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Tortuga 1667 is a gorgeous social deception game with pirates, treasure and a fake book


Fledgling publisher Facade Games has announced its second project, a pirate-themed social deduction title called Tortuga 1667. And boy, is it beautiful.

Tortuga 1667 is the first in the Dark Cities series from the husband and wife team of Travis and Holly Hancock, which aims to offer an ongoing set of games for between four and nine players that each focus on a different city and time period and include “dark, mysterious or deceptive” gameplay mechanics.

The other unifying feature of the series is that all of the games will come packed in fake book cases, with Tortuga’s production quality also stretching to a rubber playmat and all wooden pawns and tokens stored in a burlap bag. There’s 64 cards in the box, lovingly illustrated with the game’s cast of pirates and sailors, as well as the inked flags of the French, British and Dutch, and a selection of event cards.

Here’s how the game works: each player is given a character card and a secret loyalty to one of the three factions. Each team is attempting to transfer as much treasure as possible from a central Spanish galleon to their ship, without giving away their motive to other players. The central playmat acts as a way of tracking the treasure’s movement, as well as allowing the pawn for each player to move between ships and the titular island, with particular positions marking differing ranks – from captain and first mate to cabin boys and the governor of Tortuga.

As their action each turn, captains can choose to attack the galleon or the rival ship to steal treasure, while first mates can opt to call for a mutiny and banish their captain to Tortuga, although a vote must be held by that ship’s crew in either case. Players can also decide to turn over one of five facedown event cards on the table, which cause a number of events – including the potential end of the game if the Spanish armada arrives, at which point the team with the most treasure wins.

The game costs $21 (£17) for Kickstarter backers (plus an extra $8 (£6) for UK postage), with release planned for August of this year.

The campaign has already crowdfunded more than four times its initial $10,000 (£8,100) goal, raising $46,375 (£37,648) at the time of writing with four weeks left to go.

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