6 NIMMT - Reviewed by Mike
Category/Format: Fun/Card Game
Lively card game for all the family which is simple to explain but which gets surprisingly tricky once a few cards have been laid. The deck consists of 104 numbered cards on which are depicted a number of oxheads, mostly singles but some cards contain 3, 5 and even 7 oxheads. The latter are printed in garish colours and stand out against the sterile white background of the single oxheads. At the start each player is dealt 10 cards, 4 cards are turned face up on the table to form 4 rows and the rest are put aside for this round. The game can accommodate up to 10 players but I've only ever played with 6.
Players will select a card and place it face down in front of them and then all players will reveal them simultaneously. In ascending sequence they will be placed onto one of the 4 rows and the objective is NOT to be the player of the sixth card in a row(6 Nimmt = 6 takes), as if you are you take all the 5 cards in the row and these count against you in your score.
Sounds simple doesn't it but you will be surprised how difficult this becomes and players have often been heard to say "How did that happen ?". Because a majority of the cards are 'sleeping' in a round its difficult to predict what cards will be around to fill the gaps. For example, supposing there are 3 cards in a row and the last one is number 47. In your hand you have 54, 59, 61, 65. Do you play the 54 in the hope that other players will not lay 2 of the possible 7 cards that can force you to complete the row ? OK you might get away with it this time but then the row will have 54 as the fourth card and you play the 59 next time, only to find that the 55 is played this time and you complete the row !
Because there are 4 rows players sometimes fail to recognise the significance of their actions as they concentrate on one particular row. Using our previous example what if there was another row with 5 cards where the last card was a 53 and you played your 54; you would complete that row, not the one you were thinking of !. Believe me, it's easy to do this. There is one other rule which can upset your calculations. If a player plays a card that is LOWER than any of the current last cards in any row they 'take the hit' by picking up a row of their choice and their card becomes the first card in a new row. So if a row consists of say 3 cards but they are all single oxheads it's sometimes worth using this option rather than play a higher card and get stuffed with a row scoring more than 10. By removing the original row this often screws up other players, who played a card relevant to that row and now finds that it fits nicely as the sixth card on a completely different row.
When all 10 cards have been played the oxheads collected by the players are totalled and entered onto a scoresheet. The game ends when one player has exceeded a total of 66 and the one with the LEAST at the end of the scoring phase is declared the winner. Its entirely possible that a player can have 2 bad intial rounds and accumulate 40 points or more and then have 3 or 4 good rounds where they score just 1 or 2 or even zero if they're lucky and eventually win the game. The game is quick to play, usually lasting no more than 45 minutes, and players often request another game immediately, in the belief that they "understand what's going on and couldn't possibly make the same mistakes again"....how often has that proven to be a false prophecy !
Good fun for gamers as a closer and for families with children above 8 years of age. Not very expensive either and readily available in the shops. A very worthwhile purchase.