Pandante Casino Cards

The new Pandante has a great feature called "casino cards." Each gambit (each time you start a new hand), you visit a new casino in the Pandalands which has slightly different rules.


Here's three of them:

Jokers Wild Resort. This is probably the most beloved casino amongst everyone I've played with, even though it's so simple. Before the gambit starts, you find the Joker in the deck, then make sure it's one of the initial three community cards (the "Splash"). There's a fun factor in all the versatility in making hands the Joker brings. It counts as any color and any number.

Bountiful Bamboo Tavern. This casino lets everyone draw a card, then discard a card after the normal snack phase during the Splash, and then again after the snack phase during the Paws. Everyone is a bit more likely to make a difficult hand here.

Triple Play Parlor. Players normally get to do up to 2 abilities, but here you can do 3. There's a lot of different things that happen because of this. Some players go for an even more difficult hand than usual and then use their extra ability to draw a card to try to hit that hand. The Raise ability is really powerful in Pandante though. One of the reasons you don't raise all the time is you're just so constrained by having only 2 abilities. So with 3, you're more able to fit a Raise in. The same goes with Peek. It's always great to look at a card from another player's hand, and you're more likely to be able to fit that into your plan at the Triple Play Parlor.

All three of these casinos are very simple. It's good to keep things simple so that even non-gamers can understand what's going on. I want to show you one of the more complex casinos too though.


There are usually 6 abilities to choose from during the ability phase and you can do up to two of them, including the same one twice if you want. At the Oracle's Dreamery, there's 2 new abilities, so you have 8 to choose from in total.

Rearrange is a tricky ability. If you do Rearrange, then Draw, that lets you get the best of 3 cards when a simple Draw, Draw would have only let you see 2 cards. Rearrange then Add acts similarly. You'll choose which of 3 cards you want to add to the community cards, rather than only getting 2 options with Add, then Add. Furthermore, Rearrange then Add or Draw is better Draw+Draw and Add+Add for another reason: you get to see all three cards before you make your decision of which one you want. The normal way to do things means you have to decide each action as you go.

You also end up knowing the top TWO cards of the deck. Will the next player even bother to Draw or Add, when you already know what card is there and had some say about which card it is? If they Draw, you'll know what's in their hand! Being the Oracle really gives you an information advantage here! It's likely that other players will have to Rearrange before Drawing or Adding just so they can dig deep enough in the deck to actually get to a new card.

Tie-break is another interesting ability. It's fairly common to have players tied for the highest claimed hand in Pandante. For example, two players each claim they have a rainbow straight. When you really have the hand you claim, it's sometimes pretty hard to get a better hand than that by using Draw or Add. But if you use Tie-break, you don't need a better hand. You'll automatically win against anyone with the same hand who didn't use it. Also, if you really do have your hand, this gives you a big advantage against people who don't have it but who are trying to draw into it. They'll need to spend their ability slots on improving their hand, but you can use your abilities on powering up your Tie-break so that you win anyway, even if they do match your hand!

There's a lot going on in the Oracle's Dreamery. The abilities it offers are optional though, which makes it nice for new players who want to see how other Pandas use Rearrange and Tie-break.

Pandante is on kickstarter right now. If you already have the game, you can get casino cards and lots of other new things in the expansion. If you don't have it yet, all this new stuff is built right into the new base sets. Check it out now.