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27 Oct 2010
By rymanb

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A Wasteland Guide on How to Play Caravan

20 Replies 10,304 Views Created 27-10-2010

Hi everyone,

 

This is a guide I wrote on PlayStation Future on the basics of playing caravan in Fallout: New Vegas. Hopefully it will be more helpful than the note given in the game, this guide has been adapted from that very note, only I've tried to elaborate a bit on some points. Let me know what you think!

 

OBTAINING A DECK

(Minor Spoilers - from beginning of game)

 

Spoiler

At the beginning of the game, you'll find yourself in Goodsprings, a small town in the central portion of the map. Going to the bar and witnessing several events take place will reveal that a trader by the name of Ringo is holed up in the Gas Station nearby.

 

Talking to Ringo will net you a free 54 card deck for you to play Caravan with (only 30 cards are required to play). Once you've got these cards, you'll notice that throughout the Mojave Wasteland you occasionally find chances to play the card game with characters - with Ringo being the first one you meet.

 

 

Additional cards to add to your deck can be found throughout the Mojave Wasteland too, some can be just picked up off of the floor, others can be stolen from people, but you'll most likely get most of your additional cards by purchasing them from various merchants.

 

RULES OF THE GAME 

At the beginning of each game, there will be six empty piles for cards as shown below. The lower three piles (D, E and F) are for you, and the upper three piles (A, B and C) are for your opponent. The aim of the game is to build your pile to a value between 21 and 26 inclusive by use of numbered cards and aces - with aces valued at 1 and each numerical card valued at their respective numbers, these numbers are then summed to get the pile's total value.

 

Caravan - Basic Layout.png

 

Each pile is pitted against the pile immediately below or above it (i.e. A is placed against D, B against E, and C against F), and whichever pile is valued highest without being overburdened (valued at over 26) is awarded a win. The winner of the game is decided by the player with the most winning piles - either by 2 piles to 1, or 3 piles to 0.

 

At the start of the game, each player will draw eight cards from their deck - this becomes their current hand. Each player must lay a numerical card or an ace on each of their piles so that there is one card on every pile. After these initial turns, each subsequent turn follows the same basic pattern, with each player carrying out one of the following moves in a turn. These are:

 

  • Placing a card from their hand onto a pile and drawing a new card from their deck to their hand.
  • Removing a card from their hand by discarding it completely and drawing a new card from their deck to their hand.
  • Disbanding one of their caravans by discarding all the cards in one of their piles.

Players are somewhat limited in which card they may place on their piles, any numerical cards (or aces) placed on a pile should either be the same suit as the top card of the pile or should continue the direction of the caravan. The direction is based upon the top two cards in a pile - for example if the second card is a 3 of spades, and the top card is a 5 of clubs, then the player may only place a club, a picture card (these will be explained shortly), or a numerical card of value 6 or higher.

 

VALUES OF THE CARDS


As explained above, each numerical card had a value equal to its number - a 7 of clubs has a value of 7 - with ace cards holding a value of 1. Unlike picture cards, numerical cards cannot be placed on your opponent's piles. Picture cards add more strategy to the game and affect the various piles as follows:

 

THE JACK

When played on top of a numerical card or an ace, that card is removed, along with any picture cards attached to it.

 

125053i31AAC3020089FCCD


Although you may want to use this card on your own piles, the most useful device for using this card is actually placing it on your opponent's piles. Say you are drawing with a player on one set of caravans, using a Jack on their pile will reduce the value of their pile, allowing your caravan to be 'sold'.

 

THE QUEEN

When played on top of a numerical card or an ace, the direction of the caravan is reversed - a caravan of descending value will now only allow numerical cards of a higher value to be placed on it. Multiple queens may be placed on top of each other.

 

125054i3ED40C2BA1A5930B


The Queen may also be used to hinder your opponents progress, perhaps by changing the direction of their caravan from ascending to descending when their caravan is of a low value so that they can only put lower valued cards on their caravan. In the same way, changing your opponent's caravan direction from descending to ascending when their caravan is at a high value may stop them from gaining the best value caravan possible.

 

THE KING

When played on top of a numerical card or an ace, the value of that card is added again to the caravan's total value - placing a King on top of a 5 will add another 5 points to the caravan. Placing multiple Kings in succession multiplies the value - placing a King on top of the previous example will add an extra 10 points to the caravan, making the total 20.

 

125055i776D7E8BC0722357


The King can also be used to sabotage your opponent's caravans, perhaps by increasing the value of one of their sold caravans in order to overburden it.

 

THE JOKER

When played on top of an ace, all numerical cards and aces of the ace's suit are removed from the table (excluding the ace beneath the Joker). Placing a Joker on an Ace of Spades will remove all other Aces of Spades and all numerical Spades.

 

125056i75B59CB3A6F84F5B

When played on top of a numerical card, all numerical cards of that value are removed from the table with the exception of the numerical card beneath the Joker. Placing a Joker on top of a 9 of clubs will remove all other 9s from the table.

 

125057i24B0B2EE15516E54


THE AIM OF THE GAME

To win the game, you need to have the most caravans of value between 21 and 26 inclusive. If two opposing piles are both within the winning values, then the caravan of the highest value without being overladen wins. Two opposing caravans of the same value results as a draw and does not count as a winning caravan for either player.

 

125058i14A09DD6554C16F2


However, if you have two winning caravans, and the third pile has not been won by either player, then the game continues - the final condition for the game to end is that three caravans must be 'sold'. To complete the game shown above, you may want to place a Jack on your drawing caravan so that the opponent's caravan wins, this would mean there are now three caravans that have been 'sold', of which two are yours, leaving you to take the win - as shown below.

