It fell from the sky and lay buried in ice for 100,000 years. Soon it will be free.....
Trapped in the Antarctic
Discover the intruder
Battle the alien force
Agonise for the answer
Desperate to be saved
Consumed one by one
Six... Five... Four... Three...
The Thing is an unauthorised non-collectable, non-profit game for two to six players, based on the 1982 horror movie masterpiece "John Carpenter's The Thing", and simulates the paranoid members of an American Antarctic research facility (Outpost 31) being overrun by - or conquering - a parasitic alien organism capable of perfectly imitating its victims. One player begins as the Thing - all the other players start as human.
The game is primarily played out using six asymmetrical card decks - three decks for each side (each deck corresponds to a different section of the narrative). Managing your hand of cards, and when to use each deck, is key to winning the game.
The twelve members of the Outpost 31 team cards are positioned between the players, with each human player taking one character. The team then have to overcome various encounters, while trying to stay alive, in an effort to stop the Thing. Encounters are directly taken from film events, and are sorted into three separate acts - the second and third acts are shuffled, and then all three acts are placed together, forming one narrative (in this way, each game is a little different). Some example encounters: Autopsy of Norwegian-Thing, Battle in Dogtown, Explore Norwegian Base, Conduct Blood Test, and Investigate Crashed Saucer Site. In addition, the Outpost team must allocate men to tasks that may aid in their victory over the Thing. The truth being that the humans will not be able to achieve all that they want to do and will have to prioritise. All the while, the Thing player will do all in its power to thwart the human players, while attempting to construct its Blair-saucer in a secret ice cavern by cannibalising parts from the bulldozer, radio room, and helicopter.
During the game, at various stages, the Thing player has the opportunity to place infection or dummy infection cards under the human character cards. Later in the game, the Thing may even directly infect other players (unbeknownst to the remaining players), or give the impression to the others that it has! The humans must keep their wits about them if they are to fight and win against the Thing, or they may find themselves fighting each other....
1. The Outpost #31 team win if they survive the final confrontation, having destroyed the camp and sabotaged the Thing's Blair-saucer - and have killed all the Things.
- If they are mistaken and some Things remain: the Things win.
- If they killed a non-infected player: the Thing wins.
2. The Thing wins if it completes construction of its Blair-saucer.
3. The Thing wins if all the humans have been assimilated or killed.
4. The Outpost #31 team win if the survivors manage to fly to the coast in the helicopter.
5. The Outpost #31 team win if they contact McMurdo base by radio.