How would you like to race camels around a pyramid in the desert, placing bets along the way? Earn or lose Egyptian pounds in this gamble of a game to collect the most money by the end of the race.
Watch out for crazy camels who travel backward and try to take the other camels with them! Read on to learn the ins and outs and everything in between.
This Camel Up rules guide will cover the following:
- What is Camel Up?
- A brief history of Camel Up
- What you’ll need to play Camel Up
- Camel Up Rules
- How to play Camel Up (Video Tutorial)
Read on to learn how to play Camel Up.
What is Camel Up?
Camel Up, a board game created in 2014, allows players to place bets on a camel race. The winner of each round and the overall game winner collects coins and hopes to have the most money by the end of the game.
Number of Players: 3-8 players
Length of Play: 30 minutes
Category: Family game, dice game
Similar to: Horse Fever, Fasttrack Game, Ticket to Ride,
Main Objective: Players earn money by placing bets during the game. Whoever collects the most money wins!
Why We Love It: Have you ever seen a camel race? Have you ever bet on camels racing around a desert track amidst the pyramids? It won’t disappoint! This board game is so original and packed with creativity.
A Brief History of Camel Up
In 2014, the first edition of Camel Up was designed by Steffen Bogen. Since its release, Camel Up is now available across the globe in various languages.
The second edition of Camel Up became available in 2018 and featured new crazy camels. You can find expansions such as Camel Up Super Cup and Camel Up Off-Season.
What You’ll Need to Play Camel Up
Everything you need to play is included in this boxed set.
The complete game box contains:
- 1 game board
- 1 pyramid
- 5 color camels
- 2 crazy camels
- 5 color dice
- 1 grey die
- 40 finishing cards
- 20 betting tickets
- 8 partnership cards
- 5 pyramid tickets
- 8 spectator tiles
- 20 Egyptian Pound coins
- 1 starting player marker
- 1 rule book
Area of Play
Each player selects a character and takes every card associated with their character, along with three coins (pounds.)
Players will hold the race betting cards in a closed hand, and a spectator token sits face-up on the table.
In a 6-8 player game, you must also place a betting card face-up on the table.
Place betting cards in their appropriate spaces on the board by color and in order of worth lowest to highest. The bottom card is worth 2 pounds, and the card on top of the deck is worth 5 pounds.
Place five pyramid ticket tokens on the center of the track at the designated place.
Camels Starting Position
Roll each of the five dice and place camels in the correct starting position on the board based on the number rolled. Be sure the camels are facing forward.
There can be more than one camel per number. Simply stack the camels on top of each other in random order.
Next, roll the grey die twice to position the black and white camel in their starting position. These camels will face the opposite direction on the track.
- Roll a 1: Start on the number 16
- Roll a 2: Start on the number 15
- Roll a 3: Start on the number 14
Place the pyramid in the center of the board and put all the dice inside. Choose a pyramid token to determine which player goes first. As the game progresses, pass the token to the next player.
Camel Up Rules
The game consists of one whole race around the track. When a camel passes the finish line, the game is over.
A crazy black or white camel can complete the race by traveling backward over the finish line, or one of the colored camels can complete the race by moving forward over the finish line.
The race consists of various legs. A leg is made up of 5 camel moves.
During the game, players will place bets on the outcome of the entire game and the result of individual legs.
After each leg, pay winning bets to players and reset the cards for another round.
When a camel reaches the finish line, pay winning bets for the outcomes of the entire game and winning bets for that leg of the race.
Players take turns playing in a clockwise rotation around the game board. In your turn, you can choose from one of the following actions:
- Bet on the leg: Take the top card from any camel decks and place it on the table in front of you. Once the cards are all taken, betting ends for that camel. There is no limit to how many camel betting cards you accept.
- Bet on the entire outcome: On the top of the gameboard is a space to place bets on the overall winner or overall loser of the whole game.
Take the betting camel card in the color of your choice from your hand and place it face-down on either the winning or losing space on the board. Place cards on top of existing cards, and these cards will remain here for the rest of the game.
3. Place your spectator tile: You can place your spectator tile on one racetrack space or move it to another space. If you put the tile face-up, the camels are encouraged to move forward (+1), or if placed on the back, camels move back (-1.)
