Be honest: how well can you actually know someone? Would you know it when your best friend is actually an exact copy – an alien, looking for a way out to dominate the world? I guess this would prove to be quite difficult, until I got to take someone’s blood and test it by applying heat to see whether it was really human blood. Hopefully it won’t come to that…
In the board game The Thing: Infection At Outpost 31, based on John Carpenter’s 1980s film The Thing, I was subject to this spooky situation. In this beautiful game, where the spirit of the film is captured perfectly, you and your fellow players are stranded at the snowy arctic outpost that sets the scene of the film. One of you is not who he says he is – one of you is… The Thing! “Man is the warmest place to hide”, so watch out! Anyone who has seen this fantastic movie (my favorite!) knows: you have to pull out all the stops to survive on this outpost. The Thing gets to you one by one, copies you and sabotages your rescue attempts.
At the beginning of the game each player chooses a character. Each character also appears in the movie: so you can play as the bearded MacReady, the cunning Childs, or radio man Windows. Next, it is determined which players are the humans are and which player is or which players are The Thing. This is done, of course, by handing out cards that each player keeps face down in front of them. The game board looks like the layout of the outpost and contains different rooms that gradually become available (and even possibly progressively unavailable). All players (including The Thing) then choose who will go on a mission to try to unmask The Thing and to escape. The team leader (in other words, the one with the only gun) makes the final call, so The Thing might just unwittingly go along. But beware: on every mission, The Thing may sabotage. When a mission succeeds, people get one step closer to escaping. If a mission fails, then the Chess Master shifts and The Thing is one step closer to completely demolishing the outpost. Sometimes people in a certain room encounter The Thing – then a fight takes place. Throughout the game, more (movie) elements are unlocked. At some point, for example, you can find a flamethrower, in order to set a suspicious player on fire and win the game early. You can also find rope, so that a player can be tied up to prevent them from joining the mission and thus sabotaging it.
In this cool board game, you’ll be sitting pretty. Real-life horror from a box, what more could you want! Highly recommended if you want to play a game with friends where you have to cooperate and/or sabotage. Genius addition to this game genre, with only one tip: see the movie FIRST! Because only then can you appreciate how well all elements of the film are incorporated in this game. In any case, the pictures speak for themselves! It clearly shows this game has been made with lots of love for the classic movie! 😊
In short, do you like group games like Werewolves and Saboteur and even the fantastic Shadows over Camelot where someone is not who he seems? And are you looking for something more challenging? Do you like games that perfectly represent a movie (like Jaws)? Then this is the game for you!