Brett J. Gilbert, Game Designer

#01

The Other Hat Trick

Brett J. Gilbert

Card game

3 players • 10 minutes

Published 12/07/13 • Cards v1.0 • Rules v1.0

What you need

You only need the 17 cards. Nothing else is needed to play.

Three rival magicians take to the stage in a battle of prestidigitation to produce just the right props at just the right time. Only the magician who can successfully perform the most valuable tricks will win!

About the game

The Other Hat Trick is a game of luck, deduction, and pulling rabbits out of hats. And if you can’t pull a rabbit out, perhaps a carrot will do just as well?

The game was born long before I first heard the term ‘microgame’, principally as an intellectual challenge to myself: just how few cards did I need to make a game? My answer to that question was 17.

The set of seven prop cards created a lovely slice of combinatoric potential within the ten tricks, and it is a challenge to the reader to decide if I have pitched the relative value of the different tricks correctly, based on the probabilities of drawing any specific combination.

New players should be aware that last trick in the deck is always the eponymous — and most valuable — The Other Hat Trick. You’ll need to pull The Other Rabbit out of The Hat to win the points, but if no-one succeeds, woe betide the magician caught with either of those props at the end of the game!

About the designer

Brett J. Gilbert is a professional boardgame designer, which is every bit as lucrative as you might imagine. His first published game, Divinare (Asmodee, 2012), was recommended by the 2013 Spiel des Jahres jury; a fact he mentions purely in passing.