The year is 1936. As Hitler's grasp on Germany tightens and his maniacal fervor is unmasked, men from the highest levels of the Reich begin to plot his assassination. As the clock ticks and Hitler's ambitions grow, these daring few must build their strength and prepare for the perfect moment to strike. The Gestapo hound their trail, calling these conspirators "Schwarze Kapelle", the Black Orchestra.
Black Orchestra is a tense and heart-pounding co-operative game based on historic events, in which concerned German officers and citizens attempted to remove Hitler from power, by any means necessary. Players take on the roles of these conspirators and engage in a high-risk game of growing suspicions, daring actions, and desperate plots.
On a turn, players may take three actions, such as moving, searching for an item, or drawing a card; or, at the cost of one action per die, roll the dice in an attempt to gain even more actions - at the risk of attracting the suspicion of the gestapo. This dice rolling "Conspire" action allows players to make bold moves when most needed.
But every move you make may also increase the suspicion of the authorities. The Gestapo will make routine sweeps, and any players with high suspicion will be arrested and interrogated (possibly resulting in other players being arrested). If you are all arrested or if the Gestapo finds your secret papers, you lose. And the suspicion placed on each conspirator will increase the chances their plots are detected.
A Series of Historical Events
After the actions have been taken, an event card is drawn. The game is played over seven stages of World War 2, represented by seven stacks of event cards. These cards walk you through the events of WWII in a roughly (but not strictly) chronological order. New stages open up new areas of the board, cause Hitler and his deputies to interact with the Conspirators, and present various opportunities or threats. During the final stage, many board spaces become off-limits, as the Allies move closer to Germany.
The Plot Thickens
To win, players must collect a plot card and fulfill all necessary requirements listed. The active player may then attempt the plot by rolling the indicated dice, including all additional modifiers and helpful Action cards. The total of number of "Target" symbols needed to kill Hitler is based on Hitler's military support, but a Conspirator's security level decides if any "Eagles" rolled will see them detected, and foil the plot regardless. Players must consider their ability to successfully complete a plot and the relative suspicion levels of the different Conspirators involved.
See what critics have to say about Black Orchestra!
'The game is very thematically rich.'
'It's very strongly and smartly put together.'
'It's a game I recommend, and it's a game I liked!'
-Zee Garcia, The Dice Tower
'It's very thematic, and I love that!'
-Board Game Geek
'This has got to be one of the most thematically powerful games I've ever played!'
'I think this is a really, really solid co-op game.'
-Man vs. Meeple
Victory or Defeat
Players will need to work together and agree on the wisest course of action, as well as have a little luck, to succeed. So, get ready to conspire and put your plan into action! Pick up your copy of Black Orchestra today!