 

125059i1F9AAA94B271BF09


Hopefully this guide has made the rules of the game clearer in your mind. Knowing how to play this little mini game can prove a lot of help in earning currency and acquiring a few of those pesky trophies! Not to mention the diversion it generates, you can literally spend hours roaming the wasteland, and sometimes its nice to have a break and play a game of caravan with an inhabitant of the Mojave Wasteland.

 

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Tallahassy

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Thankyou much :)

 

 

 

 

Edit. (spoiler) Shame i lost the pack that Ringo gave me

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Will give this a good read through later as I have no idea how to play caravan and need the trophies for it.
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Tallahassy wrote:

Thankyou much :)

 

 

 

 

Edit. (spoiler) Shame i lost the pack that Ringo gave me


 

How'd you manage to lose the pack? Did you just drop all the cards out of your inventory or something? 

 

Oh well, guess you're gonna have to get 30 cards the harder way :|

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Im guessing it glitched. I got Ringo out of Goodsprings and i think i remember being given a deck of cards.. but when i tried to play with someone i didnt have them :(
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Tallahassy wrote:
Im guessing it glitched. I got Ringo out of Goodsprings and i think i remember being given a deck of cards.. but when i tried to play with someone i didnt have them :(

Really? A glitch in Fallout: New Vegas? You must be talking nonsense my friend ;)

 

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niice guide it explains alot of how to play... thnxs

 

 

 

 

I'm a pizza lover so what.... :)

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I thought you could only play cards that continued the direction? So if I had for instance, 6 clubs, a 5 and a 4. I could play a 3,2 or ace but you're saying I could also play a club which is higher than a 6? I'm winning nearly every game but it would be useful if I knew the rules lol.

Nothing beats putting a King on your opponent's caravan and making their score in the 30's :D
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stephenc87 wrote:

Nothing beats putting a King on your opponent's caravan and making their score in the 30's :D

 

Everytime I do something like that I start signing this: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=pBjEcAPybsE

 

This game is so easy now, won 27 (3 off the trophy) :) Completely cleaned out a trader I was playing with :D

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Diddymow wrote:

 


stephenc87 wrote:

Nothing beats putting a King on your opponent's caravan and making their score in the 30's :D

 

Everytime I do something like that I start signing this: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=pBjEcAPybsE


Lol, you are such a loser :D

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Many thanks for the time taken to put the guide together :)
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Great guide, finally getting the hang of it now :D
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stephenc87 wrote:
I thought you could only play cards that continued the direction? So if I had for instance, 6 clubs, a 5 and a 4. I could play a 3,2 or ace but you're saying I could also play a club which is higher than a 6? I'm winning nearly every game but it would be useful if I knew the rules lol.

Nothing beats putting a King on your opponent's caravan and making their score in the 30's :D

 

That's correct, you could a play any card higher than the top card (in this case a 4) as long as it is the same suit (as the 4) - you cannot, however lay a 4 of hearts on that 4 - hope this clears that up?

 

Gotta love those Kings lol!

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Haven't tried a game yet and skipping through those instructions is enough to make me not want to play it LOL.

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ytevo79 wrote:

Haven't tried a game yet and skipping through those instructions is enough to make me not want to play it LOL.


It's pretty easy really once you understand it.

 

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Much respect for the guide, you're a legend. I didn't get how to play it in-game and this made it easier. Thanks man.

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Easiest way I find to win a game of caravan in a few moves is to build a deck with 10's, 6's and Kings. Bring the number of cards up to 30 then total using jacks and a mixture of other cards such as 9's, 8's, 5's and 4's.

As my deck has an even number of 10's and 6's and quite a few kings, on my first draw I normally always get 3 or more 10's and six's and a king or two :P

Simple when it comes out like that. 10 + king + 6.

In the event I get some of the other cards instead, I just mix and match them to get 25 or 26 using a jack here or there to mess up my opponents caravans :)

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Kudos for the guide, made the trophy a piece of urine
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Can someone explain the deck building process for me. thats the bit that confuses me. I start a game and place my ante then in front of me is 1 complete tops pack of cards and it asks me to pick my deck out of those cards.

 

If i'm to use all 6's 10's etc how does it work? There are only four in the pack of each, naturally 6 of clubs, spades, diamonds, hearts etc. I have a load of extra cards in my inventory how do add these to my pack to build a deck from them?

 

Basically do I have to sart with a standard pack of cards everytime or can I start with a pack that has 10 6's of variuos suits?

 

Actually Scratch that, ive just watched a vid and the guy has 6 8's on the table. So when I start the game of Caravan it says I have a total of 54 cards on the table, which is a standard deck. I have more cards in my inventory from various places how do I add these to the table so I have more than 54 showing?

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Bug Alert Bug Alert Bug Alert awooga awooga. etc.

 

Everytime I find a card or buy one from a vendor, its sits in my inventory seperate from my main caravan pack as mentioned in t'other post. In other words it wont automatically join my main pack of cards

 

Luckily I'm not the only one and there is a cure.

 

Firstly Remember your Hot Key Layout, or make a note of it.

 

Find a safe Container and empty your entire inventory into it, this can take a while if your a Hoarder. Leave the container menu now you are entirely naked and devoid of items, then open the container and take all of your stuff back using take all square button.

 

Now the Cards will dissapear from you inventory and join your single caravan pack, you should then notice the next time you play caravan your new cards are amongst the standard deck. The only downside to this is you have to get dressed again and re-hotkey all your items if you were using hot key.

 

It seems that I have todo this everytime I aqquire new cards so I'll stockpile a load of cards before doing the above process to avoid doing it so often

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