What can you do with "grown-up" board game and small children? Bend the rules and play anyway!

After the werewolves, it's time to talk about Karmaka.


Here's the game description on BoardGameGeek.

Karmaka is a competitive card game that plays out over multiple lives.

Karmaka is a tactical card game set in a karmic universe. Players begin the game as lowly Dung Beetles. In life after life (hand after hand) they climb their way up the Karmic Ladder, racing to see who will achieve Transcendence first! During each of your lives you'll be working towards three ends:

Score enough points to climb the Ladder and keep up with your rivals.
Stash a good selection of cards to your Future Life. This will become your opening hand next life.
Play cards for their abilities to help yourself or to hinder others.
But what goes around comes around. A key tension in Karmaka is that after playing a card for its ability, a rival may take the card into their Future Life. Your actions may come back to haunt you in the next life...

Score points to ascend while sowing the seeds of your next life, and – if necessary – sabotage your rivals. But remember, what goes around comes around, and your actions have consequences in this life...and the next.

Tiny Karmaka

From the mechanics of Karmaka, we are only using the cards, the points system and the karmic ladder.

The karmic ladder has 4 stages with a threshold of 4,5,6 & 7 Points respectively. Each card has a number of points written on it, either 1, 2 or 3.

Here's how we play:

  • Pick a card and lays it on the table in your game
  • Add the number displayed on all your cards
  • If the sum is above the threshold of the karmic ladder, discard all your cards and advance on the ladder

This has proven itself a very fun and easy way to add up small numbers. My son learned to count on his fingers with this and enjoyed finding the correct sum on his own.

Have you ever modified a board game like this? I'd love to hear about it!