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Players compete in two teams in Decrypto, with each trying to correctly interpret the coded messages presented to them by their teammates while cracking the codes they intercept from the opposing team.

In more detail, each team has their own screen, and in this screen they tuck four cards in pockets numbered 1-4, letting everyone on the same team see the words on these cards while hiding the words from the opposing team. In the first round, each team does the following: One team member takes a code card that shows three of the digits 1-4 in some order, e.g., 4-2-1. They then give a coded message that their teammates must use to guess this code. For example, if the team's four words are "pig", "candy", "tent", and "son", then I might say "Sam-striped-pink" and hope that my teammates can correctly map those words to 4-2-1. If they guess correctly, great; if not, we receive a black mark of failure.

Starting in the second round, a member of each team must again give a clue about their words to match a numbered code. If I get 2-4-3, I might now say, "sucker-prince-stake". The other team then attempts to guess our numbered code. If they're correct, they receive a white mark of success; if not, then my team must guess the number correctly or take a black mark of failure. (Guessing correctly does nothing except avoid failure and give the opposing team information about what our hidden words might be.)

The rounds continue until a team collects either its second white mark (winning the game) or its second black mark (losing the game). Games typically last between 4-7 rounds. If neither team has won after eight rounds, then each team must attempt to guess the other team's words; whichever team guesses more words correctly wins.

Decrypto - What's in the Box

  • 2 Screens
  • 48 Code Cards
  • 110 Keyword Cards
  • 4 Interception Tokens
  • 4 Miscommunication Tokens
  • 50 Note Sheets
  • 1 30 Second Sand Timer
  • 1 Rulebook

  • Awards

    2022 Popular Mechanics Best New Board Games

    2022 Polygon Best Party Games

    2018 Golden Geek Best Party Game nominee

    2019 UK Games Expo Best Party Game People's Choice winner

    2018 Tric Trac Nominee

    2018 Lys Grand Public winner

    2018 Cardboard Republic Socializer Laurel winner

    2019 Gra Roku Best Party Game winner

    2019 Guldbrikken Best Parlor Game winner

    2018 International Gamers Award nominee

  • The Dice Tower

    "Two big thumbs up from me. For a party game, the theme of [Decrypto] is spectacular."

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  • Shut Up & Sit Down

    "[Decrypto] is a game that allows you to be delightfully clever and throws you under a bus when you're being too clever."

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  • Opinionated Gamers

    "Decrypto is a fascinating and enthralling word game.  It is one that rewards clever wordplay and clue giving, but you can’t be too clever because your team will lose the game if they can’t decipher your clues."