About the game

We are in the 16th century, after the death of Martin Luther, the world-changing Augustinian friar. Most of his discouraged followers and admirers are still asking each other hopelessly: how to go on without him? What’s next now?

Some of them, however, know very well what is to be done in times like this: to write down the events of the Reformer’s earthly journey as detailed and as true as possible. This is the only way to pay due tribute to their friend and professor in order to educate the world and the church. So, they organize themselves into a handful of scriveners and set to writing the great biography. But they might get hard pressed for time!

While playing Luther – The card game we have the chance to slip into the shoes of these scribes. The teamwork, as usually happens, swings into a little rivalry: who will reap the glory, which comes with chronicling certain stages of life? Who will be the one taking the most manuscripts to the printing house? What’s more, from time to time, the diligent work of the scribes is interrupted by the least expected incidents such as: a carefully inscribed sheet of paper burns or changes hands “accidently”, or a crafty fellow scribe filches a page, or mixes foolish rumours into the reliable notes.

Playing and testing the game

The goal of our game is to “write” certain chapters of Luther’s life, which means putting down as many cards as possibly to various stages of life.

To start with we get seven disks (so called marker) and seven cards.

Any three of the below actions can be performed in a turn: drawing a card, opening a chapter, writing a chapter, leading off an action card, replacing a card, marker withdrawal and closing the chapter.

The chapters are written jointly with other players, so we can place cards to any line.

We mark the one we put down with a marker.

With our action cards we can either hamper each other or strengthen our strategy: using the Plagiarism card we can draw a card from the hands of our fellow player, using Book-burning we can clear away cards put down by others and using Sola gratia we have the right to draw from the pack, etc.

We can choose from two modes of the game: the “Melanchthon-mode” (basic game) offers more tactical options. In this case all the seven actions are available, out of which three can be performed in one turn. The other mode, called „Muntzer-mode” stimulates quick and firm decisions. In this case we can perform one single action, selected from the following four: drawing a card, opening a chapter, writing a chapter, leading off an action card. In order to make things easier, at the beginning of the turn the player can draw a card from the pack.

The game has been tested in several, various circles: in board-game exhibition in Germany, at pastor conference, in schools and in circles of friends, with more or less experienced players. A total of more than one hundred games had been played by the time the game gained its current shape.

Detailed game rules will be published later.

Historical accuracy

The 16 chapters of the game present the most important periods of Luther’s life from his birth to his death. When selecting the themes of the cards, our main ambition was to use results of the latest research of church and theology history, so that we would not pass disproved knowledge to the new generation. We skipped the famous Luther legends: nailing the 95 Theses to the door of the church; the “throwing the inkwell at the Wartburg; or the “I am baptized” sign on Luther’s desk. We replaced these in the game by such exciting information which is authentic and theologically and socially important but not current, common Lutheran knowledge. Besides our theological and early modern age knowledge, in this work we consulted a church historian as well.

Using the game in religious education

From the beginning of creating Luther – The card game we aimed at making the game suitable for the use at religious education in schools and congregations and in confirmation preparation classes as well. While playing the game, the children can arrange their knowledge related to Martin Luther into themes, in an interactive manner. Prior learning, however, is not needed, for bookmarkers on the cards help organizing the themes. Picking up information is easier if the player, putting down the card reads out the text. The teacher or pastor leading the session may point out connections when reading the titles of the completed chapter. The playtime was deliberately planned 30 minutes, so that a complete game could be played during a religious education class.

Illustration of the cards

For the first sight, the illustrations on the cards seem to be funny caricatures, which resemble the black and white wood carvings of Luther’s time. However, there is much more about them: each drawing was made based on a 16th century depiction. Furthermore, every small detail enriches the cards with authentic additions.

Just a few examples: on the card called “Pope”, behind Leo X. his predecessor, Pope Julius II. Leo, the most notorious renaissance Pope is surrounded by the Medici family coat of arms, the tool belt used at hunting, the rhinoceros woodcut by Durer, and the St. Peter’s Basilica floor plan.

In the background of the “95 Theses” the study room of Archbishop Albrecht of Magdeburg can be seen because Luther sent his theses to him first accompanied by a letter. The parrot, appearing on the cards is not just a sudden idea of the artist either: on the original, 16th century painting of the Archbishop we can discover the scratching bird on Albrecht’s desk.

Elements of the game

  • 220 cards:
    • 196 game cards
      • 134 information cards
      • 62 action cards
    • 16 chapter opening cards
    • 8 additional cards
  • 56 marking disks
  • rulebook

How to order

If you are interested in the game and would like to order it, this is the right place for you!

Order more, pay less!
1-4 games 20 € per pc.
5-9 games 18 € per pc.
10-24 games 16 € per pc.
25-49 games 14 € per pc.
50-99 games 13 € per pc.
100 pieces or more 12 € per pc.

The above prices do not include transportation costs.
Transportation costs also depend on the quantity:
1-6 games: 17.5 €
7-10 games: 19.1 €
11-20 games: 19.8 €
21-30 games: 20.5 €
31-40 games: 21.6 €
41-50 games: 22.7 €
51-60 games: 23.8 €
For orders more than 60 pieces we give special price.

Transportation prices may change depending on fuel prices.
These prices are valid only in case of UK orders.

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Bence Domonkos, the game expert of the team; Graphics Designer.

The current game project is far not his first one but as for its symbolic importance perhaps the largest scaled. In 2009 he debuted in front of the professional audience with his strategic game Tutela and won first prize at the board game contest organized by Mensa HungarIQa. His diploma work at Moholy-Nagy University of Art, Designer Faculty in 2011, the Navigare has not been in series production yet. Since then Doma has been working for the largest board game publisher in Hungary as graphics designer, besides being the proud father of their three children, Marci, Anna and Abel.

Bencéné Horváth Noémi, the pedagogue in the team; religious teacher.

Her fifteen years youth educational experience bears good results in the practical concept of Luther – The board game. Since her secondary school years she has regularly taken part in organizing and leading events and camps for children, mainly in church settings. Her commitment to teaching led her to the Evangelical-Lutheran Theological University where she took a joint ELTE course and graduated as religious teacher in 2012. The theme of her theses was: “Vital questions of 14-18 year olds”. After graduation Noemi worked as religious teacher of the Lutheran Congregation of Budavar. Besides assisting the creation of this game, now she fulfils her educationalist ambitions as a mother of three.

Bence Áron, the illustrator and theologian of the team; pastor, historian.

The fortunate encounter of his childhood and still practiced hobby and the area of his expertise resulted in the illustrations, which greatly inspired the project’s image. There is good chance that we come across his typical drawings in Lutheran publications for the youth as well. Luther – The card game is Aron’s first project where he is present as a church historian expert through his carefully considered illustrations. He graduated from ELTE History and Finnish Faculty in 2012 and from the Evangelical-Lutheran Theological University in 2015. At present he works as a pastor and studies at ELTE Economic and Social History Doctoral School as a candidate for Ph.D. His field of research is the cultural diversity in the 16th century Europe.

The Ninirc Games brand is the property of Bence Művek

Bence Művek Bt
1205 Budapest Mikszáth utca 7.

Tax number: 22571708-2-43

E-mail: ninircKUKACninircgamesPONTKOM

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