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A Sid Sackson classic, available again!
Through skillful trading and re-trading, each player attempts to gain the right combination of beautiful glass stones from the Bank to purchase the wares displayed in the Bazaar. Values of the various wares are determined by the number of stones the purchaser holds following his transaction. Trading is governed by the current rates posted at the Exchange. When all the wares from two of the stalls have been sold, the Bazaar is closed, the game ends, and the player with the highest score wins!
Players: 2 - 6
Time: 45 or more minutes
Ages: 8 and up
Weight: 1,215 grams
- 100 Glass Stones
- 10 Exchange Cards
- 45 Ware Cards
- 1 Special Die
- 6 Player Reference Cards
Average Rating: 4.8 in 3 reviews
One of my favorite games, and the first real game I remember learning. Collect tokens, either by rolling a die or by trading, to buy cards, whose worth depends on how many tokens you have left after and whether they are starred. (All cards cost 5 tokens. Cards with 4 or 5 tokens the same color are starred; it's generally trickier to buy them. In the end game, all cards go up a star -- plain cards score as starred; starred score as double-starred.) Sometimes it's best to buy a card with many leftover so an opponent can't; sometimes it's better to try to trade down to have fewer left.
The exchange rates are different each time, as are the cards on offer, so there's plenty of variety. There's no reading required, and only minimal counting, so it's a decent game to play with kids once they have the attention span for it.
It may not sound like much, but those I've introduced it to have enjoyed it, and I'm still playing 30+ years later.
This is a beautiful (sometimes depending on what version you have) game with simple rules and complex thought required. This game places a premium on effective trading, and is better for two people than any other number. I have played this game for a whole evening, and have used it to teach school children algebra principles. The interesting quirk in this game is that when you trade tokens for other tokens according to two charts (different in each game) you attempt to purchase cards and have as few tokens as possible left over after you buy. I have been able to get quite absorbed in this game, and it is always refreshing. I write this review in 2002, and I purchased my first version, by 3M (not the prettiest one) at a second hand store for $.25. For some reason, this Sid Sackson game seems to go in and out of print, but if you are patient, you will find it at a garage sale, second hand store, or in the old stock of a Discovery Toy sales person. I highly recommend this game, and it is one that parents can play with children as well.
Sid Sackson is one of the most widely respected game designers to have emerged in the late 20th century. Notable designs that are part of his ludology include Acquire, Can't Stop, and the game that is the subject of this review, Bazaar. Bazaar first appeared in 1967, originally in a much loved 3M edition and later in a less loved Discovery Toys edition, and is a popular design that has been out of print for an extended period of time. The good news is that Gryphon Games has stepped up to the plate to produce a brand new edition of this classic, with a new look and new components worthy of its respected status.
In the game, players are getting coloured glass stones, and trading them according to the rates of exchange listed on two exchange cards, trying to get combinations of coloured stones to match one of the face up ware cards that are in play. The fewer stones you have left over after cashing them in for a matching ware card, the more points you earn, so the idea is to make your trading as efficient as possible. It's a simple concept that makes the game easy to teach and learn, and works well with people of all ages, including children, yet remains a pleasant challenge for adults as well.
Is Bazaar for you? Many of Sid Sackson's games have stood the test of time, and Bazaar is no exception. It's elegant and beautiful, and has potential to appeal to a variety of gamers, and its accessibility means that it's even suitable for families or non-gamers. This fresh new edition has done a wonderful job of bringing a beautiful game to today's audiences, and if you want to own a game that's both beautiful to look at and interesting to play, then you can't go wrong by considering picking up a copy of Bazaar.