The Traitors Card Game Review

The Traitors Card Game Review

Undoubtedly the biggest reality tv show hit of 2023 was BBC’s The Traitors. Hosted by Claudia Winkleman, it sees 22 contestants battle it out to win £120k. With the majority of the contestants playing as ‘Faithfuls’ it is their job to eliminate all the ‘Traitors’ in order to split the prize fund between any Faithfuls left standing. Players are eliminated via ‘murder’ (committed in secret by the Traitors) or by banishment, where the entire group vote on who they think is a Traitor. If at the end of the game there is still a Traitor remaining, then they take the entire prize pot away for themselves.

Games designers Ginger Fox have created a card game based on the tv show and so when I was offered the opportunity to review it, I jumped at the chance!

You can only hold a maximum of 3 cards at a time

How to play The Traitors

The Traitors card game is suitable for 4-8 players aged 8 years and upwards. At the beginning of the game each player is assigned a number and (secretly) whether they are a Faithful or a Traitor. They are also given 3 additional cards. The additional cards can either be-

  • Gold cards – used to build up the group prize pot
  • Shield cards – allowing you to protect yourself from murder should you be targeted
  • Dagger cards – used to blackmail another player by viewing their cards (and possibly stealing one)

There is also a digital element to the game whereby you scan a QR code and select the number of players in play. From here you can play events when an event card is drawn.

Pulling an event card

The events include-

  • Murder – the Faithfuls must select ‘F’ for Faithful, but the Traitor commits the murder by selecting the assigned player number for the player they wish to eliminate
  • Banishment – everyone gets to vote on who they would like to remove from the game. Majority wins.
  • Quiet night – basically nothing happens.
The Quiet Night Screen

If you don’t have internet access, then there are additional cards you can use instead of the online element, which makes this an ideal game to play anywhere.

One last thing to mention is the additional Traitor card. Much like the tv show, a Faithful can be recruited as a Traitor if they so wish.

I won’t go into any more details of how to play because frankly, you’re better off playing!

The Traitors Card Game Review

We played this game several times, once with 4 players and once with 5. In my opinion, 4 players is too few. 5 players was fun but I would absolutely love to play this again with 6 or more players. I also feel that with a low number of players, the game is biased towards allowing the Traitor to win. Every time we concluded a game successfully, it was a Traitor who won. I think the Faithfuls stand a much better chance of victory when there are more numbers of them. Due to the card allocation, there will only ever be a maximum of 2 Traitors per game, so your odds of winning as a Faithful are much better when there are more of you to sniff out the Traitor(s).

My main criticisms of the game are regarding the online element. When we pulled an event card, we found that Quiet Night came up too many times, which is boring because literally nothing happens. There was also some confusion around the screen design of the Banishment event. It acts as a chalk board, but it wasn’t immediately obvious so we thought that there was a website error.

The Banishment chalk board… took as a minute to realise this wasn’t an error!

I would also add that there’s room for player error too as in one murder a player selected the murder reveal option rather than taking their turn, meaning the game ended too soon. And in another murder, the only Traitor was murdered (impossible) because a Faithful selected the wrong button. Another premature game ending. So I’d probably avoid playing this game with people over the age of 60 because of that hahaha (just kidding!).

The murder screen. Confusing for some.
Vote F for Faithful. Pick a number if you’re a Traitor.

Of course, the more you play, the better the game gets and while it isn’t quite as gripping and deceptive as the tv show, it does rely on good poker face. I am pleased to say that I did win as a Traitor.

The idea of the game is to also play it as rounds and tally up who has the most gold in order to be the overall winner. This is something we neglected to do but in future we will ensure we include this game element.

All in all, it is a very fun game, if a little confusing at first. But it is 100% a case of the more, the merrier so if you can rally round 7 other people to play with you, then you’re in for a fun time.

Series 2 of The Traitors UK begins on BBC One on Wednesday 3rd January 2024.

Disclaimer: I was gifted The Traitors 2023 Card Game to play, but as always all opinions are my own. 

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