The Pumafiosi (Puma Mafiosi) operate in a strict hierarchy from the family's boss down to the lowest Picciotti. Everyone wants to reach the top, and no one wants to end up at the bottom — or even beneath the soil. Amongst these aspiring Pumafiosi, it is wise to keep your head out of the firing line. Stand out too much, and you'll soon find yourself in prison, if not murdered by the rival families.
Pumafiosi is a refreshingly unique blend of simple trick-taking and precarious press-your-luck. Each trick, the person who plays the second-highest card wins the round, and they decide where to place that winning card in the hierarchy. You can even choose to place your measly card at the top of the hierarchy to stake your claim on the big boss points. The catch is that these cards can be knocked down one or more steps on the hierarchy by higher-valued cards, and whoever owns a falling card is penalized!
Pumafiosi differs from the older title Rooster Booster thanks to designer Reiner Knizia:
Increasing the strategy by narrowing the deck to a range of 1-55
Crafting a satisfying two-player experience
Raising the stakes by tweaking the hierarchy values and penalties
Tailoring a theme that gives context to the rules
Enhancing the drama by including physical penalty points
Layering decisions with further depth and tension via one-time-use items