Published on October 4th, 2013 | by Gregg Miller
Shoot To Kill
Gregg Explains: The Walking Dead Card Game
The Walking Dead Card Game is an interesting card-counting game that we played during the tail end of the main day of Nerdtacular 2013. It’s supposed to be modeled after 6 Nimmt!, a family game originally published in the 90s. There are two modes provided: Hero Mode, which is meant for two-to-six players, and Survival Mode, which is more of a golf scoring method.
In Hero Mode, each player is given a Hero card in addition to fifteen random cards from the deck. After that, there’s four cards that are laid out to establish the Rows that the players will play their cards to. Each round, players take one or two of their cards and place the cards face down in front of them to signify that they are ready for the round to play. The decision of how many cards you play can come down to both immediate and long-game planning. If you play two cards, you can snatch up and score all the cards in a row, or two rows. However, if you have no cards in a round, you can’t participate in the round, giving the final round to any player who still has cards.
Once all players are ready everyone reveals their cards simultaneously, then the cards are played to the Row they belong to, depending on the current values of the Rows. If a Hero card was one of the two cards, then the order for when cards are placed is changed. If two or more Hero cards are played at the same time, the the cards paired with the Heroes are resolved in numerical order first, then any remaining players who didn’t play Hero cards have their cards resolved afterwards.
The game ends when nobody in a round can play a card. Counting up the bullet icons on all the scored cards, the player with the most bullets wins. Pretty much, it’s making tally marks of how many zombies you mowed down during an epic zombie surging horde.
In Survival Mode, play is roughly the same, but this mode is meant for larger groups. Three to ten players participate, no Hero cards are factored in, and everyone only gets ten cards, and can only play one card per round, making the game end at the tenth round every time. However, in this version, you want to score as few bullets as possible. Think of it as if you only have a limited supply of bullets to last through a zombie apocalypse, and the bullets you score are how many you had to “use” in order to deal with the horde of zombies. Whoever used the least did better.
This game is very short. Once people get the hang of it, it takes about ten minutes to play a full game in either mode. Aside from just being used to pass the time, it’s a game that can be used to quickly decide something with a measure of luck and skill, like in poker dice. Card counting is a handy skill to have, especially when you’re trying to predict if a row is about to be scored or not.