Social and card games from the 2011 end-of-year party

You’ve seen the photos and are awaiting the videos (including our local developer interviews), but what about the games we played at the end-of-year party?

Ninja and the Danish Clapping Game (sounds like a band name)

In the physical game space in the outside area, we played a couple of games we learned during a visit to the fine folks of IGDA Melbourne: “Ninja” and the “Danish Clapping Game” (which we incorrectly referred to as the Norwegian Clapping Game). Both excellent games, which we won’t go into too much here. You’ll just have to attend future events to learn the rules and play with a crowd. 😉

WA Game Developer Gin Rummy

Also in the outside area, some of you played a card game we put together to feature the achievements of local game developers: “WA Game Developer Gin Rummy”. The game was all about matching game developers to their games, with simple rules based on games like gin, rummy, and mah jong.

Rich designed a deck featured 16 sets of three cards, each containing:

  1. A game developer logo
  2. A game screenshot
  3. A game title and hints as to the game developer logo and screenshot

The aim of the game was to get two sets of three, and the rules were:

  1. Four players (ideally)
  2. Each player is dealt five cards
  3. The winner of the last game (or someone random) starts and players take turns in a clock-wise order
  4. At the start of their turn a player draws a card from either the top of the deck or discard pile
  5. If they have a winning hand (two valid sets of three cards), they declare “Gin” and reveal their hand
  6. Otherwise, they choose a card from their hand and place it face-up on the discard pile
  7. A player can take a turn out of order if cards in their hand and the card on the top of the discard pile complete a set, at which point they can take the card, but have to reveal the completed set

Here’s a photo of all the cards fanned out:

People were impressed by the number of cards, often remarking that they weren’t aware that so many games came out of Perth. To which we responded: “There were heaps to choose from, but we could only choose 16!”

Here’s a photo of my soon-to-be-winning hand with WRK Studio’s Orbeats on the table and two cards from the Binary Space / Class 3 Outbreak set in hand:

Rock, Paper, Scissors

Anthony designed a social variant of the classic game: Rock, Paper, Scissors. Upon registration, attendees were able to choose a card which was either rock, paper, or scissors. They were to keep the card secret and at any time could challenge another player, at which point they each had to reveal their cards to determine a winner. The winner would then (sometimes dramatically) tear up the loser’s card and hope that nobody noticed the exchange and ascertained what they were holding.

Here are the cards we used (notable for their discrete size and disposable nature):

It was an easy-to-understand game and encouraged people to approach strangers. At the end of the night, we had a five-way tie (all rocks!) which had to be decided by a more traditional rock-paper-scissors play-off!

Social Taboo

Minh designed our other social game (as a derivation of a game she played at a baby shower): Social Taboo.

Compared to Rock, Paper, Scissors, this game was much less discrete and much more visible, but just as simple and enjoyable! When attendees entered the party, they were given a sticker with a “taboo” word on it that they had to wear on their chest. If someone caught them saying the word, they would have to surrender the sticker to the other person, who would then proudly display if on their chest. At the end of the game, the person with the most words on their chest wins.

Some words (like “I”, “um”, and “like”) were difficult to avoid and would be passed around a lot. Other words were pretty safe (eg. “lobster”), but paved the way for fun attempts to get people to say them. Again, this game was designed to facilitate talking to strangers and it seemed to really empower some people, and offered a lot of enjoyment for others.

We played this game during a Let’s Make Games workday prior to the event and it was a big hit. We stuck all the original stickers onto a piece of paper for reference, and here it is:

So those were the games we played at the end-of-year party! Let us know what you thought of them, and if you’ve played them subsequently. (If anyone wants printable copies, we may be able to oblige. Let us know!)

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