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Subject: Dixit: The Prettiest Party Game on the Block rss

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Tiffany Smith
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Portland
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I bought Dixit because I picked it up in a game store, looked at the back of the box and thought, “This is gorgeous. I have to have it.” I looked in my wallet. No money!!! Oh no! I went back to the game store a few days later and it was gone. I was crushed. I put an order in for it, and then spent a bunch of time on the Dixit page looking though the images, reading and rereading every thread on Dixit’s forum. I was seriously excited about playing Dixit once I finally got it. The best part about my Dixit purchasing experience was that it lived up to the stalking I did before I bought it. It’s in my game bag every time I go to a game day, and I am always excited about a chance to play it.

How do you play Dixit?

It’s a party game where one person, the storyteller, picks a card from their hand and uses a word or phrase to describe that card. Then, each of the other players pick the card from their hands that matches the storytellers word or phrase the most closely. After each player has selected a card from his/her hand, all of the players other than the storyteller vote on which card they think prompted the clue. The catch is that if everyone or no one votes for the storyteller’s card, the storyteller gets no points, so the storyteller wants to pick a word or phrase that someone, but not everyone, will understand. It’s a delicate balance between being too obvious and being too vague.

Each player takes turns being a storyteller until the deck of cards runs out, and the person with the highest score wins.

Dixit is very accessible.

With simple rules—one page, front and back—Dixit is easy to teach to non gamers. Many people compare Dixit to Apples to Apples, and since Apples to Apples is a game many non gamers have played, describing Dixit that way can be a way of getting non gamers interested in playing Dixit. Many people find that Apples to Apples can get random and silly pretty quickly. Dixit does not suffer from that problem because there is one right answer. In that way, Dixit is really more like Balderdash.

The easiest way to get people to play Dixit is to show them the cards (or even just the gorgeous box!). The cards are irresistible in their beauty and intricacy. Also, I’d recommend having first time players go late in the turn order because it can be intimidating trying to figure out what word or phrase to choose for a first time storyteller. Having a few examples will go a long way towards giving new Dixit players confidence. These cards should illustrate what I mean about the variety and beauty of the Dixit cards.



Is Dixit replayable?

Many people fear that the small number of cards will limit the replayability. Until I actually played the game, I had this fear as well. But each card has so many small details that the more it gets played, the more each storyteller will have to pick up the small details to trick the other players who have also played the game a lot. Additionally, you can play a theme game where each clue has to be a line from a movie or song or really whatever interests your group of friends or game buddies. I frequently play Dixit with people who haven’t played before, so I don’t find that I need the extra themes.

What might you not like about Dixit?

I usually play Dixit with one person I know and a group of people who haven’t played before. It can be tempting to give a clue that no one other than the person whom I know well would have a chance of understanding. I would never do that because I want to have groups of people desiring Dixit time as much as I do. But it could be a problem. I do not find it such a big problem that I would not want to play Dixit. But if I played with players that acted like that, I would probably not invite them to my Dixit game again.

Other than that, the only negative aspect I’ve found is that new players can get AP about which card to pick and what to say. Usually, the other players just chat about the last round for thirty seconds or so and then stare at the storyteller until they make a decision. It’s good to recommend to new players that they think about which card they want to use before it is their turn in order to keep the game clipping along.

When should you play Dixit?

Right now.

Seriously though, I like to play it after a heavy game to refresh and recharge. But it’s not a mindless filler. That’s what makes Dixit so invaluable to my collection, and why I recommend it to anyone looking for a party game or a filler to play with non gamers. The great thing about Dixit is that there is plenty of game for gamers, while still being approachable for non gamers or for a party atmosphere.
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Snowball
Belgium
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Gender: pot*ato. My opinion is an opinion.
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Everything about this game is pretty. Even the artist!
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Kristi S
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I've had this game on my wishlist for awhile now. Can you give us some examples of good phrases/hints you would use for the images shown in your review?
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Tiffany Smith
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These cards would probably not show up together in a selection because they are too varied, but I can pick out pairs of them and give clues that I have used or could imagine using.

For the most part, we just use one word when we play. Any more than one word gives too much away, but I could see needing to say more as I play the game more times.

For the image of the lady with the puppets in her stomach (left most one on the top row) I have used the clue "motherhood." One of the cards that was played was the bassinet and the ominous looking trees (second one from the left on the bottom).

The word "isolation" could be used to describe the child in the reverse snow globe, and I might think of playing the card with the with the raindrops and the red background (left most on the bottom) for the word isolation as well.

Or you could notice details and cite them. For instance, the rightmost image on the top row is a candle. But there is also a candle in the picture that is just one left of it. If you had the scientist looking card you could say candle and many people would probably pick the other card if it got played. You, of course, would have to bet that another player had the candle image. A clue like fire or flame or melt might be more useful.

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Snowball
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I play the game with usually more convoluted hints: the last card, for instance, would be winter, since autumn is going away.
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Tiffany Smith
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If I were to use a clue that tricky as the storyteller, no one would actually guess mine. But I have yet to play with a game with every player having played before. That "winter" clue is a great illustration of how the game grows with you. The more times you play it, the more tricky your answers have to be.
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Tim Roberts
United Kingdom
Colwyn Bay
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Thank you for another great review Tiffany.

Dixit is clearly a most visually impressive game. The illustrations are fantastic and they remind me a little of the European animations I used to watch on television when I was a child. There's a slightly sinister nature to many of the pictures and some have a quite surreal quality. I really like them.

I'm not sure if it's the sort of game I'd be any good at however. I can visualize myself trying to think of a word and going "Er... er... er... hang on a minute... er... er... er" until everyone gets bored and goes home.

I'm tempted to get it though, just to look at the pictures.
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Tiffany Smith
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Eventually the pressure of people staring at you would get you to say something.

The people I've played with have had fun even if they weren't particularly good at it. I mean, it is a game that you try to win (unlike Apples to Apples where winning is often almost as random as snakes and ladders), but when I play I don't care as much about winning as I care about enjoying the strategy and enjoying my fellow players' delight as their cards are picked. Dixit is strategic, but it is much more social than strategic. I would recommend trying it though before you buy it because it is very different kind of gaming experience.
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Zev Neumark-Gaudet
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In a four player game I played recently I took a gamble.

There were two 30+ adults, an 18 year old young woman and myself (22 year old).

I had a card with a hedge maze on it. I took a gamble that the younger girl hadn't seen it and used the movie "The Shining" as my clue.

As I had hoped, the two adults guessed my card right but the young woman hadn't seen the film, thus she guessed wrong. It probably helped that the other cards players put down were helpful for me (for example one player played the candle with blood card seen in the picture above).

Anyway, just my experience of a great game!
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The Cheng Meister
Australia
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I absolutely love this game and yes, we here in Australia do manage to get French games! laugh

The funniest experience was this:
I was playing with a group of 4 + me, all of us had known each other from university and gamed relatively frequently.

My friend being the storyteller chose the phrase, "destruction and the day after, loneliness".

We turned over the cards:
1. Clown standing in spot light
2. Boy inside pleasant world with house looking out into the snow
3. A toy shop window
4. The doll sitting in the doll house
5. Giant terrorising the city


Now which one would you vote for?


Well, the storyteller's was number 3!!!!!
We all cracked up laughing so hard as he scored zip.

laugh
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sunday silence
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I agree with the poster about giving indirect clues. I had a picture with a candle on it (different than the candle shown) and for the clue I said Elton John (reference to Candle in the Wind).

ANother player put out the candle pictured above! And I think 2 people guessed that one and one person guessed my picture. So I scored my pts but the other person with the candle scored 2 or whatever.
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