Spectator tiles cannot be placed on space 1, a tile beside another spectator tile, or on a space already occupied by a camel.
4. Take a pyramid ticket: Taking a pyramid ticket allows you to move a camel. Cash these tickets out at the end of the round for one pound each.
- To move a camel, shake the pyramid, press the button, and see which die is revealed. If you roll a colored die, move the matching camel forward the number of spaces identified.
- Place the used die on one of the tent spaces on the board. Do not place it back inside the pyramid until the next leg.
- If the camel lands on a space with another camel, place it on top of the other camel(s.)
- If you move a camel with existing camels on its back, move the camel and any camels on its back, but not camels positioned underneath.
- If you roll the grey die, then you will move a “crazy camel” (black or white camel) based on the color of the number shown on the die. Move these camels in the opposite direction around the board but follow the same rules as the other camels.
Always move the crazy camel carrying other camels before moving a singular one regardless of die color- black or white.
You cannot move a crazy camel if the other crazy camel is directly above or below. If camels are on top of one another, simply move only the top camel and any camels above.
If a camel or stack of camels lands on a spectator token facing up, the camel(s) will move one additional space forward (or in the direction, it was facing.)
If landing on a spectator taken facing down, the camel(s) will move one space back. If moving backward, the camels will go underneath any existing camels in the space.
Whichever player owns the spectator token then claims a 1 pound bonus.
5. Enter a betting partnership with another player (Only for a 6-8 player game)
When you enter a betting partnership with another player, you swap betting cards with them and flip them both over to the handshake image. Now, you can benefit from the bets made by each other.
The other player has no option but to enter the partnership, but it has no adverse effect.
Partnerships can only exist per leg of the game, and players can only be in one partnership at a time.
Ending a Leg
Once no more pyramid tokens are available and the last die is played, the race’s final leg is over.
Payout any bets placed on this leg of the race before proceeding.
Whichever camel is furthest around the track is declared the winner of the round. The second camel to follow is ranked second. If camels are stacked, the camel on top gets credit for the placement.
Players earn 5,4, or 3 pounds for bets for the winning camel depending upon which ticket they had for the leg, and 1 pound for second place.
However, any bets for camels not in first or second place cost players one pound per bet.
Players collect a pound for each pyramid ticket gained for the leg.
Add or subtract your winnings or losings for the round from your overall earnings. If you fall into debt, simply return all the money you can.
After paying out all earnings, betting partnership cards are returned to their owners, spectator tiles returned, betting camel cards explicitly placed back on the board, and dice put back into the pyramid to set up for the next leg of the race.
Camels remain in the same position, and bidding cards previously used stay in their place on the board.
The player next in order, with the pyramid token, starts by completing an action first on the new leg.
If you are in a 6-8 player game and actively involved in a betting partnership, you can choose to claim one of your partner’s bets. If there are no earnings, a partner can opt out of any earnings since there aren’t any available.
How to Keep Score in Camel Up
The first camel to move across the finish line, either forwards or backward, wins the race, and the game ends instantly.
At the end of the game, payout the last leg betting earnings first. Then, determine which camel is the overall winner and loser of the game.
Flip over the entire stack of betting cards and manage payouts in the order the bets were placed.
The first player to bet on the winning camel collects 8 pounds.
The second player earns 5 pounds, the third player earns 3 pounds, the fourth player makes 2 pounds, and all other remaining betters gain 1 pound.
Players must pay 1 pound for any incorrect bet(s) placed on the outcomes.
After players have paid or collected their coins, each person must add up their money for the entire game. The player with the most money wins!
How to Play Camel Up – Video Tutorial
Frequently Asked Questions
Is Camel Up Second Edition better?
The second edition of Camel Up features two crazy camels, black and white, which add a fun twist to the game because they move backward along the track! The artwork was also updated from the original version, but the gameplay follows the same basis of betting on a camel race.
How many players can play Camel Up?
Camel Up is designed for gameplay between 3 and 8 players. Additional rules for 6-8 player games keep the cards from running out as quickly, so players have other opportunities to earn money by placing bets.
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