4 Nov 2013

First Time Playing: Dixit

This is a game that made its appearance one game night with some of my friends. I had heard of Dixit before, and had an idea what it was all about, but I had never played it or seen it being played before. It's an association game, where players play cards with beautiful, not to mention colourful illustrations on them, trying to fit whatever theme the 'storyteller' has picked, then attempt to figure out which card they believe was played by the 'storyteller'.

It's a very simple premise. Each player have five cards on their hands at any given time. They then take turns playing as storyteller. The storyteller looks at the cards in their hand, and try to come up with a theme that would match one of his/her cards. The theme can literally be anything; from media references, historical or cultural references, personal references (at one point in the game I used my own best friend as the theme for the round, which got me a lot of laughs).

The clue is to neither make it too easy, nor too difficult. Because each other player has to choose which of their own cards best fits the theme (or if they can't find one that fits, they could use the opportunity to rid themselves of a card they don't want), and then the storyteller gathers the cards, shuffles them and then reveals them on the table (giving each a specific numeric value). The other players then choose a voting tile in their own colour to place face down in front of them. Once everyone have placed their vote, the tiles are turned and placed on the card associated with the number.

If none of the players voted on the storyteller's card, then everyone except the storyteller get two points. If at least one of the players (but not everyone) vote on the storyteller's card, then the storyteller and the players who got it right, get three points each. Players also receive a point for each person that voted on their card (but no more than three). If all players vote on the storyteller's card, then everyone except the storyteller also receives two points. The first player whose rabbit token makes it all the way around the board - wins the game.

It's a very fun and newcomer friendly game. You learn it within minutes. I do recommend mostly playing it in groups where people really know one another, as having a long, shared history adds a whole other layer to the gameplay. It allows players to really go all out in terms of creating new, interesting categories for the cards at hand, and it helps keep the players at more of an equal footing.

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