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Oltre Mare (Merchants of Venice)

Oltre Mare (Merchants of Venice) by Rio Grande Games
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Manufacturer: Rio Grande Games  Visit their site
Designer: Emanuele Ornella
Players: 2 to 5
Time: 60 Minutes
Ages: 10 and up
Availability: Unavailable 
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Our Price:  $27.95 - Retail $39.95
Reward Points: 2,795
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From the Publisher...

The Mediterranean Sea is the lifeline for merchants living in the lands on its shores. In Oltre Mare, players represent competing merchant families plying their trade throughout the region. As the players move their ships from port to port, they try to load and deliver large cargos of the seven major trading goods of the day: spices, silk, silver, sugar, wine, wood, and grain. With experience, each has learned what the market limit for each good is, and will try to fill his ship with just this much of each cargo type to gain the most from his investments. Of course, players must always be on the lookout for pirates, who will board careless ships, stealing both cargos and reputations. The most successful player will earn the most money - you are merchants, after all), and win the game!

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I really like set collection games, and here is another one with nice components. The nautical theme is a good excuse to make the wonderful ship components, but the heart of the game is in the tokens and cards. If you like set collection, trading, and card drafting you need to add this one to your list.

Oltre Mare is a trading game with lots of clever mechanisms that work very well together. My personal favourite is the way the top card of your trade stack determines both your hand limit and the number of cards you can play - it is a very elegant way of balancing and creating variety in the game. Components are top notch as well, and I'd definately recommmend it to anyone who appreciates trading games.

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