Players: 5 to 10
Game Length: 90 minutes
Best enjoyed: With 5 to 10 players who like a good debate and discussion!
The Resistance: Avalon is a social deduction and traitor game where the players are knights in the service of King Arthur. However, some of these knights may be traitors in the service of Mordred, and it will be up to the loyal knights to determine who among them can be trusted. As the game proceeds, tensions will run hot as knights accuse each other of being traitors, and the loyal knights must work out who among them is telling the truth, and who is lying!
Play in The Resistance: Avalon takes place over up to 5 rounds. At the start of each round, one player – the leader – will need to select a number of knights to send on a quest. The knights collectively vote on whether they approve or disapprove of this mission; if they approve, the mission goes ahead, but if they disapprove, the mission does not go ahead and the next knight gets a chance to select a group for the quest.
Once a group is approved of, they are each handed a ‘Success’ and ‘Failure’ card. Loyal Knights may only select the ‘Success’ card, but Minions of Mordred may select a ‘Failure’ card if they want. After doing this, all selected cards are shuffled together and revealed – if there is just a single failure card, the traitors win the round, otherwise the loyal knights win! The first team to win three quests wins the game.
Over the course of the game, the loyal knights will be trying to determine who can and can’t be trusted. There’s a lot of information flying about they can use to determine this – which knights a leader selects, which way each knight votes on a selected group, and the final result of the mission. Traitors will try to sow dissent among the loyal players, making arguments for why they should be allowed on a mission, and the loyal knights will need to make their voices heard if they’re going to be included on missions!
There are a lot of different characters and modes of play that can be added to The Resistance: Avalon to add depth to the game after it is learned. The most common addition is Merlin, who knows which players are Minions of Mordred, and can try to convince the loyal players who is a traitor. He’ll have to be careful, however – at the end of the game, if the Minions of Mordred are able to identify which loyal knight was Merlin, they will win the game! Other characters and gameplay modes can be added that keep the game fresh, such as Excalibur that forces a knight to tell another knight his allegiance.
The Resistance: Avalon is an almost purely social game, with debate and discussion determining the selection of knights for missions, and ultimately, success or failure of the loyal knights. It won’t suit all players, particularly those who aren’t willing to speak out, and the constant debate can be frustrating to those who just want to play a game. That said, the game does manage to accommodate large groups and engage all players without downtime – an impressive feat for any game.
If you want a social game that keeps all players engaged, and with enough variety to keep it fresh over repeated plays, The Resistance: Avalon comes highly recommended.