The Mind creator’s next exercise in tabletop telepathy is party drawing game Subtext


Brain games

After convincing players of their mind-reading powers (or not) in number-counting phenomenon The Mind, Wolfgang Warsch is back with a new attempt to achieve telepathy around the table.

Subtext sees the Kennerspiel des Jahres-winning designer apply his tricky mix of deduction and restricted communication to a drawing game.

It goes like this: one player looks at a card with a word, before shuffling the card back into a deck of other words, which are then handed out to the rest of the group of three to seven people. This means that one person has the same word as the dealer and everyone else has wrong answers – but nobody knows who has what.

The dealer draws their word, hoping to be specific enough to get the person with their word to guess correctly but vague enough that everyone else doesn’t have a clue – a bit like a reversed version of party gem A Fake Artist Goes to New York.

Drawing complete, everyone tries to guess which of the words the picture relates to. Meanwhile, the dealer tries to figure out who ended up with their original card. If the dealer and their unknown word-sharer both guess correctly, they score points depending on how many people choose the wrong word.

Not quite as purely intuitive as The Mind, but definitely needing some ability to think like your fellow players to score big, Subtext sounds like another mechanically simple but psychologically complex experience from Warsch.

The game is due out in the first quarter of next year.