Hungarian War is a hilarious party game designed for 3-5 players. The game was invented by Lauren Schlick and playtested with her family members and friends.
Number of Players: 2+ (3-5 recommended)
Time: 5 - 20 minutes
Equipment: One round table, one standard 52-card deck, and one 6-sided die for each person.
Introduction: The goal of Hungarian War is to get the most points. The game is played in a series of rounds, in which each player has the opportunity to earn points. Rounds should take about 10-20 seconds once you understand the rules.
Seat players around a table. There will be one draw deck and one discard pile. Each player will have their own pile where they collect their points.
The dealer deals cards from the draw deck and puts them face-up on the table. One card goes directly in the center, and the other cards are spaced evenly around the center card and are staggered between players, so that each player has one card on their left and one card on their right. The dealer then identifies the largest valued card on the table, and swaps it with the center card.
The point value of cards are as follows: Ace = 1, number cards = number on card, Jack = 11, Queen = 12, King = 13. If two cards have the same value, then the one which should go in the center depends on the suit. Diamonds are the highest priority, then spades, then clubs, then hearts.
A round follows this procedure:
The players examine the cards on the table, and decide what they want to do. They can either decide that they want to try and take a card for themselves, or block another player from taking a particular card. The players encode their action by choosing one of the 6 six sides on their die.
|1||Block center card.|
|2||Block left card.|
|3||Block right card.|
|4||Take right card.|
|5||Take left card.|
|6||Take center card.|
To keep their choice a secret, players choose the side of the die discreetly under the table so that other players can't see. They press their chosen side of the die into the palm of their hand and squeeze to keep it in place. Then they place their hand down onto the table, and keep it there to keep the die covered.
Once all players have placed their die on the table, the dealer counts down from 3 and then all players lift up their hands at once to reveal the top face of their die, and by extension, the action that they chose.
Every player who played a 1 or 6 should place their die on the center card. Every player who played a 2 or 5 should place their die on the card to their left. Every player who played a 3 or a 4 should place their die to the card on their right. Now we determine which players get points, and which players get temporarily eliminated:
If only one player tries to take a particular card, they get the card and it gets added to their points. If two or more players try to take the same card, then neither of them get the card and the card gets discarded instead.
There is also the ability to block a particular card. Blocking works differently for the side cards than for the center card.
For the side cards, it's fairly straightforward. If one player blocks the side card and the other person tries to take that same side card, then the player who blocks gets the side card. If one person blocks but the other person doesn't take, then nothing happens. If both players block, then the card is discarded.
For the center card, the rules are more complicated because it's the most valuable card on the table and everybody has access to it. In order to block the center card, multiple people have to block it in order for it to count. The number of people required to block depends on the number of players currently in the game. Specifically, ⅓ (or as close to ⅓ as possible) of the players have to block.
|Number of Players Currently in the Game
(Not counting temporarily eliminated players)
|Number of Players Required to
Successfully Block the Center Card
For the center card, if there is a successful block of the center card, then any players who tried to take the center card are temporarily eliminated. If there is a successful block of the center card, but nobody tries to take the center card, then all the players who tried to block the center card are temporarily eliminated. If everybody blocks the center card, then the center card is discarded and nobody gets it.
If there is not a successful block of the center card, then we treat it as if the block didn't happen and the players who tried to block just didn't do anything for their action.
At the end of the round, after all players have collected their points and have taken their dice back, the dealer replaces any missing cards on the table, and swaps the largest card on the table with the center card. The next round begins.
On any particular round, if nobody tries to block the center card, or everybody tries to block the center card, then all players who have been temporarily eliminated rejoin the game. Being eliminated usually only lasts about 1-3 rounds. As you play the game you'll understand why the rules are set up this way.
Once the draw deck is empty, the game ends. All players total the point values of their cards, and the player with the most points wins. The point value of cards are as follows: Ace = 1, number cards = number on card, Jack = 11, Queen = 12, King = 13.
Additional rare cards like the Joker and the Rules Card may be added to the draw deck and can have extra value.
Additional decks of cards may be used in order to make the game last longer.
You can also make the game last longer by writing down everyone's score on a sheet of paper, and then gathering all the cards and playing another game. Once that game is complete, you can add everyone's score to their previous score.