I’m not familiar with Rather Dashing Games’ Drawn & Quartered series of tile-laying games of which Pirates, Ninjas, Robots, & Zombies and Graveyards, Ghosts & Haunted Houses are part of. This Belongs in a Museum is the 3rd game in the series and shares similar mechanics with the previous two. It has players taking the roles of competing archeologists trying to gain the most renown while avoiding mummies and finding ancient relics.
Put on your fedora, grab your whip, and be ready to spout some famous one-liners…
The goal of This Belongs in a Museum is to connect the most temples of your color back to your home base before the pile of tiles runs out. You can also gain extra points by finding your five artifacts as the board is built and moving your color mummy onto opponents’ colored spaces. Use airports to help link back to your camp, or mountain ranges and oceans to maximize your movement. Players can even use special tile actions to rearrange the way the board as been laid out.
Setup is super quick. Grab an archeologist, their color basecamp tile, and 5 random artifact tiles that match the archeologist’s color. These tiles stay hidden from other players. The stack of board tiles is then shuffled and each player takes 3 into their hand. Once everyone as what they need the Mummy Tomb is placed on the table with everyone’s mummy on it.
Each turn a player places a tile, optionally uses an action if the tile has one, may move their archeologists up to 3 spaces, collects an artifact (if possible), and draws a new tile. Any mummy can be moved instead of using a tile action. Play continues this way until all the tiles run out, then the game is scored.
Every space matching an archeologist’s base camp that is attached to their basecamp is worth 1 point. Airports can also remotely attach spaces to a player’s basecamp. An archeologist standing in an area of their own color that isn’t attached to their basecamp can score those spaces, also. Each artifact picked up along the way is worth 3 points each. Lastly, if the player’s mummy in on an area of an opponent’s color, those spaces are scored for the mummy’s owner instead of that color player.
Whoever has the most points wins. For the full rules, check here.
I also received some promo cards with the game, each with a medallion in each of the player colors. One side shows the medallion whole while the other side shows it shattered. Normally a player can’t move through spaces with a mummy on them. The medallion lets them do so once during gameplay, then is flipped over to the broken side.
This Belongs in the Museum is a lot of cardboard. Cardboard player and mummy characters, cardboard artifacts, cardboard tiles. Everything is chunky, sturdy, and feels like it can stand up to the rigors of play over time. The box insert also fits everything nicely without anything falling out of place when stored on the shelf.
The promo cards I received feel a little thin, but they’re not meant to do much except track if the medallion was used. They’re not meant to be shuffled or excessively handled in any way, so it’s not much of an issue.
I played This Belongs in a Museum with my 3 oldest kids. It was hit or miss when them, but I enjoyed it. There’s plenty of choices in the game when it comes to laying tiles, moving your archeologist, and whether or not to use a tile’s actions or move your mummy. The mummies can really mess up someone’s plans when used properly. It also really helps that any color mummy can be moved instead of using a tile action.
While it’s not the deepest game in the world it certainly packs a lot of game into a small package with a fairly short playing time. With easy-to-learn rules, multiple ways to score points, and multiple ways to block other players from doing the game, it’s a great value.
I’m eager to snag the other two games in the Drawn & Quartered series to see how each plays on its own.
A copy of This Belongs in a Museum was provided free for review by Rather Dashing Games.