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Poison Bottles
Poison Bottles
by Dark Flight (2016)
Player Count
3 to 4

Player Ages

Playing Time
15 minutes to 40 minutes
  • Card Game
  • Bluffing
  • Memory
  • Number
  • Designers
  • Jordan Draper
  • Nick Halper
  • Mechanisms
  • Set Collection
  • Trick-taking
  • Hand Management
  • Memory
  • Artists
  • Jordan Draper
  • Family
  • Crowdfunding: Kickstarter
  • Rating: 6.29/10 from 7 users


    Poison Bottles is a card game with many classical elements entwined. Each player has a 3x3 grid of facedown cards in front of them, for which they will try to secretly change as the game progresses in hopes to achieve the lowest score possible.

    There are five distinct phases in the game, starting with trick taking, where a high card of the first played suit will win. If a poison bottle is played in the trick, the rules are reversed and the low card wins.

    In the next two phases, peeking and swapping, every player is allowed to look at any one card on any players board, followed by the losers of the trick swapping one card from their board with a card from their hand. A marker is then placed on one card of each players board to protect it from being attacked.

    The attacking phase follows, where the winner of the trick then takes a card from an opponents board, and swaps it with one from his hand, leaving the card face up for the rest of the game. This is repeated for each opponent.

    The final phase is the drawing phase, where players draw back up to a five card hand. These phases are repeated until a player cannot draw a card, upon which the game ends immediately. Players then reveal their boards and count up their points, however, if a player manages to get three of the same number card in a row or column, that row is eliminated and now worth 0 points. Similarly, if a player manages to get a row or column of three poison bottles, that row or column becomes worth -30 points. Poison bottles played in the trick taking phase are worth -3 points to that player at the end of the game.

    There are elements of hearts, nines, and memory in the game, with a focus on bluffing and heavy player interaction.

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