A downloadable board game

Bootstraps is a board game created by Casey Jarmes, Keegan Milano, and Thomas Rohn. The game is centered around working-class life and seeks to capture the difficult, hopeless, often random experience of being a working American.


Set Up

1: Each player takes 10 money and 5 joy.

2: Place three shop cards in the center and the Round Counter Token on the Round Counter.

3: Each player chooses an apartment and rolls for a job, starting with the player with the most money in their real-life wallet and going clockwise from there. Do not pay your expenses during set up. Your job and apartment will stay the same unless changed by a card effect.

4: Players take turns one by one, trying to stay afloat. After the last player takes their turn that round, move the round counter and begin the cycle again.

Turn Overview

1: Pay Expenses - Pay the expenses written on your apartment box. If you are unable to pay your expenses, you are eliminated.

2: Draw Event Card - Draw an event card, do what it says.

3: Work - Do the work action written on your job box.

4: Optional Bonus Actions - Take a single bonus action.

Bonus Actions

Shopping - Buy 1 of the items in the center of the board, replace it with another shop card. Cards can be gifted to other players.

College - Pay 1 money and 1 happiness to take a college token. When 4 tokens are collected, take 2 extra money when you go to work.

Crime - Roll the die. If it lands on a 1 or 2, you are eliminated. Otherwise, take an amount of money equal to your roll.

Drink - Pay 1 money to gain 3 happiness. Roll the die. If you roll a 1, you must take an Addiction Token and continue to pay 1 money each turn, but no longer gain any happiness.

Help - Donate as much money as you would like to another player. Take 1 happy equal to one-third of the money donated.

Change Job - You are unable to work on your next turn. On the turn after that, roll for a new job.

Losing: In the event that you end a turn with zero money or end your second turn in a row with zero joy, you are eliminated.

Winning: At the end of round 7, any players with 15 or more money and at least 1 joy retire and win. All players without enough money or joy lose.


Bootstraps Game Board.pdf 168 MB

Leave a comment

Log in with itch.io to leave a comment.