Board game reviews, strategy tips & session reports
No. of players: 3-6
Amount of time to play: 60-90 min
Age requirements: 12+
Set-up time: 5 min
In Betrayal at Baldur’s Gate something evil is rising up in the city and you must get to the root of it. But beware it might just possess you.
You start Betrayal at Baldur’s Gate by choosing your character. You are all on the same team, but at some point in the game there is a chance one of you will turn on the group.
On your turn you may move and take an action. When you move off the map you draw a tile and place it where you were headed. Some tiles trigger events or have items and weapons on them. Often you need to roll dice to pass a test based on one of your character’s stats. The dice are six-sided with two blanks sides, two with one pip, and two sides with two pips. You roll dice equal to the value of the related stat and the card tells you your target value.
Some tiles have an omen symbol. These tiles have a chance to trigger the haunt. To check if the haunt has occurred you roll a number of dice equal to the number of omens that have been found. If the total is equal to or greater than six, the haunt occurs. Which haunt occurs is based on the tile and omen that triggered it.
The scenario book will tell you the results of the haunt. Usually the player that triggered the haunt will become evil and must be defeated. But sometimes an outside event will occur and the players stay in the same team to defeat it.
If any of your stats drops to zero you are eliminated from the game.
The scenario determines the win conditions for the players and betrayer (if there is one).
Betrayal at Baldur’s Gate is a re-skin of Betrayal at House on the Hill. Betrayal at Baldur’s Gate has a DnD theme. In this version the characters are different races and classes. They possess special abilities and everything is set in the city of Baldur’s Gate.
The components for this game are good. The art and tiles are very nice. The chits seem a bit thin but should hold up. The rules are easy to read too.
The theme and mechanics in this game go hand in hand. As you explore Baldur’s Gate there is a tension about what you’ll find and just when the haunt will be triggered.
The way the specific omen and tile trigger the different haunts is cool as it adds a ton of replay value to the game. It is also just an interesting way to determine which scenario you’ll play.
The DnD theme is cool and the characters’ special abilities add to the theme. They are not overpowered but are a nice element to add a bit of flavor. Many of the scenarios are thick with Dungeons and Dragons references too.
If you like cooperative games with a lot of theme and a good chance of having a traitor, pick Betrayal at Baldur’s Gate up. Or if you wanted to try Betrayal at the House on the Hill and like DnD or fantasy settings, give it a try.
Score and synopsis: (Click here for an explanation of these review categories.)
Strategy 3 out of 6
Luck 4 out of 6
Player Interaction 5 out of 6
Replay Value 5 out of 6
Complexity 4 out of 6
Fun 4 out of 6
Overall 4 out of 6