Have you been hearing the buzz about “VSCO girls”? I’m not going to rehash the definition since it’s been everywhere including multiple websites and on the Today Show. I would rather point out how environmentally conscious these kids – and others of this generation – are with their reusable straws, metal water bottles… and even some trends from decades before they were born. It makes me so happy when I see scrunchies and banana clips making a comeback. I get it. The mystery and lure of days gone by… When I was a teen, I wore a denim jacket, saddle shoes and pinkie ring as an homage to the styles from the 50’s.
So you can only imagine how giddy I got when Big G Creative released the Trapper Keeper Game. it was an absolute throwback to my adolescence. Did I ever own one? No. Not only were they extremely pricey, they didn’t fit into my organizational style of organizing my homework. But that doesn’t mean I didn’t love them and the status that they represented. I actually wanted to own the game simply so I could tote around my own miniature version of the nostalgic school notebook system.
The idea of Trapper Keeper Game is to earn the most points by collecting school papers, getting notes from classmates, matching the permission slip with the appropriate field trips and report cards and avoiding getting the most detentions. Each player selects a folder in their favorite color to start the setup process. School paper cards are shuffled and dealt into a 3×3 grid of nine face-down stacks.
The top card on each stack is turned face up. The Bell cards are shuffled then six are randomly selected to form a face-down pile alongside the grid. These will be used to track the rounds while the remainder are returned to the box, ensuring that each game will be different from the prior! The Teacher’s Pet Marker is given to one player and they’ll be in charge of the stack of Bell cards.
On your turn, you’ll select three cards from any row or column or use the Bell card to select an arrangement of cards in another pattern. The cards may be face up or face down depending on whether prior players selected the face-up one in that row/column.
You’ll take your cards, select on pocket from your folder and tuck all the cards into that same pocket where they will remain for the rest of the game. If you’ve left three or fewer cards face up then you’ll flip the top cards from the remaining piles so all are piles have a face-up card. That’s all there is to your turn! Play passes to the next player to do the same. After each player has taken one turn, the Teacher’s Pet reveals the next Bell card to signify the start of the next round.
There are seven different types of School Paper cards to consider. Quizzes, Homework, Notes from classmates, Detentions, Signatures, Field Trips and Report Cards. Scoring varies as noted on each type of card. As an example, you’ll earn 1, 2 or 3 points for quizzes whereas notes from classmates score based on how many sets of the four different classmate cards you collect. Field trip cards and report cards score only if they’re paired with a signature card.
After all the Bell cards have been revealed, the scoring phase begins. It’s broken down into two parts: The Doodle Phase and the School Paper Phase. You may have noticed the blue and red doodles on the sides of the school papers. When you placed them into your folder, you indicated whether you’ll score the blue doodles (the left pocket) or the red doodles (the right pocket) on each school paper. You’ll count each of the five doodle types separately and the player with the most of each type earns 5 points, the second most 2 points.
Once you’ve completed the five doodle types, move on to scoring the school papers. Start with Quizzes and work your way through according to the rules of each type of card. The player with the most points when totaled claims the status of the gnarliest, totally tubular classmate.
This retro-themed game transports Gen X-ers back to their childhood while allowing the latest generation to experience a taste of what were considered state-of-the-art school supplies for the time. You can pick up a copy at your local Target or keep watch for it to show up on Amazon. Big G Creative continues to play on our emotions and memories with products like Home Alone card game, The Brady Bunch game, Kenny G Keepin’ it Saxy cooperative game and the cereal-inspired Monster Crunch game. Store their Facebook and Twitter handles so you can file away ideas for other products that strike your interests!
Did you own a Trapper Keeper when you were in school?