Marrying Mr. Darcy and the Pesky Trouble of the Undead
Follow the lives of Jane Austen’s characters as they survive a slightly undead threat with Marrying Mr. Darcy.
My fondest memories of Marrying Mr. Darcy are with my brother when we traded old-fashioned insults when the game first arrived. Ha ha! Although far from a solo experience, I still wanted to get it to the table. How could it be scary? Welcome the Undead Expansion! With the threat of undead attacks looming, the ladies had their work cut out.
I’ve been working and reworking a solo variant for years, though nothing has quite hit. Perhaps that’s due to the game itself: It’s mostly luck-based with a fun romp through a myriad of events! To spice things up, I added in a small expansion to include the hilarious threat of the undead in this Jane Austen world. Ready the party cards!
A Lady’s Best Friend
My randomly chosen character was Jane Bennet. More importantly, her special item to fight off the undead came down to her half-boots. Fashionable, and protective!
The theme probably works best for those who are familiar with Pride and Prejudice and Emma. Amazingly, I’ve never read any of the books. Scandalous, I know. Ha!
But the fun of flipping event cards and building up character points in areas like beauty and wit is still there.
I enjoy the silly goal of finding a suitor. Yet with some undead events, he might not know what bit him…
A Lady’s Worst Enemy
My attempts at a solo mode have been mediocre at best. Sometimes, I like having the entire county represented in a very vague manner. Here, Georgiana entered the arena.
She seemed a little better equipped to survive the undead! That broadsword looked pretty menacing.
I didn’t set out to do much with this session. Sometimes, that’s exactly what’s warranted! There were some funny event cards I hoped to come across. That was it.
With Jane properly outfitted with footwear and Georgiana swinging her sword, it was time to locate a suitor!
Although I had a specific StoryWorld card in mind, Jane stumbled across the perfect event. I thought I recognized the artwork. Plus, she stole that pencil fair and square!
It might have made more sense to hang onto the pencil, now fashioned into a stake, for undead protection.
The play advanced in much the same way. Events came out, I had a few laughs, and the dice rolls determined everything. Not a bad way to be entertained, though!
Jane slogged through the mud to take care of her sister. Georgiana fell in the mud. So much mud, people. Ha ha!
Living a Good Life
Many moments came and went through Jane’s life. She kept her calm when the militia was mentioned. This was quite the feat in her social circle! Many admired her.
Pianoforte concerts were plentiful, and she was well-known for dancing with everyone. Everyone loved Jane.
Then, there was Georgiana. She made blunder after blunder in society, to her family’s utter embarrassment. So Jane befriended her in an effort to improve her.
And then things took an ironic and comedic turn. For no one knew that Georgiana had a reason for the blunders…
Developing a Strange and Powerful Elixir
Indeed. Miss Georgiana was cursed by an unruly mob of the undead. Oh, my! She kept this rather unattractive fact a secret, disclosed only to her closest companion… Jane. To continue her friend’s improvement, Jane perfected an elixir. No matter where she gained the knowledge. Maybe it was the pianoforte that spoke riddles to her? Or the local chemist.
She had the power to stop her friend from turning. But this was a competitive sort of society. If Georgiana could live a normal life, there was every indication that she might be the best lady in the village. What was Jane to do?
Play Number: 18 and 19
Expansion 1: Marrying Mr. Darcy: The Emma Expansion
Expansion 2: Marrying Mr. Darcy: Undead Expansion
Solo Mode: None
Required Play Space: 20″ x 16″
Setup Time: Almost None
Play Time: 10 Minutes per Play
Outcome: 28-28 and 17-29 (2 Losses)
Georgiana remained undead, but in a strange turn of events, she actually won! And in the best way: By turning Mr. Wickham. As the card said, “He deserved to die.”
Price & Value
Challenges & Mechanics
Design & Theme
Components & Rules
Achievement & Enjoyment
Distinctness & Randomness
+ Pros (Positives)
- There are many events to experience, from fun parties and pianoforte concerts to social blunders and scandals.
- The artwork is charming and appealing, with plenty of black-and-white images that capture the time period.
- By controlling how many cards are in the event deck, the length of play time can be customized very easily.
- Even with multiple card columns for the different traits, the overall amount of table space is still reasonable.
- Although rolling a die can be repetitive, it offers random opportunities to have some fun with certain events.
- Small expansions are easy to add with just a few shuffles, and everything fits in the base game box without issue.
– Cons (Negatives)
- Many cards show noticeable scuffs and feature differently colored backs with the rather low-quality cardstock.
- There isn’t really any sort of strategy to follow since the luck of the draw or roll determines almost everything.
- Aside from the recognizable characters from Jane Austen’s novels, there isn’t really anything unique in the game.
- Rolling for the suitors during the final phase feels tacked on and odd since a bad roll often leads to a low score.
Continue the Conversation
Did you ever play Marrying Mr. Darcy? It seems to be a somewhat niche game that’s pretty uncommon to read about, though it certainly has its merits! What other less common games do you like? Chances are that I won’t get this one to the table again for a long time. Still, it was worth it for a few laughs! Maybe I’ll make that solo variant someday…