Put and Take


If you read last weeks post, you now have ideas on how to make improvised game counters. So now I will share a game for you to put those counters into play. Put and Take games have been played for centuries by many different cultures. You can find many types of Put and Take tops from Dreidels to the eight sided teetotums of the Roaring Twenties. So whether paying for candy or coins why not give them a spin.


The number of sides a top has decides how many actions a game will have. If playing with an eight sided top a game is played like this.

1. Any number of players may play.

2. The players agree on the amount of chips each player will put in the pot at the beginning of the game.

3. First player spins and follows the instructions shown on the top.

4. After the spin the player passes the top to the next player so that he or she can spin.

5. If a take all is spun or the pot is empty all players wanting to continue playing put the agreed amount of chips in the pot.

The markings on a eight sided top mean the following:

T1 = The player takes one from the pot
T2 = The player takes two from the pot
T3 = The spinner takes three from the pot
P1 = The player adds one to the pot
P2 = The player adds two to the pot
P3 = The player adds three to the pot
AP =All players add one to the pot.
TA = The player takes all of the pot


Making a top for informal games is easy. The top shown in the photo is just a piece of cardboard cut into a octagon . Then a piece of wood with one tapered end is inserted in the middle of the cardboard. Finally label the eight sides with a game actions, and you are ready to spin.

While put and take games have a long history, I am interested to hear how popular the game is today. If you have experiences playing put and take, please share them in the comments.


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