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Monty Python and the Holy Grail's official board game includes a working catapult

Fend off the roaming Black Knight, French style.

Monty Python and the Holy Grail board game backerkit video screenshot
Image credit: Dynamite Entertainment

If you’re an older millennial reading this, there’s a pretty good chance that you’re both into board games and wore out more than one copy of 1975 comedy classic Monty Python and the Holy Grail. If so, you’re in luck - an official tabletop adaptation of the quotable film has hit Backerkit.

Monty Python and the Holy Grail: The Game is a new design from Gwen Ruelle and Sam Bryant, the duo behind Fire Tower and Punch Bowl, that attempts to faithfully recreate as much of the British comedy troupe’s most well-known creation into cardboard and cardstock. Players join King Arthur in his quest for the Holy Grail, navigating a convoluted board and dodging threats such as the roaming Black Knight and catapulted cows.

Two to five players will wander the vaguely European wilderness and gather followers to help you in your trevails while also accruing Quest cards. When played, everyone seated at the table will attempt to stop the questing player from achieving their goal and earning valour. Both sides will play Grail cards from their hands to a stack in order to hit as close to the goal number without breaking over. To the winner goes the valour, while the loser (bravely) runs away.

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Knights will also need to keep an eye out for the Black Knight’s pawn, who will stalk the game board and challenge any errant questers he encounters. Win, and that player gains a permanent buff printed on the back of one of his limbs. Another source of valour comes from the working catapult, which can be used to launch cow meeples across the board in a cruel and decidedly French attempt at knocking over opponents’ meeples.

On its face, Monty Python and the Holy Grail: The Game is an intentionally goofy and weird design that stuffs as many references, winking nudges and gaffs into the box as possible. All of the components feature stills from the film or original artwork illustrated by Terry Gilliam. The designers describe their own board game as “the weirdest (and perhaps most pointless) game you’ll play this week”, hinting at an experience that doesn’t take itself too seriously.

Monty Python and the Holy Grail board game backerkit video screenshot showing catapult
Image credit: Dynamite Entertainment

The Backerkit campaign for Monty Python and the Holy Grail: The Game runs through February 8th to fund a single physical box version (with a dedicated tier for vendors). Shipping to backers is currently estimated to begin this July, but publisher Dynamite Entertainment maintains the possibility of delays during production.

Monty Python’s send-up of the Arthurian Legend enjoyed a different tabletop adaptation last year in the form of Monty Python’s Cocurricular Mediaeval Reenactment Programme, a mouthful of a tabletop RPG that takes the piss out of roleplaying and its own source material.

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