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Adel Verpflichtet

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Product Awards:  

Ages Play Time Players
12+ 60 minutes 3-5

Designer(s): Klaus Teuber

Manufacturer(s): Avalon Hill

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Product Awards

Spiel des Jahres
Game of the Year, 1990
Deutscher Spiele Preis
1st place, 1990

Product Information

Product Reviews


Average Rating: 4.4 in 16 reviews

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One of the best play mechanics out there
January 16, 2003

Adel Verpflichtet is one of the most impressive jobs of mixing excellent balanced play with strong mechanics and it's all amazingly built on a foundation of Rock, Paper, Scissors.

I have seen some diehard gamers suggest this game is nothing more than that basic childs game, but that's like suggesting that the Indy 500 is just driving a car.

The theme here works very well. You feel like a snob much of the time and feel like a crook when you're stealing items from another player, etc.

The game pieces and board are excellent. It's easy to learn, teach and play and all moves along at a nice pace. The strategy elements are subtle but essential. This is far from a basic guessing game.

The game is best targeted to moderate gamers who enjoy the social interaction elements gaming brings as opposed to the more intense gamers who are mainly interested in only the game.

In my group, it has yet to fail to provide an excellent play experience.

by Tony
December 11, 2002

The game is fantastic. By Hook or Crook embodies

the elements of all great games, it posseses the

need to get more power and the ability to get it

by any means. The ability to steal artwork and to exact revenge on your opponents makes this a game for true gamers. I recommend it for all gamers regardless of age or gender.

Great game, with some luck
February 26, 2002

This game is a great game. It does have a strong element of luck, but is above rock paper and scissors. We have tried playing with random players, and these positions lose (even when it is hidden knowledge that they are playing randomly).

There are two elements of strategy that are clear:

- playing the most logical move. As one person complains in another review- you can move from behind rapidly by using a detective against a thief. However, this is a strategy, that works to win- deliberately fall behind in the knowledge you will play a detective to catch up. There are a number of such strategies available to players, and each of them has merits and subtlety. There are some real strategies to be uncovered, even though they are certainly mitigated by luck.

- psychologically figuring out your opponents. If you can figure out the pschology of your opponents, you will always win this game. Since people are unpredictable it is not easy- but there are certainly patterns, and if you can deduce the patterns you will come out ahead. This is entertaining in and of itself.

The thing that pushes this game from a four star game to a five star game is that it is fast and fun. Even if you are losing, you will have fun trying to outwit your opponents each round. Every round you have something interesting to chose. How can you go wrong with this? It does not have the deep strategy of some other games- but some games should be light fun, and this game fulfills that promise completely.

Just how well DO you know your fellow gamers?
October 21, 2001

I introduced this to our games group, which had recent favorites such as Settlers, [page scan/se=0042/sf=category/fi=stockall.asc/ml=20]Modern Art, and [page scan/se=0172/sf=category/fi=stockall.asc/ml=20]Medici. Within two minutes, everyone was clear on the rules and we were up and playing. This one is quite a different breed, but it has been a huge hit nonetheless.

This is NOT game based on luck or other random factors. Keeping an eye on which collections people are displaying, which items are available for purchace, which cheques are out of play, and whose thieves are currently locked up, can give you a general idea of which cards are likely to be played.

But, knowing which of your fellow gamers are cautious or risky, spitefull or forgiving, will help you along just as much.

We highly recomend this to the hard-core devotee or to the casual gamer.

by Wendy
Fabulous fun!
January 30, 2001

This is one great game, with an equally great mechanic.

There are a few different strategies and the winner will truly be the one who 'outbluffs' the rest of the table. The gaming system is flawless for this reason.

It took a while to teach to friends, who tended to overcomplicate it (the kids picked it up right away); but once everyone had it down, it was hilarious.

The pieces are of good quality too.

Great game for the office!
January 10, 2001

We recently started introducing quality games to non-gamers during lunch hour to bring some fun and informality into our office environment and found ADEL to be an excellent game for that purpose!

It plays within an hour, is easy to teach others (about 5 minutes), has great spectator interest (pity only 5 can play but we had many more just watching and joining the suspense with each move), where the winner is in balance until the very last move!

Players liked the suspense that comes with each turn (both deciding where to go and what to do) and enjoyed hiding the size/worth of their collection until the very end!

