I’m Feeling Lucky - [Card Game] - Personal Project
By Christian Graham
How to Play
I'm Feeling Lucky is a social card game based around Google search autocompletes. All 175 cards are real world Google searches. Any number of players (2+) can play, but I recommend 4-8.
In order to play make sure the deck is shuffled and laying face down. Choose 1 player to start. The starting player draws a card off the top of the deck and reads the "search" and the "autocomplete" silently to themselves. The starting player then chooses another player to be their "opponent". The starting player reads the search aloud followed by two things. (1) The actual autocomplete on the card. (2) A made up autocomplete that the player just came up with. The starting player can choose to say the two autocompletes in any order they wish. The opponent player then has to guess which autocomplete was made up by the starting player. If the opponent player correctly guesses which autocomplete the starting player made up then the opponent player wins that round. If the opponent player incorrectly guesses then the starting player wins the round. The winning player keeps the card. The turn now passes clockwise (to the left of the starting player). Collect 5 cards by winning 5 rounds and you win!
I'm Feeling Lucky was inspired in part by two sources. First and foremost was The Rooster Teeth Podcast where on occasion they play a game called Gavin or Google. Gavin or Google (GoG) is played very similarly to I'm Feeling Lucky and that was by design! Over the years GoG became one of my favorite segments on the podcast mostly due to the whacky Google searches it would bring to my attention. This leads me into my second source of inspiration for I'm Feeling Lucky. This podcast segment led to many nights where me and my friends would stay up late seeing what crazy autocompletes we could get Google to show us. The results from the autocompletes were so insane I wanted a way to share the joy and laughter me and my friends found with others. Couple that with the want to experience the competitive nature of GoG and that's what inevitably led to my development of I'm Feeling Lucky.
I'm Feeling Lucky is certainly a fun card game that accomplishes its goal of being funny, accessible, and promoting interesting conversations. The design of the cards is such that when the cards are presented to people they automatically understand the base of the game. I've found this to be the case in the majority of play sessions I've experienced. With a base for the game formed in the persons mind they become much more receptive to learning the intricacies (rules) of the game. This idea is paramount in a "pick up and play" social card game as it becomes extremely easy to pull out and teach anyone who's never played before.
One of the core design flaws shows up in the way the game is played. Forcing the starting player to choose their opponent (instead of having an opponent assigned somehow) can lead to favoritism among players. This means that some players are getting drastically more play time (based on prior social relationships), and consequently more chances at winning cards thus more chances at winning the game. This was a design flaw I noticed right from the beginning. We need some way to arbitrarily appoint the active (starting) player an opponent that isn't overly complicated, maintains randomness, and doesn't add any external pieces to the game. I plan on continuing to come back to this game as I collect more play session data. I have no doubt this is a solvable issue given more play sessions.