Match Me If You Can Rules

This is the online pandemic friendly version of Pluckin’ Pairs, made by my friend Steven Glenn. You should go buy a copy. We’ve always enjoyed this game, but it has a few problems. First the score sheets that come with the game are silly, so download mine instead here. Second, Gina Mai Denn thought the name is bad, so she fixed it. Third, there’s this rule that when everyone agrees, nobody gets points. We changed it to be that when everyone agrees, everyone scores the same large number. It’s effectively the same, but if feels better.

To Play: Get 5 to 10 people together, even just by phone, each with their own score sheet, pencil, and web access. Print that now so these rules will make more sense. Play six rounds. Six is arbitrary, you can play more for a longer game.

Each Round: Everyone looks at the Match Me If You Can pictures web page. Pick a series number, and everyone must use that same number. It will show the same set of eleven pictures to everyone. On your score sheet is a white line that says “Pairs”, and five columns that say “Pair 1” through “Pair 5”. Without showing other players, pick which pictures make sense as pairs. Maybe picture 2 is of a soccer ball and picture 7 is of a lacrosse stick, so you decide they are both sports and you put “2” and “7” in the white boxes below Pair 1. Then picture 8 is of a pine tree and picture 4 is of a gingerbread man, and maybe those are both Christmas, so you put “4” and “8” below Pair 2. Keep going until you have used ten unique numbers for the five pairs. But there are eleven pictures, so the odd one goes into the “Odd” column. Make sure no number is used twice.

Comparing Pairs: After everyone is done, one player starts by saying which pairs they put together. Let’s say you start, and you say 2 and 7 go together because they are both sports. Everyone who had those two pictures paired together raises their hands, even if they had a different reason for matching them together. If at least one other person raised their hand, you count the number of people who had the same pairing and all those people get that many points in the blue Score column. So let’s say that three other people also put 2 and 7 together, so all four of you write “4” in the Score row below Pair 1. When you say that 4 and 8 go together because of Christmas, everyone points out that picture 10 is a maple tree, and 10 and 8 go together much better. Nobody but you had 4 and 8 together, so you score zero points for that pair. Don’t feel bad, everyone’s going to get some zeros. Not me, of course, but everyone else.

Odd One Out: When you get to the Odd one, you’ll simple ask who had that as their odd one as well. This time, if anyone has the same odd one, you double the score. So when you say that picture 9 is your odd one, because you didn’t see a match for that picture of a wheel of cheese, two other people agree that it was their odd one as well. All three of you score 6 points, not 3, for matching on the odd one. Again, if nobody has the same odd one as you, you score zero. That’s usually the case, as it’s hard to match odds.

Compare Everyone’s Pairs: After you’re done, each other person takes turns saying which pairs they had that were not already mentioned, scoring the same way. Keep going until every player has had a turn saying which pairs they had that were not already mentioned, even the last person who’s pairs cannot possibly match the other players. It’s fun to hear everyone’s reasons for pairings, I tell ya.

Scoring: Add your scores on the blue line and put them in the Score column, and then put the same number in the Total column. On subsequent rounds, you’ll add the Score to the previous Total and carry the Total down. That way when you get to the end of the game we don’t have to wait for you to do all that adding. Why would you make me wait? I’m a busy guy. The highest score wins. In case of a tie, there can be multiple winners, and isn’t that what we all want?

Style Points: Once per game you may give out a Style Point to another player who has a very clever pair that scores zero point. Many players might give the same player the their Style Point for the same answer. The clever player scores the Style points instead of the zero for that answer. Failing to ever give our your Style Point ain’t Styling. Either that, or your group does not have sufficiently cool reasons for their answers.

Irregularities: If you accidentally use the same picture twice, that’s fine. Don’t change it once the players have started naming their pairs. You’ll score lower if you use the same number twice, so there’s no reason to penalize you for it.

The Right Answers: Each round, a different person starts with saying which pairs they have. We claim that this person “has the right answers”. They don’t score any differently than anyone else’s scores, it’s just something we do to keep track of who starts the round, and ironically suggests that there are right answers.

Picture Source: I took random pictures from They are not curated by me and so there may be pictures inappropriate to the game. If you find any, let me know.