What is this game?!
All or One is a hidden role, social deduction card game. It could also be described as a tabletop escape room where the puzzle is not the room you find yourself trapped in but rather the people sharing the room with you, each of them a secret character as unique as yourself.
The game begins with the players waking to discover they have been abducted and imprisoned in an empty room, virtually exitless except for a trapdoor in the center of the floor with the words "Feed Me" scrawled upon it. A malevolent voice from an indeterminable source soon instructs the players that they must select one among themselves to be sacrificed in order for the others to be set free. A hidden timer begins counting down, and if the group can not reach an agreement before it expires, gas will flood the room, killing them all.
At its core, All or One is a game of conversation and compromise. The puzzle presented to the players lies hidden in the role cards, each a unique character with their own thematic motivations and goals; as players work toward meeting their own victory conditions, they begin to share information, both through their choices of action and verbally, whether speaking honestly or otherwise, and a picture of potential outcomes begins to form. Players can strike bargains, make alliances, protect each other, betray each other, discover and reveal information about one another; steal, injure, intimidate, coerce, possibly kill; or perhaps assist, encourage, confide, maybe even discover a means of escape; or maybe just simply gang up on one poor soul if the majority so desires. Through purposefully freeform, emergent group dynamics, no two games of All or One will ever play out the same.
How far will you go to ensure you get out alive... if that's even the personal end goal you are trying to achieve.
Final Character Art Sample:
Our final art is not yet completed because we are in the midst of using select Kickstarter backers to literally model for our character art. Shown here is a sample of what that means and the style Sarah will be applying as the character artist:
Here's a static look at the potential and hidden cards for the mock Witch role. Because this character has not been included in the current iteration of the prototype, the icons and wording are loosely used just for example purposes; however, this character will be refined and included in the final production copy of the game.
Base Game Components:
- Two piece game box
- One deck of 21 potential character cards
- One deck of 21 hidden character cards
- One deck of 20 special item cards
- One deck of 12 mark cards
- One set of action reference cards
- Five 6-sided action dice
- 60 double-sided tokens
- One instruction booklet
How to Play:
For those already familiar with the game, or those who simply prefer information presented through video, feel free to skip ahead to the collected campaign videos and live streams presented in the next section.
Provided here is brief description of how to play along with some card samples. Whether before or after reading this section, we strongly suggest you watch either the How to Play video tutorial or the PAX West Demo which includes rules being explained to a live group who then are able to play out and enjoy their first game.
Please Note: All samples shown are prototype placeholder art and will be replaced with final art; the style and layout are also subject to change.
First, a set of "Potential Role" cards are dealt face up in the center of the table. These represent potential characters that any given player might hold and which would be in play within the room. The players themselves are only a subset of these potential roles.
These are just a small sample of the Potential Role cards. As you can see, they display a character name and two icons; the icon on the upper left offers a hint at what that character's main victory condition or goal is, and the icon on the upper right offers a hint at that character's bonus score roll conditions -- what this means is at the end of the game, any players who have achieved their victory condition and then also fulfilled bonus roll conditions, get to roll a number of dice to score themselves; the player with the highest score is considered the true winner of the game.
This becomes more clear when you see the "Hidden Role" cards. Each player will receive two of these, allowing them to choose which role to play; some roles are much more challenging to play than others.
As you can see viewing the sample hidden role cards, they offer much more depth about the character, the victory condition, and the bonus roll objectives.
The players are also each dealt two "Special Item" cards from which they can choose one to bring into the room with them; typically they would want to choose one which compliments their selected character, provided they've been fortunate enough to have been dealt one.
The special items aim to be self explanatory and most are allowed to be willingly shared without requiring use. During the game, players can reveal, activate, trade, and/or steal items.
Finally, each player also receives one "Mark" card, which designates a player seated one or two seats to the left or right, but should not be interpreted as that player must die. The mark is only contextually relevant if the player's selected role or item card use the word Mark; if neither card says Mark, the mark card is meaningless, but all players must hold one.
As can be seen in the case of the Protector, the player seated two the left must actually be protected and survive in order for this player to win the game.
In addition to these hidden cards, players will each have access to Action Reference cards. These cards are color coded to match mental states which players will be increasing throughout the game: green is for Trust based actions, and red is for Aggression based actions. The actions are tiered, requiring increasing the given state to the level designated in order to unlock a specific action.
The game is split into and could last up to six rounds -- provided the players don't make choices or take actions which could end it earlier. At the beginning of the game and in between each round the players receive one double-sided mental state token; everyone privately chooses which mental state to increase, reveals simultaneously, and the next round immediately begins. The tokens are not currency that is spent to attempt actions, rather they simply designate the level of each player's respective mental states and which state specific actions are available for that player to use. Each player is allowed one trust based action and one aggression based action per round; any actions not listed on the card are considered free actions and players may attempt as many of those as they wish.
Whenever a player attempts an action against another player who does not want that action to be successful, they each roll a six-sided action die against each other: highest roll wins, any ties go to a defending player.
The game ends in one of three ways: If a body is on the trap door -- quick reminder that the players are all trapped together in an exitless room except for a trap door in the center of the floor -- the moderator (or a player acting as moderator) will ask, "Do all players who are able to speak agree to this sacrifice?" If the answer is a unanimous "Yes" then the trap door opens and the game immediately ends; if any player answers "No" the game continues. If the game timer expires on the last and final round, gas floods the room killing everyone inside and ending the game. Alternatively, at the bottom of the Trust based actions, there is one named Escape; if all players manage to escape the room, the game immediately ends, but if only some escape, then the game continues for any left behind.
Once the game has concluded, players reveal their hidden role and mark cards and discover who achieved their victory conditions and then who also earned bonus score rolls to determine the game's winner.
Again, we highly recommend you watch either the How to Play video tutorial (embedded in the following video section) or the archived PAX West Demo where you can hear the full instructions as explained to a live group and then witness a game play out.
Video & Live Streams:
- PAX West 2017 Demo Live Stream
(includes player instruction)
- Designer Q&A Live Stream
(mentions elements of the Kickstarter campaign)
- Game Night w/ Friends Live Stream
(mostly game play only)
- Meet Our Cats! and Meet Our Cats part 2
- One Last Chat
(mostly prototype iteration & design discussion)
OMSI Mini Maker Faire Demo (game play only)
Another OMSI Mini Maker Faire Demo (game play edited)
How to Play (instructional tutorial)
PAX West 2016 Game Play (final round snippet only)
Please Note: This was from an earlier build of the prototype, some mechanics mentioned have since been altered.