Put away your Codenames agents and marvel in the true king of word association games; Decryto - a fantastic new twist on a classic theme which uses fantastic real life encryption!
Decrypto is suitable for three to eight players, created by Thomas Dagenais-Lespérance, and published by Le Scorpion Masqué and IELLO. It's a fantastic, fun, very unique word association game, in-which players divide into two teams, and each team receives four secret words which are hidden using a unique encryption tool of word play. When you place the word in the Decrypto panel, the word is revealed, each secret word when placed in the panel will have a accordioning number from one to four which will be used as part of a code.
The objective of Decrypto is to relay a code to your team as the encrypter, using clues which associate to your team’s secret words without giving away what your words might be, as each round the team has the chance to intercept your message and guess the code. If they get it right two times they win.
How to be an Encrypter?
The first player will draw a secret card from the code deck, that lists a three-digit code, containing numbers one to four which refers back to the secret word in your team’s panel. If the code is, “3-1-4” the encrypter will have to give clues that lead their team to guessing the code from the secret words by looking at them and the clues and working out which words match the clue, such as third, first and fourth words in that exact order. If the team fail to get the code this means communication has broken down and you receive one black token, if you receive two of these token in the game your team loses due to poor communication.
The trick as encrypter is that the clues need to be simple enough that your own team can guess them, but challenging enough that the other team cannot infer what they might be and intercept the message and store points.
The role of the remaining team is to decrypt the code given by the encrypter. These clues are shared between the opponent and your own team, meaning that if over two three,four plus rounds you have been giving clues which have a running theme such as your word being chocolate and you have given Charlie as a clue, aphrodisiac along factory for example, the theme could be quite easy to guess - meaning your opponents are likely to be able to work out the word and crack your code each time due to theme of clues given.
Final Thoughts on Decrypto
As you can see, Decrpyto has several elements which make the game have twists and turns such as its unique encrypted cards which are only revealed when placed in your panel. This, in my view, supersedes Codenames and is much more fun and family friendly, and given the choice been the two games I would play Decryto. One common problem with Codenames is the mass mix of cards which require high methodical thinking and strict rules. Decrypto removes this as you only have four words to think of clues for and the rules allow you to use names, slogans and much more.
The game can play a minimum of three players, however the game works better with four players rather than two and really comes to life with six or more players as you will then have three players on each team - allowing for unique clues. One element which does really help you understand clues and the game structure is playing with people and group that you are familiar with, knowing the individual's think patterns and ways of working, as you may then understand more of the abstract clues, but the game is equally, if not more, fun playing with people you have never met - trying to deduce the meaning being the clue.
If you enjoy word association games with an element of deduction and creative thinking then this game is perfect for you. Decrypto is a relatively family friendly game with some complex/more challenging word/encryption cards which can easily be removed or swapped with other charges.
I would highly recommend buying this game with high replay value due to the number of encryption card which comes with the game you are unlikely to play the same four words for at least 10+ games.