Silver & Gold is a fun little card game from Pandasaurus Games. The game was designed by Phil Walker-Harding. He had created some very popular games, like: Sushi Go; Imhotep; Imhotep – The Duel; Gizmos; Baren Park; and more. Phil seems to design a lot of “easy to learn” games that also offer a good amount depth and strategy.
Silver & Gold is a game for 2 to 4 players, ages 8 & up. The game is played in about 20 minutes. Silver and Gold is a “Flip & Write” game. Polyomino shaped cards are flipped up on the table, and all players will mark that shape onto their Treasure Island cards – in hopes of filling out their cards quickly, and finding treasures. When you completely fill in a card, you get to choose another card to explore.
Flip & Write games pay homage to older “Roll & Write” dice games like Yahtzee. The new breed of Flip & Write games (and Roll & Write games) offer a lot more player interaction and deeper strategies than the old Yahtzee game does. Let’s have a look.
What is Silver & Gold?
In Silver & Gold, players are combing their islands for treasure. The player who obtains the most treasure by the end of the game is the winner.
What’s in the box?
The Silver & Gold box is pretty small – 4.5″ wide x 7″ tall x 1″ deep.
- 47 Treasure Island Cards
- 8 Expedition Cards
- 4 Score Cards
- 1 Round Card
- 4 Erasable Markers
Every card in the box has a glossy finish that allows players to write directly on each card. You will use a dry-erase marker to write on: the Island Cards; your Score Cards; and the Round Card. This is pretty neat to be honest.
How do you play Silver & Gold?
Here is a brief overview of gameplay.
Setup is very easy:
- Each player takes an Erasable Marker and a Score Card.
- Each player is dealt 4 Treasure Island Cards at random.
- Each player will pick two Island Cards and place them face-up in front of them.
- The discarded cards are shuffled back into the remaining Treasure Island Cards
- All remaining Treasure Island Cards are now shuffled again creating a Draw Deck.
- The top 4 cards are flipped up into the middle of the table for all players to see.
- The 8 Expedition Cards are shuffled and placed face-down in the middle of the table.
The game is played over 4 rounds. And each round consists of 7 turns.
Each turn takes 3 Steps:
- Reveal an Expedition Card – The Top Card is flipped over placed in a face-up pile. Expedition Cards have Polyomino shapes (like Tetris pieces). There are 8 Expedition cards.
2. Cross off Boxes – All players can now explore either of their two islands. All players cross off boxes on one of their two Treasure Island cards – according to the pattern revealed on their expedition cards. Players can rotate the pattern and/or mirror the pattern, but they must keep the pattern’s shape exactly.
Note: If a player cannot – or does not want – to use the revealed Expedition card’s pattern. They can instead cross of a single box on either of their Treasure Cards.
If a player crosses out an “X” symbol, they get to place one more X anywhere – on any one of their cards.
If a player crosses out a Coin Symbol, they also cross off a coin on their own Score Cards.
If a player crosses out a Palm Tree, they immediately Score Points on their Score Card for all the Palm Trees they crossed off, plus additional points for all Palm trees shown on the 4 Additional Treasure Cards in the middle of the table.
3. Complete Rows of Coins or Treasure Cards – Any player who has completed one of their rows of coins on their score card can claim the next available Trophy from the round Card. Trophies have a point value from 6 down to 1. The first player to complete a coin row gets the 6 point trophy. Then next gets the 5 point trophy. And so on.
Also, any player who has completed a Treasure Island Card, can set it aside, and draw a new Treasure Card from the draw pile, or one of the 4 Face-Up Cards.
Step 3 is done in turn order. After Step 3, the first player changes to the next person on their left. And a new Expedition card is revealed.
End of the Round
Each round ends when of 7 of the 8 Expedition cards are revealed. (Thus, each round, one Expedition card is not revealed). The corresponding Round number is then crossed off Round Card.
End of the Game
The game ends after four rounds. Players now total up all their points:
- Each Crossed off coin box earns 1 point
- Each Trophy earns as many points as the number on the trophy.
- The total of each palm tree boxes are added up.
- Each completely filled Treasure Island Card earns the total in the upper left corners
- Bonus points are awarded for Seals on Completed Treasure Cards. Seals are in the upper right corner. One or two extra points are awarded for each separate, completed treasure card in this color.
The player with the highest number of total points is the winner.
Likes, Dislikes and Final Thoughts on Silver & Gold
- Easy to teach. Easy to learn. Fun to play.
- Quick Pace. No Downtown. You are always doing something in this game.
- Good quality components. The card stock is nice. Markers seem to be good quality.
- The game plays well with 2, 3 and 4 players.
- Compact size – The game doesn’t take up much room and travels well.
- Fast Play Time
- I wish the Erasable Markers actually had erasers on them. You have to dig up a tissue or paper towel to wipe off the cards after each game.
- Only 4 players. Sometimes your game group has 5 or 6 players. This is a game you can’t break out when you have more than 4 gamers around.
Silver & Gold is a pretty fun little game. There is something satisfying about fitting the Tetris like Expedition pieces perfectly into your island cards.
I also like that you can write directly on the game cards. Most Roll & Writes give you a score pad, and you have to tear individual sheets off of it. Tear-offs are decent enough, until you have to buy more, or decide to print more off yourself. In Gold & Silver, you simply erase all the cards, and you are good-to-go another game.
I like that there are several different paths to victory too. You could try to amass coins and trophies quickly. Or you could try to set up some large palm tree bonuses. Or you could try to complete your treasure cards as quickly as possible. Or you could try to get a lot of bonus points from the color seals. Or, you could try dabbling in a little bit of everything.
Silver and Gold is simple enough for young teens to play, but there is plenty of meat here for seasoned gamers too. This is nice filler game to bridge the time between more meaty games on a game night.
The price is right too. The game is about $20, and gets a big recommendation.