Undercover Agents

Had our first housewarming-ish party today, which also doubled as my sister’s boyfriend’s birthday celebration somehow?

It was nice to have my siblings over to play games. I think Codenames was an interesting game to play with the people present.

The game has two teams (red and blue). Each team has a spymaster. On the table, are 25 cards laid out in a 5 x 5 grid. Each card has one word on it. The spymasters also have a grid that only they can see, and certain squares on the grid are coloured different colours. Each square corresponds to one of the cards on the table. The goal of the game is to get your team to work out which cards on the table correspond to the squares of your team’s colour before the other team does. However, there is one black square, and the team that uncovers that square automatically loses.

The spymasters are allowed to give a one-word clue (or more than one if it’s a “combo word”, such as a name of a famous person like Leonardo di Vinci), as well as a number, which is a hint to how many words match that clue.

I don’t know if it was by design, but we ended up learning a lot about each other from the game just from explaining the clues that people missed. For instance, one of my clues was about a car we had as kids, except I forgot that we sold it before my youngest sister was born, so she didn’t know about it. It was also a good way to learn about how other people think, and the links that their minds make. I think a lot of my clues were really obscure, and I completely forgot about the assassin. In the game where I was the spymaster, we were quite far ahead, but I made a clue that made MrFodder immediately think of the assassin card as one of the options, and unfortunately, the team decided to pick it, so it was game over for us.

Overall, I think the game is incredibly simple to pick up, and though it can be quite tricky once you start to think too deeply about some of the clues, it’s not like you have to be incredibly intelligent to play.


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