Picks and Pans Review: Assassin

updated 12/07/1981 AT 01:00 AM EST

originally published 12/07/1981 AT 01:00 AM EST

Though the name of this game raises such ugly mages, it's no more violent than war-oriented table games and has some clever features. Two to four players start in St. Louis—where the game was created—and proceed around a board. They buy and sell such commodities as gold and plutonium so they can hire an assassin to bump off the competition with a series of card draws and dice shakes. The game includes a roster of assassins, with photos; the game's inventor, Doug Byrne, appears as "Logan Redwine," a 4'11" former Canadian hockey player whose specialty is tracking. Another, "Karl Radek," is a Latvian who collects Chinese porcelain and "has been known to chew the hair off his victims' heads." While it's not exactly all in good fun, there's strategy in it, and a chance to vent hostile impulses ($16).

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