Publisher: Funko Games
Player Count: 2-5  Players
Game Length: 45-60 Minutes
Complexity 2/5

Back in 1974, 4 friends set out on a road trip across rural Texas. Along the way they stumble on what appears to be an abandoned house only to discover unspeakable horrors lie within. What started as an innocent road trip turns into a battle for survival. In this one versus many game, The Texas Chainsaw Massacre: Slaughterhouse allows players to relive the madness as the young trespassers or step into the shoes of the murderous Sawyer family. Play through a series of scenarios challenging you with different objectives and puzzles. But remember, in this game, there are no winners… only survivors.


The Texas Chainsaw Massacre is both a cooperative game and a one vs many experience. You choose the side you want to play and then embrace the storyline, objectives and mechanics uniquely related to that persona.

So yes, you’re going to have to learn 2 sets of rules, but they’re pretty straightforward and TCM is any easy game to jump into. I’d liken it to the Horrified series from Ravensburger in terms of depth and engagement. There seems like just enough rules and choices to keep you engaged without overwhelming you.

Playing as the trespassers puts you in the shoes of the uninvited guests who have just happened to wander onto the Sawyer property. The game provides a series of unique scenarios that give the trespassers different goals to keep the game fresh. In truth, they all basically culminate with the trespassers trying to not end up dead, but you get to do different things along the way.

As the trespassers, your job will be to quickly, quietly and efficiently rummage through the game’s creepy 2-story house. In the first scenario, your goal is to repair a specific vehicle, grab the gas and the keys and get out of Dodge before the Sawyer family can beat you to death. In another scenario, you’re taking photos around the property to document the murderous activities. Choices are fairly limited: you either search a location in and around the house, walk to another location or run for your life! You may uncover useful tools to escape or items to help defend yourself. But, doing things in general creates noise and noise has consequences… which leads to one of the coolest features in the game…

As you take actions, you collect noise tokens. For anyone who’s ever seen a scary movie, noise is not something you don’t want to create. These noise tokens will both conceptually and physically become the fear tokens that fuel the antics of Leatherface and the crazy Sawyer family.

Playing as the Sawyer family is more of a process pulled directly from the pages of a movie script. Key characters are revealed, plot twists exposed and tensions rise to a frenzied pace. The Sawyer family consists of 4 members, each with their own special abilities, but they’re not all available to start the game. The Sawyer family will need to progress on the chainsaw track (a cube track shaped in a cardboard chainsaw) to bring out additional family members. The Sawyer family will move around the house chasing after the intruders, but they are aided in their quest with the fear tokens. These fear tokens can be spent on additional actions to gain bonus abilities or move forward on the chainsaw track. And this is key to amping up the pressure in the game. With more baddies on the board, the Sawyer family has a tactically heightened opportunity to make life difficult for the survivors… and if the survivors last long enough for Leatherface to make an appearance, they better make haste.

Damage is randomly assigned to the survivors through confrontations and a deck of death cards. Once a trespasser is assigned 4 unique injury cards they’re no longer injured… they’re dead. And that player gets to enjoy the terrifying screams of their companions from the sidelines for the remainder of the game. Now survivors can deal damage to the Sawyer family in a number of ways and cards drawn throughout can help balance the power struggle, but in my experience, survivors are running and Sawyers are chasing.

The game ends when at least 1 survivor has met their objective and escaped or all the survivors end up on the chopping block.


The Texas Chainsaw Massacre: Slaughterhouse is a highly thematic experience and the overall look of the production is a huge contributor toward immersing you in this twisted experience. The artwork does a fantastic job fabricating an uneasy, fear-driven environment. This is a game that truly seeks to honor its source material and it doesn’t pull any punches. It’s gritty, brutal and nasty.

While I wish the survivors were more than cardboard standees, the Sawyer family mini’s look great and are fun to move around the board. (Deep thought: Perhaps it’s the frail, cardboard nature of the survivors that made cardboards standees a must for these terrified youth characters… I’ll have to ask my therapist about that).

