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Game: Mystery Rummy: Jack the Ripper (US Games)
Submitted By: Charles Bahl
Date: 5/13/2003 3:08:00 AM
?Jack the Ripper? is the first card game in the ?Mystery Rummy? series created by Mike Fitzgerald. It is my favorite of the bunch--at least for two players (although I hear ?Murders in the Rue Morgue? is great for four players). ?Jack the Ripper? is a Rummy variant, but uses its own deck of creepily horrific late-Victorian cards by artist Virginjus Poshkus that lend a nice amount of thematic atmosphere to the game. In addition, the game possesses a deductive element that is not a part of any other Rummy game I am familiar with.
As in Rummy players draw and discard with the object of forming sets (melds). In ?Jack the Ripper? melds consist of three or more ?evidence? cards. The game also contains ?gavel? cards, which are not melded, per se, but are added to melds and usually impart a special privilege. For example, ?scene? cards permit the player to search the discard pile for a favorable card. Gavel cards interact in ways somewhat similar to cards in ?Magic, the Gathering,? and their strategic use is one of the keys to intelligent play.
Once per game a player can call for a vote. At that time players secretly write on a slip of paper which suspect they think is the Ripper. (The Ripper is the suspect that has the most points of melded cards at the end of the hand.) Players who successfully guess the correct identity of the Ripper receive a bonus. Selecting the best moment for the vote is a difficult and important decision.
If you like Rummy games ?Jack the Ripper? is a must have. But even if you don?t, the game contains enough new and intriguing elements that should make it attractive to a wide range of gamers.