OBJECTIVE OF DON’T L.L.A.M.A.: Be the player with the lowest score at the end of the game

NUMBER OF PLAYERS: 2 – 6 players

CONTENTS: 56 cards, 70 chips

TYPE OF GAME: Hand Shedding

AUDIENCE: Ages 8 and up


L.L.A.M.A. is a push your luck hand shedding game in which players are trying to get rid of as many of their cards as possible while also bluffing their opponents into keeping more cards in their hand.  There are six different colored suits, and each suit contains its own number.  There are also 8 Llama cards that will cost the player extra points if it’s still in their hand at the end of the game.

During the game, players will need to play cards to the discard pile that either match or are ranked one higher.  The game is played over multiple rounds until one or more players earn 40 points.  At that point, the player with the lowest score wins.


 The L.L.A.M.A. deck is composed of 56 cards including: eight purple 1’s, blue 2’s, green 3’s, yellow 4’s, orange 5’s, red 6’s, and eight Llama cards.  Within the box, there are 70 chips.  20 of them are black and have a value of 10 while 50 of them are white with a value of 1.

Shuffle and deal six cards to each player.  The rest of the cards form the stock.  Put them face down on the table and turn the top card over to begin the discard pile.  Put all of the chips near the stock. 


The youngest player gets to go first.  On a player’s turn, they have three options: play, draw, or quit.


If a player chooses to play a card from their hand to the discard pile they must choose a card that matches in value (a 5 on a 5) or a card that is one higher in rank (a 6 on a 5).  Llamas can be played on top of 6’s or on top of other Llamas, and 1’s can be played on top of Llamas to begin the cycle over again.  Once a card is played, that person’s turn is over.


A player can draw a card from the stock on their turn.  If the player chooses to do this, their turn ends immediately after drawing.  If the stock runs out of cards, players simply do not have the option to draw anymore.


If a player cannot or does not want to play a card and chooses not to draw one, they must quit the round.  They place their cards face down on the table in front of them.

Play continues with each player choosing one of the three actions on their turn until the end of the round.


A round can end in two ways.  First, the round ends as soon as one of the players has played their last card.  Second, the round ends once all of the players have quit.

If all but one of the players has quit, the remaining player can continue to play cards to the discard pile, but they are not allowed to draw.  Once that player has emptied their hand or run out of cards to play, the round ends.


If a player discards their final card, they are able to return one chip in their possession to the pile.  That chip can be white or black. 


Players earn penalty points for the cards remaining in their possession whether they are still in hand or placed face down on the table after quitting.  Each card is worth the value of its rank, so a 6 is worth six points, a 3 is worth three points and so on.  However, if a player has multiple copies of a card, they only earn points for one.  For example, if a player has three 6’s, they only earn six penalty points. 

Llamas are worth 10 penalty points. Just like the numbered cards, players only earn penalty points for one of the Llama cards in their possession.


After tallying up their score, a player should take a number of chips equal to their point total.  Black chips are worth 10 points, and white chips are worth 1 point.  A player can exchange one black chip for ten white ones (or visa versa) at any time during the chip collection phase.


The game ends once a player has collected 40 or more penalty points.  When that happens, the player with the lowest score wins the game.  In the case of a tie, the victory is shared.

Mark Ball
Latest posts by Mark Ball (see all)