Review – Go Da Cheese
A Hand Management card game.
Title: Go Da Cheese!
Year Published: 2015
Designer: Hisashi Hayashi
Publisher: Okazu Brand
Game Time: ~15 mins
Set-up Time: ~1
Mechanic: Hand Management
How to win: Score the most points.
A large, rich house must of course contain a large, rich pantry. And there, you will find a lot of cheese! All mice from around the neighbourhood have been waiting and longing for the day when the door to the pantry will open, dreaming dreams on stuffing themselves with that delicious cheese…
And one day, the door opened. Everyone rushed to the feast, trying to beat their rivals to the goal, and hoping that the vicious cat won’t see them…
Whose mice will be able to steal most cheese, whose cats will catch most mice, and whose dogs will chase away most cats? This is the start of a fearsome fight for food and fame!
Setup is simple, take the cheese cards, shuffle them up and place them in a circle or a ‘wheel of cheese’ if you will. Give each player a deck of cards of one colour, give them a shuffle too, everyone draws 3.
Pick a random start player and you’re ready to go.
On a players turn they do one of two things. Firstly you can draw 3 cards, but if you’re at the maximum hand size of 6 or just want to on your turn you can play 3 cards instead.
To do this, pick a cheese, any cheese and put one of your cards face down next to it. Then, place 2 more cards from your hand face up on the next 2 cheese cards in clockwise order.
The only thing that breaks this rule is a card with a symbol, this symbol.
These can be played face down even when they’re supposed to be face up. You have 3 of these in your deck, 2 mice and 1 cat.
If a card is already there overlap it and continue to expand each row outwards as cards are played.
Once everyone has played all their cards you go to scoring.
You score each cheese card individually by flipping all the face down cards face up, making sure you keep them in the same order.
Now, from the furthest card from the cheese to the closest, look for dogs as they score first.
Dogs are lazy and don’t want to run very far so they chase away Cats belonging to an opponent that are adjacent to them right into the dog owners score pile.
Cats now chase away mice. Starting with any remaining cats furthest from the cheese you scare away 3 opponents’ mice in front of them.
You don’t chase away your own mice but they count as a space and a cat will only stop at the next Dog or if they get to the cheese itself. Mice that ran away run into the cat owners score pile. Resolved cats are removed from the line back to the box.
Then comes the King, symbolised by a crown every player has one, starting with the back of the line and moving forward King Mice move to the front of the line because, Hierarchy.
Finally, you get to eat cheese… The number on the cheese shows how many mice get to eat so the X closest mice, ignoring lingering dogs, eat that many cheese the lucky things.
Do this for each cheese and total your score.
Your mice that ate cheese and opponents mice you chased away are worth their point value and each cat you chased away is worth 3 points. It’s all printed on the cards so it’s easy to add up…
The most points wins, tiebreaker goes to the player with the most King Mice, still a tie? The player with the most mice overall wins.
This is a very nice, simple, fun game with a theme people easily understand with very simple game play.
So, Draw 3 or Play 3? That’s it… and if you have 6 cards in your hand you HAVE to play.
The hard part is remembering which of the 3 cards you play face up or face down, then remembering to look at the ‘face down’ symbol on your cards.
It’s one of those ‘think, double think’ games where you know someone put a Cat face down… but you know they know you think that, so what do you do?
Not as ‘Fun’, but a better game than the similarish Om Nom Nom which I also really like but people seem to play Go Da Cheese, whereas in Om Nom Nom people feel they need to play randomly. (ruining the game essentially)
It’s in a tiny box too! also, from the designer of Trains weirdly enough 🙂
Go Da is not a ‘Go To’ filler so I can’t rate it too high, but it’s fun and quite different to anything else I have.
I give it 6/10