OBJECT OF BETRAYAL AT HOUSE ON THE HILL: The object of House on the Hill is to survive and complete your goal to win.
NUMBER OF PLAYERS: 3 to 6 Players
MATERIALS: A rulebook, 2 haunt books (one for the traitors and survivors), 44 room tiles, 1 starting piece, 6 character miniatures, 6 double-sided character cards, 30 plastic markers, 8 dice, a damage and turn tracker, 13 omens, 22 items, 45 events, and 149 tokens.
TYPE OF GAME: Horror Themed Board Game
OVERVIEW OF BETRAYAL AT HOUSE ON THE HILL
Betrayal at House on the Hill, referred to as Betrayal from now on, is a horror game for 3 to 6 players. The goal of the game is to survive and complete your win condition.
The game is played in two parts. In the first half, players all work together to explore the house, collect relics and items, and become stronger. At some point, however, the haunt will be triggered starting the second half of the game. This usually entails a traitor amongst your midst who will have a separate win condition from the other players, and it will become a competition to see who can complete their objective first.
To start each player will pick a character and place the plastic markers pointing at their starting strait number (marked in green). Then the starting board piece, the basement piece, and the upper floor piece should all be set out. The remaining floor pieces should be shuffled and create a facedown pile centrally to all players. Shuffle the event, item, and omen deck and place them near all players as well.
All player characters will be placed in the front of the starting title near the front door. The dice should be placed near to all players and the player whose character’s birthday is next, goes first.
The game begins and proceeds clockwise from the first player. On a player’s turn, they may do all of the following once. A player may move, find a new room, use a card, attempt to roll dice, and attack (attacking can only be done once the haunting begins).
If choosing to move, you can move a total number of spaces equal to your current speed trait. You may also split up your movement to do actions in between but if you are made to draw a card for any reason, this ends your turn and your movement.
If finding a new room, you will move out of a doorway on a discovered tile and draw a new one for the floor you are currently on. Any tiles not of your floor will be discarded facedown. You may connect a room any way you wish as long as you do so logically. You may also not block in the floor, if your tile would do this if played discard and draw a new tile. When you connect the new tile, you move into that room.
Some rooms have text or symbols on them. The first person to enter and end their turn in that room will trigger it (some rooms can be triggered once by each player). This may mean following the text printed on the card, pulling a card, or both. If pulling cards, they are completed first as you might leave the room because of the card pulled.
Items and omens can be useful cards. Each card you own can be used once. When you use a card you may do one of the following: follow the text on the card, trade the item with a person in the same room, drop the item, steal an item from a player by making a special attack roll, or pick up the item.
Rolling dice is not something you will choose to do, rather than be made to do possibly several times during your turn. when you roll you will take as many dice as the situation calls for (usually a number based off a trait) and roll them to see if you can reach a target number.
When attacking you will usually make a might roll against the person you wish to attack in the room. You will both roll dice and the player with the lower number will take an amount of physical damage based on the difference between these two dice. There are some circumstances where the rolls and damage type may differ depending on the items of the person attacking. If attacking a monster, you can not kill them only stun them unless otherwise specified.
There are two special attacks. There is a stealing attack that is identical to a regular attack; if you afflict 2 or more damage though you can choose to steal an item instead of dealing damage to a person. Certain items allow you to do ranged attacks. For these, you must have a line of sight and if you are defeated by your victim in the attack roll you tame no damage.
There are four types of character traits. They are speed, might, sanity, and knowledge. These affect how many dice you can roll and how far you can move. These are also split into physical (might and speed), and mental (sanity and knowledge) traits. When you take damage, it will specify which type of trait you will be taking the damage in and you as the player can decide which trait or what mix of straits will be affected. If any trait ever drops to the skull, however, your character will die, and you may not participate in the game any longer.
There are three types of cards a player may pull on their turn. They are items, events, or omens. Items are usually useful cards that allow you to have an advantage over other players. Events are special occurrences that can be good or bad for your character and usually involve a die roll. Omens are a special card type that may have an occurrence or an item or character a player may now be involved in.
The haunt can occur at any time during the game. After an omen is pulled, at the end of that player’s turn they will make a haunt roll. A haunt roll is when a player rolls all 8 dice and if the total of the dice is less than the number of omens pulled in the game so far the haunt begins.
When the haunt begins players will read the survivors’ booklet to let them know who the traitor will be if there is one. Then the traitor will take their booklet elsewhere and the traitor and survivors will each read their win conditions separately as to keep them secret from each other. Once finished the players are all rejoined, and each player will try to complete their objective before the other to win the game.
END OF GAME
The game ends when either the survivors or traitor finish their win condition. For the survivors to win at least one of them must remain alive, the traitor however can win sometimes even if deceased.