Do you love to tell a good story? Check out this list of 5 games that will have you using those storytelling skills every chance you get.
In the Gloom card game, you assume control of the fate of an eccentric family of misfits and misanthropes. The goal of the game is sad, but simple: you want your characters to suffer the greatest tragedies possible before passing on to the well-deserved respite of death. You’ll play horrible mishaps like Pursued by Poodles or Mocked by Midgets on your own characters to lower their Self-Worth scores, while trying to cheer your opponents’ characters with marriages and other happy occasions that pile on positive points. The player with the lowest total Family Value wins.
In Dixit One player is the storyteller for the turn and looks at the images on the 6 cards in her hand. From one of these, she makes up a sentence and says it out loud (without showing the card to the other players). Each other player selects the card in their hands which best matches the sentence and gives the selected card to the storyteller, without showing it to the others.
The storyteller shuffles her card with all the received cards. All pictures are shown face up and every player has to bet upon which picture was the storyteller’s. If nobody or everybody finds the correct card, the storyteller scores 0, and each of the other players scores 2. Otherwise the storyteller and whoever found the correct answer score 3. Players score 1 point for every vote for their own card.
The game ends when the deck is empty or if a player scores 30 points. In either case, the player with the most points wins the game.
Once upon a time
Once Upon A Time is a game in which the players create a story together, using cards that show typical elements from fairy tales. One player is the Storyteller and creates a story using the ingredients on their cards. They try to guide the plot towards their own ending. The other players try to use cards to interrupt the Storyteller and become the new Storyteller. The winner is the first player to play out all their cards and end with their Happy Ever After card
Above and below
Above and Below is a mashup of town-building and storytelling where you and up to three friends compete to build the best village above and below ground. In the game, you send your villagers to perform jobs like exploring the cave, harvesting resources, and constructing houses. Each villager has unique skills and abilities, and you must decide how to best use them. You have your own personal village board, and you slide the villagers on this board to various areas to indicate that they’ve been given jobs to do. Will you send Hanna along on the expedition to the cave? Or should she instead spend her time teaching important skills to one of the young villagers?
A great cavern lies below the surface, ready for you to explore– this is where the storytelling comes in. When you send a group of villagers to explore the depths, one of your friends reads what happens to you from a book of paragraphs. You’ll be given a choice of how to react, and a lot will depend on which villagers you brought on the expedition, and who you’re willing to sacrifice to succeed. The book of paragraphs is packed with encounters of amazing adventure, randomly chosen each time you visit the cavern.
At the end of the game, the player with the most well-developed village wins!
Fiasco is designed to simulate the caper-gone-wrong subgenre of film. It shares creative control of the story among the players, even when determining who each player’s character is. Themes of the game include black comedy, and poor impulse control.
Although there is no one standard setting, each game of Fiasco uses a “playset” that indicates the setting of that specific game. The core rulebook contains playsets for Main Street (small town America), Boomtown (The Wild West), Tales from Suburbia, and The Ice (McMurdo Station, Antarctica). Bully Pulpit Games also released a free Playset of the Month on their website. These, and many more, are available for free online on the Bully Pulpit Games website, with many fan-made playsets available online, as well. The Fiasco Companion provides additional advice on creating playsets.