I never considered myself a matchmaker. Too many things can go wrong when meddling in people’s romantic lives, just look at Emma Woodhouse (Jane Austen’s Emma). Though well-intentioned, her attempts led to tears and broken hearts galore. So, while I adore a good love story, I’ve always left matchmaking to the experts — that is until a few weeks ago.
Designed by Richard Wolfrik Galland and illustrated by Emily Hare, Jane Austen’s Matchmaker is as fun as it is stunning. I can definitely see why Marianne Dashwood initially succumbed to the handsome scoundrel Mr. Willoughby, and Mr. Darcy looks as dreamy as ever. So, despite my previous convictions, I’m now pairing left and right. Each deck features 56 beautifully illustrated cards with characters from all six of Jane Austen’s novels. The purpose of the game is to make as many matches as possible. No one wants to get stuck with old maids. The winner is the person who scores the highest points in virtue.
If you are an avid Austen fan, creating non-book pairs will feel painful in the beginning, sacrilegious even. I mean, Mr. Darcy does not belong with Elinor Dashwood, and the thought of Anne Elliot and Mr. Knightley together is preposterous. But trust me, the desire to win and rack up virtue points will soon overpower any initial scruples toward the unlikely pairs.
The quality of the game and cards really impressed me considering the funding came from a Kickstarter campaign and not a big, well-known company. Once one gets the hang of the rules, each round lasts an average of 20-30 minutes. I like that once the game ends, it ends for everyone. The winner doesn’t come about via elimination, so no one is bored or left out, waiting for a new round. I have played with a wide range of people and so far the game has provided fun and laughter for all.
Whether you are a budding matchmaker, a literature fan, or enjoy card games in general, Jane Austen’s Matchmaker is a must.
Review copy provided by Warm Acre. Thanks!
You can purchase the game from the Jane Austen’s Matchmaker site.