Codenames Pictures – A Review
Codenames Pictures is a new game from Vlaada Chvatil, the maker of Codenames. I think my affection for it is partly due to the fact that I love the first version so much, and partly due to, well…
Aspirations of Adolescents Anywhere
Let’s face it. Every single one of us, at one point in our lives, wants to be a secret agent of some kind. For those of us in the USA, it was probably an FBI agent or CIA operative that enraptured your imagination on the silver screen. Around the world, every culture has its underground, and the mystery is what draws us in to that scene. Codenames taps into that fascination. For a brief moment, you’re a secret agent, and that little kid inside you is elated!
Codenames Pictures is played with a minimum of 4 players. On the table are laid 25 cards with pictures on them. These pictures represent the codenames of undercover agents. The purpose of the game is to locate all of your team’s undercover operatives. One player is the Blue Team Spymaster, one is the Red Team Spymaster, and the rest of the players are evenly divided between Red and Blue team field agents. The Spymasters must use clues made of ONE WORD and ONE NUMBER to point the field agents toward the picture that represents the undercover operative’s codename.
But! The Spymaster must be careful with his or her clues. Within the play field are civilians – field agents that contact civilians lose their turn – and an assassin. Uncovering the assassin ends the game immediately, with the other team securing victory.
One thing that has frustrated us at Pround Games is the limitations on certain words that can be used to describe the pictures. If the picture representing an undercover operative is a bee, saying “Bee” is against the rules. The original version of Codenames had no such limitations, so this has been a source of frustration with the new version.
Cameron Hates Playing This Game With Me.
Seriously. Cameron hates playing this game with me. We at Pround Games have played Codenames Pictures only a handful of times, but we’ve got a fair amount of experience with the original. The first game of Codenames that I played with Cameron was amazing. We were perfectly in sync, and every clue was easily connected to a codename. However, all good things must come to an end.
On a dreary Thursday night at Denny’s in Edmond, Cameron and I sat down for a game of Codenames. On the VERY FIRST CLUE, I picked the assassin. Game over. My thoughts: No worries, we’ll get past this, Cameron and I are expert Codenames players… Could I have been more wrong? We proceeded to lose three games of Codenames in a row.
You would think that Codenames Pictures would be a “new slate”, but I still haven’t been able to convince Cameron to be a Spymaster on my team.
Codenames Pictures – [insert thumbs up emoji]
In short, we at Pround Games are excited every time we sit down to play Codenames Pictures. It’s still new, and we’re learning more . I just can’t get Cameron to be Spymaster with me anymore…