Theme and What is It?
In Pick the Lock players take on the role of thieves attempting to crack the codes on various vaults in order to be the one with the most treasures at the end.
*Note* Copy of the game provided by the publisher for review purposes.
Pick the Lock is game focused entirely on bluffing and deduction. The entire game could be boiled down to a version of the Princess Bride wine scene where clearly I cannot choose the wine in front of you as players try to out think one another.
Players take turns picking a treasure they wish to steal. They then play a card from their hand that sets the range of the combination. Another player choose the combination from that range. The thief player then has to figure out a portion of the combination in order to steal the treasure.
Since you only have so many cards and you have to play each one once, the strategy of when to play higher value cards that result in a larger combination range becomes a piece of the strategy.
Each of the treasures has a special rule attached that affects game play as well. This can cause any amount of problems and makes the choice of target treasure equally as important as what code cards you play.
It looked like a fun puzzle. I was intrigued by how the game would play out and what would happen as people tried to play through the game. The rules for stealing treasures from one another as well as the communal vault seemed like a solid enough idea that I was interested in trying.
Quality of Components and Insert
I was given a print and play version of the game for the review so I can’t really judge here. I don’t know the final quality of the cards.
The version I was given was art light. I have gone online and seen pictures of the final art. What I’ve seen online was quite good. Each player color was given a unique art to distinguish them from one another and they all looked quite good.
I enjoyed this. The number of treasure cards and their effects on the game added a decent level of strategy and re-playability. The back and forth of the game was a nice challenge.
Difficulty and Age Range Suggestion
The rules are easy enough. The strategy is where the game gets a bit more difficult. For age, I’d say mid to late teens. I think at that point most people should be able to handle the planning and thinking this game requires.
This is a good puzzle game. The back and forth between players flows nicely and keeps the game moving. Though I think it plays best a 2 player where it’s a game of wits between you and one other person. Also, turns can be long as people plot their next move, so it helps if you’re not waiting to be either of the two people involved in the turn.
This would be a good game for a quiet night at home with a glass of wine and a bit of music.