Monday, February 22, 2016

Oh, the Betrayal!

Betrayal At House On The Hill. We've owned this game since last August, playing it sporadically. It's fun. It's not boring. And Wil Wheaton liked it, so what else do you want*?!

Well, I am too disorganized to give it a proper review but let's just say it has some issues and, for me, they kind of ruin it. In the game, you're all exploring a weird old house together. Things happen, and eventually something triggers the second half of the game–someone turns traitor and the game is no longer cooperative. Now the good guys are trying to survive and the traitor has his/her own plans. There are 50 different scenarios in the game, and that is what makes it fun.

But it is also what makes it not fun. Six or seven of the haunts are flawed. Like, we need to take a sharpie to that part of the game book flawed. Like no one play tested this flawed. And maybe if we did just sharpie those haunts out everything would be fine. I don't know.

A particularly flawed haunt. 
See, its not a quick game, so by the time you discover that the haunt you're in is total garbage, you've invested a chunk of time into it. The randomness of the haunt is half the fun, and if you're handpicking them because a lot of them have issues, where's the fun in that?

There is an excellent discussion of the game archived here, with many different views. I admit I blushed a bit at those voices there telling me not to take it so seriously. We've just run into these bad haunts more than we like. I wouldn't sell the game or even go back in time and not buy it (because I'm  a bit of a hoarder) but I wouldn't buy it again. I will likely play it again, but we will be marking the bad haunts and skipping them.

* Below are two episodes of TableTop with Wil Wheaton wherein they play Betrayal at House on the Hill. But they get a good haunt, as you'll see.

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