There is this great little card game that my friends introduced me too a while back. Every now and then it floats again to the surface and we enjoy a game or two, or twelve... or twenty... but each and every time we play it, I succeed in having an absolutely wonderful time.
It is Assassin. And it goes a little like this.
We all sit in a circle. Cards (one for each player) are shuffled by the dealer (who is in our case, the very sneakiest of all players). In this hand, there are three black cards and a single red ace, while all the others are normal red cards.
The red ace is the Assassin. (This is the most fun but also the trickiest role to play! Subtlety is the key, but is so hard to pull off!)
Once dealt a card, each player peeks sneakily at it.
Then someone calls out "everybody down" at which everyone bows there heads and closes their eyes.
Then "black team up". The holders of the black cards now look up, and remember who else is on their team. The goal of the black team is frankly and simply, to survive, because once all black team members are out, the game is ended. This means that the red team members would like them all out, too.
Someone will call out "black team down", and then "everyone up". Everyone is now up.
This is the first hugely fun part! The accusations! Everyone now tries to guess who is the assassin, and there will be so many fingers pointing and so much laughing and screaming and trying to point out that "such and such is so smug - he is soooooo the Assassin!"
The person who the majority accuse will be killed, and they reveal their card. If this person is the assassin, the game is over, but if not, it takes on a new and thrilling turn!
Now, this eliminated player calls "everyone down". Everyone bows their heads and closes their eyes. Deja vu.
Then "Assassin up!" The Assassin now looks up and points at a player, thus assassinating them.
Then "Assassin down and everyone up!" The assassinated player is eliminated, and everyone gets to accuse whoever they think is the Assassin.
Basically, the assassin continues to pick off people until they are acused and killed, or all black team members have been killed or assassinated.
That's kinda the gist of it. If all black team members are assassinated or accused and thus killed, or if the Assassin is accused and killed, the game is over.
The thing that makes it so brilliant and exhilarating, though, is the amount of strategy involved, at the same time as the necessity of having to trust gut-feeling! Oh, I love it so much! It is such fun trying to work out who the Assassin is, trying to see through their strategies, or just take a leap of faith and point your pointer like it's never pointed before! It's great. It gets so exciting and hilarious, especially when you are killed off and finally realise who the Assassin is, and it is always the person you suspected from the beginning and no one else accused, or the very last person you would have imagined. It is truly one of the greatest games ever, and I think it serves an incredible role in my friends group of really making us feel like a family. Just the comfort of being able to point and laugh and poke tongues out and scream and whinge and giggle. So thankyou all, I love it, and I love you.