It’s Deduction vs Deception in FFG’s latest “secret identity” game!
Blood Bound is new take on the “secret identity” genre from Fantasy Flight Games. What’s a “secret identity” game? You’ve probably heard of games like Mafia, Werewolf, or Secret Hitler. In these games, players take on different secret roles and are trying to deduce who their allies are as well as their targets. They are tons of fun and great for gamers and non-gamers alike. That’s because the rules are simple to understand and it’s more about the social aspect than the “game” – you’re playing the people and not the “game” if you catch my drift.
So how is Blood Bound different? The setting involves two different clans of Vampires who are each trying to capture the Elder of the other clan. Each player is given an identity card which they will keep secret:
Naturally, these are all random and dealt face down – no one knows your TRUE loyalties at the start of the game. However, just to before the game starts in earnest, each player must reveal their “clue” to the player on their left. Most of the time, the clue will reflect their clan…but not always! That means when you start the game for real, you’ll know your clan and the probably allegiance of the person on your right. Now the fun begins…
The Dagger is given to a player randomly. When a player gets the dagger they can choose to pass or to attack. If they pass the dagger, they must give it to another player. This could be seen as a way to curry favor – or maybe you just want to keep the heat off you. However, attacking is the only way to discover more information about another player.
When you attack with the dagger, you deal 1 point of damage to a player and they must reveal one piece of information about themselves to everyone at the table. This is done by exposing one of your affiliation tokens or your rank. Exposing your affiliation will can confirm your loyalties – but not all players have the same ratio of affiliation tokens. Is that a clever ploy to throw you off their scent or are they being truthful?
Exposing your rank also triggers your special ability. This can allow you to cause damage back to your attack, heal another player, look at another players cards – it all depends on your identity. However, that will also expose how high (or low) you are on the pecking order. If you have a particularly low number, you might have just made yourself the next target…but at least your identity is still secret.
After a player takes 4 damage (and all their tokens are flipped over) they are considered captured. Again, the objective of the game is to capture the enemies Elder while trying to deduce and protect your own. Blood Bound and it’s mechanics are simple and clean. They put pressure on players to deduce who their fellow players are using the information provided. The slow drip of information on every turn really adds to the tension and intrigue of the game. Every player’s action must be analyzed if you want to win this one.
If you’re looking for a new social “secret identity” game to play then grab a copy of Blood Bound – it’s up for Pre-Order now!
For centuries, you and your kind have ruled the darkness, feeding wherever you chose and turning more and more humans to join your clans. But conflict became inevitable as the clans grew in number and broadened their territories, creating an atmosphere of festering mistrust and betrayal. The ensuing war destroyed countless immortals, and the clan leaders were forced into hiding. There are only remnants left, but the war is not over. You will not rest until you’ve destroyed your enemies forever.
In every game of Blood Bound, you and a few of your fellow players become a clan of vampires, working together to deduce the identity of your rival clan leader and capture him. Your adversaries—the other players—won’t be idle, however. They’re simultaneously working to identify and eliminate your clan’s leader. You must make your attacks carefully, but hunting in the dark is never as easy as it appears. In fact, you may not know your friends from your foes until it’s far too late.
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