A mystery box filled with miniatures to enhance your RPG campaigns. All official miniatures and for a bargain price!

Buy Miniatures Box »

Not sure what game to buy next? Buy a premium mystery box for two to four great games to add to your collection!

Buy Premium Box »
Subscribe Now »

If you’re only interested in receiving the newest games this is the box for you; guaranteeing only the latest games!

Buy New Releases Box »
Subscribe Now »

Looking for the best bang for your buck? Purchase a mega box to receive at least 4 great games. You won’t find value like this anywhere else!

Buy Mega Box »
Subscribe Now »

Buy 3, get 3% off - use code ZATU3·Buy 5, get 5% off - use code ZATU5

How To Play High Society

high society (1)

High Society is a Reiner Knizia special, it boils all the gameplay down to a pure bidding game and gets rid of any unnecessary filler. I like to introduce it to people not familiar with his games as it shows how much can be done with so little. With that in mind if you need help learning the game I have written this blog especially for you.

Set Up

Each player gets an equal set of 11 money cards (1 colour per player) that they keep in their hand. It is very important that you do not let on to other players how much money you have left at any point in this game until the end.

Take the 16 status cards and shuffle them, then make a stack face down. Choose a starting player and we are ready for some big money spending fun.

How To Play

In High Society you are trying to be the socialite with the most glorious lifestyle but not the one who is the poorest. At the end of the game the player or players who have the least amount of money are automatically expelled from the game no matter how glorious they activities are. Keeping on top of your bidding whilst making sure your competitors don’t run away with the win is the order of the day. Once the poorest player (s) are eliminated the remaining players activities are measured and the winner is the player with the ‘best’ lifestyle.

At the start of a turn a new card is flipped over from the stack of status cards and depending on the type of card the following auctions / bidding will take place.

Auction Rounds – ‘Good’ Status Cards

These are the cards you want, they show perfume (1 point), champagne (2 points), haute cuisine (3 points), casino (4 points), nice clothes (5 points), holidays (6 points), art (7 points), jewellery (8 points), dressage (9 points), cruising the world (10 points). In addition there are 3 very coveted x2 multiplier cards which significantly help at the end of the game.

During these ‘good’ rounds you are bidding to win the card displayed. The starting player decides if they wish to bid and if they do they must play 1 or more of their money cards face up on the table as their opening bid. The next player clockwise must then either place a bid on the table that is higher or they can pass.

When you pass on ‘good’ cards you take all your money that you bid back into your hand and sit out the rest of this turn.

When it comes round to you again you can increase on your previous bid but you cannot take any cards that are on the table back into your hand, rather you have to add new cards from your hand to the table. The bidding continues until all players but one have passed. The player who remains loses all of their money bid on the table but gains the status card.

In the event of all players passing on a turn the last player to pass gains the status card for free.

The winner of the auction becomes the new start player and turns over a new status card unless the end game trigger has occurred. Any status card won must be left face up on the table for all players to see.

Disgrace - ‘Bad’ Status Cards

There are 3 cards in High Society that you want to avoid at all costs. These are faux pas! (you lose a card), scandal (your score is halved), passée! (you lose 5 points).

When any of these cards are revealed the auctions become the opposite of before. As soon as a player passes in this phase they receive the status card and they receive their bid money back, all other players ‘lose’ this turn and must pay their bids to the discard pile.

If a player ‘wins’ the faux pas card they must immediately lose one of their ‘good’ status cards won in a previous round. If they do not have any other ’good’ status cards they must discard one as soon as they win it.

Game End Trigger

You may have noticed the x2 cards and the scandal card are green. As soon as all 4 of these green cards have been revealed the game ends immediately without auctions for the fourth card.

Final Scoring

The player (s) with the lowest amount of money are immediately removed from the final scoring and cannot win despite how many ‘good’ status cards they may have. Then the remaining players add up their status cards remembering to apply the green cards effects at the end. The player with the highest score wins. Ties are broken by the winning player with the most money left over.


I hope this has helped you to learn the rules and how High Society plays. Obviously I would always recommend people use the official rule book to learn the rules in depth but this blog should give you a really good flavour of how the game flows.

I really enjoy the game and if you want to find me on twitter to discuss how brilliant High Society is please do @boardgamehappy.