The Game is a co-operative effort where you are trying to rid all players of all their cards. It’s made up of a deck of cards numbered 1-99 and on your turn, you simply play cards (at least two, but more if you like) to one of four available places on the table.
Each player begins with a certain number of cards (Depending on player count) and four cards are laid face-up on the table: two 1 cards and two 100 cards.
On your turn, you must play at least two cards to these discard piles. From the 100 cards, you must play a lower number than any previously played cards, and on top of the 1 pile you must play a higher number. But – that basic rule can be broken if you have a card that is exactly ten places higher or lower than the current top card on the pile – for instance if the go-lower pile has a 47 on top, you could play any lower card or a 57 on top of it. This ‘rule-breaker’ aspect can buy you some time and stop the options for card-play running out.
Players are forbidden from revealing what numbers their hands contain, but they are allowed to make suggestions about which spaces to leave open for them. After playing cards, players replenish their hand, and this continues either until the cards are all gone (players win!) or you have nowhere to play your cards (players lose!)
I’ve never really associated The Game’s artwork and alleged theme (I’m assuming zombies/time running out kinda thing) with the play, which is gentle family fare really. It’s a good one to play with young kids as it’s co-operative, easy to teach, and introduces some hints of tactical play. Beyond that, I enjoyed playing it just fine, but never pined to keep revisiting (I’m not a huge fan of Hanabi either, but I think it’s a more interesting version of the idea here). Solid, rather than spectacular.
None, unless you count collectively losing.
Next to nothing.
Low: your choices are limited by your hand and what cards are on the table. And the rules really couldn't be simpler.
It's not a game that provides a wealth of different experiences, but if you enjoy the collective (mild) tension, it's short and sweet enough, despite the menacing looking artwork.