Redistribution game

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the redistribution game was created in order to display that money can't buy you happiness. with the metaphor of "there are no pockets in a shroud" we wanted to demonstrate that at the end of your life money doesn't mean a thing as you can't take it with you. money is only a means to an end. what counts is how much you've committed yourself socially.

the intention was to create a game which doesn't force the accumulation of capital, it's rather a game that enforces intangible, immaterial goods through redistributing capital in order to collet so-called "happy points".

there are two different versions of this game. one tries to show a realistic approach with different characters having different initial incomes and time units at their disposal. the other version is played with all players having the same starting situation with equal incomes and time units. the concept of this game shows that no matter how much money or time you have, there is always a possibility of committing yourself socially.

as we state a critical comment to capitalism and the efficiency-oriented society, it was clear that we wanted to provide this game for free on an opensource basis so everybody can download it. all you need to do is to print it out, put it together and have fun!

Redistribution instructions 1.png



File:Double-sided redistribution.pdf


collect as many happy points as possible in order to win this game. why? because there are no pockets in a shroud!


the equipment consists of a board, 2 dices, 6 characters, 6 character cards, 16 action cards, 16 community cards, 140 happy points, 140 time points and play money worth 15.900 € (30 x 200 €, 45 x 100 €, 60 x 50 €, 75 x 20 €, 90 x 10 €)


put the board together (4 x A4 pages)

cut out the cards (action, community, character)

cut out the tokens and put them together

cut out the points (happy, time)

cut out the dice and glue it together

cut out the money

now you're ready to play the game of your life!


place the board on a table and place the action and community cards on the board. each player draws a character card and the matching token to represent him/her while traveling around the board. pick your money and time points according to your character.

characters & tokens



all remaining money and other equipment (happy and time points) goes to the bank. all players select one banker who plays in the game but has to keep his/her personal funds separate from those of the bank. the bank pays salaries and bonuses but also collects all taxes and fines. if the bank runs out of money, you may print out some more.

game procedure

File:Time point.png
This icon is a time point.

File:Happy point.png
This icon is a happy point.

place your token on the corner marked "start/finish". the player who has his/her next birthday starts the game. throw the dice and move your token in the direction of the arrow the number of spaces indicated by the dice.

if you throw a negative number while having your token on "start/finish", you have to wait until your next turn. if you throw the time point icon, you get rewarded with one time point but you have to rest on the same space. after you have completed your play, the turn passes to the left. two or more tokens may rest on the same space at the same time.

according to the space your token reaches, you can/have to perform the following actions:

  • get your salary, if you land on a "work space"
  • pick a community card, if you land on a "community space"
  • pick an action card, if you land on an "action space"
  • earn happy points, if you land on a "project space"
  • you get rewarded, if you land on the "income taxes" or "holiday bonus corner spaces"
  • all players get fined, each time a player passes over the "inflation corner space"

if you are out of money, you have the possibility of exchanging happy points to money at the bank(1 happy point - 50 €). the lending of money among the players is not allowed.

the game lasts until the first player lands on the "start/finish space" with the exact number on the dice. however, if a player lands two spaces beyond the "start/finish space", he/she has to rest on the same space. if a player throws a negative number on his dice, he/she has to move backwards according to the number on the dice. now you need to sum up your happy points in order to see who has won the game.

game spaces in particular

work space


this space is an obligatory one, which means you have to perform the demanded actions. if you land on this space, you have to go to work. you must exchange one time point for one salary. Your salary is always 10% of your initial income written on your character card.

community space


this space is for all players. if you land on this space, you have to pick a community card. there are two different types of community cards, either you invest money or time.

example: the community wants to build a new kindergarden. the funding goal is 1000 €. now every player decides secretly if or how much money he/she wants to spend to support the project. if all players have decided, they reveal the chosen amount of money by putting it on the table at the same time. you can spend as much money as you want, ranging from zero to infinity. after revealing the donations of all players, you have to sum up if the funding goal has been achieved or not. either way the whole money goes to the bank. funded: the most generous earns 4 happy points, the second most generous earns 2 happy points. not funded: nobody gets rewarded. you just lost your money to the bank.

action space


this space is an obligatory one, which means you have to perform the demanded actions. if you land on this space, you have pick an action card and follow the instructions.

project space


this space is an optional one, which means you don't have to perform the demanded actions. on each project space, it is possible to spend up to two times the asked time/money to get the double amount of happy points.

example: help to build a school in india! you can now decide either to spend one time point or 200 € in order to get rewarded with two happy points.

inflation space


this space is an obligatory one. every time a player passes over the "inflation corner space", each player has to pay 10% of his/her current amount of money to the bank.

example: the student has a capital of e.g. 1240 €. 10% of 1240 € would be 124 €. as we have no coins in this game, the amount has to be adjusted downward to 120 €.

tax averaging & holiday bonus space

Tax averaging.png

this space is an obligatory one. if you land on this space, you get rewarded. be happy about earning 200 €.

and what if everybody was equal in terms of money and time...?

another version of this game would be if all players were in the same starting situation. in order to play the game this way the character cards are obsolete. instead every player gets 15 time points and 1200 € with a respective salary of 120 €. all other game rules remain the same.