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Czech Games Edition CGE00031 Codenames Card Game

by Vlaada Chvátil

The two rival spymasters know the secret identities of 25 agents. Their teammates know the agents only by their CODENAMES.

The teams compete to see who can make contact with all of their agents first. Spymasters give one-word clues that can point to multiple words on the board. Their teammates try to guess words of the right colour while avoiding those that belong to the opposing team. And everyone wants to avoid the assassin.

Codenames: win or lose, it’s fun to figure out the clues.

Standard Set Up

Players split up into two teams of similar size and skill. You need at least four players (two teams of two) for a standard game, although there are 2 and 3 player variants.

Each team chooses one player to be their spymaster. Both spymasters sit on the same side of the table. The other players sit across from their spymasters.They are field operatives.

25 codenames are chosen and placed on the table in a 5-by-5 grid

Each game has one key that reveals the secret identities of the cards on the table. The spymasters choose a key card randomly and don't let the field operatives see it.

Spymasters know the secret identities of 25 spymasters.Their teammates know the agents only by their codenames.

Spymasters take turns giving one-word clues. A clue may relate to multiple words on the table. The field operatives try to guess which words their spymaster meant. When a field operative touches a word, the spymaster reveals its secret identity. If the field operatives guess correctly, they may continue guessing, until they run out of ideas for the given clue or until they hit a wrong person. Then it is the other team's turn to give a clue and guess. The first team to contact all their agents wins the game.

Codenames from designer Vlaada Chvátil and publisher Czech Games Edition has won the 2016 Spiel des Jahres, Germany's game of the year award, which is intended to highlight an outstanding design that would be ideal for German families — and if you happen to belong to a family of some other nationality, there's a good chance that you'll enjoy the game as well.
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