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Designer: Nick Howard
Players: 20
Stuff required: Name cards x20, faces x20, play money x200.
Crew required: 1 to explain rules and distribute items.
Preparation: Designing/printing faces and descriptions
Time required: 5 minutes explanation and distribution, 20 minutes play
Place required: one room large enough for 20 players to mingle
Activities: trading
This is an unfinished game. It is still in the design stage, and is not playable.
This game is made available under an Attribution-Noncommercial Creative Commons licence. (What does this mean?)

This game is still in the process of being written up, and is soon to be tested.



The players are aristocrats; members of the landed gentry. Each of them is in debt to somebody, and is owed a debt by somebody else. At the beginning of the game, each players is presented with a selection of items:

  • A face, on a A4 sheet, which they attach to their front (it should be clearly visible)
  • A name-card, to be kept hidden
  • The name and brief description of the person who owes them money
  • Play money (x10)

The object of the game is to be the last person with money. This is achieved by finding your debtor, while avoiding the player (identity unknown) to whom you are in debt. Complicating matters is the loose description given to each of the players of their debtors ('he has red hair', 'he wears a hat') referring to the faces each is wearing. No description rules out more than 2/3 of the players.

The players must therefore challenge potential debtors, asking for their name. Challenged players have two options: refuse the debt (in which case they must show their name card to prove themselves) or pay the debt (which does not require name-proof). Incorrectly challenged players must be given a note of play money as recompense for their trouble.

So, successful players should keep an eye on what is taking place, as challenging indiscriminately will leave them bankrupt. Players may wish to trade for information on who is whom, and may pay off debts which are not their own if they would prefer to keep their name out of circulation.

If a player is found to be bankrupt (ie, is unable to give another player compensation, or to pay a debt) they are removed from the game. It's recommended that a zone be assigned (against a wall etc) for “Debtors' prison.” Circulating players are still allowed to interact with debtors, and may still pay for information, potentially allowing the players to re-enter the game.

The game ends when only one person is still standing – ie, not bankrupt.

The Bunbury

One player can surreptitiously be given two names, allowing them to evade debt at will.

Player Instructions

Play Testing

Game Files