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A new deluxe edition of Kill Doctor Lucky, a classic board game from Cheapass Games.
A new deluxe edition of Kill Doctor Lucky, a classic board game from Cheapass Games.
2,711 backers pledged $210,086 to help bring this project to life.

Introducing Deadfall


Good afternoon, killers!

We've nearly reached our 100k stretch goal, and we have a few ideas for new improvements (listed below). But first we'd like to tell you about Deadfall.

Deadfall is a new game in the Pairs family, scheduled for release in May. We're including it as a $10 add-on in the Kill Doctor Lucky project, in case you'd like to grab your copy early. (And it will automatically become part of the "Everything" levels.)

Deadfall uses a Pairs deck (1x1, 2x2, 3x3, etc) but it won't include the rules to Pairs. We figure you know those already. Instead, it will have the full rules (and variants) for a bluffing game called Deadfall (first introduced in the Lord of the Fries Pairs deck).

The Rules:

Deadfall is a gambling / bluffing game. Players ante one coin to begin, and start with a hand of six cards. Everyone plays one card, and the lowest of these will go first.

On your turn you may either play a new card face up, or call one of your opponents. 

When you play a card, you are trying not to play the last card of that rank. For example, if you play a 5, you are declaring that someone's hand still contains a 5. If you have one, you know you're safe. If not. you're making an educated guess.

A call ends the hand. When you call another player, you are saying that they were wrong when they played their last card, and there are no more cards of that rank left in anyone's hand. 

If the caller is right, she wins the pot, plus a penalty equal to the rank of the card, paid by the called player. (For example, 7 coins for calling a 7.) If the caller is wrong, the called player wins the pot, and he wins the same penalty from the caller.

There are two ways to get ahead in Deadfall: you can catch people when they play the wrong cards, and you can trick others into calling you when you're safe.

You can download the basic rules for Deadfall as part of the Lord of the Fries Pairs Deck rules, at Hip Pocket Games. Check out all the other Pairs variants while you're there, starting with the Pairs Companion, a booklet of all the variants and history from the first twelve decks. 

Don't wait! Play it today! 

The Game:

Deadfall has a set of ten fantasy characters, above, drawn by Bill McGuire. You could also play Deadfall with any Pairs deck, or even build your own deck with cards from three poker decks. But we think people will really like this art.

The game will reach retail stores in May, but we're also adding it to the list of add-ons for Kill Doctor Lucky, for $10 plus shipping, for anyone who wants Deadfall a little early. This game will include a complete rules sheet and a compact tuck box, and will be printed on our highest quality cards.

What's Next for Doctor Lucky?

The Cheapass family is taking a relaxing weekend, so updates and responses might be a little slow for the next couple of days. Rest assured, we have not disappeared. 

At the time of this update we are less than $2k from unlocking our $100k stretch goal, the wooden Doctor Lucky pawn. This is a genuine thrill for us: everyone agrees that the game will be much better with it.

But what's next? We're working on it. Here are some of the possibilities:

  • Rules for Escape from Lucky Mansion: a game where Lucky comes back as a zombie and terrorizes his would-be assassins (in beta test right now).
  • A character card for Doctor Lucky (specifically for Escape), featuring Zombie Lucky on the reverse.
  • A PDF of coloring pages based on the new character art.
  • A set of Photo Character Cards for the Funvelope
  • An alternate board / map on the back of the main board
  • An exclusive Pairs deck featuring 55 still life photos from Lucky Mansion
  • A full set of wooden pawns: We have some preliminary bids, and they aren't cheap. It'll be a high stretch goal, if we can even do it. But we're trying!

We're also working on a couple of videos, including a play-through that shows a full game of Kill Doctor Lucky (with cat!), and a behind-the-scenes video from the weekend when we shot the main campaign video.

Thanks for your support through this exciting campaign. And let's enjoy the weekend!


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    1. Cheapass Games 11-time creator on October 29, 2015

      ShadowStalker: Scythe has already raised $1.2M. I don't think it's fair to compare us. Plastic piece manufacturing has a high initial cost (the models and molds) and a low running cost (the pieces). We have never done plastic manufacturing and we don't plan to. We are using methods that are cost-effective for smaller print runs, such as using existing plastic pieces, or turned wooden pieces. These have a lower setup cost, but a higher running cost. We absolutely cannot compete with Scythe on price.

      If you are looking for a bargain, you can always print a copy of Kill Doctor Lucky absolutely free: .

    2. ShadowStalker on October 26, 2015

      Regarding the wooden pawns. How can a game like Scythe (100 wooden tokens and 25 minautures (among other things), costs $59) and KDL only has 10 tokens/pawns total not provide wooden pawn/tokens.

      I would understand more if the proportions were closer... or if Scythe upgraded these components as the game became more successful... but that isn't the case here.

    3. Alvin Helms
      on October 26, 2015

      If Doctor Lucky comes back from the dead for the purpose of inflicting vengeance on those who killed him, that wouldn't make him a Zombie, it'd make him a Revenant, right?

      I mean, just to be nit-picky and technical about categories of Undead…

    4. AingealWroth on October 24, 2015

      Escape variant (and card!), alternate board, and then the long shot pawn goals all made me smile with anticipation. The rest sound good, but those are what I look foreword to.

    5. Missing avatar

      Lukas Daniel Klausner
      on October 24, 2015

      I'd love to see an alternate board, the Escape variant including Zombie Lucky and the wooden pawns. The still-life photo Pairs deck also sounds neat. (Don't really care about photo character cards and colouring pages.)

    6. Missing avatar

      Dean Reilly on October 24, 2015

      I'd like to see an alternate board as well. I suppose Craigdarroch Castle is off the table as an option?

    7. Missing avatar

      Leah Watts on October 23, 2015

      I'd love to get an alternate board layout. (Hmm, I wonder if I still have the alternate board from the "white envelope" days?)

    8. Eric Arsenault on October 23, 2015

      Like Daniel said, an alternate board layout gets my vote !

    9. Daniel Cooksey
      on October 23, 2015

      Far and away an alternate board layout is the most attractive SG to me. Adds so much to replay value.

    10. Greg W. on October 23, 2015

      @Cheapass Games
      I love the sound of these three option for SGs the most...

      -Adding the rules for Escape from Lucky Mansion + the Doctor Lucky zombie card as an SG!

      -An alternate board / map on the back of the main board

      -A full set of wooden pawns

      I suspect the first is the easiest and the latter two will have to be high goals. However these three give the most to the game itself and would make this a truly unique and special edition of the game!