Deep in the American countryside, the little town of Millers Hollow has recently been infiltrated by Werewolves.
Each night, murders are committed by the Townsfolk, who due to some mysterious phenomenon (possibly the greenhouse effect) have become Werewolves.
It is now time to take control and eliminate this ancient evil, before the town loses its last few inhabitants.
Object of the Game
- For the Townsfolk: Kill all of the Werewolves.
- For the Werewolves: Kill all of the Townsfolk.
- 4 Werewolve cards
- 13 Ordinary Townsfolk cards
- 1 Fortune Teller card
- 1 Thief card
- 1 Hunter card
- 1 Cupido card
- 1 Witch card
- 1 Little Girl card
- 1 Sheriff card
Each night, the Werewolves bite, kill and devour one Townsperson. During the day they try to conceal their identity and vile deeds from the Townsfolk. Depending upon the number of players and variants used in the game, there are 1, 2, 3 or 4 Werewolves in play.
Each night, one of them is killed by the Werewolves. This player is eliminated from the game.
The next morning, survivors gather in the town square and try to discover who the Werewolves are.
This is done by studying the other Players' faces for hidden signs of lycanthropy.
After discussing and debating, the Townsfolk vote to lynch a suspect, who is then hanged, burned and eliminated from the game. There are 8 differents kinds of Townsfolk:
These folks have no abilities other than their own intuition.
Each Ordinary Townsperson must analyze the players' behavior to guess who is a Werewolf, and try not to be falsely mistaken for a Werewolf and unduly lynched, hanged and burned.
The Fortune Teller
Each night, the fortune teller can see the true personality of one player.
The fortune teller chooses which player this will be. The fortune teller must help the other Townsfolk to correctly identify the Werewolves, without being discovered out by the Werewolves, thus making him/herself a target.
If the hunter is killed by the Werewolves, or lynched by the Townsfolk, he/she can retaliate. With his/her dying breath, the hunter will shoot, thus eliminating, any one other player.
"Cupido" is the town matchmaker. He/she received the nickname because of his/her ability to make any two people fall instantly in love.
During the first night of the game, Cupido designates two players who will be in "in love" with one another for the rest of the game. Cupido can choose him/herself as one of the lovers.
If one of the lovers dies, the other immediately kills him/herself in a fit of grief. A love cannot, even as a bluff, vote to lynch their lover.
Special Case: If one of the lovers is a Werewolf and the other one is a Townsperson, the object of the game changes for these two players. The pair's only wish is to live in love and peace, and therefore must eliminate all other players (Werewolves and Townsfolk) from the game, by using the standard game rules.
This Townsperson knows how to make two very powerful potions:
The first is a healing potion, which can be used to resurrect a player that is killed by a Werewolf. The second is a poison, used during the night to eliminate one player. Each potion can only be used once per game. The Witch can use either potion on him/herself if he/she wishes.
If he/she wishes, the Witch can use the poison at night and then follow that up with the healing potion the next day.
If this character is used you can have an evening where either nobody dies or where one player dies or where 2 players die.
The Little Girl
The Little Girl is very curious. She can open her eyes during the night to spy on the Werewolves.
However, if she is caught in the act by the Werewolves, she immediately dies of fright, silently, instead of the designated victim.
The Little Girl can spy during the night only during the "Werewolves awaking" phase. When the Little Girl is in play, it is necessary for all players to avoid hiding their faces (with hands, cards, etc). when sleeping.
Instead of being dealt, like the rest of the characters, this card is entrusted to one of the players.
Just like a real Sheriff, this player is elected by a vote of the Townsfolk. The player receiving the most votes gets to be the Sheriff.
Once elected, the Sheriff cannot refuse the honor. Henceforth, this player's votes count as 2 votes (always applied to a single player, not split). If the Sheriff is eliminated, upon his/her deathbed, the Sheriff names a successor, who then becomes the new Sheriff.
If the Thief is used, two additional ordinary Townsfolk cards are added to the deck at the beginning of the game.
After the cards are shuffled and dealt, the two extra cards are placed face down in the center of the table.
During the preliminary turn of the first night, the Thief looks at these two cards, and may trade his/her card with one of these two cards. However, if both cards are Werewolves, the Thief must trade his card with one of them. If the Thief takes on of the extra cards, he/she assumes the role of this character for the rest of the game.
Players can use whatever character card mix they agree upon. That being said, the best way to learn how to play is to use the following basic mix:
2 Werewolves (or 3 according to the chart below)
The Fortune Teller
Standard Townsfolk (according to the chart below)
When using the basic mix, the Moderator (see below) uses only the Standard Turn rules (1-7), and ignores the Setup Round (D-F).
After playing once or twice this way, you may slowly add the other characters. The most important thing to remember about this game is the atmosphere. Because the game is quite short, you can play a few games at one sitting and change the characters used in the game.
It is very interesting to use the particular characters even when you have a smaller number of players. This really adds to the suspense and helps create a tense and unexpected atmosphere.
