The suspense, tension and anxiety of John Carpenter’s The Thing are all fully realized in this new board game from Mondo and Project Raygun.
The Thing: Infection at Outpost 31 is a competitive hidden role betrayer game with deduction, defector and bluffing mechanics set in John Carpenter’s The Thing movie setting. The Thing has the humans attempting to survive 3 Acts to escape on the incoming helicopter and survive to win. The Thing(s) are attempting to either destroy the base or secure themselves a seat on the helicopter to go infect the rest of the world. Throughout each Act, a few of the players will go on various missions with success or failure determined by cards played secretly by the players on that mission. Without knowing who can be trusted, selecting the right players for the mission is vital. Moreover, The Thing can infect other players throughout the game, causing previously trustworthy players to become villainous.
At first glance, it seems like The Thing is something we’ve seen many times before. However, as you dig deeper the important differences show themselves. The core mission mechanic has a few tweaks to the standard formula which set The Thing apart. Missions are more than vague skirmishes with unknown objectives. In The Thing, missions have specific goals, such as to find supplies or equipment. But more importantly, each mission will require certain people go on the mission such as researchers or mechanics. But is it worth attempting the mission if you don’t know if you can trust your mechanic? This is the question The Thing: Infection at Outpost 31 will force players to ask.
In my article, Popular Mechanics: How I Would Betray You, I discussed how I wanted a game to really push the betrayer mechanic more. I feel I should let you know right now that I was not aware of this game at the time of writing that article. Because, it seems like The Thing has done almost everything I wanted. The Thing uses a system similar to the Traitor Deck mechanic I mentioned. The Thing uses Imitation cards which can force players to switch alliances midway through the game. This elevates the anxiety as players can never be sure of anything. Additionally, the game uses a design similar to the Cooperative Roles mechanic I mentioned. Because the missions require that certain players must go on the mission makes sure each betrayer gets an opportunity to push the team towards failure without needing to seem too eager to get on each mission.
via Mondo, Project Raygun
An alien lifeform has infiltrated a bleak and desolate Antarctic research station assimilating other organisms and then imitating them. In the hidden identity game THE THING ™ INFECTION AT OUTPOST 31, you will relive John Carpenter’s sci-fi cult classic in a race to discover who among the team has been infected by this heinous lifeform.
The game has been designed to be as authentically cinematic as possible, ensuring that the players will experience the paranoia and tension that makes the film so great.
“Mondo brought more than their storied design acumen to the table,” said Joe Van Wetering, Creative Design and Game Development at Project Raygun. “Thanks to their deep understanding and reverence for THE THING, they helped define the tone and shape the game play itself. INFECTION AT OUTPOST 31 reflects a true collaboration between our two brands resulting in a game that will excite table top and film aficionados alike.”
1 Game Board
17 Plastic Movers
33 Chip Pieces
2 Game Trackers
We will be playing The Thing live on Twitch next month!
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