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- A fast-paced game of deception and betrayal
- Beautiful wooden components
- Solid game boards with foil inlay
- Hidden roles and secret envelopes for five to ten players
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Secret Hitler is a dramatic game of political intrigue and betrayal set in 1930's Germany. Players are secretly divided into two teams - liberals and fascists. Known only to each other, the fascists coordinate to sow distrust and install their cold-blooded leader. The liberals must find and stop the Secret Hitler before it’s too late.
Each round, players elect a President and a Chancellor who will work together to enact a law from a random deck. If the government passes a fascist law, players must try to figure out if they were betrayed or simply unlucky. Secret Hitler also features government powers that come into play as fascism advances. The fascists will use those powers to create chaos unless liberals can pull the nation back from the brink of war.
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This game has a print and play version available, and has a Creative Commons license, but the purchased game is beautifully made. I especially like the gold foil that is used on the game boards, and the wooden President and Chancellor office plaques. This game was funded on Kickstarter.
Basically you have some players that are Librals and some that are Fascists. The Liberals don't have any information, but the Fascists know who the other Fascists are, and who Hitler is. Hitler doesn't know who the Fascists are (except in very small games). Each round there is an election, where one person is President (this moves around the table in sequence) and they nominate a Chancellor. If the election succeeds, the President takes 3 policy tiles then gives 2 to the Chancellor to play one and discard one. The goal is to fill up the Liberal policy board for the Liberals to win, or for the Fascists to fill their board or get three policies in play and get Hitler elected Chancellor.
At any point, you can be truthful or lie about anything. Due to the ratio of policy cards and some special powers granted as policies are played this leads to some very interesting game play! You will not know who to trust, and very often discussion goes many layers deep on analyzing past actions and reviewing probabilities of things occurring as stated to try to work out who might be lying. It's hilarious! And playing with people repeatedly adds a lot to the mix, but it's a whole different game playing with new people that makes either situation a lot of fun. Definitely give this odd sounding game a try, it's the most fun I've had with one game in a while!
Hopefully they were release an expansion in the future to add another element to the game. Maybe related to the policy cards? I keep checking every few months and I would definitely purchase an expansion if one becomes available.
If you are a liberal, you are playing detective trying to find out who the fascist are. You look at other players actions, probabilities and hearsay and whether you think they are lying or not.
If you are a fascist, you are conspiring with your fellow fascists while trying to convince everyone that you are a liberal. It is all about lying, deflection and infiltration. The lies can go several layers deep. For example, you can vouch for another fascist and say they are liberals. But if he gets caught, you will be caught too. You can vouch for a liberal and say he is a liberal to try to earn his trust. Maybe a liberal says you are a fascist, in that case, you want to lie your ass off and say he is the real fascist trying to pin it on you. This is my favorite role.
If you are Hittler, it is a combination of the above, you don't know who the other fascist are. You are playing detective while lying about who you are.
No matter which role you get assigned, it is a lot of fun. The ones where fascist and liberals are neck to neck and everyone is confused and accusing each other are very memorable.
You will inevitably make mistakes in your first game. By the second game, everyone figures it out and play much better.
If you are an introvert, this might not be the best game for you. You will just get run over by the extroverts driving the conversation, have some liquid encouragement before playing.