The Board Game Fanatic | The Resistance: Coup

The Resistance is a fantastic game that’s both light and catered to larger groups. It involves deception, negotiation, and deduction. Coup, which takes place in the Resistance universe, builds on these themes as it tries to offer a more centralized focus.

Where as The Resistance involves team based gameplay, players are on their own in CoupAt the start of the game, you’re dealt two cards from the court deck. These cards represent your influence. Once you run out of influence, you’re out of the game. Cards will be kept in your hand face down in order to hide their identities. In total, there are six different identities in the game, each with their own abilities. Once the game begins, players take a turn by announcing the action they are taking. While various cards allow players to perform actions, you don’t need to be in possession of a particular card to carry out that particular action. Not only will bluffing be needed to obtain victory, it’s also strongly encouraged.

Don’t think that players will be able to get off scot-free. Cards of influence also have the ability to block various actions. It becomes a game of deduction to see Which players have what cards in order to know what actions are safe to take and which actions will be blocked.

There’s more, though. Remember that part when I said bluffing is needed to obtain victory? I mean every word of that. Just because someone says ‘I’m the Duke and I’ll take three coins” doesn’t mean they’re the Duke. That’s where challenges come in. Should you suspect a player of lying, you can challenge them. If they’re truthful, they’ll reveal the Duke, causing you to discard one of your influence cards face up. The truthful player will then draw a new card from the deck and shuffle the Duke back in. If they’re caught bluffing, however, they’ll be forced to discard one of their influence cards face up. Remember, if you’re out of influence, you’re out of the game.

The Board Game Fanatic | The Resistance: Coup

The bluffing and hidden roles of Coup have transitioned well from their influence in Resistence. The constant second guessing of your peers has also transitioned well from the co-operative dynamic to a single player affair. It’s not just worrying about who is and isn’t a spy. It’s about who’s being honest and who’s lying, an effect that’s doubled since players have two hidden identities. Add in the fact that there’s three of each card, and the second guessing is only amplified. Sure, you know where two of the Captain cards are, but are you willing to risk losing the game to call out someone you’re pretty sure is bluffing?

This is where Coup succeeds, creating multiple risk-reward situations in its metagame. Add in the fact that it’s incredibly light, simple to pick up, and quick to play, and you’ve got yourself a hit.

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