Remove the three white Overload cards from the deck. Set them aside for a moment.

Shuffle the white cards, then deal each player 7 white cards. This will be their hand. Don’t peek at other players’ hands.

Place the top 3 white cards face-up.
This is the Field.

Shuffle the Overload cards back into the deck and set it face down next to the Field.
This is the Draw pile.

It should look basically like this.

Card Layout

Shuffle the black cards, then deal each player 2 black cards face-down. These are the weapons they want to build in order to win the game. You can pick up these cards or leave them on the table. Weapon cards don’t count as part of your hand. Set aside the remaining Weapon cards in a pile.

Decide who goes first. You can do rock-paper-scissors or any other means. In subsequent games, the winner goes first.

You are ready to play!


The cardinal rule of One Hit Kill is Do Exactly One Thing.

On your turn, you must do one of the following:

  • Draw a white card and put it in your hand. You may draw from either from the Draw pile or the Field. If you take a card from the Field, immediately replace it with the top card from the Draw pile.

Draw Card

  • Play a Special card from your hand. (See Special.)


  • Discard any number of cards from your hand. These go in the Discard pile.


  • Get a new weapon. Exchange one Weapon card with a new one from the top of the Weapon pile.

Swap Weapon

  • Play your completed Weapon to win the game. First reveal your Weapon, then the cards used to create it.


When your turn is over, the player to your left goes next.

If you run out of cards in the Draw pile, take the Discard pile and shuffle it. Place it face-down as the new Draw pile.


In the Core deck, there are five Special cards that allow players to take specific actions. Playing one of these cards is the player’s entire turn.


The player draws the top five cards off the Draw pile. The player may keep as many of the cards as desired, and discards the rest.


The player searches the Draw pile and chooses one card to put in their hand. The player then shuffles the deck.


Transmute changes the class — but not the number — of a card when it is used to make a Weapon. It is only played at the end.


The player chooses whether to discard all the cards in the Field, or force another player to pick them up.

The player then takes one card from the refilled Field.


Overload is one of most dangerous card in the game.

  1. It forces anyone with more than 10 white cards to discard down to 5 white cards.
  2. It sweeps all the cards out of the Field in to the Discard pile. (Three new cards take their place.)   Overload can be played from a player’s hand, just like any Special card. It affects all players, including the player who used it. (At any time, you can ask players how many cards they have.)

If for any reason a player has two Overload cards in his hand, they trigger immediately AND both Overloads must be discarded.

Overload immediately triggers if it ever ends up in the Field.


Players race to be the first to create one of their two Weapons. Each Weapon requires a specific combination of seven cards.

Completed Weapon

To create Portal to Nowhere, the player must form a chain of four Arcane (A) cards and three Tech (T) cards. A chain is a series of consecutive numbered cards of a given type. For Portal to Nowhere, the player might use 2A-3A-4A-5A and 1T-2T-3T.

Chains cannot “loop around.” 10A-1A is not a valid chain.

Some Weapons require specific cards.

Cthulhu’s Grandpa

To create Cthulhu’s Grandpa, the player needs a chain of three Elemental (E) cards, a chain of two Bio (B) cards and two number 6 cards of any type. For Cthulhu’s Grandpa, the player might use 2E-3E-4E plus 3B-4B plus 6A-6T.

Cards can’t fulfill two requirements. For the example of the Cthulhu’s Grandpa, the player couldn’t use 5E-6E-7E plus 3B-4B plus 6T and then re-use the 6E.

You’ll always need seven cards to play a Weapon.