Strategy Tip: Save your powerful, low-numbered Gift cards for Day cards that are worth more points. Also, pass the Claus cards when you're behind in points.
3. Drawing Cards
At the end of each round, the played Gift cards are discarded, and everyone draws one Gift card. Players should have 12 Gift cards in their hand at the start and end of every round (including the last round). When the Gift deck runs out, reshuffie the discarded Gift cards and use these to replenish the draw deck.
Ending the Game
The game proceeds for 12 rounds/days. After all players have drawn their final Gift card at the end of the 12th day, the game ends, and players determine their score.
Note: If no one wins the 12th day, the game ends anyway, and the 12th day card goes to no one.
A player scores points in two ways:
1. Day cards: Each player totals the Day cards they won during the game. Each Day card is worth its number in points. The 1st day is worth 1 point, the 2nd day is worth 2 points, and so on.
2. Gift cards: Players may score bonus points for the Gift cards remaining in their hands. Whoever holds the most Gift cards of a specific value scores that many points. For example, whoever holds the most 9 cards wins 9 points, and whoever holds the most 5 cards wins 5 points. Score points in ascending order from 1 through 12.
If players are tied for the most cards of a specific value, then each of those players scores the full value of that card. If a player scores points in this manner, they place a Gift card of the appropriate value with their earned Day cards to indicate their bonus points.
Nicki and fake each have two 7-point Gift cards remaining in their hands, while Cassidy has only one. Both Nicki and fake score 7 bonus points each and place a 7-point Gift card on their stack of Day cards.
Each player adds their Day card points and bonus points together.
The player(s) with the most points wins!
Variants of Play
8 Nights. During setup, remove the Claus cards and all cards valued 9 through 12 from both the Gift and the Holiday decks. Shuffle the Gift deck as normal, but only deal 8 Gift cards to each payer. Game play ends after 8 rounds called "nights." Otherwise, gameplay is the same.
Note: The smaller hand size makes deciding which card to pass during the gifting phase more difficult.
8 Players. To accommodate up to 8 players, simply combine the Gift decks from two 12 Days sets together. Otherwise, the rules are the same.
Note: The double distribution of cards can lead to frequent ties.