Ebbes is a quirky spin on your standard trick taking game for 3-5 players. There are five different colors and each round each player is dealt ten cards. However, players must stay on their toes as each color means something different each round and you don't know what any of them mean when the round begins!

At the beginning of each round, a card with a number is flipped over. What does this card mean? The first time that number is played, the color of that number becomes the trump for that round. The second time it is played, that color is worth positive points at the end of the round. The third one played is called "ebbes". For the "ebbes" color, you do not want the most or the least cards of that color at the end of a round. Everyone not holding the most or the least receives three points. The fourth color is the "minus". Each of these is a negative point at the end of the round. The final one played is the "zilch". The player with the most of these cards at the end of the round determines who goes first the next round.

After points for the hand are tallied, the number card is put face up at the bottom of the stack and a new number is displayed. Stay on your toes when you play Ebbes!

How to Win: Most points after all the number cards have been used (in a three player game, it is five rounds) is the winner.

My Review: I love card games, always have! This is a really neat spin on the game which seems to keep anyone from getting too far ahead. With players dictating so many rules as the game goes along, it is easy to gang up on another player, but even then, hard to hand one player all the cards.

I have found the best strategy on this game is to take as few of tricks as possible. This seems to lead to the best results! The game is fairly quick and I find everyone that plays shows a variety of emotions as the game progresses. Overall, this has to be one of my current favorite card games, despite the less than stellar components!

 Overall Ratings

Instructions: 10/10 Clear and concise

Ease of Play: 8/10 This game takes some getting used to. You have to all pay attention to not only what color is being played but what number. The numbers can be a bit challenging to read if your vision is less than stellar.

Components: 2/10 The board is flimsy and only in German. Yes, you can figure it out but it's a bit inconvenient. The board is permanently bent to fit in the box, which can make the tiny scoring markers hard to keep in place, especially if more than one person has the same score. The cards are flimsy and some of the numbers are hard to read.

Replay Value: 8/10 There is enough variety in the play of this game to keep it coming to the table.

Overall Rating: 7/10