Mon: emblems of Sengoku, the review. A trip to feudal Japan

Mon: emblems of Sengoku, the review. A trip to feudal Japan


Mon: emblemi del Sengoku is a card board game, created by Studium Mundi and published in Italy by Studio Supernova. In games lasting about fifteen minutes, a variable number of two to six players aged eight and over will compete to get as many points as possible, playing a series of cards with an increasing numerical value. With an extremely simple regulation and a very short duration, Mon: emblems of Sengoku fully falls into the category of filler games, that is, those to be started when you have little time available or as a filler before or after a game of a title with a specific weight. major.

Mon: emblems of Sengoku, setting

Mon: emblems of Sengoku is set in Japan during the Sengoku period, that period of time between 1467 and 1615 which saw the rise like never before the figure of the samurai and in which the Japanese feudal states, led by their respective Daimyos, waged war continuously between themselves for the title of Shogun and the dominion over the Land of the Rising Sun. The term mon in Japanese means "family crest" and is in practice the equivalent of Western heraldic crests. This coat of arms was carried with great honor in battle by the various samurai clans. And the mon of the most influential families of the Sengoku period show off themselves in this card game that aims to keep alive the memory of the history of feudal Japan of the sixteenth century.

Too bad, however, in Mon: emblems of Sengoku this theme emerges only from the beautiful graphics on the cards, since in fact the game is definitely an abstract to which any setting could very well be applied, or not at all.

Mon: Sengoku emblems, the setup

Mon: emblems of Sengoku, the game

A game of Mon: emblems of Sengoku takes place over several turns. At each turn, starting with the first player and proceeding clockwise, each player can perform one of the following actions, continuing in this way until the end of the game, which will take place when a player has no cards left in their hand.

The possible actions during your turn are:

Play a card forward: it consists in playing from your hand a card that has a higher value than the last card in play on the line of cards of the color of the card that you want to play. For example, if the last card of the line of black cards is a 5, it will be possible to play any black card with a value of 6 or more.

After playing the card, a scoring marker of his own color and of the value indicated by the card played. Playing a card back: it consists in playing a card from your hand that has a value between that shown by the last card in play on the line of cards of the color of the card you want to play and the value shown by the card that precedes it. For example, if the last card of the line of black cards is a 7 and the one preceding it is a 5, it will be possible to play only the black card of value 6.

In this case, you will have to remove the scoring marker present on the last card present on the line, cover this card with the new played card and place on the latter the scoring marker of your color and of the value indicated by the played card plus the number of cards that have been covered by playing the card backards. Changing cards: consists of discarding a card from your hand and drawing a new one from the deck. Discard a card: consists in discarding a card from your hand, without drawing a new one. This action is especially useful if you have the advantage and want to ensure that the game ends as soon as possible.

From an editorial standpoint

Editorially speaking, Mon: Emblems of Sengoku is a good product. The box is made of cardboard of good weight and has a pleasant graphics to the eye, while the small size allows you to take the game with you and play it practically anywhere. The papers, the core of the product, are also of good quality and weight, which makes them sufficiently resistant to wear. Since they will be mixed at every start of the game, we still suggest that you pack them in the appropriate bags, so as to protect the excellent graphic and artistic aspect, the real strength of this title. Each card, in fact, bears one of the mon of the main samurai families who served under the three main forces in the field during the Sengoku period and the name of the respective commander.

As for the markers, the quality is normal, thanks to the use of good cardboard and an essential Japanese look. Finally, the rules are enclosed in a leaflet and illustrate the game in a clear and concise way.


The random aspect of the title is quite large, which is which prevents players from preparing long-term strategies and which in fact requires them to play turn by turn, adapting to the cards in hand at that time and to those played by the other participants. Furthermore, the mechanics reduced to the essentials mean that the interest of the players decreases after a few games, which inevitably will always be very similar to each other. The game, however, scales very well with any number of players, although the best of itself is from four players upwards. With this number of participants, in fact, there will be more interactions and a minimum of variety during the games.

In fact, the real strength of Mon: emblems of Sengoku g is, as we said earlier, the artistic aspect of the cards. The mon from the various samurai families are truly wonderful, as are the black, gold and silver colors used as a backdrop. It is just a pity that they have no function in the game, other than a purely aesthetic one, and that the setting they evoke is nothing more than a tinsel, a sticker applied on top of a completely abstract game.

A game aimed at…

Mon: emblems of Sengoku g is a title that for its simplicity is offered to a very wide range of players, even quite young in age. It is in fact easily approachable by anyone and can be a good product to bring more casual players closer to more complex titles, while at the same time it can be sufficiently challenging for more experienced players, who might find it fun trying to plan a strategy even against the game. luck of the moment.

In addition, Mon: emblems of Sengoku g can only be appreciated by all lovers of Japanese history and art. The beauty of its artistic sector, in fact, makes it extremely pleasant and a source of inspiration for these subjects.

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