Such is the case with my newest 3DS jam: Pocket Card Jockey.
Cramming solitare into something unrelated ain’t a new concept. Neither are horses. Dudes have been on about them for YEARS. Ghengis Khan was way into them. If the streams of drunken arseholes rolling out of today’s Horse Racing Carnivals are anything to go by, it’s also still quite a thing.
Pocket Card Jockey seamlessly blends both the classic card game Solitaire and horse racing. Sorry, what’s the opposite of seamless? Like all seam? This game is 100% seams. One second you’re playing Solitaire, next there is horse racing. NOW SOLITAIRE! HORSES!
Here’s my beginners guide:
It’s fucking baffling.
There is not only a shit load of systems and mechanics, there is also a dense intro that actually never ends. Just when you think you’re free, nope. This guys shows up to let you know why you lost. FOREVER.
It’s not even real solitaire.
It’s like some kind of fruity variant that would make your Nan’s shake her head in disgust. You get dealt one card and either go up or down sequentially. Can’t do that? TOO BAD. Pull another card. Still nothing to do? FUCK YOU. Run out of cards to pull in the short amount of time given? YOU FAIL NOW YOUR HORSE IS ANGRY.
It’s unforgiving. You’re going to lose.
In my experience, get a bad start and you’re pretty boned. Each horse only has a limited amount of time on the track before it ages out. But then they can breed. Awesome.
You can name the horses.
Any game that allows me to name horses after Dark Souls in jokes is OK BY ME. My stable includes “Try Rolling”, “Great Swamp” and my latest philly “Illusory Wall”. Tell me they don’t work as horse names. You can’t.
It’s dumb fun at its finest.
Sure it’s hard, weird and convoluted but it’s also challenging, funny and amazing value. There’s a shocking amount of content for the 9 bucks I paid for it.
Tap the goddamned screen to move through the dialog
So much talking. TAP TAP TAP.
In closing, it’s great. Get it.