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Numbertown

Numbertown

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Numbertown
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Designer: Kevan Davis
Players: 10 or more.
Stuff required: One large, numbered badge, and five small tokens with the same number, per player.
Crew required: One.
Preparation: Ten minutes.
Time required: Half an hour.
Place required: A large, explorable area, indoors or out.
Activities: Chasing, hiding, mental arithmetic.
Discuss this game
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This is an untested game. Its rules are written, but it hasn't been tested out yet.
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This game is made available under an Attribution-Noncommercial Creative Commons licence. (What does this mean?)

Trapped in a strict numerical hierarchy, can you conspire against the larger numbers without getting caught by them?

Player instructions

You've got a badge with your number on it. You outrank anyone with a lower number, and defer to players with a higher number.

You've also got five scoring tokens with your number on - other players will be trying to steal these from you during the game, and you'll be trying to steal theirs. Whoever has the highest total of scoring tokens at the end of the game (not counting the ones they started with) is the winner.

When everyone has their badges and tokens, you have five minutes to distribute yourselves over the playing area. After five minutes (according to some publicly visible clock, or a whistle), the game begins.

If you can see someone that you would outrank, you can chase them down and tag them. If you succeed, they must give you a scoring token of their choice from the ones that they're carrying - either their own number, or one that they've stolen from someone else. If you already have a token with their number on it, though, they don't have to give you another token.

If someone outranks you, the only way to get their tokens is to gang up on them: if two or more players are walking around together (within a couple of feet of each other), then they are considered to have ganged up, and are treated as if they were a single, giant player with a badge number equal to the total of their members' badge numbers.

If a gang outranks a player, the player must surrender one token to each gang member. If a gang is outranked by a player with a number higher than their total, each member of the gang must surrender a token. (Therefore if a gang outranks another gang, each member of the losing gang must give one token to each member of the winning gang.) If a gang clashes with a player or gang that has the same total, then it's a standoff - they can either back away slowly, or wait for someone to defect.

If you run out of tokens, that's fine, just carry on playing and try to win some back. (If you run out of tokens halfway through handing them out to a gang, you get to choose who does and doesn't get your tokens.)

After twenty minutes, the game is over. All players remove their badges and return to the basecamp for final scoring. Players discard any tokens which have their own number on, and the highest total wins.