Review: Venture Capital

Venture capital

Overview

Venture Capital is an auction style game where players bid on various startups and services. Ultimately you are trying to gain the most points over 15 rounds of bidding.

Positives

  • Family friendly
  • Very fast play time
  • Simple rules
  • Simultaneous play

Negatives

  • Not a deep gaming experience
  • Feels like half a game.
  • If you’ve played another auction game, you’ve played this one.

Gameplay

During each turn, a startup card is dealt faceup onto the table. Each player then selects one of their remaining cards as a bid. The person who bids the highest value wins the startup, and all bids are then discarded. Once all cards have been bid on players tally up their points. Players score bonus points for getting two or more startups of the same type. The player with the most points wins.

My verdict

I felt that Venture Capital was part of a game and not the whole game. I found it uninspiring and too simple. The game doesn’t offer anything new or exciting. It takes an auction game and cuts out the interesting part. Much like fat-free Italian dressing, half the calories, none of the flavor.

Additionally, Venture Capital does not fully exploit its theme. You are bidding on startups and services for points… investors do not fund startups for points. They fund startups and other ventures for profit. Investors want a return on their investment. And that would have been an excellent second phase of this game. Seeing who could take their startups and grow them the best. Perhaps even sell them off for the greatest profit. There is no venture in Venture Capital. It would have been the same as a generic auction game seeing who won the prettiest plastic bead.

Sadly, there isn’t much return on investment with Venture Capital.

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