valid HTML 4.01

House Rules for Sherwood Showdown

Sherwood Showdown is a bidding game designed by Roberta Taylor and illustrated by Heather Young. It is available for sale online at Whimsey Games. Originals of the watercolor illustrations are available for sale online at Elasah Art.

I did not think I liked bidding games. The Big Cheese did not have enough interesting twists. Ceasar and Cleopatra had too many. But Sherwood Showdown gets it just right.

House Rules

The only problem with Sherwood Showdown is that the "buy cards" mechanic makes it too easy for the player who wins the first round to keep winning. That player can spend all of the first round's winning to increase his or her hand size. This is too much of an advantage.

Bill Walter helped create three new rules:

  1. During setup, players remove the Ransom cards from their decks before shuffling. Players can slide these cards into their shuffled deck as desired.
  2. Only Ransom money (not Traveler money) can be used to buy more cards.
  3. Bought cards do not immediately go into the player's hand. Instead they are set aside, and their owner may choose one each turn to add to the hand.

Thus each player can choose how much to sacrifice some early bidding power (Outlaw cards) for early purchase potential (Ransom cards), and gaining purchase potential first does not bestow too extreme an advantage.