Favorite Christmas Party Game

It wasn't that hard to choose my favorite Christmas party game. I know I am not supposed to play favorites, but this time I just have to! My favorite Christmas party game is called "Gotta Have It."  It combines the fun of a Christmas gift exchange with a little bit of getting to know your guests bettter and a whole lot of excitement.

This can be played with true White Elephant gifts or with presents that your guests have put a lot of thought into.  Either way works nicely.

After I wrote this game, I used it at my next gathering.  There were a few little things that didn't work well the first time around.  So what you have here is the updated version.  I played this later that same year and it worked great!

I hope you enjoy "Gotta Have It" as much as I do. 

Summary: Gotta Have It is a Christmas gift exchange method where you have to convince the others why you should get the gift.

Ages: From 12 to adult

Recommended Number of Players: Between 8 and 30

One die
A pie pan or box lid to roll the die inside
Each player starts with a wrapped gift

Set Up:
Place all the wrapped gifts for the Christmas party game on a table, have the players sit in a circle if possible.

How to Play:
One player begins by rolling the die. If the number is odd, the next player on their right then rolls the die. If the number rolled is an even number (2, 4 or 6), then the player takes a gift from the middle and opens it. Any player who opens a gift gets 5 seconds to decide if they want to keep it. If they do, the player who opened the gift (hereafter called "Opener") has to yell "Gotta Have It!"

If one or more other players in the room also want the opened gift, then all who want the gift also yell "Gotta Have It!"

From here, a few different things can happen:

1) If only one player yelled "Gotta Have It!", and the "Opener" did not yell "Gotta Have It" within 5 seconds, then the only player who yelled "Gotta Have It!" gets to steal the gift. The "Opener" then has to wait for their turn to roll the die again before they can open another gift.

2) If only one player yelled "Gotta Have It!" and the "Opener" has yelled "Gotta Have It" both players must roll the die. High roll gets to keep the disputed gift. In the case where each player has an unwrapped gift, the gifts are then exchanged. Play continues with more players rolling to get an even number.

3) If more than one other player yells "Gotta Have It!", then all players who yelled "Gotta Have t!" must tell why they need to be the one to keep the gift. Every player in the room then gets to vote on the best reason why one particular player should be allowed to keep the gift.

The reasons can be real, or they can be made up. For instance, a reason for needing the gift could be that you are the only person who truly understands the banking regulations in America, and you only discuss this knowledge with others while you are in a good mood, and by NOT bringing that gift home would put you in a bad mood for several months, creating a collapse in the world economy because no one else knows what to do. Thus, it serves the greater world good for you to have the gift and you should be the one to take it home from this Christmas party game.

If the vote is a tie, then the Host of the party decides who gets to keep the disputed gift and regular play continues.

4) If a player in the room who already has a gift yells "Gotta Have It!" and succeeds in claiming a new gift, the two gifts are simply exchanged. No one should have more than one gift at a time.

All players get to roll the die, regardless of whether or not they have a gift. If a player who has an unwrapped gift they do not want to keep rolls an even number, they can point to an unwrapped gift in someone else's possession and yell "Gotta Have It!" Then that player has 5 seconds to yell "Gotta Have It!" or the gifts are automatically swapped. This also opens up the opportunity for others in the room to yell "Gotta Have It!" at the same time and thus start the reason process again.

If a player has an unwrapped gift they want to keep, yet they roll an even number, then they may keep their gift but they now have two choices: 1)They can decide which two other players will exchange unwrapped gifts straight across OR 2)they may give their roll to anyone else in the room who doesn't have an unwrapped gift, thus allowing them to pick from the middle and then open that gift.

The Christmas party game continues until all the gifts from the middle have been unwrapped.

If one player has fought and won the SAME unwrapped gift three times, that gift is theirs to keep and can never be stolen again nor swapped straight across. The only way this gift can be exchanged is if the owner yells "Gotta Have It!" for another gift and wins the new gift.

Everyone at the end should be the keeper of one gift.

And there you have it, rules to my favorite Christmas party game.

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We only played the Christmas ABC game tonight, but it was fun and funny! I have 3 more games and quizzes that I will take to my parents' house on Saturday. Thanks again!!
Jill K. from California, USA

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