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Old 12-05-2012, 07:57 AM   #1
kacaju
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Christmas gift game swap ideas

OK, I have heard of these many times...but really never have actually played them. 2 of my nieces got married over the summer and my SIL told me not to buy for them or the new husbands this year...we are getting away from giving everyone gifts... But I just read a thread about ideas for $10 gift game swap and thought maybe we could start something new. So I need detailed instructions on how to run one of these games.

There are 11 adults all together. Thanks!!
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Old 12-05-2012, 08:42 AM   #2
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OK, I'll give it a shot. I think there are a lot of variations, but this is how I've done it.

Put everyone's name in a basket, and put all the wrapped gifts in the middle of the room/table.

Pull the first name, and that person chooses a gift and unwraps it. As each new name is called, that person can either choose a gift to unwrap or "steal" the gift someone is already holding. If your gift is stolen, you can either steal someone else's gift or choose a new gift to unwrap.

The game continues until everyone has an unwrapped gift. We add the rule that no gift may be stolen more than 3 times (so if you're the 4th person to hold it, it's yours to keep). And a gift can be stolen only once per round. Does that make sense?
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Old 12-05-2012, 08:43 AM   #3
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All presents are brought wrapped and put in a pile. You put numbers 1-11 in a bowl/hat and let everyone choose one.

Whoever has #1, chooses a gift to open. The next person (#2) can either take the gift #1 opened or open another wrapped gift. The next people in line can choose any of the opened gifts or take a wrapped gift. If a person get's their gift "stolen", then they open up another wrapped gift or steal one. And then move onto the next person in line.

We have a rule that a single gift can only be "stolen" twice. The third person to get that gift gets to keep it. But you don't have to do that if you don't want, or extend it to more steals.

The last person (#11) get to choose the last wrapped gift or steal one. If they don't choose the wrapped gift, the person who they steal from must take the wrapped gift and the swap is over.

I hope I've gotten all the elements in there.
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Old 12-05-2012, 09:31 AM   #4
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We had our own variation which was more random because we all just purchased gift cards in the same denomination.

I put slips of paper in a basket that had various instructions we had to follow.

Some would include everyone "Everyone pass your gift to the person on your right" "Everyone put the gifts back in the pile and choose again"

Some would be individual "Exchange your gift with the person older than you"
"Choose someone to play rock paper scissors against you. Winner picks the gift" "Pick one of the kids to sing a Christmas duet with you. The kid gets to pick who you exchange with"
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Old 12-05-2012, 10:16 AM   #5
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I have played by the rules posted in the first and second responses (some variations on how many times a gift can be stolen, etc.).

I have also played where nobody unwraps their gifts till the end, once everyone has a package. You are choosing from the pile, or stealing wrapped packages, based on what you think *might* be inside. Oddly sized/shaped packages keep everyone guessing. It usually makes for a lively exchange as people try to shake, weigh, guess what's in each package. Of course, you're also more likely to end up with something you didn't really want that way. (I got a set of sake glasses once. I have never even tasted sake.)
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Old 12-05-2012, 10:54 AM   #6
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Here are our rules:
All presents are brought wrapped or in a gift bag and placed on a table or under the tree.
Put the numbers 1-11 in a bowl and let everyone draw one.

Whoever has #1, chooses a gift to open. The next person (#2) can either take the gift #1 opened or open another wrapped gift. The next people in line can choose any of the opened gifts or take a wrapped gift. If a person get's their gift "stolen", then they open up another wrapped gift or steal one. Continue through the numbers the same way. We encourage stealing or the game will be over in 10 minutes!

Once someone takes the last wrapped gift and opens it, the swap is over.

We have these rules:

Once a person has a gift for the 3rd time it is theirs and cannot be stolen anymore, it is out of play.

You cannot immediately steal back the gift that was taken from you. EX: A steals from B, B must steal from someone else not from A.

When the last gift is opened, the first person who went--if they do not already have a gift that they have had 3 times and is out of play--can trade his/her gift for any of the gifts eligible for stealing. Then the game is over.
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Old 12-05-2012, 02:11 PM   #7
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I was going to post the same question! We want to try something like this. Keep the ideas coming!
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Old 12-05-2012, 02:18 PM   #8
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thanks everyone. sounds like fun and I am sure the family will enjoy!!
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Old 12-05-2012, 05:09 PM   #9
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I am going to a party on Thursday and we always play the left, right game.

Here is an example of how it is played. If you google it, there are lots of versions of it.

http://www.santalady.com/xmasgame/leftright.html
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Old 12-05-2012, 09:29 PM   #10
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We use dice. Gifts come wrapped...every one picks one and unwraps it. Then we all sit around a table. With 11 or 12 people - we'll use 2 pairs of dice. Everyone takes a turn with the dice, if you shake doubles you can exchange with anyone. There are 2-sets of dice going, so it gets a little grabby.

We do this for a specific time - about 4 minutes, and when the timer goes off - you get the gift you have in front of you.
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