Gloom Review

Gloom is a storytelling card game where you want to have the most miserable family of all time.

In this game, you pick a family to play as. Each family has five members, but you only play with four members (unless you want a longer game). In this version, the families are the Dark Circus, the Slogar family, the Stark family, and the Wellington-Smythe’s.

The other types of cards are modifiers, events, and untimely death.Cards also have effects on the bottom when played, but for an easier play, you can disregard these to simplify play (which I recommend when you first play). Modifiers change the self-worth of characters, for both positive and negative reasons. You want to play the negatives on yourself and the positives on your opponent. The player who has the lowest family self-worth wins.

Events are played to change what a player is doing. They can cancel actions or alter actions. They are discarded immediately after play and do not affect self-worth points.

Untimely deaths kill characters and prevent any more modifiers from being played on them. You can play them on your own family members or on your opponents, as long as the member has negative self-worth.

Each player gets to actions per turn. The fun part about playing Gloom is the stories you can create as to why these miserable things are happening to your family, and connecting all of the actions together. One game, I had a very extensive story about the zoo while the nanny took the twins for a trip. The fun is in the story, which can be as ridiculous as you want.

I won’t go deeply into depth on how to play and the little intricacies of the game because there are a lot. In order to win, someone’s whole family must die. You then calculate all of the visible points of your DEAD family members, yes only the dead ones. The family with the lowest self-worth wins.


Image source: Michelle Anneliese

This game is really fun and becomes hilarious with the story-telling and the crazy things that can happen to your family members. However, this game is a little difficult to play at first and there are a lot of specifics that need to be learned, but with some house rules, you can make this game easier if need be.

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What are your favorite gloomier games? Share with me in the comments!

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8 thoughts on “Gloom Review

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  4. Recently, I’ve been introduced to a few other adult card games like this. I have a feeling these kinds of games have been around a while but I am only now learning about them! I can’t wait to try this one out next!


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