Ever watch a football final where it comes down to Penalties? It’s not so much about the ones that go in, it’s about the ones that are missed. I felt the same about Codenames which I got to see played out a number of times at KnaveKids last weekend with a variety of players. Missing a clue was fatal.
The games is a pretty straight forward party game with a nice theme. It was played at the con with a variety of younger and older gamers so it got a really good workout.
The game is played out on a randomly selected grid of 5×5 cards with single words on each. The Teams each elect one of their own as a spy master and they both stand at the opposite ends of the table and view a randomly picked card showing which words on the grid relate to the Blue Team and which related to the Red Team.
The first player to start has to get their team to reveal 9, the second 8.
The spymaster looks at the grid and calls out a word that related to one or more of the words on the cards they want their team to pick. So for example they might say “Transport” and hope their team are clever enough to pick “Car” and “Road” on the grid.
The spymasters can only use one word clues and use none of the words on the grid. If the team of guessers picks one of the agents correctly they get another go or can pass and it hops back and forth like so until the requisite amount are uncovered or the assasin is uncovered which ends the round early.
it’s simple fun, there’s a large variety of double sided cards so you’re unlikely to play the same list twice. I liked it. It was quick and simple and perfect for the age group at the convention.
If you’re looking for a simple team game that anyone can play with a nice theme, you won’t go far wrong with this
as we Spymasters often say