Spreading the love of board games one meeple at a time
Dixit is one of the best casual games I have ever played. Although there are rules, a score card and technically someone wins, I find this is a game where none of that really matters. Don’t get me wrong, a casual game can become competitive, but that might stem more from a players personality then anything else.
Each player starts Dixit with 6 cards. Each card has a very interesting, colorful, and quite imaginative picture. On his or her turn, each player becomes the storyteller. The storyteller uses a word, phrase, song, sound or story that relates to the picture on the card he or she has chosen. The storyteller then places the card face down. All the other players choose a picture from the cards in their hand that best fits with the storyteller’s story and place it face down in a pile. All the cards are then shuffled and revealed. Players vote on which picture they think was the original inspiration for the storyteller’s story (that is, the storyteller’s original card). Points are then awarded based on the guesses.
The version of Dixit that I own is called Dixit Odyssey and can be played with 3 to 12 players. The scoring changes depending on how many players are in the game, and if the game is being played with teams or individuals. The game play remains the same regardless of however many people are playing, and it transitions nicely from being a game to play with a couple of friends, to a big party game. When I purchased Dixit from my FLGS, Strategies, the owner told me that it was originally designed for 6 players, but as it’s popularity grew, the designers realized people wanted to play it as a party game. It was modified to fit how people wanted to play it, and I think that remains true. Last time we played with a group of people we talked about doing rounds where people could tell stories based on a theme for the round (like scary, or romantic). The game can really be played to fit the mood and personalities of the players.
I enjoy this game as a party game because I find it less exclusive than other party games. Trivia party games, like Battle of the Sexes, tend to exclude people who aren’t interested in trivia. Physical party games, like Charades, often only appeal to people who have outgoing personalities. Quirky part games, like Quelf, can sometimes be overwhelming and require a lot of creative participation and aren’t well suited to those of us who are a little more shy. That’s not to say that these games aren’t fun with the right group of people, but Dixit is immediately accessible for different personality and group sizes. The dynamic of the people you play with will influence the seriousness or playfulness of the game, but Dixit doesn’t primarily appeal to one personality type.
I do find that there is a bit of a learning and comfort curve the first round of Dixit, especially for new players, but once everyone starts looking at their cards and becomes inspired, game play flows quite easily. I’ve found that at the end of the game, players often want to just look through all the cards and just admire the art. Dixit and Dixit Oddessy come with 84 cards, and the cards are unique for each version. There is also an expansion pack of 84 more cards that can be purchased to add to the game. That means that with the expansions, a person could have 252 unique art cards to play the game with. The cards themselves are well suited for re-play as they are usually quite detailed, with quirky and interesting little details that are sometimes not noticed until the second or third time the game is played.
The first time I played Dixit I had it described to me as the player being an art critic and this game really is about art and imagination, and I would say that I agree. The artwork is excellent and I really enjoy being inspired by the beautiful and weird pictures. This is a great game for all ages, for serious gamers and for a casual party goers.