Codenames is a modern party game that came into practice in 2015. This game was designed by Vlaada Chvatil and published by Czech Games Edition. This is considered to be one of the best board games.

This game has been awarded three awards consecutively.

  • 2015 – best family game, fan-favorite game, the game of the year by Origins award.
  • 2016 – game of the year by Spiel des Jahres.
  • 2017 – best two-player game (for duet version) by Golden geek award.

This is a great family entertainer where 4-12 people can play. It is recommended at least to have six players. The game is between two teams. So now you have found a suitable game for your family the next time you gather.

Codenames involve the skills of language, identification, and guessing.

Let us see further about this new game named codenames.

How to Play?


As I mentioned earlier, codenames are played between two teams. Both teams will have a spymaster. There are 25 agents. The spymaster will give one clue at a time in connection with the multiple words on the cards. Then the teammates should identify their agents with the code names before the other team identifies theirs.


In Brief

  • Guessing is done with the hint of the spymaster.
  • Played in two groups. The groups usually are named blue and red.
  • One person from each team becomes the spymaster.
  • The other teammates are field operatives.
  • Twenty-five codename cards are placed.
  • The cards are placed randomly and mixed with the team’s cards. A certain number of cards only will represent the teams. Other cards are known as bystanders.
  • There is also an assassin.
  • The spymasters are shown a key card. It has 25 squares of various colors resembling the codenames cards on the table. Both the spymasters will be given a specific time to look at it.
  • When the turn begins, the relevant spymaster gives a clue/hint about the words on the codenames card. It will be a single word or number. It should be related to many of the words on the cards.
  • Cards will be covered as guesses or choices made.
  • If a spymaster gives an irrelevant clue, their turn ends. They will have to face a penalty. The opposite spymaster will cover one of their codenames cards.
  • The teammates should make at least one guess during their turn.
  • If the first guess comes right, they can keep playing till they go wrong.
  • If you don’t want to make the game too long, you can set a timer for each turn to end.
  • If the assassin is picked, the game will end immediately. Then the opponent team claims the win.
  • If one team identifies all their agents before the other, they win.

Is it Available Online?

Yes! In this digitalized world, codenames are not exceptional in dominating the online platform. The digital version of codenames is available, and the publisher officially launched it. You can find the official web version and the duet version on their website. They have launched a mobile version too.


To Conclude,

Were you in confusion when you heard about this game? I believe I have given you a clear picture of codenames, and that is good enough for you to play with your friends and family when you gather next time. This is a popular and entertaining game. Do try it and drop us feedback!

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