Office of the Director

March 21, 1962

HP No. 001/62








1. Agency-wide Memorandum


Tradecraft is a live-action role-playing game about cold-war espionage.  Each player is a spy tasked with a mission to acquire, convey or steal information for his or her country.  Players are given a basic set of ground rules at the beginning of the game and a personal communiqué from headquarters.  Teams have to devise a strategy to share information without it falling into enemy hands.  Playing Tradecraft is about trust and deception. 


Tradecraft bears some similarity to a murder mystery dinner party, but the plot is not scripted.  Two teams will attempt to outthink and outmaneuver each other to win.  One plays Tradecraft by communicating with other players, through group meetings, one-on-one conversations, written notes or whatever methods can be devised.  The game will play out in a few rooms of a house or apartment.  Tradecraft is a unique activity for a cold-war themed cocktail party or family gathering.



2.  The Stockholm Incident


Tradecraft Vol. 1, “The Stockholm Incident” takes place at the 1962 Nobel Prize ceremony in Stockholm, Sweden.  Diplomats from both Western and Communist-bloc nations have gathered to toast the scientific innovators of the day, but some may have another agenda.


Tradecraft Vol. 1 is played by exactly 12 players and a moderator in about 3 hours.  Want to host your own game?  Download the moderator’s packet here for free.  This packet includes instructions for the moderator, rules for players, and game materials in PDF format. 



3. Prague Spring


Tradecraft Vol. 2 takes place in Czechoslovakia during the tumultuous Prague Spring of 1968.  Will the reformist government usher in a new era of personal freedom, or will the Communist Bloc restore control to the hardliners?  A few operatives working behind the scenes will make the difference.


Tradecraft Vol. 2 is playable by 8, 10 or 12 players plus a moderator in about 3 hours. 


Interested in hosting your own game of Tradecraft Vol. 2?  The moderator’s packet is now available at the password-protected link below.  To get the password, head over to the official Facebook page.  While you’re over there, “like” Tradecraft to keep up with the latest developments in the Tradecraft community.


Got the secret code? Click here for the materials.


4. Code of Conduct


Note: Are you interested in playing Tradecraft?  Have you been invited to a Tradecraft game night?  Then do not download the moderator’s packet.  You do not have the required security clearance.  Violators will receive a one-way ticket to Siberia.

4.  Intelligence Briefing


To stay abreast of the latest Tradecraft developments, become a fan of Tradecraft on Facebook. For other inquiries, email


5.  Legal Entanglements


The Tradecraft game concept and all game materials are the copyright of Patrick Riehl, 2009 (Vol. 1) and 2012 (Vol. 2).



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