|Players:||2 to 30, depending on space and duration of game|
|Stuff required:||Cake; between 6 and 20 small signs; blu-tac or tape to stick them up with; pieces of paper to act as cake slips; pens; a box for people to put completed cake slips in; a bell or horn or loud voice or other way of getting attention; paper plates and napkins.|
|Crew required:||One person to set up.|
|Time required:||An hour to a day, depending on the number of signs and how long the event lasts.|
|Place required:||A place with plenty of walls, and preferably some tables, chairs, etc and quite a few attendees.|
|Activities:||Deduction, finding, eating, ambient|
|This is a playable game - it's finished, tested and ready to play.|
|Attribution-Noncommercial Creative Commons licence. (What does this mean?)|
Cake Hunting is a background game where players try to find and decode a series of words in order to win cake.
Instructions for organiser
First you'll need to prepare your cake signs. These are small signs - say, half-A4 - saying something like:
This is a Cake Sign
If you see this, do not alert those around you. Simply write down the word "afterwards" on your Cake Slip. If you do not have a Cake Slip, you can get one from the Sandpit table.
Put your Cake Slip in the box on the Sandpit table by 8:20. At 8:30 a bell will ring in the Sandpit area, and the person, people, team or teams who have filled out the most of their Cake Slip correctly will share in delicious cake.
Some signs should just be straightforward, like this one, and stuck in fairly obvious places; some should be stuck in more difficult places (under a table? Upside-down at the base of a wall?). Some should be in a code - morse code, rot-13, pig latin, as difficult as you think your audience will like. A set of relatively easy cake signs has been included in the files section of this page.
Once all the signs are stuck up, set out a pile of "cake slips" - little pieces of paper with a space for someone's name, and the words they find. (You'll need enough for everyone who wants to, to play - always provide more slips than you expect to have players, to be on the safe side.) Put a labelled box nearby for the finished slips to go in. And then, when it's 8:30 (or whatever time you've chosen as an end point), go and check the slips, ring a bell or honk a horn or shout, and award the cake to the winners.
You may also like to provide a cupcake or biscuit for everyone who entered.
Note on setup: It's worth leaving the cake somewhere safe but visible during the game, with a sign saying something like "DO NOT TOUCH: prize for cake-hunting". You're likely to get a lot more interest in playing if people can see the cake.
Note on ending the game: Once the game's over, remove all the cake signs. If you think there's a chance you might miss one or two, you should probably put the date you're playing on the signs, so you don't get people trying to play two weeks after the game's ended.
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We used the Sukplena freeware font for these signs, but you can do as you like.
Instructions for players
Players receive no instructions beyond those included on the cake signs. Organisers may or may not choose to tell players that the cake hunt is going on.
You can include the total number of cake signs on the cake signs or the cake slips, but that can lead to people spending a desperate hour looking for the one last sign they're missing - which is especially bad if one of the signs may have fallen down or been removed.