First Impressions: Dirty Cops

Hey everyone, how have you been on this fine Monday?….. Is what I would say usually, but since it’s Thursday, I’d better refrain. As you may have noticed, my post for this week is late. That makes me sad. But here it is! So that makes me glad. Now, you may be asking yourself why I missed my personal deadline so terribly. Well, long story short is that real life gets in the way. The biggest part of which was a sickness that was relentless to me. It was a really bad weekend and start to the week. Anyways, here I am with a new review for a new week! I would like you to be forewarned that in this First Impressions review is VERY First Impressions. I played this game while I was sick, and didn’t take time to write out notes as I usually do, as I was trying to pay attention to getting rules correct, and follow the game. Anyway, with that, let’s get on with the show!


How It’s Played

Dirty Cops is played through Four Rounds (called Crime Scenes). Each crime scene is played until either every player has died, or every criminal has died. There are a few stages per turn as well. This starts with the planning stage in which each player will plan their moves by using an assortment of  Raid and Defense cards of their choosing. This will give the players an advantage over the criminals. Once everyone has taken a turn in the planning phase, they then move onto the Criminal Phase. In this phase, starting from the Criminal closest to the “Hideout”, they deal damage to the appointed player. The criminal card will dictate which player is attacked by each criminal. From there, the players will have a chance to attack the criminals of their choosing. This will take away their life points. If they run out of health cubes, they have been killed. Once players have all attacked, the next phase is the draw phase. Each player draws three cards and move onto the clean up phase of the turn. This involves sorting the loot from a) Dead criminals, and b) unconscious players. The Lead Detective will gain all the loot and must sort everything out evenly. (Cash, and Drugs) Not necessarily an even amount of each, but numerically even. (Ex: Player one gets 3 $50 bills and 1 Drug cube, Player two gets 2 $50 bills and 2 Drug cubes etc.) Once loot has been sorted, there is an ER phase which everyone can spend money to heal themselves. Players must heal if able. After getting “out of the hospital”, there is the sell phase. Players can sell any extra drugs they have acquired, or cards that have monetary values if you choose.Finally, there is the vault which you can pay a fee (of 50%?!?) to put money away and it will be kept safe. The money in the safe is not allowed to be affected by other players. The vault phase is also the only phase that action cards may not be played. This “How It’s Played” section today only details the biggest sections of the game today, as there are many smaller intricacies.


The Pretty Little Bow

The copy of Dirty Cops that I received was a preview copy and as such, I am unable to make any judgments on quality of components. The cards themselves have art on them, but I have not been told that this is final art. The art that was included was very well done and gives you that “greasy, sleazy” feel. Which is great since the point of the game is to be a dirty, greasy, sleazy cop. For me personally, the art wasn’t a big hit for me, however, as I said, it matches the theme very well. From the concept things that I’ve seen, I believe that this will be a very well put together game. As an extra quick note, you may notice a lack of pictures in this post today. This is mainly due to the fact that I was using a preview game, but it is also due to the fact that I forgot to take photos while playing (see first paragraph about how I was sick)

What’s Not To Love?

For me, I found the biggest deterrent of this game to be the set up. I found setting up the crime scenes was a little tedious, and I was constantly double checking the rules to make sure set up was done correctly. Even the sorting of Combat cards that needed to be done before the game started could be seen as frustrating as well. Once the three types of combat cards were sorted, you deal one of each type to players, and then mix them all together. A lot of small things like that, really seemed to have add up during set up for me. I think that if there were no specific amount of combat cards in your starting hand, these three types of cards could just stay together and could save time in set up. I did not however, play any games like that to see how it affected the game overall (yet).As well, in the final game, I think having a set up reference card handy would help out a lot. It will put all the information needed for set up on one card and would likely cut down on set up time. Another small complaint I had, was the art itself. I realize that this is a preview set, and as well art is a very subjective thing. It didn’t click with me, but as stated above, I understand the appeal this style has for this game.


What’d You Think? 

I enjoyed playing this game quite a bit. I look forward to playing it more and paying attention to some smaller intricacies that I may have missed due to having a stuffed up everything. I think this has potential to being a little heavier than I realized. It was a nice mix of co-operative play with traitorous motives. You really could feel the “backstabbery” of trying to get your opponents caught being “Dirty Cops” while you would turn around and get away with the exact same thing to make money.  I think this game offers a unique gameplay in that regard, as there is enough co-operative work to call is a co-op, however, there is enough looking out for yourself that no one can really become the “alpha-gamer” to instruct the whole group on how to play the game and beat the criminals. This is certainly a game I would bring out and play on an average night, and this would likely be the “big” game we play for the night. The potential for many fun game nights is certainly there with Dirty Cops. If this could be a game that is of interest to you, consider checking out their current Kickstarter, as they are looking to get funding to make this game a reality. You can also go check out some of the artwork and tell me I’m crazy for not being super excited about the artwork! Here is a link for you to go check it out!


Enjoy the rest of your week and I will talk to you all again after the weekend! Don’t forget, I love you all!




2 thoughts on “First Impressions: Dirty Cops”

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