There's treachery afoot in Betrayal at House on the Hill: the popular board game where you can murder your friends, summon unknowable horrors and everything in between. It's down to £25.89 at Amazon with free delivery currently, and the lowest price it's been this year thus far. Stick with us to learn all about it.
Steeped in all the horror tropes, Betrayal involves building a haunted mansion with randomly generated tiles and uncovering its mysteries cooperatively. So far, so standard. However, and here's where it gets interesting: when a certain chain of events are triggered, one lucky player is selected by the game to be the traitor, and must carry out a secret dastardly plan to snuff out their fellow investigators.
There are 50 different possible traitor scenarios contained within Betrayal's rules, each with its own unique story and planned actions. For example, you might be turned into a werewolf and tasked with turning your buddies into lupine monstrosities, or another where you must offer a team-mate in sacrifice to the Lord of Hell. It's no easy feat defeating the traitor: they tend to be granted unholy powers and hidden knowledge about the house.
You'll also be fighting plenty of monstrosities - all the usual culprits are there - using a steely mix of RPG style stat balancing combined with the use of the most cursed dice I've ever seen. Those guys have way too many blank faces to be anything other then conduits of pure evil.
As such, Betrayal includes an excellent mix of co-operation, strategy, and if it's your thing, plenty of storytelling hi-jinx. It's also eminently re-playable, with the map, traitor scenarios, and randomly generated items/quests unique to each play-through - as well as six different characters with contrasting skill stacks to select. There's your creepy little kids, shady priest, unhinged mystic and big bulky boy wielding a bat, among others. I've personally played Betrayal multiple times with the same group and still found each experience special. Even better, Betrayal packs in lots of suspense and creepy thrills.
Additionally, it's easy to pick up as far as board games go. Play works in three phases (not uncommon with your haunted house/dungeon crawler type titles), and items and clues are generated via card decks. You'll likely need a decent space, such as a table or the floor, to play - as that map can get petty vast! Also, don't forget to pick an appropriately spooky soundtrack - there's plenty of thematically appropriate ones to select on Spotify.
If you're looking for something a bit different but in a similar storytelling vein, be sure to take a gander at our round-up of creative tabletop games - which can be grim, wild or full of goblins depending on your preferences.