I would strongly recommend this game along with other office lunch time favorites: Acquire (Avalon Hill; now Hasbro--best all time classic), Formula 1 Fever (Shaunequest Games--best local game) and Apples to Apples & Pictionary (best office party game).

by Mike
Really... It IS "That Good"!
December 12, 2000

This is another one if those games that I have read about and never gotten around to buying. Adel has a solid pedigree (Klaus Teuber, Alea games, Spiel des Jahres) and the theme appealed to me, so....

Boy, when other reviewers describe this game as a variant of Rock, Scissors, Paper they aren't kidding. Game play is virtually simultaneous! everyone just chooses a card from their hand. Some cards canceling the effects of others, etc.

The object is to tacticly move around the board while protecting the vaue of your hand (collection of rare objects).

So if anyone else out there has been looking at this game and wondering if it could really be 'that good', don't worry. It is, so go ahead and buy it!

One of the great German games
December 10, 2000

My mother-in-law likes to play games, but due to the painkillers she has to take, she does not have the concentration to devote to long, complicated games. Tonight I pulled out my old Avalon Hill copy of Adel Verpflichtet when she asked me to bring a game over. I am very pleased at how well it was received.

The game is a perfect blend of bluff, intuition, and luck. Playing time is an hour or less, and players of all skill levels will be happy with this title. I am the sort of person that loves deep strategy games, like El Grande and Tigris & Euphrates. I came in second behind my sister-in-law, who is a casual gamer, and only a couple squares ahead of my mother-in-law.

Was it because there is no strategy involved, or too much luck? No. I was simply out-guessed. There was almost constant laughter as we played, as one player or another would outsmart the others at the table. At the conclusion of the game, everyone seemed quite happy and willing to play it again soon. Not many of my games generate a response so universally positive, and those that do are rare treasures indeed.

The game may be the most convoluted take on rock-paper-scissors ever invented, but it is easily learned and easily played. This is a game that stands the test of time, and will be a welcome entry in any family's game closet.

This is a must have!
December 06, 1999

Let me start by saying thanks to Mark U. for teaching me this simple and fun game. As I am a collector of Euro games I have to read reviews. This is the only way to choose game sight unseen. I purchased about 10 games and one was Adel Verflichtet. As some of the reviews give game play descriptions I won't. This game will not disappoint you. Weather you teach it to your Mom & Dad or you bring it to you gaming group for a short session. It does have depth and suspense. Oh and one thing all games should have 'Player interaction'. Buy it and have lots of fun simple.

by Mark U
Premo Stuff!
December 04, 1999

Winning the SDJ (Spiel des Jahres) award for game of the year automatically puts this game into the family-type game category. And as a family game, Adel Verpflichtet can provide alot of laughs, suspense, and a great deal of fun bluffing. I sat down and played this with only 2 players, and still had a blast. Ok, so it's not the deep thought type of game like Euphrat and Tigris. But as a family type game, this one is premo stuff.

Adel Verpflichtet - No Game Like It @¨@ !
October 21, 1999

Oh, gosh, this is the most wonerful game in the world! When my German teacher showed it to me and it was and hour of complete fun and enjoyment. It is unlike any other game I have ever played. I used to play those old Risk and Monopoly-type games, but once I was introduced to Adel Verpflichtet, Those other games seem as if they meant nothing to play. I'm definitely going to buy this game and I know I will never stop playing. I bet within a couple years, it's gonna be the addiction game of America. I luv it and am teaching my family it right now. The reason I like it is because there are options in this game that you can't use in other games. It's also very very easy to set up and clean up because there aren't that many pieces; probably a fraction of the amount of pieces that Monopoly has. If you like high suspense games that keep you laughing for hours, buy this game, it's worth it.

by Fred
Bluffing Fun though Ending is Abrupt
January 08, 2002

A really fun aspect of this game, which I prefer with 5 players, is the guessing and double guessing involved.. do I go to the Library or the Auction, do I buy or steal.. should you and if so I .. just a mess!!! That's a lot of fun. Another good thing about this game is that the natural division of two places to play into, means that you usually have two games going on in parallel in any one round. Something that San Marco can attempt to in a 4 player version, but in this game takes a life of its own. This is really unique and a lot of fun.

The unsatisfying aspect of this game is the ending. You can be in last place with ZERO points (no undeclared sets), bur your card hoard and a well timed detective catching a thief could yield you 8 + 6 = 14 points.. maybe not first place but you could land a close second!! All the fun in every round notwithstanding, that seems a bit questionable to me. Of course you have worked all along to build such a set, but the players you're leaving in the dust that have plodded 2/3 of the way through the scoring track have that puzzled look on their faces..

