Rules Document last updated on 9/18/15
A satirical card game by Carol Mertz
Pass work off to your opponents and fib your way up the corporate ladder in this satirical bluffing card game! Get rid of the tasks in your hand to get promotions and level up, all the way until you reach the top and become the C.E.O.!
In Pass the Buck: A Game of Corporate Responsibility Management, players act as corporate employees who each have Tasks to do, Departments that determine their ability to complete Tasks, and a Level which indicates their job title. Players take turns as the Delegator, trying to get rid of all the Tasks in their hand by completing them one-at-a-time themselves, or by passing them off to their opponents for optimal efficiency. Players can bluff about whether they are in the proper Department to take a Delegator’s Task, but be careful! If the Delegator believes a player is bluffing, they can call HR, which could have dire consequences.
This lightweight card game is both comedic and strategic. If you’re great at forcing other people to do your work for you, you’ll be C.E.O. before you know it!
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“Each playthrough [of Pass the Buck: A Game of Corporate Responsibility Management] ended up a hilarious parody of inter-office slacking and bureaucracy as people cut loose and get in to the game.”
“[Pass the Buck: A Game of Corporate Responsibility Management is] a hilarious tongue-in-cheek, poking-fun-at-corporate-America kind of thing.”
—Seth Coster, Butterscotch Shenanigans
“It’s extremely simple with three types of cards, but there’s a lot of emergent behavior and strategy that comes out.”
“I thought the concept of how you move up in the company in this card game was hilarious, because it’s true to life. You pass off your duties to somebody else, a subordinate or someone under you, and you move up in the company. It was an interesting take on a card game.”
“This game resonates with everyone from the cubicle-bound to the retail peon and answers that age old question of 'How in the world did Terry become a manager?!' It combines the beauty of playing the corporate ladder without the ugly lawsuits of actually having to deal with Human Resources. It's Corporate Subterfuge without all the red tape!”
—Adam Zinkl, Playtester
How do I get the game?
The Kickstarter campaign to fund production of the game was successful (and even reached two of the stretch goals, greatly improving the quality of the components). You can now purchase the full retail version of the game directly from Amazon, or you can purchase the Print & Play version of the game through itch.io.
Is there a press release?
Can I bluff in order to accept a Delegator's Task Card?
The short story is that you can, but the long story is that there is really no good outcome for bluffing in order to take a Delegator’s Task Card. The best case scenario is that someone later calls HR on you and you get away with it, so it’s something of a wash (you’d get an extra card when the Delegator gives it to you before, and the Delegator has to draw a card and end their turn as punishment for calling HR when you were telling the truth). The entire goal of the game is to get rid of cards; by taking someone else’s card without being in the right department, you are not only benefitting the other player by letting them get rid of a card, but you are also putting yourself at an extraordinary disadvantage by taking a card that you can’t even complete on your own turn.
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