After I was unceremoniously dumped during my first semester of freshman year, I acted out a bit. I also, with the help of Esquire and Tetra, invented a game! The rules even had different sections established by Roman numerals—that’s how you know shit’s for real.
We’ve only ever played Bikini Snow Tag once, and I’m not proud to say I was on the team that cheated. That ain’t right! Do look past the dubious integrity of a heartbroken nineteen-year-old and give the game a try yourself. The rules are below—grab some bikinis and get going!
I. The Objective
The objective of the game is to find both the top and bottom of the two bikinis that are hidden on four of the players, two from each team.
Each player and Team Captain is required to wear a mask the color or pattern of the Team Captains’ choosing. Each Team Captain needs to have backup masks for captured players (see Capturing the Other Team’s Players).
Each player and Team Captain is also expected to wear a pair of patterned/dark boxers and a dark T-shirt on the outside of his clothes to disguise whether or not he is wearing a part of the bikini or not.
Team Captains must wear whistles as a symbol of their divine importance.
III. Playing Field
The ideal place to play Bikini Snow Tag is in an area with lots of trees. Snow is preferable, of course.
IV. The Bikinis
There are two different bikinis in play. Each team has a top to one bikini and a bottom to the other.
Before playing, two players from each team are secretly selected to wear the top to one bikini and the bottom to another underneath the T-shirt or the boxers. The Team Captains must confirm that both parts of the bikinis are definitely being worn underneath the T-shirt or the boxers before the game begins. Every player must act like they are wearing a part of the bikini, even if they’re not.
V. Getting Started
There are two teams, which means that there are two Team Captains. Each Team Captain takes a turn choosing who she wants on her team and distributes the masks.
If there are an odd number of players, the team captains flip a coin to see who gets to pick two players instead of one, or the odd player may be the Warden (see Zones). The Warden times how long each player is stuck in the Prison Zone and has the option of hanging around the outskirts of the zone to drag in prisoners.
The Team Captain may pick a Second-In-Command if she wishes, in case the Team Captain gets captured (see Capturing the Other Teams’ Players and Capturing the Team Captain).
Bases must also be declared at this time (see Bases). Zones must also be clearly marked off (see Zones). The Team Captains agree upon a standard length of time for head starts.
Each team must choose a base to run to when they feel they are in danger of being tagged. Also, this is the team meeting place for when a Team Captain or the optional Second-In-Command can call meetings (see Team Meetings). The base cannot magically move or be hidden during the game. All bases must be declared before the game begins. The bases must be far enough apart so you cannot see the other team’s base if you are on your own base.
There are four zones that any player or captain can move into at any time that may affect team progression as far as finding out who is wearing what bikini. Each zone must be clearly marked off before the game.
Zones can be entered simply by running into them, although the amount of times you can run into them depends on the certain type of zone and how often one is allowed to enter it.
- The Trading Zone: If a player wearing a part of the bikini believes he is in danger of being found out, he can move into the trading zone with another player from his team and trade off. This is not a very secret procedure, so players who are trading off must try to be as stealthy as possible. Players can only trade-off when in this zone.
- The Prison Zone: If you accidentally run into this zone, you are out of the game for 3-5 minutes (depending on how much you butter up the Warden!) and have to wait until your time is up in that zone. Remember: The Warden times how long each player is stuck in the Prison Zone and has the option of hanging around the outskirts of the zone to drag in prisoners. You can also end up in this zone if you are a captured player (see Capturing the Other Team’s Players). Players cannot escape the Prison Zone or be rescued out of it; the only ones who can be rescued from the Prison Zone are the Team Captains.
- The Switch Zone: This zone can only be used by the Team Captains, and there are only two chances during a game that this zone can be used per Captain, so make sure it counts. Either Team Captain can run into this zone, blow her whistle to alert the other Team Captain, and demand to trade a player or more. While the other Team Captain must comply, she then gets to decide who on the other team she wants as a fair trade-off.
For example, Tetra is a Team Captain and she runs into the Switch Zone, blowing her whistle and demanding that Akimbo should be on her team. Esquire, the other Team Captain, must agree to give Akimbo away, but in return, he gets to choose any player from Tetra’s team that he wishes.
