The Twelve Games of Christmas by Ellie Dix



The 12 Games of Christmas are designed to be sold as a pack in which you open one box, flap or envelope every day. Inside each envelope there are some cards and the rules for a new game. Each new game can be played by combining the new cards with the cards you’ve already acquired from previous days. At the end of the 12 days, you’ll have 12 games you can play using your full set of cards.

NB: Each game should have a name, but I haven’t created those yet.

The Format

I’ve been thinking of the set as working in one of two ways:

  1. Like a collection of books. Each ‘book’ would be an envelope with a spine.
  2. Like an advent calendar with drawers.


  • There needs to be a place to store the growing deck as you move through the days and to store the complete deck when all days have been opened. Is there a box that will accommodate everything and be strong enough for a standalone game box?
  • The cards need to be small enough to be easily placed in an 8X8 grid on a table but big enough to be easy to hold as a hand of cards.

Prototype Cards

The cards are very much in prototype form. The suits are not fixed – they can be any colour/icon combination. The terrains are not currently as I’ve envisaged them. At the moment, some of the terrain colours are too close to the suit colours (e.g. Tinsel). I really want the terrain sections of the cards to be aerial illustrations of terrains or places. I imagine a snowy field with mulltiple footprints over it (a bit like in Winnie the Pooh’s Snowy Day book), a sparkly night sky with a sleigh pulling across it, a wrapping paper strewn elf workshop and maybe a town with gingerbread houses… or something similar. I’ve very much put placeholder images as I couldn’t find things online that matched what was in my head!

Below you can download the prototype cards, if you’d like to play the games yourself.

The First Game of Christmas

A Storytelling Game

The Second Game of Christmas

A Simultaneous Trick Game

The Third Game of Christmas

An Elimination Game

The Fourth Game of Christmas

A Last Trick Game

The Fifth Game of Christmas

A Team Tableau Game

The Sixth Game of Christmas

A Speed Game

The Seventh Game of Christmas

A Memory Game

The Eighth Game of Christmas

A Bidding Game

The Ninth Game of Christmas

A Racing Game

The Tenth Game of Christmas

A Tableau Deconstruction Game

The Eleventh Game of Christmas

A Bluffing Game

The Twelfth Game of Christmas

A Matching Game