Game Length: 30 minutes
Best enjoyed: With 5-6 punks willing to test their luck
Ca$h ‘n Guns (yes, the dollar sign is part of the game’s name) is a game set at the conclusion of a heist. The heist itself was a success, and everyone’s there – what remains is to split up the loot. However, tensions are high and not everyone agrees on who should get what. As money, diamonds and artwork starts to spill out of the bag, guns are drawn and only the player with the strongest nerves will be walking away with the most loot!
Ca$h ‘n Guns is a bluffing game played over eight rounds. Each player has a foam gun and a hand of eight cards – three ‘Bang’ cards and five ‘Click’ cards. They choose which of their eight cards to place face down in front of them, then all players simultaneously point their guns at a player of their choice. After a moment to consider, players may choose to withdraw – if there are too many guns pointed at them, for example. Anyone left pointing at a player that didn’t withdraw reveals their card – if it was a ‘Bang’ card, that player is wounded. Three wounds and a player is dead, but each player only gets to play a total of three ‘Bang’ cards over the course of the game. Any players still standing get to split up the loot that is on the table, then the next round begins.
If you don’t mind pulling fake guns on your friends in public, Ca$h ‘n Guns makes an excellent pub game. It’s light-hearted and doesn’t outstay its welcome, and if you have any theatrically-minded friends you’re likely to start hearing the Dirty Harry and Reservoir Dogs jokes. The thrill of having all players simultaneously point their guns at another player creates memorable situations – such as when you start arguing with your friends about who they should be targeting, only to find when it comes to the draw that half the table has a bead on you!
This summary covers Ca$h ‘n Guns Second Edition, not the first edition, which has a few rule differences. I personally prefer the first edition, as the rules of the second edition make the split of loot dependent on player order rather than splitting only what can be split evenly, and take away the powerful ‘Bang Bang Bang’ cards that resolve before a ‘Bang’ card. However, it would not be too difficult to implement the First Edition rules with the Second Edition components. All the same, the second edition retains the suspense of pointing guns at your friends and hoping you can bluff them into backing down when all you have is an empty clip.