The players choose a Moderator (chosen at random, voted, or whatever). For the first few games, the Moderator must be someone who is familiar with all of the rules of the game. The Moderator is the most important player in the game. It is their job to create a strong atmosphere to make the game truly enjoyable.
The Moderator takes the appropriate number of cards, shuffles them, and deals one character card (face down) to each player. Each player then secretly looks at their card and places it face down in front of themselves.
The Moderator puts the town to sleep by saying "Night falls, the town is asleep, and everyone closes their eyes". All character players now close their eyes.
The Moderator says "The Thief wakes up". The player who has the Thief card opens his/her eyes, silently looks at the two face-down cards in the center of the table, and possibly switches the Thief character card with one of these two cards (see The Thief above). The Moderator then says "The Thief falls asleep". The Thief closes his/her eyes.
The Moderator calls Cupido by saying "Cupido wakes up". The player who has the Cupido card opens his/her eyes, and silently designates two players (possible him/ herself). The Moderator walks around the table and discreetly taps the shoulders of the two lovers (keep your eyes closed lovers). The Moderator then says "Cupido falls asleep". The Thief closes his/her eyes.
The Moderator calls the lovers by saying "The lovers wake up, recognize one another and fall back into blissful sleep". The lovers just look at one another. They do not show their character cards to one another, and therefore don't know the true personality of their love.
The setup round is now complete, and the Moderator now continues with the standard turn.
The Moderator calls the Fortune Teller.
The Moderator says "The fortune teller wakes up, and chooses a player whose true personality she wants to know".
The Moderator silently shows the Fortune Teller the character card of the chosen player. Then the Moderator says "The fortune teller falls asleep".
The Moderator calls the Werewolves
The Moderator says "The Werewolves wake up, recognize one another and choose a new victim".
The Werewolves, and only the Werewolves, open their eyes, silently consult each other and designate a new victim. During this phase, the Little Girl can spy on the Werewolves by partially opening her eyes, peeking, or whatever she feels she can get away with. She is not required to do so, but can if she dares.
If the Little Girl is caught in the act, she dies instead of the designated victim.
The Moderator then says "The Werewolves fall asleep again, after fulfilling their lycanthropic needs" (or something like this). The Werewolves close their eyes.
The Moderator will reveal the results in the morning.
The Moderator calls the Witch.
The Moderator says "The Witch wakes up. I'll show you the victim of the Werewolves. Would you like to use your potion of healing or poison?"
The Moderator shows the Witch the victim of the Werewolves. The Witch is not obligated to use the potions if the player does not wish to. If the Witch uses a potion, he/she indicates by showing a thumbs-up for healing, thumbs-down for poisoning. If poisoning is used the Witch indicates which player is to be poisoned.
The Moderator will reveal the results in the morning.
The Moderator wakes the Town Up
The Moderator says "The sun rises. Everybody wakes up and opens their eyes... Everyone that is except for the one that was killed in the night".
The Moderator now points to the Werewolves' victim.
This player turns his/her card face up and is out of the game. This player cannot communicate with the other players anymore.
If the player killed is the Hunter, he/she can retaliate before dying, and choose another player to die immediately.
If the eliminated player is one of the two lovers, the other lover also dies immediately and turns his/her card face up.
The Townsfolk argue and debate.
The moderator is here to moderate and organize the debate (also known as the angry mob!).
A strange noise is heard during the night, suspicious behavior, a player that always votes along with another one. All of these are clues that can bring the suspicion of being a Werewolf upon a player. During the discussion, the goals of the players are different:
Each Townsperson tries to unmask a Werewolf and have it lynched.
The werewolves try to disguise themselves as ordinary townsfolk.
The Fortune Teller, and the Little Girl try to help the Townsfolk, but without revealing themselves, which can be dangerous or fatal.
The lovers try to protect one another.
All players can pretend that they are anything.
You can bluff or tell the truth, but you had better be convincing about what you say. And you must not only protect yourself, you must also find out as much as you can about the other players.
Trust us, you always give yourself away in one manner or another. Everyone has a "tell".
The Town votes.
The players must eliminate a player that they suspect is a Werewolf.
Upon a signal from the Moderator, each player, simultaneously, points his/her finger towards a player that they want to eliminate (don't forget that the Sheriff's vote is worth two).
The player with the most fingers pointing at them is convicted of being a Werewolf and is immediately lynched, hanged, drowned, shot with a silver bullet and burned (just to be sure). This player is now eliminated from the game. If there is a tie between the accused, no one is eliminated.
The eliminated player reveals his card and will not be able to communicate with the other players until the end of the game.
The Town Falls asleep.
The Moderator says "Night falls. The surviving players fall asleep". All players close their eyes.The eliminated players must keep silent, especially when they find out who the Werewolves really are.
The game resumes with step 1, The Fortune Teller...
End of the Game
The Townsfolk win if they manage to eliminate all Werewolves.
The Werewolves win if they kill the last Townsperson.
The Lovers win if they are the surviving Townsfolk/ Werewolf pair, and all other players are eliminated.