|Stuff required:||Handouts + pens or balloons, air horn or whistle.|
|Time required:||1 hour+.|
|Place required:||A large woods.|
|Activities:||hiding, sneaking, chasing, stealing, trading.|
|Discuss this game|
|This is a playable game - it's finished, tested and ready to play.|
|What does this mean?)|
Haggis Bandits is a game about running, hiding, sneaking and... Haggis.
The area for playing should be woodland with plenty of cover, but should also have some open cover 'dash for glory' patches. An added bonus is ditches. A guideline measurement will be added soon.
At the start of the game everyone (excluding crew) should be given a handout. If it is wanted, non-crew players can be split into two or three teams, but playing it solo or in twos or threes is a just as fun. All crew members should be given a pen. Two crew members (the 'buyer' and the 'seller') are given 5 minutes to hide in the woods while the remaining players wait outside. This is a good time to explain the rules. After the allotted time the non-crew members run into the forest, followed 3-5 minutes later by the rest of the crew (the 'Haggis Bandits')
The game is about haggis selling in Scotland, and is an accurate simulation of the current haggis market. Haggises (note that the plural is haggises, not haggi or haggis) are wee beasties that live in the Highlands of Scotland (note the game does not have to be played in the Scottish Highlands). A huge market exists for them in Scotland, and, as such, willing entrepreneurs (the players) are out to amass glorious riches in haggis selling and buying. Haggis sellers and buyers, like haggises themselves, are very shy, and move around a lot.
Players move around the playing area searching for the Haggis Seller and Buyer. Their score-sheet is divided into two columns: 'Money' and 'Haggises'. All players start off with £5 in the money column. When they find the Haggis Seller they may buy as many haggises as they like from him, at the cost of £1 per haggis. They then head to the Haggis Buyer who buys their haggises off them for £3 (it can be changed to £2 but it makes for a harder game and less glorious wealth). Players are generally not allowed to climb trees though rules can be altered. No players should have pens, in case of heinous card alteration. Rinse and repeat until the time limit is up. If a player runs out of money or loses his card, one of the following should happen: (a) Have a massive wedgie by a Bandit/Seller/Buyer and be removed from the game or (b) give the Bandit /Seller/Buyer a chocolate bar and be given a new score card.
Here's the snag: there are various Haggis Bandits wandering around the woods, wanting to steal/eat/murder the players' haggises! These Bandits are the remaining crew, and there should be about 1 Bandit for every 4-6 players. I've played with 2 bandits for 12 people to 8 bandits for 60 people, and this ratio worked. The Bandits should walk around the area not 'discovering' too many players, and should run like the wind to chase after players running like the wind as well. Chases are the best part of the game. Ditch-jumping, hill-sliding, and diving into the safe zone. When a player is caught he/she must hand over their score card to the Bandit. The Bandit will then cross off all the haggises in the 'Haggises' column. Haggis Bandits do not care for money or other such things: all they want is a meal and to hear the little haggises scream with terror. Bandits should not capture/tackle players in 'safe zones'. Bandits should also not hang around the Haggis Sellers/Buyers.
Haggis Buyers/Sellers should stay in the same place for about 10 minutes then move to a different location. They can order a queue to disperse before they move if needed. Selling is done by crossing out the money in the 'Money' column and replacing it with a new sum. The respective number of haggises are written in the 'Haggises' column. Buying is exactly the same, but in reverse. For example: Angus has £5. He buys 3 haggises. The Seller crosses out the 5, puts in a 2, and adds a 3 in the 'Haggises' column.
Ending the Game
When the time is up the crew carrying the air horn/whistle blows it and everyone must come back to the allotted area. Points are calculated by adding the money to the amount of haggises in the 'Haggis' column. This represents haggises being sold back at cost price. If you want a harder game, left over haggises are not counted as points. The person/team/group with the most points is declared the winner and is bestowed with honour and glory.
Here are some variants. Feel free to add your own.
In this version, score cards only have money on them, and haggises are represented by balloons. I've never played with helium balloons, but it might work. All balloons should have strings attached. This makes the game a lot harder because (a) haggises are now visible and (b) haggises can pop on holly bushes. Bandits can either pop the balloons, and/or carry them in a bunch and give them to the Seller every now and then. Bandits are also used to ferry balloons from the Buyer to the Seller: otherwise the Seller runs out of balloons. This game tends to have less money involved because haggises are visible, so a £3 haggis price is recommended
The Golden Haggis!
In this variant a special Golden Haggis is introduced. There should be about 2-3 Golden Haggises and they have to be physical, unlike the meta-haggises in the standard game. Not necessarily unwieldy, but visible. We have used cardboard boxes about 1ft. by 1ft. by 1ft., which is about big enough. Golden Haggises are fairly hefty in price: about £100 in a standard game, and about £20 in a balloon game. However, Golden Haggises cannot be sold, but are worth about twice the amount they were bought for. If they are still carried by the end of the game, the player(s) holding it adds it to their score.