Overall, the production, rulebook and materials used in the game create a visceral and tactfully good time.


➕ Wonderful thematic experience

➕ Simple rule set allows you enjoy the game and not get bogged down in unnecessary rules

➕ Player aids supplement ease of play

➕ Cool noise/fear mechanic instantly creates tension

➕ Flexibility to play as the Sawyers or the survivors as well as multiple scenarios creates plenty of replayability.


➖ There is a decent amount of luck in this game and bad dice rolls can affect your enjoyment

➖ No one really likes to sit on the sidelines and dying early can be a bummer


I’d say fans of the movie franchise are going to love the vibe of this game, but that’s too easy. The Texas Chainsaw Massacre is a game with tons of universal appeal. While the theme is incredibly macabre, the excitement, tension and unique one vs many/cooperative angle makes this a fun experience for groups at Halloween or anytime for that matter. This is a gamer’s party game and groups looking for a good horror experience are going to love this.


The best thing is the noise/fear mechanic. I spoke about it above, but this single mechanic really elevates the entire game. Again, you collect noise tokens by taking actions. Some actions (such as running), create additional noise. At the end of the survivor’s turn, they roll a die in hopes of removing some or all of these noise tokens. Any remaining after the roll ends up in the Sawyer’s pocket and are almost guaranteed to come back and haunt you later. I love the tension of this mechanic and I can’t get enough of it.


I had a blast with The Texas Chainsaw Massacre: Slaughterhouse. The tone, the tension and the mechanics make this a real immersive experience and I think it’s going to surprise a lot of people. The look of the game does an amazing job putting players in an unsettling position. The semi-cooperative, one vs many setup creates an almost party-style gaming environment that, paired with the theme, will be a unique addition to many gaming libraries.

I mentioned how much I enjoyed the mechanics. There is really a nice tension in your choices and it always makes you a little unsure of how things are going to work out. It’s not terribly heavy and it’s relatively easy to jump into, but the mechanics paired with the theme give it a nice, thick feeling. For reference, this is a game that really matches up well with the hugely popular game Horrified. The weight, complexity and game length hit a lot of the same notes. It is its own game, but It also provides an equally satisfying and exciting experience.

Where TCM: Slaughterhouse might struggle is with the IP. The Texas Chainsaw Massacre the movie is a grindhouse-type film that originally marketed itself as a true story. The gritty, violent, realistic approach made it a hit with a limited audience paving the way to its cult status today. In addition, it was made almost 50 years ago. There’s been some sub-par sequels, but I imagine there are a number of potential players who have never even seen the original. Where Horrified evokes an almost campy-vibe, Slaughterhouse is edgy and dark and may not appeal to everyone.

The final point I need to address is the game’s luck factor. Yes, there are a lot of dice rolls in this game and that means a lot of luck. In fact, you can lose this one thanks to poor die rolls. Certain cards will mitigate some of that luck, but not enough to sway the outcome in my experience. This didn’t sit well with everyone who I played with. While I typically like to control my own gaming destiny, I think the luck element really lends itself to the tension of the entire experience. These classic horror films are a roll of the dice. We never know who’s going to make it out alive and the somewhat swingy nature of a die roll provides those unexpected plot twists. Sadly, it might be you who takes the brunt end of this mechanic, but all the more reason to come back again for another try.

The Texas Chainsaw Massacre: Slaughterhouse has “hidden gem” written all over it. While players might be apprehensive to give this one a roll initially, word-of-mouth is going to catch on. This is an exciting, satisfying, tension-filled game that sets the tone early and doesn’t let go until the survivors escape or the Sawyer family gets the last laugh… just like a good horror movie. If you’re looking for the next great horror game for your gaming group, you definitely need to give Texas Chainsaw Massacre: Slaughterhouse a serious look.