The Three Musketeers

Saturday night we played a few games, and I was able to entice 4 other players into trying out my newest addition, The Three Musketeers.

 

Now this is a game that ought nought to be taken very seriously.  But I really enjoyed myself!  I didn’t ask, but it seemed as if the other four (musketeers) also were having fun.  So I currently find myself enthused about this game.

For those of you who have watched the movies or read the books, you will recognize the scenario.  The Queen has foolishly given some jewelry to her lover, the Duke of Buckingham.  Cardinal Richlieu (me, in our game) has realized this, and suggested to the King that he command the Queen to wear the jewels at the Ball to given.  So the musketeers come to her rescue!

At the start of the game, the four musketeers stand on the street outside the Louvre.  At the far end of the building the Queen is processing towards the King.  The Musketeers must cross the Louvre and deliver the jewels to the Queen before she comes before the King.  In between the Musketeers and the Queen are the Cardinal’s guards, the Comte de Rochefort, and Milady de Winter.

So here we have the team-based scenario.  Only one of the musketeers has the real jewels, but the other three have decoys.  They can travel together, which will aid their fighting prowess, or they can scatter fragmenting the Cardinal’s efforts.  The musketeers are much better fighters than the guards, and should easily win a duel.  But with enough scratches even the heartiest of the musketeers will be briefly knocked out.  And while a musketeer is unconscious, any guard can inspect his body and see if he carries the jewels.  Further, the Cardinal also has two special pieces – Rochefort and Milady.  Rochefort  is a skilled duelist, and has a pistol he is prepared to fire before swords may be crossed.  But the most potent weapon available to the Cardinal is Milady.  She has the ability to walk up to any musketeer and, if she rolls well, cause him to hand over the jewels!  And since she is a woman, no musketeer would dream of attacking her.

Adding to the possibilities, each musketeer has a special ability, and the musketeers can once during the game chant together, “All for one, and one for all!” and have a simultaneous group turn!  But the Cardinal also has some tricks up his sleeve.  He has a small pack of cards which gives him additional tricks to play and guards to deploy.

Each turn a card is flipped, showing what the sequence of events will be.  Often the Cardinal will get a couple turns to move pieces, interspersed between a variable order of musketeer moves.  One turn Porthos may be first, another turn Athos might be first.  At the end of most turns the Queen advances towards te King.

The combat is fast, and heavily favors the musketeers.  But the Cardinal has lots of troops, and the danger of Milady is very potent.  Adding to the fun, all of the playing pieces are well crafted toys.

What we did not explore in our first game – but what I appreciate was included – is a kit of sorts.  You can customize the game to your tastes.  You can add useful benefits to either side, or take away useful benefits from either side.  There are also a set of Queen movement tokens, to change the way the Queen advances, keeping everyone in suspense until the tile is flipped.

The Three Musketeers is definitely in the “family gaming” end of the pool.  But it is well done, and the theme is very well executed.  I won’t be breaking it out when I want a serious match.  But for a fun event to round out the last 45 minutes of game night, I think it may prove entertaining.

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One Response to “The Three Musketeers”

  1. thegamebistro Says:

    I’ve now played this five times. It went over very well with a group of role-players. It did pretty well with a casual game, and it was a bit of a mediocre response from the game club.

    I’m loving it, but I now feel like the musketeers need some help. I intend to introduce a variant where Milady can only do her seduction roll if she is *alone* in a room with a musketeer. Otherwise, I am of the opinion that she is too much for the musketeers to contend with.

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