Bidding and bluff card game
September 20, 1519: The activity on the deck is frantic. Sailors run from side to side, loading the final batch of supplies. On the royal stand in the harbor, the preparation is intense. The King has arrived to watch the fleet set sail: five mighty ships, commanded by five shrewd captains whose intelligence will be put to the test in the years to come. The cannons roar, giving the departure signal. The anchors are pulled up, and the sails unfurled. The voyage that will circle the globe has just begun.
In Magellan: Elcano, you assume the role of a captain on one of these ships circumnavigating the world, and you want to collect as many goods as possible. Each player has an identical deck of 15 cards, and you start with five random cards in hand. These cards have values on them in two colors (from red, blue, and green) on opposite ends, and three decks of ocean cards in red, blue, and green lie in the center of the table.
Reveal the top card of each deck. Each player then takes turns playing a card from their hand in front of them, building up to three piles — one in each color — and rotating a player card as desired to make it one color or another. Continue around the table until all players have passed or have no cards remaining in hand. Whoever has played the highest total in red discards their played cards and claims the matching ocean card; all other players return their played red cards to hand. In the event of a tie, all players return their cards to hand, with the red ocean card remaining in place. Do the same with the blue and green cards.
All players draw two cards from their personal deck, then you reveal a new red, blue, and green ocean card, piling up cards of the same color if they weren’t claimed the previous one. Continue playing rounds until all players’ decks are empty. Total your claimed ocean cards. Whoever has the highest sum wins!