In some cases, two players can equal one, depending on the person and their enthusiasm, how badly the Team Captain wants a certain player on her team, and so on. All decisions are final, unless the other Team Captain (Esquire, in this case) runs into the Switch Zone again.
- X-Ray Vision Zone: Each team has only two chances to run into this zone per game, so again: Make sure it counts. This zone gives players the opportunity to choose one person on the opposite team and take a peek under the shirt and the boxers. If the person isn’t wearing the bikini, then that’s that. If the person that they chose is wearing part of a bikini, the player has a ten-second head start after they put on the bikini to run to base.
A player may use any of the zones to his or her own advantage.
VII. Initiating Play
Each team will start on their base, and once the two whistles from each Team Captain are blown, the game is now in play. Team players will then begin to hunt the other team.
IX. The “Tag” Element and Bikini Discovering
As far as tagging goes, tackling and pouncing a la football are perfectly acceptable (and actually encouraged) as long as you make sure you don’t break anybody’s bones, nose, or head. The sound of bones been crushed and broken under body weight is disgusting. Not having anyone rushed to the emergency room is ideal.
If you’re tagged by a member of the opposite team, the player that tagged you has the choice of either seeing what’s underneath the boxers or what’s underneath the T-shirt. This does not mean full-on “pantsing”; this is merely “peeking.”
If the tagged player is wearing the bikini bottoms and the member from the other team chooses to check underneath the boxers, the tagged player must relinquish the bottoms to the other player.
If the tagged player is wearing the bottoms to the bikini and the other player chooses to see what’s underneath the shirt, the tagged player does not have to show what’s underneath the boxers. The bikini is still secret and the tagged player can go off on his merry way.
For example, Mistress tags Bamboo. Mistress has the choice of seeing whether Bamboo is wearing the bikini top underneath his T-shirt or the bikini bottoms underneath the boxers. Bamboo is, in fact, wearing the bikini bottoms. If Mistress chooses to look under the boxers, she gets tentative control of the bottoms. If Mistress chooses to look under the shirt, she sees and knows nothing, and can’t change her mind and decide to look under the boxers. Bamboo is free in those circumstances and can run off. If Mistress still suspects that Bamboo has a part of the bikini, she can tag him at a later point in the game and see what he’s got under his boxers.
Simply asking whether or not someone is wearing a part of the bikini under the T-shirt or boxers is not enough. This is a hands-on game; you have to check it out for yourself. You never know who will be lying!
You may not tag the same player twice in a row. For instance, Mistress has to first tag someone else before she can tag Bamboo again. She can’t simply jump atop him as soon as he stands up and demand to see what’s under his boxers.
You may not tag a player while he or she is either being asked or asking about the bikini. For example, once Bamboo is tackled and Mistress checks him out for a certain part of the bikini, a member of Twist’s team can’t run over and join in on the fun until Bamboo is up and running around again.
Furthermore, a member of Bamboo’s team can’t run over and tackle Mistress while she’s searching for the bikini on Bamboo. He or she must wait until Mistress is done searching, and if Mistress doesn’t find the bikini, she has five seconds to escape.
Also, once a player discovers that a player on the opposite team is not wearing a certain part of the bikini, there is no broadcasting (e.g. “Bamboo is not wearing the top!”) unless it’s to the Team Captain, who may do what he or she wishes with that information (see Team Meetings). That takes all the mystery out of it, and plus, there is the very likeliness that the bikini parts will be circulating, so your efforts would be futile.
X. Capturing the Other Team’s Players
If a member of Team A discovers half of a bikini on one of the Team B’s members, Team A now has tentative control of that half of the bikini. This means the member on Team A needs to wear the bikini half on the outside of his clothes and try to make it back to base. In doing so, he is now fair game to be captured by the opposing team.
The player cannot be tagged while putting on the part of the bikini. He or she is also given a head start to run back to base; no one from the opposite side of the team can chase after him or her until the head start is over. However, swarming around the player and flexing one’s intimidation skills is perfectly acceptable.
