In Canvas, you play as a painter competing in an art competition. Players will collect art cards, layering 3 of them together to create their own unique Painting. Each card contains a piece of artwork as well as a set of icons used during scoring. Icons will be revealed or hidden based on the way players choose to layer the cards making for an exciting puzzle. Paintings are scored based on a set of Scoring cards which will change each game. Once players have created and scored 3 paintings the game ends.
On your turn you may take an Art card or make a painting. Art cards are selected from a row of cards in the center of play. Each of these cards has a cost associated with their position. After selecting an Art card you must pay its cost by placing an Inspiration token on each of the cards to its left. If you do not have enough Inspiration tokens, you may not select that card. Any tokens on the card you have selected are kept for future turns. The far left card costs no Inspiration tokens to take.
If you have three or more Art cards you may chose to make a painting. Select 3 of your art cards, arrange them in any order and then score them by comparing the visible icons on your painting to the Scoring conditions.
Once all player have made 3 paintings the game ends.
The player with the most points wins!
This game was the first Kickstarter game that I ever backed, from what I saw of it, it looked like a beautiful game that would be simple enough for the family but still enough planning and work needed to give it a bit more meat. The premise is simple, you are aiming to create three paintings with the cards that become available, but there are five different coloured ribbons to collect. Four of them you can gain by fulfilling the different goal cards (ie. have a pair of shapes in the blue and yellow or red and green, have each colour covered etc.) and the fifth is a bonus ribbon which can be earned. Each card has an illustration and then 1-3 colours with symbols along the bottom (which you use to earn ribbons) and then 0-1 words.
You get given small art palates which you can use to buy a card further along the line, should you not want the first free card, out of the five. Each time you take a card, they all move along and a new one is added to the line. You must use 3 and only 3 cards for your painting, but you can pick up cards until you have 5 in hand, so you have a little leeway. What I really like about this game, is that whilst you are trying to get the most points in the end, once someone has finished their three paintings, the game doesn't end, everyone else keeps going until everyone has completed their three. This gives a nice, steady feel to the game because you don't need to rush compiling your paintings.
The downside to this game are the cards, because they are see through they are thicker and a bit harder to shuffle, but it really just means you have to give these a really decent shuffle to ensure new painting combinations. A lovely game and I'm glad I bought it.
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