Human Snake

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Human Snake
Designer: Minkette
Year: unknown
Players: 7+
Stuff required: 5 Cardboard cut-outs of fruit, music, prizes (optional), a whistle or other noisemaker.
Crew required: One Snake Charmer.
Preparation: make cardboard cut-outs of fruit.
Time required: Half an hour.
Place required: Any location but not too large an area as the snakes will get tired very quickly. This game has been played indoors and outdoors.
Activities: dancing, finding.
This is an unfinished game. It is still in the design stage, and is not playable.
This game is made available under an Attribution-Noncommercial Creative Commons licence. (What does this mean?)

A real-world version of the classic computer game Snake, except the snakes are conga lines and the 'apples' are potential players holding up cardboard cut-outs of fruit.

Basic Idea

The Snake Charmer (organiser) sets off 2 Snakeheads (conga line leader players) to capture fruit (standing players) and bring it back to the Snake Charmer. Every time a fruit is captured, that player joins the front of the conga line as the Snakehead.

Depending on how many players you have there are different 'settings' in which this game can be run.

Multi Player Mode. (head to head)

This version only works well with a large number of participants.

5 people are selected to be fruit first, they are given the cardboard cut-outs and sent out into the game area. They need to pick a spot and stay there holding their fruit up so the Snakes can see them. Two players are selected to be the Snakeheads, they're task is to conga, not run, up to a fruit and grab that players waist. That player now becomes the Snakehead and congas back to the Snakecharmer to hand in their fruit and go off in search of the next fruit. The two snakes must race around the game area until there is no more fruit left. Every time a fruit is handed in, a new player is given the fruit and can run into the playing area to be caught.

The longest Snake wins.

(In the case of a tie-break situation - the first snake back wins)

A possible untested variant is to have two different colour Snakes/fruit - all the players are split into 2 teams before the game starts and the first team to get all their players into the snake wins. This is more of a relay race type game and may have a more competitive and satisfying conclusion.

Single Player Mode. (Time trials)

This version can work if there are too few players to make up two snakes.

Starting with one player congaing on his own*, the snake must either collect all the players in the shortest time or the most players in 3 minutes.

  • This is mandatory (as it is very funny to watch ^_^).

Flash mob Mode.

This version is untested and would be really cool if it worked, but has all the pitfalls of a flashmob i.e. if no one turns up it'll be really disappointing.

Arrange a time and a game area in advance - choose a place where it is busy but open and safe such as a plaza or major train station concourse. At the pre-arranged time, all the invitees hold up a fruit which they have made themselves and brought along. The Snakesheads are brought by the organisers, it is very important that they turn up so must be organisers not invitees! Use the whistle or noisemaker to signal the start of the game and the snakes must collect all the players in the game area until there are none left. The longest snake wins.

Bring several Snakeheads as well as your own fruit, it there are lots of fruit shown at the appointed time - then set off more than 2 Snakes. If there aren't many - give your spare Snakeheads fruit and send them out to be players. This will not work if the invitees have chosen allegiances beforehand.