Traitor (game)

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Game data
author Marcel-André Casasola Merkle
publishing company Adlung games
Publishing year 1998
Art Card game
Teammates 3 to 4
Duration 45 - 60 minutes
Age from 12 years


À la carte card game prize 1999: 1st place
game of the year 1999: list
German game prize 1999: 7th place

The game Verräter is a card game for 3 to 4 players, ages 12+ , by Marcel-André Casasola Merkle . It was awarded the à la carte card game award by the trade journal Fairplay in 1999 and was included in the selection list for Game of the Year . It was published by Adlung-Spiele in 1998 .

The theme of the game is the feud between two rival royal houses. These fight for the landscapes of a region and are supported by the players. At the crucial moment one of the players can turn out to be a traitor and switch sides.

Game material

In addition to the game instructions the game includes 66 cards (6 overview maps , 4 mind maps , 1 start player card 12 landscape tiles (two identical sets of 6 cards), 12 Gutshof- / office cards , 23 supply cards , 1 strategy map , 1 conflict card and 6 action cards ; the landscape and sentiment cards are printed on both sides so that by turning the card a change in membership of the royal houses can be indicated).

Game idea

The two princely houses (called Adler and Rose ) compete for a total of 12 landscapes of a mountain region, which are represented by the landscape cards. At the beginning of the game, these 12 landscape cards are divided into two identical sets of 6 cards. Each of the sentences is turned to the side of a princely house. Then the landscape cards are shuffled together and laid out in a circle. During the course of the game, a conflict can arise at all points in the circle where landscapes of different affiliations are next to each other. The players each support one of the principalities by playing their supply cards - however, one of the players in the conflict can prove to be a traitor and change sides. Finally, the conflict is evaluated: the superior princely house conquers the participating landscape of the inferior principality (the card is turned over and is therefore subject to the other principality), the followers of the victorious principality receive victory points .

Game flow

The two sets of landscape cards each consist of 6 different cards with different values ​​from 0 ( wasteland ) to 15 ( city ) conflict points . One sentence is turned to the side of one of the two principalities, both sentences are mixed together and laid out in the form of a closed circle. Often cards with different affiliations are next to each other.

The players are assigned equally to the two principalities, which is recorded by the corresponding display of the respective orientation card. In the following, all actions of the respective player benefit the princely house they support.

The players each receive three of the manor / office cards printed on both sides in their respective game colors and a small supply of supply cards . The latter are kept hidden and each have a value between 2 and 8 conflict points.

One player becomes the starting player and the person sitting next to him becomes the strategist , which is marked with the corresponding card.

The individual game rounds now follow in a specific order.

The strategist's player chooses a place of conflict : These are two neighboring landscapes that belong to different royal houses. He marks this with the conflict card and this is where the dispute ensues. The selected landscapes have a certain value between 0 and 15, which plays a role in the conflict.

Beginning with the starting player, each player chooses one of the 6 action cards . Not all cards are available and the respective choice remains secret for the time being. The action cards in detail:

  • the traitor (he changes sides before the conflict is evaluated and surprisingly supports the other principality - turns his line of thinking to the other side)
  • the diplomat +2 (he receives 2 additional conflict points for the conflict and can draw a supply card after the conflict)
  • the diplomat +5 (he receives 5 additional conflict points for the conflict)
  • the builder (he can perform an action with the manor cards)
  • the strategist (he receives the strategist card and can determine the conflict location in the next round )
  • the farmer (he can draw several supply cards after the conflict)

While the choice of the respective action card is still secret, each player now places between 0 and 5 supply cards face down in front of them, which also bring conflict points for the following dispute.

Then the action cards are revealed and a possible traitor changes his loyalty.

The conflict points are determined separately for both royal houses ( landscape + possible diplomats + played supply cards ) and compared. The superior princely house conquered the landscape of the inferior principality. The followers of the victorious Princely House receive victory points. These depend on the number of winners as well as the value of the conquered landscape ( conquering a city alone is much more lucrative than overrunning a hostile wasteland by 4 players together).

There are also victory points for choosing individual action cards.

Supply cards that have been played must be discarded. Depending on the selected action card and the use of the Gutshof cards , a maximum of three supply cards can be drawn.

The starting player card is passed on to the neighboring player and a new round begins.


The game ends after 9 or 8 rounds (with 3 or 4 players), so that each player has been the starting player 3 or 2 times. Alternatively, the game ends when one of the royal houses controls all of the landscapes.

Depending on the cards in hand and the use of counter cards, there is again the possibility of gaining victory points at the end of the game.

The player with the most victory points over the entire game wins the game.

The playing time is between 45 and 60 minutes.

Final consideration

Traitor is a complex card game. The control of the other players, the continuous acquisition of victory points as well as securing the supply of supply cards are three difficult game objectives to reconcile. The sequel from 2000 is mutineers .

Web links

Wiktionary: Traitors  - explanations of meanings, word origins, synonyms, translations