|Designed by||Kenny VenOsdel|
|Extra Material||Suit Chips|
You are a beluga whale competing in the annual "Belugas are Best" exotic fish eating competition. Your goal as a competitor is to eat the most fish of the different varieties. At the end of the competition points will be awarded to whoever can regurgitate the most fish of each type. Down with Narwhals!
Place 7 fish (suit chips) for each suit into an opaque bag. Place the Pawns in a face down row of "zones" in the center of the table. Draw fish from the bag to fill each zone. From the dealer's left the zones receive 1, 2, 3, and 4 fish. Shuffle the rest of the Decktet and deal 6 cards to each player. The remaining deck forms the draw pile.
On a player's turn they must, if able, play a card into a zone on either player's side of the table. The fish in the zone dictate the suit demand for that zone. For example, on zone 3 if there are 2 green fish and 1 yellow fish present, player's must place cards that contain either a , , or both. Each card played contributes all of its suits to the demand. When the number of suits played on a side match the demand, that side of the zone is full. Thus in the previous example when there are cards containing a total of 2 and 1 the zone is full. A player may not purposefully go above the suit demand unless the card being played also fulfills another demand.
Example: Zone 3 contains 2 green and 1 yellow fish. You have played 4 into a zone satisfying the demand for 1 green and 1 yellow fish. You may not play 6 since the yellow demand is met. You may play 8 despite the yellow demand being met as it also satisfies the final green demand.
Aces have one special ability. As a single turn you may play as many aces into a single zone as you want provided they all match the suit demand. At least one of the aces must have an unfulfilled demand.
Ex: A zone has a yellow, blue, and green fish and you have already met the yellow and blue demand. You may play the yellow, blue, and green aces as a single play since the green was still needed.
If none of your cards match the demand you may show your hand and discard up to 3 cards. At the end of your turn always draw until you have 6 cards in your hand. If the draw pile is empty shuffle the discard pile. Players alternate turns this way until a zone is eaten.
Eating a zone
When both sides of a zone have met the demand , the fish in that zone are eaten by the player with the largest total rank of cards in that zone. Aces are worth 1 and Crowns are worth 10.
Each card is only counted once. If this is a tie the player who placed the last card in that zone eats the fish. Place the fish in front of the player who ate them and draw new fish from the bag to replace them. Discard the cards on both sides of that zone. Play continues with the player who lost that zone. Thus, a player may take more than one turn in a row by first playing into a zone and losing it, this can be a good way to cycle bad cards out of your hand and get a jump start on a new zone.
End of Game
When there are not enough fish left to fill a zone the game is over. The remaining fish in the zones are not scored.
Regurgitate the fish you have eaten into piles separated by color. For each color, the whale with more fish gains a point for each fish that their opponent has of the same color. The whale with the highest total of points wins the coveted Beluga Cup.
In case of a tie, whichever player ate the most fish wins.
Note: Regurgitating the fish is not mandatory. You may simply place them into piles; though it is highly suggested you at least make regurgitation noises since it greatly adds to the theme of the game.
The Excuse, and The Courts:
The Courts are played like any other card. Their value is equal to 4 times the number of matching fish. Thus each court can be worth either 4, 8, 12, or 16 points for matching 1-4 fish. Each of the suits of the Court can be used to fill a demand.
The Excuse can be played in two ways.
1. If a zone has not been played into by either player you may play The Excuse to adjust the fish available in the zone. Draw fish from the bag equal to the number of fish in the zone and combine them with the available fish. Return as many fish to the bag as you drew, these may be the original fish, the just drawn fish, or a combination. If there aren't enough fish left in the bag draw as many as you can.
2. On your turn you may play the Excuse to pick up a single card from your own zone into your hand. Your turn then ends as usual.
For slight variation you may choose to use the Pawns in the deck and the Courts as the zones.
For a longer game add more fish to the draw bag at the beginning of the game.
Inspired by Stephen Glen's Balloon Cup