Emergency Games Kit

109 games in one pocket
Wednesday the 24th of August 2016
The Emergency Games Kit, v4.0 The Emergency Games Kit v4.0

I've been carrying this around for a few years now: a collection of game components that's small enough to carry in any bag or pocket, and which unpacks into a decent number of card and dice games. It's inspired by the huge plastic toolboxes of the Seattle Cosmic emergency games kits, which I admired but never really understood the "emergency" aspect of, until I realised that everyone involved presumably had a car.

This kit began in 2013 as dice, plastic poker chips and a half-sized deck of regular playing cards. The deck was later replaced with a custom-printed one which included added corner numbers (0-5 in six "circle" suits, and numbers 1 through 35, which is enough to play a lot of things) and scanned-in chunks from games I already owned. It's the portable MP3 version of my games collection.

As of April 2017 the kit stands at 29 interesting games playable with the card deck and/or poker chips, and 80 in the Freeze-Dried Games Pack (a mixed bag of 100-word rulesets for card, dice, paper and word games that I've been compiling), for a total of 109 games.

(I've since published a cut-down CC-licenced version of the card deck as The Skeleton Deck.)

Version 4.1

Full contents:

It all fits inside the pencil case, the chips being bound with two rubber bands in a single stack.

List of games

An emergency game of Santorini in a cafe Emergency Santorini

Games in and around the card deck:

The kit also includes 80 small games from the Freeze-Dried Games Pack (Yahtzee, Boggle, Lynx, etc), all playable with dice, standard poker cards and/or a pen and paper. And the deck of cards can obviously be used to play any card game that takes a single poker deck.