allow you to pick up a random captain from the Captains pile or the discard pile.
Be on the lookout for the Cursed Captain card. A player who is holding this card cannot win the game even if they also have the Treasure card. I love it when another player randomly steals this Cursed Captain card. It’s tough not to laugh in the most evil way possible when this happens.
Families are going to find a lot of fun in this small box game. Pets N’ Pirates plays in around 20 minutes and the games are always competitive. The cute, sharp cornered illustrations are really playful and well done. In this box you’ll find an expansion with more captains and new cards that increase the player count to 5. For us, we tossed this expansion in after 2 or 3 plays and never looked back.
It’s always fun to hear about families who design a game together. You can tell that this game was a labor of love that is meant for parents to play with their kids.
Visit the Pets N’ Pirates Kickstarter campaign today and add this card game to your family game shelf.
A prototype of the game was provided for this coverage. Components and rules covered in this preview are not finalized. Read more about our preview policies at One Board Family.