Once Upon A Time Game

  • Once upon a time. « Once Upon A Time » is an adventure game in which a young woman, finds a magic book and is instantly teleported inside. Each chapter of the book is one single tale in which you will have to solve riddles in fairy tale designed settings. Magic and nature will be friends and foes.
  • Check out Once upon a time. It’s one of the millions of unique, user-generated 3D experiences created on Roblox.

Oct 29, 2015  Can you name the words in this Once Upon a Time-themed word ladder? Test your knowledge on this just for fun quiz to see how you do and compare your score to others. Word Ladder: Once Upon a Time Characters Quiz. Once Upon A Time is a game where players get to create their own story by using the cards in their hand that show all the important parts of a fairy tale. One player gets to be the storyteller and tries to create a story using the ingredients in her own hand, guiding the plot toward the ending of her choice.

Once Upon a Time 3rd Edition
Designer(s)Richard Lambert
Andrew Rilstone
James Wallis
Publisher(s)Atlas Games
Playing time15 minutes[2]
Skill(s) requiredStorytelling
Once Upon a Time 2nd Edition
Cover of Once Upon a Time (2nd Edition)
Designer(s)Richard Lambert
Andrew Rilstone
James Wallis
Publisher(s)Atlas Games
Playing time15 minutes[2]
Skill(s) requiredStorytelling

Once Upon a Time is a card game produced by Atlas Games, originally released in 1994 with a second edition published in 1995[2] and the current third edition in 2012.[3] One object of Once Upon a Time is to tell a fairy tale as a group.[1][2][4]While the story is developed by the whole group, the competitive aspect of the game is that each player has an individual goal of using all of the 'Storytelling' cards he or she has in hand, and finishing the story with their own special 'Happy Ever After' card.[4][5][6]Only one player at a time is the current storyteller, giving him or her a chance to play their Storytelling cards, while the other players have a chance to 'interrupt' the story and become the storyteller if, for example, the storyteller mentions something on one of the interrupting player's cards.[1][5][6]


Each player is dealt a hand of cards that represent story elements: objects, people, events, and 'aspects' often involved in fairy tales (for instance, there are cards for 'crown', 'key', 'stepmother', 'a death', 'time passes', 'sleeping', et cetera). These 'Storytelling' cards represent ingredients of a fairy tale, i.e. words or phrases that are likely to appear in fairy tales.[5] From a different deck of cards, each player is also dealt a single 'Happy Ever After' ending card, to be kept secret from other players until it is used.[2] The object of the game for each player is to use their cards in telling a story, finishing the story by using their Happy Ever After card.[5]

One player at a time is the storyteller. (The 2nd edition rules suggest the starting storyteller could be the 'player with the longest beard', or any other method upon which the players agree.[7]) Whenever a story ingredient is mentioned, if any player has a Storytelling card for that ingredient, he or she can play it and become (or continue being) the storyteller.[1][2] A player may be required to draw extra Storytelling cards (for example, when they are the storyteller and are interrupted by another player who becomes the new storyteller, or if he or she hesitates for too long while telling the story[2][5]). If the storyteller ends the story with the ending on their Happy Ever After card, and is out of cards, he or she wins.[5] Players are expected to cooperate (to some extent) in order to avoid contradictions in the story as it develops, for the story to make sense, and (according to the rulebook) that any ending to the story is 'satisfying'.[5][6][7]


Expansions contain 55 additional cards. 2nd Edition expansions include:[8]

  • Dark Tales, dark story elements
  • Create-Your-Own Storytelling Cards, blank cards

3rd Edition expansions include:[3]

  • Seafaring Tales, aquatic elements
  • Enchanting Tales, prince and princess elements
  • Knightly Tales, medieval elements
  • Create-Your-Own Storytelling Cards, blank cards

The 3rd edition also has a Writer's Handbook available, in trade paperback format.

Awards and critical reception[edit]

Zy Nicholson reviewed the second edition of Once Upon a Time for Arcane magazine, rating it a 7 out of 10 overall.[9] Nicholson comments that 'Although I'm well aware that the first edition (now sold out) did receive some rave reviews, I'm going to award this a respectable but cautious score.'[9]

Spike Y. Jones reviewed Once Upon a Time for Pyramid #6 (March/April, 1994) and stated that 'The rules are simple enough that children and grandparents can all play at the same time, and the game is so engrossing that even people who look down on your roleplaying activities would be willing to join you in a bit of this sort of storytelling. Whether you're buying Once Upon A Time for yourself, or to give to a gaming friend or non-gaming relative, this is one card game which won't sit on a shelf gathering dust.'[10] Commenting on the second edition for Pyramid #18, reviewer Derek Pearcy said the game 'is a brilliant example of what we should be getting in this new game market' and 'not only is this game easy to learn, not only is it fast, fun, and an Idea Whose Time Has Come, but .. girls think it rocks' commenting upon 'the occasional insulting lip-service [many game companies have paid] to their female readership.'[11]

