List Price: $34.95
Your Price: $27.99
(Worth 2,799 Funagain Points!)
from 2 customer reviews
Please Login to use shopping lists.
An artifact of untold power lies in your hands. To claim it, you must escape the caverns alive. No less than nine horrific beasts stand in your way -- that, and the greed of the other players.
In this game of kill-stealing, you decide whether to swing for a whopping 50 points of damage -- or hold back, awaiting a more opportune time to strike. Only the final blow matters if you are to score the kill. Hold back or sabotage others' plans too much -- and the entire party will die, without a winner.
We had an hour to kill on Saturday as we waited for the 7th person to show, so the 6 of us got this out.
Quick fun game play.
Tons of strategy for those who like that kind of game. For those that do not get the strategy right away, you can just play cards simply out of your hand.
The first time we played with 6 of us, it took 1 hour and that included us referencing the instructions as we played.
I highly recommend this game for anyone that has a good group to play with.
I've talked in the past about games that have surprised me; because after reading the rules, I thought the game would be boring - only to find out later just how good the game actually was. Cutthroat Caverns (Smirk and Dagger Games, 2007 - Curt Coven) was different; because as soon as I read the concept and started going over the rules, I was sure that I was going to love this game. The idea of backstabbing fellow adventurers in a dungeon isn't anything new - especially those who play with "munchkin" players in roleplaying games, but this card game actually encourages folks to annoy one another.
The concept is simple; players are working together to beat monsters in a dungeon, but only one can win at the end. Players want each other to die, but not early in the game, as all players are needed to defeat the monsters. It's a hilariously fun game of both blatant and subtle backstabbing, and with the right group of players is one of the most enjoyable experiences I've ever played. It certainly isn't for the faint of heart - confrontation and shouting will likely be involved in a game, and fortunately it only lasts just over an hour - an intense time of high interaction.
Each player takes a character - each a stereotype of typical dungeon adventurers - with no discernible differences in the game other than the pictures. Each character has a card with a stone used to track their hit points, starting at one hundred. A deck of creature cards is shuffled, and nine of them are placed face down in the middle of the table, forming the dungeon for the game. A deck of ninety-four cards is shuffled and placed on the table, next to a pile of initiative cards (one for each player: 3-6). A monster life tracker card is placed on the table, and a marker is placed on a track to show which encounter the players are on. A pile of prestige point counters is also placed near the board, and the first encounter is ready to begin.
Each encounter begins with players drawing seven cards from the deck, and then the top encounter card is flipped over. The monster on the card is examined, and their hit points (according to the number of players who started the game) are marked on the monster life tracker card. Players draw random initiative cards and place them face up in front of them to show the order of their attacks. Players then select an attack card from their hand, placing it face down in front of them. Once all players have chosen their cards, they are revealed in the order of initiative. Attack cards are of several types:
The monster then attacks according to the information on the card. Each monster does different things. Examples include:
If the monster stays alive, then all players draw one card and a new initiative card, and start the round again. The player who kills the monster takes the card and receives prestige points equal to those shown on the monster. In the seventh, eighth, and ninth rounds, players receive bonus prestige points, taking markers to show this. After the creature is killed, all players may discard any number of cards from their hand; and the next monster is turned over, starting another encounter.
Besides attack cards, players may draw item cards, which must be played in front of them. Some item cards are one use potions, others give a player a specific ability (like having more cards in their hand each turn.) Players also may get action cards that are played at different times during the game to help players or annoy opponents. Examples include:
The game continues until all nine monsters are killed, or until the players are all killed, which ends the game in defeat. A player who is killed during the game loses, and their prestige points do not count. When (if) all nine monsters are killed, the player with the most points is the winner - with ties being broken by fighting another monster.
Some comments on the game…
Cutthroat Caverns may cause some arguments between players, and that coupled with its theme will keep it from being played with some of my gaming groups. But with an adventure loving, easy-going group, this can be one of the most fun experiences I've ever had with a game. I like the fact that players are forced to be cooperative yet can stick the dagger into each other at the most inopportune moment. Shrieks of rage and shock and laughter mingle together in this game from Smirk and Dagger, their best work to date. I highly look forward to the multiple expansions promised, to see what new monsters and rules will be added. For me, one of the best games of 2007.
"Real men play board games"