TL;DR

What is it? A boisterous gambling game of guts and bluster
How many people? 3-5
How long does it take? 40 minutes
Who is it for? Friends that like to bet big
Buy it: on Amazon here

The Gist

Why we recommend it

A horde of Vikings have returned fresh from a journey of looting and pillaging, and now you’ve got to decide how to share out the spoils. It’s not easy deciding who gets what. The game asks you to play a form of Liar’s Dice, whereby each viking secretly rolls a handful of dice behind a special screen.

Next, you’ll want to check what you’ve rolled. Let’s say there are six dice. You’ve rolled three ones, a five and two sixes. You now need to take a punt on the total number of rolls, including those of the other players. On the basis that you’ve got lots of ones, you decide to go big with five ones. 

The next player goes for six ones.

The one after that doesn’t look happy. Clearly not confident of there being seven ones between just three players and 18 dice, their choices are either to switch from ones to something else, or to challenge the previous player. The go for the former. Six twos. 

Back to you. Are there really seven twos? I mean, you didn’t roll a single two. It’s not looking likely. But there could be six. If the other two players had three each … hmmmmm. OK, time to go bold. Six sixes. 

The next player decides to challenge you. 

Now the real fun starts. Before players reveal all of their dice, and thus whether your bid was valid, all the others place their bets on who they think was correct. Each viking secretly puts a handful of coins on a token that either means they think you were right, or whether the other player was right to challenge it.

Dice are revealed and so is the winner. There were six sixes after all. Rejoice!

Only those that backed you with their bets get to share the spoils – piles and piles of treasure. The bigger the bet, the better the choices, plus they get the cash back. Those that backed the challenger lose it all, and don’t get any treasure either.

You can see how this can get feisty. Fast. There’s a lot of one-upmanship, and it’s thrilling once you start to get into the big numbers. Similarly exciting is when you successfully goad the other players into making risky gambles after making it seem like you were rich in threes or something – only to reveal you actually don’t have any at all.

Vendettas tend to form quickly, and minor squabbles end up spilling over into future rounds. Spoils of War is such a simple game, almost anyone can play it. Yet only those that are happy to beat their chests with macho bravado will be having fun while doing so.

Grab it on Amazon for around $30 now.