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  • 170 Double-sided Message Cards
  • 1 Card Holder
  • 5 Blank Message Cards
  • 7 Colored Tokens
  • 7 Colored Dry-Erase Boards
  • 7 Dry-Erase Markers
  • Game Board
  • 56 Scoring Chips
  • 30-Second Timer
  • Instructions

Object of the Game

Can you get your message across? In ROFL!, you rack up points by condensing and guessing messages. Whoever has the most points at the end of three rounds wins!

A round consists of several turns. Every turn, one player becomes the Guesser. The remaining players are the Writers.

If the game is tied after three rounds, Tiebreaker Turns are used to determine the winner.


Place the Game Board in the middle of the table. Each player receives one Token, a matching Dry- Erase Board, and a marker.

At the start of the game, choose one player to be the first Guesser. Give them the Timer and the Message Cards in the Card Holder.

Game Play

  1. The Guesser removes the top Message Card without looking at it, and shows one side to all the Writers. (REMEMBER: the cards are double-sided, so the unused message facing the Guesser should be upside down).

  2. The Writers tell the Guesser the card's category... but only the category! (There are six categories in the game: Movies; TV Shows; Songs; Books and Comics; Politics/History; and Sayings).

  3. After the Writers see the message, the Guesser places the card face down, then starts the timer.

  4. Once the timer has started, Writers condense the message into as few characters as possible (while still getting the message across) on their Dry-Erase boards.

    At any point during the turn, Writers may place their tokens on a Game Board space, indicating the number of characters used in their message.

  5. The Guesser should give the Writers a warning that time's running out, and again when time is up. At that point, Writers MUST stop writing (though they may still place their tokens).

Condensing Messages

Writers may use any common characters found on a computer, cell phone, or typewriter keyboard - including numbers, letters, punctuation marks, mathematical and other standard symbols. (Examples are on the bottom of the Dry-Erase Boards).

Write as neatly and clearly as you can! You aren't allowed to explain what a character or symbol is supposed to mean.

Spaces between characters are "free". When you're totaling the number of characters in your message, do not count these.

Placing your Token

Your Token's position on the Game Board determines when you can show your message to the Guesser. Lower numbers will be shown to the Guesser before higher ones.

  • Writers may place a Token on any empty numbered Game Board space. The number you choose should be equal to (or greater than) the number of characters you used in your condensed message.

    The sooner you place your token, the more options you'll have open to you.

  • Tokens may be placed at any point during a turn.

  • Once placed, a Token may not be moved by anyone; it must remain on the space it was placed until the end of the turn.

  • Only one Token may occupy a single Game Board space. If another Writer's Token is already on a space you wanted, you may either choose a higher number, or - if time remains to shorten your message - a lower number.

  • Even though Writers must stop writing, Tokens may still be placed on the board once time runs out.

  • Be sure to count correctly! If you've used more characters than the space your Token is on, no guess may be made on your message this turn.


The Writer with the lowest numbered Game Board space shows the Guesser (and the other Writers) their message. The other Writers keep their messages hidden until their Game Board numbers come up.

The timer is flipped over again, and the Guesser has 30 seconds to guess what the full message is!

The Guesser only gets one shot at each Writer's message! So be careful when blurting something out!

No sounding out the message! As soon as the Guesser starts speaking, the guess has begun. As Guesser, you may not write down the message, or otherwise try and work it out, except in your head!

Other players should remain quiet. No hints, hand gestures, loud noises, or pantomimes! Hand-puppets are right out (snorts and giggles are allowed, though).

Once a guess is made, Writers may only tell the Guesser if they are right or wrong, not if the guess was close to (or far from) the original message. The current Writer should then remove his or her Token from the Game Board.

If the Guesser gets the original message from the first Writer's condensed message, both Guesser and Writer score points, and the turn ends. If not, the turn continues with the Writer whose token is on the next-lowest Game Board number, and so on.

A successful guess must include ALL the words of the message, in the correct order.

(Your group is encouraged to fiddle with this rule as best suits your style of play: If you think missing an "a", an "an", or the occasional "the" is okay, then be sure to tell everyone before the game begins! ROFL! is a party game - and it's your party! "Fun" beats "Rules-Lawyering" any day!)


When a successful guess is made, points are awarded to both the Guesser and the corresponding Writer.

For each correct guess, points are awarded as follows:

  • 3 Points - Guesser correctly figured out the first Writer's message. Both score 3 points!

  • 2 Points - Guesser couldn't figure out the first Writer's message, but correctly got it from the second Writer. Both score 2 Points!

  • 1 Point - Guesser figures out the message from one of the remaining Writers. Both score 1 point!

  • 0 Points - Even though the Writers did their best, the Guesser couldn't figure out the message. No points for you! Hang your heads under a cloud of shame, and start a new turn!

Use the scoring chips provided to keep track of your total points. Note: During the game, you do not have to show other players how many scoring chips you have.

Once any points are awarded, the player to the Guesser's left becomes the new Guesser. Wipe off your board, grab your Token back, and start a new turn!

End of the Game

After three rounds (that is, once every player has been the Guesser three times), the game is over. The player with the most points wins! Congratulations, you can get your message across!

If two or more players are tied, Tiebreaker Turns need to be played, to determine the winner!

Tie Breaker

All Players with tied high scores become Writers. The rest of the players are Guessers. One Guesser shows the Writers a message, and play continues as it would for a normal turn - until it's time to guess!

During a Tie Breaker Turn, when a Writer reveals their message, any Guesser is allowed to guess the message, but only one guess is allowed.

The first Writer to score points breaks the tie and wins the game! If no points are scored, another Tie Breaker Turn will be needed.

General Rofl! Play Hints

If it looks like you'll be the Writer with the most characters, you might as well use them all. Why limit yourself to 8 characters when you can use all 20?

Sometimes, placing your Token on the Game Board before you condense your message is a smart way to grab a low-numbered space. But be careful! This can come back to bite you.

Write as neatly and as cleanly as you can! The grids on the Dry-Erase boards are there to help you. If the Guesser can't read what you've written, you've already put yourself in a hole!

Optional Rules

  • Get creative! Instead of choosing a card, let a Writer come up with their own message one turn. Use the blank cards provided, or a piece of paper. If other Writers agree it's fine, use it! (Just don't show it to the Guesser..).

  • Allow more than one Token to occupy the same space on the Game Board. Stack 'em up and resolve them in order (bottom first) when it comes time to guess.

  • Instead of only using standard keyboard symbols, use any and all you'd like. Peace symbols, sports logos, hearts, stars - the sky's the limit!

  • For a more relaxed game, ignore the timer altogether, or give Writers an extra thirty seconds. Same goes for the Guessers - they normally know when they're flummoxed!

  • For a more challenging game, don't tell the Guesser the card category at the start of the turn!

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