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Studio H
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Number of Players 3-5
Playtime 25 Min
Suggested Ages 10+
Designer(s) Frank Crittin, Grégoire Largey
Publisher Studio H

"Hagakure", a term meaning "in the shadow of the leaves" or "hidden in the foliage", is a spirtual and practical guide for Japanese warriors that's also known as "The Book of the Samurai".

The game Hagakure is a trick-taking game for 3-5 players in which you try to score more points than any other player. The deck is comprised of thirty cards: villagers numbered 1-17, samurai numbered 18-27, and three "old fools" who have no numbers. (With 3-4 players, you eliminate cards 1-5 and 23-27 from the game.)

At the beginning of each round, you deal 4-5 cards to each player, then place the remaining 4-5 cards in a pile called "Goze". Every player starts with five "Nobori" tokens, each of which has a special power, and a player can choose to play exactly one of these tokens after looking at their cards. These tokens allow you to look at another player's hand, swap your hand with the Goze, double your points, etc.

The lead player plays a card from their hand, then each player follows, with the highest card played winning the trick, then leading the next trick. If a samurai (a red card) is played, then all other players must play a samurai, if possible. Otherwise the game has no mandatory plays. An "old fool" played by itself is worthless, but if a second or third "old fool" is played into a trick, then the player of the last such card wins the trick.

Players get 1 point for each trick won and 1 point for capturing the 16. A player who took no tricks will lose 2 points. After 5-9 rounds, depending on the player count, whoever has the most points wins the game.

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