In 1999 Pyramid magazine named Once Upon a Time as one of The Millennium's Best Card Games[12] and also as one of The Millennium's Most Underrated Games.[13] Editor Scott Haring stated 'the game's just as good for kids as it is for adults.'[12]

In his 2007 essay on the game in Hobby Games: The 100 Best, British author and game designer Marc Gascoigne stated that Once Upon a Time is 'one of the best ways [he had] ever found to grab a non-gamer by their imagination and fling them into our world'.[2]

Other awards include:

  • Once Upon a Time 2nd Edition was named to Games magazine's Best Family Card Game section in the 1997 Games 100 list.[8][14]
  • In 2013 the 3rd edition of the game won a Recommended Parents' Choice Award.[14]
  • The 3rd edition was featured on the Tabletop (web series) with Wil Wheaton in 2013.[14]
  • Once Upon a Time 3rd Edition received the Tillywig Best Family Fun Award in 2013.[14]
  • The cover art for the 3rd Edition was featured in Spectrum 20.[14]
  • The 3rd edition was nominated for an Origins Award in 2013, in the Children's, Family, or Party Game category.[14]


  • Shadis #27 (May, 1996)

See also[edit]

  • The Extraordinary Adventures of Baron Munchausen - Another story-telling game, also designed by James Wallis.[1][2]
  • Talecraft - A story-creating card game with some comparable game mechanics.
  • Nanofictionary - Another story-creating card game; created by Looney Labs, the creator of Fluxx.
  • Rory's Story Cubes— sets of pictorial dice that can also be used as a storytelling game


  1. ^ abcdefDarlington, Steve (1999-05-03). 'Once Upon A Time: The Storytelling Card Game'. RPGnet. Retrieved 2008-03-29.
  2. ^ abcdefghiGascoigne, Marc (2007). 'Once Upon a Time'. In Lowder, James (ed.). Hobby Games: The 100 Best. Green Ronin Publishing. pp. 224–226. ISBN978-1-932442-96-0.
  3. ^ abAtlas Games 'Once Upon a Time 3rd Edition' webpage
  4. ^ abDr. Matt J. Carlson (2005-11-13). 'Once Upon a Time (Card Game)'. GamerDad.com. Archived from the original on October 15, 2007. Retrieved 2008-03-29.
  5. ^ abcdefgJones, Spike Y (April 1994). 'Pyramid Pick: Once Upon A Time'. Pyramid. Steve Jackson Games (#6). Retrieved 2008-03-29.
  6. ^ abcO'Sullivan, Steffan (1993). 'Once Upon a Time Review'. The Game Report (2.2). Retrieved 2008-03-29.
  7. ^ abOnce Upon a Time 2nd edition game rules
  8. ^ abAtlas Games Once Upon a Time 2nd Edition webpage
  9. ^ abNicholson, Zy (March 1996). 'Games Reviews'. Arcane. Future Publishing (4): 79.
  10. ^http://www.sjgames.com/pyramid/sample.html?id=647
  11. ^Pearcy, Derek (March 1996). 'Pyramid Pick: Once Upon A Time, Second Edition'. Pyramid. Steve Jackson Games (#18). Retrieved 2008-03-29.
  12. ^ abHaring, Scott D. (1999-12-17). 'Second Sight: The Millennium's Best Card Game'. Pyramid (online). Retrieved 2008-02-17.
  13. ^Haring, Scott D. (1999-11-25). 'Second Sight: The Millennium's Most Influential Company and The Millennium's Most Underrated Game'. Pyramid (online). Retrieved 2008-02-17.
  14. ^ abcdef'Atlas Games Awards & Nominations' list

External links[edit]

Once Upon A Time Game
  • Once Upon A Time 2nd Edition webpage at Atlas Games
  • Once Upon A Time 3rd Edition webpage at Atlas Games
  • Once Upon a Time at BoardGameGeek; 2nd Edition Dark Tales at BoardGameGeek; 3rd Edition Seafaring Tales, Enchanting Tales and Knightly Tales at BoardGameGeek
Retrieved from 'https://en.wikipedia.org/w/index.php?title=Once_Upon_a_Time_(game)&oldid=928644528'
Once Upon a Time Slot Details
Game NameOnce Upon a Time
Game Type3D Slots
Release DateAugust 21, 2013
Slot Reels5
Slot Lines30
Min Bet$0.02
Max Bet$150
Max Win2,500 Credits
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Once Upon a Time

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Once Upon A Time Game Cards

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