Deceptive bluffing games are my guilty pleasure.
All you need to play Liars dice is five six-sided die for each player.
The rules go like this:
- Each player secretly rolls their handful of dice, keeping them concealed from the other players for the duration of the round.
- The youngest player (or the loser of the last game) starts by declaring how many of a certain number they think is on the table.
For example, if there were three players and the first player had rolled two threes, they might declare “I think there are three threes.”
While they don’t have three amongst their dice, the chance that at least one of the other two players rolled a three is high.
- The next player to the left now has three options;
– Raise the last person’s bluff by either increasing the value of the dice, Three Fours. Or by increasing the quantity of dice, Four Twos.
– Call the players bluff, at which point everyboy reveals their dice to be counted.
- If the player’s declaration was correct, the accuser must discard one of their dice. If their bluff was wrong, the player who made the declaration must discard a dice.
- If a player suspects that previous player’s guess is correct, they may also call “Exact.” If this turns out to be true, no players lose any die. If the player who called exact was incorrect, they lose a dice.
The game continues like this until there is only player with dice left on the table.
As the game goes on and the dice pool decreases, each player’s ability to bluff reduces.
There is a more advanced ruleset where all ones are considered ‘wild’, and are included in the tally for any number.
When playing with this ruleset, if someone declares that there are ones on the table, if the next player wishes to bluff a number other than ones, they must double the number of ones called by the previous player, rounding up. For example, if the first player calls Three Ones, the next player must either call four-or-more ones, or 6-or-more of any other number.
This rule also operates in reverse. If the first player calls Seven Fives, the next player may call Four ones, Seven Sixes, or eight of any other number.
Give this a crack next time you’re struggling to find a game to play at a family dinner. It’s incredible fun to watch and learn how your friends and family go about bluffing and calculating probablilty.