Top Hats and Treachery (T.H.A.T) is a new filler game coming from Rogue Artist Creations which will soon be launching on Kickstarter. I put together a print and play of this so I can give it a preview before it hits Kickstarter.
In T.H.A.T. players run hotels in London and welcome real historical persons as guests. Some of these are upper class nobility, others are middle class professionals and some may be lower class servants.
The game has a strong storytelling narrative as players tell rumors about their own and their rival hotels guests. Some will be a story of triumph where as others are of failure. These stories will determine the guests social status score, negative stories remove points and positive scores will gain points. You can also kill off characters that are either too costly to keep for end scoring or are too beneficial to your competition.
Games consist of either 10 or 15 rounds depending on your desired game length and depending on the rule set you choose from (Deadly Simple or Simply Deadly) you play cards on guests and then draw new cards. You do this for a number of rounds, new guests arrive a different points of the game. Play continues until round 10 (or 15) and then add up the total social status scores of your guests.
Overall I enjoyed this game it does a good job at being a light, easy to learn filler. I prefer the shorter game with the Simply Deadly rules.
In the Deadly simple rules you just play a card then draw a card, with the Simply Deadly rules each phase you roll a die and the rules change. It could be play a card, discard a card and draw 2 cards or play a card and steal a card from your neighbour and it just mixes things up a bit.
The theme works well with the idea of the hotel staff gossiping about the different guests is very believable. Oscar Wilde went to the Queens Coronation, Darwin is going bald and exclamations of “Dickens is Dead”
This is a fun, light, filler with plenty of take that for 2-6 players and won’t out stay its welcome with an average play time of 30 minutes.
Make sure you check out the KickStarter launching in September from Rogue Artist Creations.