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Each Exploding Kittens expansion has specific setup instructions. If you’re playing with multiple expansions, make sure all setup instructions are being followed.
Remove the Exploding Kittens (4) and all of the Defuse Cards (6) from the deck. Also remove the Tower of Power Card (1) from the Barking Kittens expansion deck.
Give 1 Defuse Card to each player and shuffle the extra Defuse Cards back into the deck.
Combine the 19 remaining Barking Kittens expansion cards with the rest of the cards from the main deck and shuffle the deck.
Deal out 6 cards and put them on the table. Then put the Tower of Power Crown on top of them. This is the Stash.
Insert the Tower of Power Card back into the deck and shuffle.
Deal 7 cards face down to each player for a total hand of 8 cards (7 cards + 1 Defuse Card) per player. Keep your hand secret.
Insert enough Exploding Kittens so that there is 1 fewer Exploding Kitten than the number of people playing. Remove any extra Exploding Kittens from the game.
For a 4 player game, insert 3 Kittens.
For a 3 player game, insert 2 Kittens.
This ensures that everyone eventually explodes except for 1 person.
Shuffle the deck and put it face down in the center of the table.
Pick a player to go first and start playing.
Faster Game Variant
Before inserting any Exploding Kittens or the Tower of Power Card into the deck, randomly remove about one third of the deck from the game (you will be playing with approximately two thirds of a deck, but you won’t know which cards have been removed). Then, shuffle the Tower of Power Card and the appropriate number of Exploding Kittens into the Draw Pile and start the game.
Barking Kitten 2 Cards
Place this card face up in front of you and ask for the other Barking Kitten. If any player has it, they are your target and must give you half their cards (rounding up). Combine them with your hand, then choose and return the same number of cards back to them (it’s fine if any/all of the cards were originally theirs), then discard both Barking Kittens.
If no one has the other Barking Kitten, leave the card face up in front of you. (You cannot play it again, and it is not part of your hand.) When someone plays the other Barking Kitten, you are their target.
If you get both Barking Kittens (even if you’ve already played one), play them together and pick any player as your target.
Like all Kittens, Barking Kittens cannot be Noped.
These two cards are like a game of chicken. If you have one and think someone else has the other one, play it quickly to steal their cards. But if you’re wrong and no one has the other one yet, you’re turning yourself into a target!
Alter the Future (3x) NOW 2 Cards
Privately view the top 3 cards from the Draw Pile and rearrange them in any order you’d like. Return them to the top of the Draw Pile face down, then continue with your turn. Don’t show the cards to the other players.
Unlike a normal Alter the Future, the "NOW" part means that you can play this card even when it’s not your turn. Is your opponent about to draw a card? Alter the Future before they do. Someone else just played a See the Future? You can alter the top 3 cards right after they view them. The only time you can’t play this card is in the middle of an action (i.e. you couldn’t play the card WHILE someone was shuffling the deck).
Bury 2 Cards
Play this card, then end your turn by drawing a card. After looking at it, put it back into the Draw Pile anywhere you’d like in secret.
This is great if you’re SURE the top card in the Draw Pile is an Exploding Kitten; not so great if you were wrong.
You cannot play this card if you have an I’ll Take That Card in front of you.
When BURY is played on an Imploding Kitten, leave the Imploding Kitten in the orientation you drew it (face up or face down) when putting it back into the Draw Pile.
Personal Attack (3x) 4 Cards
This Attack is played on yourself. Take three turns in a row. Take your first turn as normal (play-or-pass then draw). Then, when your turn is over, it’s your turn two more times.
If you play another Attack Card (Personal Attack, Normal Attack, etc.) on any of your turns, your target must take any of your remaining turns plus the number of attacks on the Attack Card just played.
Super Skip 1 Card
End your turn without drawing a card. If you’re supposed to take multiple turns, end them all.
This is useful when you’ve been attacked.
Potluck 2 Cards
Starting with you and going around the table in the direction of play, each player must put a card of their choice face down on top of the Draw Pile.
Tower of Power 1 Card
To play this card, wear the Tower of Power Crown. Then take the Stash Cards, and without looking, put them inside on top of your head.
The Crown protects you against all forms of stealing. If anyone steals cards from you, they blindly take a random card from the Tower of Power Crown instead of your hand (until there are no more Stash Cards left). This applies to Favor Cards, playing pairs, playing 3 of a kind, or any other form of stealing.
You may never move Stash Cards from the Tower of Power Crown into your own hand. It only protects you from stealing stealers who want to steal cards from you. Continue wearing the Tower of Power for the rest of the game.
I'll Take That 4 Cards
Play this card face up in front of another player. The next time they draw a card, they must secretly view and hand it to you.
If they hand you an Exploding Kitten, you must Defuse it or explode. Play continues as if that player had drawn a card and ended their turn.
You cannot play this card in front of a player who already has one in front of them.
Useful when you're sure a player is going to draw a card that you want!
Share the Future (3x) 2 Cards
Privately view the top 3 cards in the Draw Pile and rearrange them in any order you’d like. Show these cards to the next player before returning them to the top of the Draw Pile face down, then continue with your turn.
Stop! Don’t read this section if you aren’t playing with the Streaking Kittens expansion!
BLIND Barking Kitten ----
If you play a Barking Kitten while blind, you may not look at any of the incoming or outgoing cards.
If a Barking Kitten is played and a blind player has the other Barking Kitten, they may look at their cards to discard their Barking Kitten, then shuffle their cards blindly and proceed with the normal Barking Kittens rules blindly.
If you have a Barking Kitten card face up in front of you and become blind (or play one when blind), keep the Barking Kitten visible to all players.
In all cases, after resolving the Barking Kittens, both players may look at their new hands to see if they now have an Exploding Kitten without a Streaking Kitten that must be Defused.
BLIND Tower of Power ----
Curse of the Cat Butt only affects Stash Cards once they enter into a blind player’s hand, at which point they become blind.
BLIND I'll Take That ----
If an I’ll Take That Card is played on you while you are blind, you may look at the card you draw before giving it away as usual. Then you will become unblinded because you have successfully drawn a card (even if the card you gave away was an Exploding Kitten).
If you are blind and receive a card from an I’ll Take That, follow the rules of playing a Favor Card while blind.
BLIND Potluck ----
If Potluck is played while you are blind, you must pick a card to place on the Draw Pile without looking at your cards. After you have made your selection, you may secretly view the card (so that if you’ve accidentally given up a Streaking Kitten and you’re left with an Exploding Kitten in your hand, you can try to Defuse it).