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Learn How to Play Resistance Avalon

I like board games but I bloody hate reading the rulebook. This How to Play Resistance Avalon rules guide was written to make the rules easier to understand and read. The goal is to get your game started as fast as possible.

Players: 5 to 10 | Game duration from: 30 mins | Game Complexity: EASY
The Resistance: Avalon rules pdf / rulebook | Play The Resistance: Avalon Online Link 1

The goal of Resistance Avalon

  • Players are either Loyal Servants of Arthur fighting for Goodness and honour or aligned with the Evil ways of Mordred.
  • Good wins the game by successfully completing three Quests
  • Evil wins if three Quests end in failure or by assassinating Merlin at the game’s end or if a Quest cannot be undertaken.
  • Claims can be made by players anytime throughout the game. Discussion, deception, accusation and logical deduction are all equally crucial for Good to prevail or Evil to rule the day.

Avalon Game Setup


  • Loyalty is determined by character cards. Character cards with Arthur’s sigil appear on a blue background and are on the side of Good. Cards with Modred’s sigil appear on a red background and are on the side of evil
  • References to a player’s Good or Evil loyalty are denoted with a special font.
  • There are some characters with special abilities in the game – Merlin and the Assassin are included in all games, and the remaining cards are optional
  • A player’s Character card must not be revealed at any time during the game, nor the character art discussed.


Leader Token – Designates the player that will propose the Quest Team
Team Tokens – Allocate positions on the Quest Team
Vote Token – Approve or reject the Leader’s proposed Quest Team
Quest Cards – Determine a Quest’s success or failure

Resistance Avalon cards and tokens
  • Select the tableau corresponding to the number of players.
  • With the Score Markers, Team tokens, and Quest cards next to the tableau, place the tableau in the centre of the play area.
  • Put the Round marker on the tableau’s 1st Quest space. Each player gets two Vote tokens
  • Randomly select a leader; giving the Leader a Leader token. Use chart below to determine the number of Good and Evil players:
Resistance Avalon players
  • The appropriate number of Good Character cards (one of these cards will be Merlin, all the other Good Character cards will just be “Loyal Servant of Arthur” cards) and Evil Character cards will be shuffled (one of these cards will be the Assassin, all the other Evil Character cards will just be “Minions of Mordred” cards). Deal each player one card face down. Players examine their loyalty cards in secret.
  • As soon as all players know their loyalty, the Leader must ensure that all Evil players know one another and that Merlin knows all Evil players with the following script:

“Everyone close your eyes and extend your hand into a fist in front of you”

“Minions of Mordred open your eyes and look around so that you know all agents of Evil”

“Minions of Mordred close your eyes”

“All players should have their eyes closed and hands in a fist in front of them”

“Minions of Mordred – extend your thumb so that Merlin will know of you”

“Merlin, open your eyes and see the agents of Evil”

“Minions of Mordred – put your thumbs down and reform your hand into a fist”

“Merlin, close your eyes”

“All players should have their eyes closed and hands in a first in front of them”

“Everyone open your eyes”


Each Round consists of a Team Building phase and a Quest phase. The game lasts several rounds

Team building phase

Team Assignment: After appropriate discussion, the Leader takes the required number of Tokens using the following chart or numbers on the tableau and assigns each Team Token to any player.

Avalon Team building phase

The leader can be on the team however this is not a requirement. Only one team token per player may be assigned.
Discuss! All players should help the Leader choose the right players for the team. Catching Mordred’s agents in a web of deceit requires active and logical discussion.

Example: The first Quest in a five-player game requires a Team of two players. The Leader passes Team tokens to Walter (himself) and Thomas, then calls for a vote.

  • After appropriate discussion, the Leader calls for a vote on the Team assignments.
  • The leader proposes a team to complete a quest and all players either approve and move to the Quest phase or reject the team and pass leadership to the next player. This will repeat until a team is approved.
  • Choose your Team wisely and only approve Teams where you can trust everyone. Even a single Evil player on the team is enough for failure.
  • Each player, including the Leader, secretly selects one Vote card.
  • The Leader asks for all players to flip over their Vote cards so everyone can see how they voted when everyone has their Vote cards ready.
  • If the majority accepts, the team is approved and play continues in the Quest phase.
  • If a team is rejected, the Leader passes clockwise and the Team building phase is repeated.
  • Evil wins the game if five teams (five consecutive failed votes) are rejected in a single round.

Strategy tip – Trust no one: Consider rejecting the proposal if you aren’t confident of everyone on it. Rejecting a team does not mean you are evil. Skilled players usually vote three or more times before agreeing on a team. Watch who approves and ask them why – sometimes Evil players will approve because they know another Evil player is included. Merlin can also use his vote as a signal, but be careful the Evil players will watch.

Quest phase

This is a time to measure a person’s true intent for the noble cause for which Arthur fights.

  • Quest cards are passed out to each Team member on the Quest by the Leader and players pick one to play face down.
  • Before revealing, the Leader collects and shuffles played Quest Cards.
  • If all the cards revealed are Success cards, the Quest is complete. If one (or more) Fail cards are played, the Quest fails.

Things to Note:

  • Good players choose a Quest Success card; Evil players choose either a Quest Failure or Quest Success card.
  • In 7 or more players game, the 4th Quest (and only the 4th Quest) requires at least two Quest Fail cards
  • Played and discarded Quest cards should be shuffled by two different players before being revealed
  • Discarded Quest cards are collected by a non-Team member so that it’s clear which cards are played and which are discarded.
  • Shuffle the discarded Quest cards.
  • Indicate a successful Quest on the tableau by placing a blue Score marker with Arthur’s sigil.
  • A failed quest is shown by placing a red Score marker with Mordred’s sigil on the tableau.
  • When the Quest has been completed (either successfully or unsuccessfully), advance the Round marker to the next Quest space. Next, the Leader passes clockwise and Team building begins.

How to Win

  • The game ends after:
    • 5 teams are rejected in a single round (Evil players win)
    • 3 successful or failed Quests
  • Evil players win if 3 Quests fail.
  • After 3 successful quests, Evil players discuss without revealing their Character cards and the player with the Assassin character card will name one Good player as Merlin.
    • If Merlin is named correctly, Evil players win
    • If Merlin is not named correctly, Good players win.
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