Card game for bubble tea lovers

Singapore creator hopes his game, Teabbles, will help people bond with their loved ones

Mr Aaron Tan and Ms Jolene Yang (both left) playing their bubble teathemed card game, Teabbles, with Life intern Isabel Kua.
Mr Aaron Tan and Ms Jolene Yang (both left) playing their bubble teathemed card game, Teabbles, with Life intern Isabel Kua. ST PHOTO: CHONG JUN LIANG

Uno and Old Maid, Chope and The Singaporean Dream.

Be it classic card games or Singapore ones, engineer Aaron Tan has played them all, being an enthusiast since he was young.

The 30-year-old has gone on to create his own card game - Teabbles.

The bubble tea-themed card game, a joint effort by Mr Tan and his wife Jolene Yang, 27, a flight attendant, was launched last Saturday after 11/2 years of hard work.

He toyed with the idea of making a card game with a local food theme in August last year. He first thought of chicken rice, but found it to be "too complicated".

"When I was thinking of an idea, I was actually drinking bubble tea. That was when I thought, why not bubble tea?" he says.

The couple, both bubble tea lovers, took on different roles in the production of Teabbles - a name coined by joining the words "tea" and "bubbles".

Ms Yang says: "He is responsible for technical aspects such as refining the game and the website, while I am in charge of Instagram marketing and design."

Everything about Teabbles - from conceptualisation to printing to production - was done in Singapore.

Even before the launch, there were about 100 pre-orders for Teabbles, which sells for $28 a set.

The card game is made up of 39 drink cards and 88 inventory cards. It can be played in groups of two to five people, in three ways: Original Play, Bluff and Boba The Builder.

While all three variants have specific rules, the objective of the game is to match combinations of ingredients to those reflected on the drink cards.

Original Play is the easiest variant for beginners - to win, a player has to fulfil drink orders with the ingredients he or she has.

The Bluff variant is similar, with the only twist being that a player can lie about the ingredients he or she has to make drinks.

Each "drink" card is allocated a certain number of points.

In Bluff, a player wins by having the highest number of points.

In Original Play and Boba The Builder, the first one to reach 11 points wins.

On the charm of old-school card games, Mr Tan says: "Nowadays, people are always on their phones playing mobile games. But the social interaction you get from physical card games is different compared with these virtual games.

"We hope that through Teabbles and other physical card games, people will be able to bond with their loved ones and have fun."


• Teabbles is available at a discounted price of $26 a set at the Christmas Market in Capitol Singapore till Dec 25. For videos on how to play Teabbles, go to teabbles.com

A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Straits Times on December 07, 2020, with the headline 'Card game for bubble tea lovers'. Subscribe