OBJECTIVE OF TRAPWORDS: The objective of Trapwords is to be the first team to defeat the monster. 

NUMBER OF PLAYERS: 4 to 8 Players 

MATERIALS: 7 room Tiles, 5 monsters, 2 Team Figures, 4 Game Books, 10. Curse Cards, 1 Sand timer, 10 Monster Cards, 2 Pencils, 3 Plastic Stands, 50 Word Cards, 2 Torches, 1 Pad of List Sheets, and Instructions 

TYPE OF GAME: Storytelling Board Game 

AUDIENCE: Ages 8 and Up 


Trapwords is a game that requires players to break into even teams. It will quickly remind you of the game Taboo, but this one has an intriguing twist on the gameplay. Each team will choose their opponent’s words that they are not permitted to use! The players must attempt to use their wide-ranging vocabulary to lead their team to the right word.  


To begin setup, split the players into two teams of an equal number of players, and orient the teams on opposite sides of the table. The gameboard is placed in the center of the playing area, ensuring that room three is facing up. The room tiles should be organized in increasing order. The team figures are placed into the stands, and they are placed in room three of the board.  

The cards are shuffled, and two of the curse cards are randomly chosen, remaining face down and hidden from the group. One of them will be placed beside the second room, and one will be placed in front of the monster. The torch that matches the player’s color will be given to the first player of each team. The monster cards are then shuffled, and one of them is randomly chosen. The cardboard figurine for the monster is placed in the stand.  

Each team will collect a trap word sheet and a pencil. Once all of the players have their pieces set up, and each team has the required materials, the game is ready to begin. 


The game is played over the course of a number of rounds. During each round, the teams will make a list of trap words, and then the teams will guess their secret word, avoiding all of the trap words that have been set by the other team. To begin the game, the players will set their traps. To do so, the players will randomly draw a word card, and the book will decide the opposing team’s word.  

The current player must then attempt to use their knowledge of that player to set some words that the player is unable to use when attempting to give clues to their team. These are their trap words. When choosing trap words, the players should choose words that are related to the topic, not just words like “is” or “and”. To determine the number of trap words to use, the player will simply have to look at what room the opposing team is in, and the number of trap words will equal the room number.  

When the players are trying to get their team to guess the word, they will have a certain time to get their team to get the word. The opposing team will flip the timer. If the team is able to guess the word before the timer runs out, then they progress to the next room. If the team does not guess the word in their five guesses, or they say a trap word, then they do not progress to the next room.  

The game continues in this manner until the team gets in the same room as the monster. If the team beats the monster, then they win the game.  


The game comes to an end when the players enter the same room as the Monster. This may be due to the Monster coming to look for them, or it may be due to the players progressing into the Monster’s lair. This is when the team has their chance to win the game. If the players guess the word, ensuring that they are following the rules that the monster set, then the team wins the game.  

On the other hand, if the team is unable to guess the word, then the players do not win, and the other team has an opportunity.

Ellie Phillips
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