30m - 45m
2 - 4 Players
Card drafting games are games in which players pick cards from a limited subset, such as a common pool, to gain some advantage (immediate or longterm) or to assemble hands of cards that are used to meet objectives within the game.
Hand management games are games with cards in them that reward players for playing the cards in certain sequences or groups. The optimal sequence/grouping may vary, depending on board position, cards held and cards played by opponents. Managing your hand means gaining the most value out of available cards under given circumstances. Cards often have multiple uses in the game, further obfuscating an "optimal" sequence.
Quick to set up and play: shuffle the deck and go, and you're done in 20-40 minutes. There's a lot of depth to gameplay, and it plays great 1v1, 1v1v1, or 2v2.
A highly underrated card game where you have to deploy your operatives in the right order so they're special powers can trigger efficiently. Featuring great old comic books style artwork that makes the whole package quite unique honestly.
I've only played this game with 2 so far. At that player count the game is fun but forgettable, something I'm happy with for the $6 I picked it up for, but I would be disappointed if I paid MSRP for it. This is the second 2-player agmes that I've tried that has Condottiere-style bidding and hand management, but that I've forgotten that Condottiere is a lot less fun with less than 4. What I like about this one is there's a balance between trying to be as ideally efficient as possible by waiting to play cards until you can play multiple scoring cards in the turn, versus if you do so your board state might not be developed enough to play multiple scoring cards anyways. Whereas Condottiere's tension comes from circling the other players seeing whether to commit to this battle or the next, Spynet works despite lacking the multiplayer tension by having tension instead in this timing element. I do wish though that the start of the game was sped up a bit, like if players started with 5 cards in hand or something, but done in some way such that it wouldn't be lopsided from someone being able to play a scoring card immediately. Also, with 2 it feels like you are basically doing the same decisions as 2/3 of the way into the game. But if a third of the deck was lopped off maybe that would mess with the ability to try to rush end of game by drawing from top of deck. EDIT: The situation cards are too similar, mostly allowing one color to basically act as a wild color. Maybe this game is better with 4 as you need to work to make your teammate be able to play their scoring cards, but with 2 you basically just to draw the highest sum of value each time, and just alternate between that and playing when your hand gets big enough that you can play multiple scoring cards in the same round. Your opponent can deny you certain colors by reinforcing one, but that makes them too vulnerable to the other colors in the process, and then their hand will run out and you can strike back. Reduced rating to a 5.