Author: Spartaco Albertarelli

Publisher: AMIGO 2004

Awards: none



G@mebox author Marco Klasmeyer writes about the game:


The night before the Thousandth Moon, the court of brave knights gathers around the council table to plan their honourable ventures: who will be the most honoured Paladin facing the bravest mission?



Paladin is a card game for 3 to 5 adventures consisting of 42 Paladin cards, 18 quest cards divided into two decks (King and Queen) and 25 wooden tokens in five different colours. Before starting the game the two quest card decks are shuffled separately. The King's deck is placed face down in the middle of the council table and upon it the Queen's deck is put. Both together form the quest cards stack. Each quest card has an "honour value" represented by swords, ranging from 1 to 6. The King's deck has more valuable cards than the Queen's deck. Depending on the number of players participating, an according number of cards from the quest stack are placed face up in a row next to the stack. Each player chooses a colour and receives the corresponding tokens. Each player also obtains Paladin cards corresponding to the number of players plus one additional card, for instance 4 Paladin cards if three players join the game. Paladin cards show Paladins of different strength (values from 0 to 9). Some cards are special, because the value is printed in red and the cards show a sword. As a general rule stronger Paladins will beat weaker ones with the exception of the 0 which is the only card to beat the 9, but it is beaten by all the others. The remaining Paladin cards build the supply stack.

The game is divided into several rounds. The card dealer chooses one of the players (including himself) to be the start player. The selected start player places a Paladin card face down close to one of the open quest cards and marks it with one of his tokens. This Paladin is called the leading Paladin. All succeeding players (clockwise) must play a Paladin card and place it close to a free quest card until all quests have a leading Paladin. From this moment on the player on turn can secretly look under one Paladin card of a quest before he plays one of his own Paladins. The cards build a sequence of Paladins following the leading Paladin. Each player is only allowed to have one Paladin in each quest. Hence a round ends when all players have placed all but one Paladin card.


Now it is time to evaluate the rank of Paladins of each quest. The strongest Paladin wins the quest and thus gets all honour points for it. Every evaluation starts with revealing the leading Paladin. The Paladin next in sequence has the following options:

  • Beat the leading Paladin, if his Paladin is stronger and thus become the new leading Paladin. Remember the rule that the 0 beats the 9. In case of equality a red number will beat a black number, and an equal black number can never beat the leading Paladin.
  • Take the face down Paladin card back on his hand, regardless of winning or loosing.
  • Discard the Paladin card directly without revealing it to the other players.


Each sequence of Paladins is handled this way until the last leading Paladin is determined as the winner of the quest. All discarded Paladins are laid aside and will replace the supply stack if needed. The winner of the quest puts the quest card and his leading Paladin in front of his place. Note that all quest cards and only Paladin cards with red numbers, both showing pictures of swords, represent honour points. The player with the least points is the dealer of the next round. For the next round quest cards are drawn from the supply stack until there are not enough cards for a new round depending on the number of players. The game will end in this case and all players count their honour points gathered during their successful quests.


Paladin is a simple card game with a nice trump mechanism. The player who places a Paladin has always to choose between two opposing possibilities: He has either to play one of his best Paladins, if he wants to win this quest (and hope no one has a stronger Paladin), or a worthless Paladin card for a more or less worthless quest. It is sometimes advisable to look under the other player's Paladins placed under a valuable and honourable quest, if he wants to trump as the last player all other Paladins in this sequence. So it can be a hard and tricky fight for the most honour points because every player has only one attempt for each quest.

The card design brings in atmosphere as well. The Paladin cards show several scenes from a Paladin's life. The cards are made of varnished paper, which gives them a synthetic impression due to their glint. I find this card design personally a little bit spurious.

Looking for this game? Visit Funagain Games!

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Copyright © 2004 Frank Schulte-Kulkmann, Trier, Germany