3 - 5
Description from the publisher: The elections are over, the people have spoken… and for you and your fellow Senators, the result was a bloodbath!!! You find yourselves in the minority after sweeping changes to the Senate and a transfer of power at the White House. You’re all that stands against a legislative agenda that promises to up-end American Democracy as we know it. Now you must stand together and help each other use the most powerful tool you have to block upcoming policy votes - the Filibuster! But keep in mind that as you engage in Senate floor shenanigans, your ultimate goal is to quietly build up the most influence within the Senate... perhaps in preparation for your own White House bid? It's time to make Politics Fun Again! Filibuster! is a semi-cooperative card game that tasks 3-5 players with stopping 7 Policies from coming into effect by reaching a certain time on the Filibuster track. Each Policy constitutes a round of play with a reward for successfully filibustering, and a setback for allowing the Policy to pass. If at any time 4 Policies are enacted, all players lose together. However, if players manage to play through all 7 rounds while preventing 4 Policies from being passed, players total their accrued influenced earned throughout the game. The player with the most influence is declared the winner. The game is played in two distinct phases; The Bidding Phase and the Filibuster Phase. Policies are randomly drawn from a Policy deck at the beginning of the game and laid out face down. For each round except the first, players spend influence during the Bidding Phase to earn 'votes' in an effort to become the Senate Minority Leader (first player) for that round. For the first round, the Senate Minority Leader is chosen randomly. During the Filibuster Phase, players take asymmetrical turns to work together with the goal of moving the Filibuster track to a certain number of hours, based on the difficulty of the current round (influenced by the success and failure of the group). The Senate Minority Leader always starts the round, and takes every other turn, alternating between the other players. On their turn, The Senate Minority Leader draws a card from the Time Deck and follows the instructions written. Then, the Senate Minority Leader plays a card from their hand that increases the length of the Filibuster. During their turn, other players draw an Action card to their hand, then they may: pass a card to the Senate Minority Leader that increases the Filibuster Time; play an Assist card; or draw an additional Action card. When playing assists or passing a card to the Senate Minority Leader, players gain influence equal to values written on the cards. The Senate Minority Leader does not gain influence from the round until the Filibuster ends, when they will receive influence equal to the length of the Filibuster. Play on the Filibuster continues until a card from the Time Deck stops the Filibuster, the Filibuster reaches 24 hours, or there are no more Time Deck cards to draw. Additionally, The Senate Minority Leader has a limited-use option to call a vote to voluntarily finish a Filibuster early, though this can sacrifice potential benefits and divide a portion of the influence earned that round to the other players. This option can only be used successfully a handful of times per game, after which it is no longer available.