Who doesn’t love a good game of trivia? Half Truth is a new game from Studio71 designed by legendary game designer Richard Garfield (Magic: The Gathering). He is joined by Jeopardy! world record winner Ken Jennings as a co-creator on the game.
Half Truth is a trivia race, where players compete against each other to score the most Victory Points (VPs) while moving their tokens around the board. The game is played in three rounds, each ended when a token reaches the end of the board. At the end of three rounds, whoever scored the most VPs takes home the prize: the ability to lord their trivia knowledge over their friends!
Thankfully, Half Truth is a multiple-choice trivia game. This isn’t a typical pop quiz, produce-the-answer scenario. Rather, players are given the question and six answers to choose from. There are three right, and three wrong answers to every question. You only have to choose one right answer.
Example question: Is a state with no national parks.
Possible answers: Tennessee, Ohio, Oklahoma, New York, Wisconsin, Oregon.
Can you deduce at least one that might be correct? Maybe you already know. Either way, there’s a chance for everyone with varying levels of trivia knowledge to jump in. Chief Product Officer, Javon Fraizer, says “The game is a unique combination of trivia and deduction, so whether you are book smart or street smart, you have a 50-50 chance of winning! This is a fantastic party game for everyone and we are excited to bring this to market by the holidays this year.”
Outside of the basic question and answer, there’s some dice rolling involved. The dice determines how many spaces players with correct answers get to move during a turn. It also has a couple special conditions that when rolled, temporarily modify the rules.
The game play is simple, but game development is anything but. Richard Garfield shared a little bit about the process and timeline on developing a game like this.
“There were two big steps in game design. The first was designing a framework with a handful of questions to test the structure. The second was to make a lot of questions. The first part took probably a few weeks, though it was spread over a couple years. The second took about half a dozen people (though mostly me and Ken) a few months; and that was spread over many years, maybe 5 years, During that time there was very little done to the game framework – but the types of questions we learned to write changed and improved over time.
“An example of the sort of changes that might come up in the framework – at one point there was a result on the die that made it so players couldn’t advance – all they could do was get bonuses. The idea was to push conservative players outside their comfort zone every once in a while and take a chance. The idea worked okay but too many of these rolls slowed the game down, and some questions were really not fun to hazard a second guess. The solution was to replace the roll with one that still advanced players, but bonuses paid out were doubled – encouraging players to take chances but not forcing them to do so.“
Ken Jennings, a trivia mastermind, was asked what he would tell readers out there who might not think they’re trivia buffs.
“In general, I think that people are too self-deprecating about trivia. We all know more than we think!
“But Half Truth is specifically designed for people who don’t think they like trivia games. Each card comes with three correct answers and three lies–hence the name, Half Truth. On each card, you’re trying to outwit me and Richard, by deciding which answers are true. The game is quick and fun and plays really well even if players are just guessing or following hunches. Knowing the answers can’t hurt…but I’ve also been beaten at Half Truth more than once, despite my Jeopardy! résumé! It’s a really accessible party game, not a stuffy test of knowledge at all.”
The best part is that through Kickstarter, you can be a part of getting the game out into the world! Anyone who backs in the first 48 hours has a chance to get in on a special early bird base set for $25. After that, the price of entry is $30 to get the base set, with rewards going up based on increased pledges.
For those really wanting to leave their mark on the game, donating $1,000 gets you a custom card added to future productions of the game. Plus a lot of other cool stuff.
Don’t miss out on a chance to support a great game today! Check out their Kickstarter which is live now and dive into Half Truth.