For example, Mistress tackles Bamboo at a later point in the game and discovers that he’s wearing the bikini bottoms. She now has tentative control of half of the bikini. She has to then put the bikini bottoms on the outside of her clothes so everyone on both teams knows that she has them now. Then she must try to make it back to her team’s base in order to keep the part of the bikini and stay on her team. She is considered untouchable as she is putting on the bikini, but then she has a head start to get to her base. If she makes it back to her base, her team gains full control of the bikini.
If a player with tentative control of the bikini gets captured, the whistle is blown and a coin is flipped to see whether the player is transferred to the other team or is to go in the Prison Zone (see Zones). Once the player is captured, no matter what the coin says, the bikini part that he tried to steal belongs back to the team that began with it, and the bikini part is then hidden on a different team member.
For example, Mistress is captured by Bamboo while running to her base. The whistle is blown, and the coin is flipped. The result is either Mistress ends up on Bamboo’s team, or else she is sent to the Prison Zone. Whatever the result is, the bikini is then distributed to and hidden on another member of Bamboo’s team.
If you are sent to be on another team, you are required to give up all loyalties to the former team.
The capturing of players may make the teams uneven; that is to be expected.
XI. Capturing the Team Captain
In the case that a Team Captain gets captured, that Team Captain is sent to the Prison Zone until someone from her team sneaks up and rescues her. Make sure the rescuing player is strong and quick, because he has to sneak up on the Prison Zone and carry the Team Captain back to their base without being tagged.
In the meantime, the Second-In-Command is in charge. The Second-In-Command does not get to pick his or her own Second-In-Command.
The Team Captain is the only player that cannot be transferred to another team.
Note: Each team must have its own Team Captain back on the team in order to officially win the game! This is to prevent the remaining team players from saying “Screw it” and leaving the poor Team Captain bored and alone in the Prison Zone for all eternity (or at least for the duration of the game).
XII. How to Get a Player Back on Your Team
There will be two ways you can either get back an original member of your team. The first way is to enter The Switch Zone (see Zones).
The second way is if a captured player is recaptured (see Capturing the Other Team’s Players).
XIII. Bikini Collecting
Again, the objective of this game is to capture both bikinis (all four parts) for your team.
If a player brandishing a stolen bikini makes it back to his base safely without being captured, his team now has full control over the bikini. As opposed to leaving the bikini at the base, the bikini goes back into game circulation until the other part(s) of the bikini is/are found. That team must hide the bikini on a team member.
For example, if Mistress does happen to make it back to her own base with the bikini, her team now has control of that part of the bikini. The bikini then gets redistributed to and hidden on one of her team members; however, which one of the team members it is is unbeknownst to the other team. The whistles are blown, and the game is back on.
XIV. Team Meetings
Team meetings are times where information can be shared. While you generally can’t run around screaming, “Esquire isn’t wearing the top!”, you can tell it to the Team Captain, who may then call a meeting, perhaps by blowing the whistle or simply by calling certain people over for a meeting.
Team meetings can be suggested by any of the players, as long as they mention it to the Team Captain, who calls forth the players. Players may be excluded from their team meetings, depending on what information is being given out. Sometimes it is just best not to know certain things.
During a team meeting, a player cannot tag or be tagged.
XV. The Invention of New Rules (Optional Play)
If there is a majority agreement that something partaking to the game is not working well or there is some aspect that needs improvement, there’s the option of inventing new rules or new ideas for the games while playing. A timeout will be called; both teams will convene and decide upon an alternative. It’s up to the Team Captains’ discretion when these timeouts are called.
XVI. Snowball Arsenal
Feel free to snowball the hell out of the opposing team to inhibit their progress. Sure, it won’t really get you anywhere in the game, but if it’s snowing, you’re probably going to do it anyway, so it might as well be mentioned somewhere in the rules.
XVII. Lack of Snow
In the event that the weather doesn’t cooperate, the “S” will mean whatever s-word equivalent the teams agree upon. Bikini Snacks Tag, anyone?
XVIII. The Winners and the Not-Quite Winners
The winners get all the victory and glory, but what happens to the losing team? That’s up to the winning team!
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