The Card Game You Haven’t Played—But Will Absolutely Love


Lauren Schulz, Staff Writer

VIDEO LINK: Game Explanation

As the more winter-y holidays are being set into motion, people are more likely to try and keep an eye out for board games, card games, or any sort of game that they can get their hands on, that will be easy to learn, and give them something to do to have some good-old, quality family bonding time. Games like these that may usually come to mind are likely Jenga, Sorry, Monopoly, Scattergories, Pictionary, etc. But, a new, sure-to-be-classic card game should definitely be on everyone’s radar for this upcoming holiday season.

Taco Cat Goat Cheese Pizza, released in October of 2019, is a simple, somewhat easy-to-learn card game, but is sure to leave any of its players in fits of giggles and hysteria. The main concept goes as this:

The entirety of the deck is passed out, one card at a time, to every player—who sit in a circle, facing each other,—until the entire deck has been cleared out and now only sits in the players’ hands. The cards in the players’ hands must all be face-down, as no one is allowed to see the faces of his or her cards. Anyone can start, and go in any direction; it just has to start with someone and start going one direction. Whoever starts must place a card from the top of his or her own hand, down in the middle of the circle of players, face up (but without having looked at the face of the card prior), and say out loud the word “Taco.” The next person will place his or her card down in the same manner, but saying the word “Cat.” This order will continue with the players, where the next person will say whatever the next word is of the game, with said words being, of course, the name of the game—Taco Cat Goat Cheese Pizza. This pattern will continue, until someone sets down a card that is the same as the word he or she is saying—so, if a player says the word “cat,” and the card just placed down is a “Cat” card. When this occurs, all players must quickly get their hand on top of the pile of cards in the center of the circle, with whoever the last person that is to touch the pile—either of hands or cards,—being the loser of the round, and taking the lot of cards in the middle. The aim of the game is to reach zero cards and to be the first person to touch the deck the next time a word was said from the list and was also called out by the player. This may sound easier, which it is—until considering the special cards, and certain rules that can be active, depending on what group one is playing with.

There are three special cards that occur multiple times throughout the deck—the gorilla, the groundhog, and the narwhal. For all of these cards, it does not matter what word was just said as they were played—all players must do the motion or action that coincides with the special card and be the first (or at least not the last) player to put his or her hand on the deck. For “Gorilla,” players must beat their fists against their chest more than once, like a gorilla, then slap down on the deck. For “Groundhog,” players must slap or smack their hands against the ground, table, or whatever surface they are playing on, more than once, then slap their hand down on the deck. For “Narwhal,” players must put their hands together, almost in a sort of praying or praise sort of motion, and hold their hands up above their head before bringing a hand down on the deck. Players who already have their entire hand-held deck gone can also win by being the first person to do the special card specific motion and to touch the deck after one of these special cards is played. The only other main thing to look out for are the rules, which can vary from group to group of people someone is playing with. Common rules are usually those like this: “It’s okay to flinch, but if one touches the deck on accident, he or she must take the cards that have been played in the middle”; “if one accidentally looks at his or her card, it must be put back in that player’s hand-held deck, either at the bottom or in a random spot inside of it”; or, “cheaters, especially when caught, must take the cards from the middle of circle and add them to their deck, or have some of their cards, like the special ones removed, or all of the cards just generally replaced.”

VIDEO LINK: Playing the Game

Once the basic concept of the game is understood, it can seem ridiculously easy—but beware, as this game is all about reaction time, and constantly tricks its players, especially with its similar-looking cards, and flustering players into doing the right motions for the wrong card.

It’s simple, easy to learn and plan, hectic, and a whole lot of fun. But…do be prepared to get hurt—whether by one’s self or a fellow player. (Keep the bandages handy, and gloves for those who like to wear jewelry.)

VIDEO LINK: Student Opinion of Game