I find too that because you can swing points quite a bit at the end, some players are unable to choose a defendable strategy. They just pick something. Maybe we need to play it more. The concepts and game play are unique and exciting. I think it's a nice piece of original work. Not cheap though.. but the cards are of high quality.

by Tom
Light, Entertaining Bluffing Game
August 28, 2001

I thought this game was unique and interesting. I seemed to enjoy it a lot more than anyone else in my gaming group did, though. Some complaints of theirs were 'too boring' and 'no strategy involved'. Weve played it twice and I had to fight to have them give it a second chance. They dont hate the game, they would just much rather play something that takes at least a little strategy like Settlers or [page scan/se=0027/sf=category/fi=stockall.asc/ml=20]Bohnanza. I thought it was an entertaining little bluffing game; very light gameplay; does not satisfy any strategic itches. I liked the element of the detectives and thieves a lot too. They really are necessary in keeping the winner from running away with it. Overall, I would call this a good 'beer and pretzel' game. Anyone can learn it and anyone can win it.

An antique itself!
November 28, 2002

A simple blind bidding board game, this one has been around a long time, and certainly is worth considering as a purchase as a lighter, non-gamer game.

Players do 2 quick blind bids each turn, on to decide whether they will be involved in the auction, one to decide if they will display their collection (which is how you get points to win the game.) After that, they then then have another set of decisions involving acquiring and antigue or stealing the paycheque, or displaying a collection or stealing from a collection, or stopping people from stealing from a collection. Best with 5 players, this game is simple, but reasonably fun.

The fun comes from trying to figure out what everyone will do on their turn. If you play a cheque to acquire an antique, you must beat the other checks to do it, and another player may play a thief which means he gets to steal the winning bid. Trying to guess other players priorities can be pretty fun, but it means there is little long-term strategy.

This game is one of the 'granddaddy' German games -- games that came out in the mid-1980's or earlier from designers we now know so well. The game were a little simpler than the ones in the bestseller lists today, but are definitely classic. Klaus Teuber brought this little gem to the public, and probably unknowingly, continued the tradition that Sid Sackson had started with Acquire: interesting games with decisions to be made each turn, and shorter, more definite playing times.

As a symbol, this game rates a 5, but compared to what's out now, sadly, this game feels a bit too simple. Do not misunderstand me, it is not a bad game in the least, but player used to GAMES Top 100 might be a bit underwhelmed by this one.

The game is blind bidding, which people either like or loathe. I like blind bidding well enough, but lots of people I know, don't. Thankfully, most non-gamers like it alright, and since this game is a bit shorter, and lighter, it does fit the bill as a goog board game for non-gamers. I've heard of plenty of people who discovered German games through Adel Verpflichtet.

SO for what it's worth, I'd have to say this game is 3 stars, which is not bad. This game is one I'll play, but, for me, is not a purchase I would make on a tight budget.

Playing at random works equally as well. ICK!
August 19, 2001

This was the first German-style game I played and I really disliked it. I am glad I got to play other German-style games or I would have thought all German games would be a waste of time. Yes, it is glorified Rock-Paper-Scissors, where people can randomly select what they want to do or try to decide what to do, and stand an equal chance of winning.

Anyhow, I felt a need to post this counter-opinion lest people reading these reviews think the game is universally loved. It isn't. Three out of five stars because it is a decent title, but TO ME, it is pointless.

Not the Best Piece at the Exhibit
May 14, 2002

This is an interesting bluffing/math game with a Museum Antique theme. Players try to get furthest on the game track by showing the best exhibit or capturing the crooks. When you choose the show house and opt to exhibit, you move the number of spaces corresponding to the information on your square and your placing at the show. You can also play the part of the robber to steal pieces from your opponents -- or the part of the detective, which captures the robbers and advances your token. When you choose to visit the auction house, you buy items for your exhibition or steal the cheque from the register. The delicate balance in this game is that the best exhibitions move you further, but they are also more attractive to thieves.

The game play is unique, and worth a run. However, it's not a 'must have.' My guess is that you'll tire of the mechanics after a couple of plays.

The game scores well in quality of bits. The interaction and theme are mediocre. Not the best piece at the exhibit.

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