Tradecraft: A Spy Game


Escape Velocity Games presents

Tradecraft: A Spy Game

trade·craft (trād′krăft′) n.
The methods used in clandestine operations such as espionage.

Knives in the dark. Secret plans. Information. Disinformation. What more could a spy ask for?

3-6 players – 30 minutes – Ages 12+

It’s the height of the Cold War and you are a spy. You have a mission to accomplish and you would like to avoid being killed while doing it. And you want your side to win, of course. But who, exactly, is on your side?

Tradecraft is a hidden role microgame (18 cards) where 3-6 players take on the roles of either Soviet or American spies during the Cold War era. Players may never willingly show their role to another player, but may say whatever they want about it, even the truth if necessary. The game is played over the course of several rounds and can usually be finished in less than 30 minutes.

Each round has 3 steps:

1. Deal Cards – Roles and tradecraft cards will be shuffled and dealt randomly.
2. Choose Cards – Players will pass a portion of their cards to the left 3 times to draft the cards they want.
3. Play Cards – Each player will play the highest valued card from their hand. Cards are then executed in descending order, information flows, and bullets fly. This step is repeated 2 or 3 times, depending on the number of players.

Scoring is based on the side winning the round (1 point) and completing a mission (usually 1 or 2 points). Dead spies may still score points, but their cards to not contribute towards scoring the round, so it is less likely.

Print and Play – Try It Now!

Tradecraft is currently undergoing playtesting and is available for free via print and play.  This means you can  download, print, and play the game as much as you like.  We hope you enjoy it – and provide feedback!

printingFor best results when printing the Card PDFs, it is recommended you print 9 to a page (see image on left).

Tradecraft_PnP_v13 (4.2 MB, zip)







Like the game?  Well, let us know over at BoardGameGeek.  Also, subscribe to our newsletter (right column) to be the first to hear about any updates!

Art Poll

card_spy_v1Thanks to everyone who participated in the art direction poll!  We’ve selected an artist (sample by winning artist on left) and commissioned the design and illustrations.

Updates to follow!

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