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The King of Joseon
The King of Joseon
by (Self-Published), PopcornEdu, Why Not? Games (2016)
Player Count
2 to 6

Player Ages

Playing Time
10 minutes to 20 minutes
  • Card Game
  • Bluffing
  • Medieval
  • Deduction
  • Designers
  • Rok Kim
  • Mechanisms
  • Hand Management
  • Rating: 5.7/10 from 2 users


    The King of Joseon reenacts the tragic story of the boy king Danjong, who ascended the throne at the age of twelve but was shortly dethroned by his uncle, Grand Prince Sooyang. The game is set on the year 1452, when some remained loyal to the king while others took the side of the ambitious usurper. Which side are you on? And who will prevail?

    There are 32 cards that represent various characters. Most of the cards have numeric values on them: 1 King; 1 Grand Prince [0]; 4 Bandits; 2 Queens [9]; 2 Ministers [8]; 2 Councilors [7]; 2 Generals [6]; 2 Eunuchs [5]; 2 Ambassadors [4]; 6 Prefects [3]; 6 Policemen [2]; and 2 Clowns [1].

    At the beginning of the game, all cards are dealt to the players. (In a 3-player game, the dealer receives one less.) The player with the Grand Prince reveals it. On his/her turn, the player can either (1) play a set of two identical cards and use its special ability or (2) attempt to steal a card from another player.

    If a player revealed the Grand Prince, his/her winning condition is to have the King and three cards out of the Queens, Ministers, and Councilors. For other players, the winning condition is to have the King card only (and nothing else) in his/her hand.

    The overall flow is simple enough, but the special powers of the cards make the game more tactical than it appears.

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