Two weeks in a row we’re going to discuss games I came across for the first time at ChiTag (the Chicago Toy and Game Fair) – it’s unintentional, but pretty interesting. When I first saw FlipOut it was called Patchwork and the inventor/self-manufacturer, Daniel Weaver, had a booth with just this one game, but when you saw it you just kind of got it. I love games that you “get” when you see them – I gives you that “well duh, why didn’t I think of that, okay let’s play” feeling.
As you can see from the photo, FlipOut is all about patterns. Each card has a pattern on both sides – not necessarily the same pattern – and each player has 6 cards in their holder. Now only you can see one side of your cards, and the other players can see the other side. The goal of the game is to collect as many cards as possible. You collect cards by getting 4, 5, or 6 cards of the same pattern in a row either in your cards facing you or on the visible-to-you side of your opponent’s cards.
On your turn you get to make any two of the following moves (and they can be made to the cards in your holder or in any opponent’s):
- Flip: Turn any card around in its holder
- Switch: Switch the positions of any two cards
- Swap: Trade one of your cards for one from an opponent (keep the same side facing you)
- Swap 2: Trade two adjacent, same-color cards from your holder with two adjacent, same-color cards in an opponent’s holder
- Score: Collect a set of 4-6 adjacent same-color cards from your holder
- Swipe: Collect a set of 4-6 cards from an opponent’s holder — BUT you must give them one card (kind of as payment for stealing their cards)
You play until you run out of cards and then everyone counts up how many they’ve collected and the person who has the most wins. Simple as pie.
I asked Daniel Weaver how he came up with this pretty unique game and here’s what he said,
“I discovered FlipOut where many great American inventions are discovered – in the shower! The previous evening, I had played poker with friends and while shampooing my hair I started thinking “what have I never seen before in games?” I was visualizing the previous evening’s poker game and realized that the backs of playing cards are never used! By the time I was done drying off, FlipOut existed in my head almost exactly as it is today.”
You can see that not much has changed since Gamewright has licensed the concept – the game play is the same, the cards have the same patterns (although the colors look brighter) but the biggest difference is the packaging. The old Patchwork version of the game didn’t have a box that visually “popped” and I think FlipOut has a “fresher” feeling to it. The one thing I do miss? The beautiful wooden cardholders – they made me drool. But in the end, it’s always easier to convince friends to play a game in a pretty box.
- ~$20 Amazon
- 2-5 player
- ~15 Minutes
- Ages 8 and up