Released in 1965 by Milton Bradley, the I Dream of Jeannie Game roll-and-move board game engaged players in a race to be first to place their magic discs on each letter of the word JEANNIE.
The game was based on the I Dream of Jeannie television sitcom created by Sidney Sheldon, starring Barbara Eden and Larry Hagman. The fantasy series followed the hijinks of astronaut, Tony Nelson, and Jeannie, a magical (and meddlesome) genie whom Tony accidentally released from a curious bottle he discovered after his space capsule landed on a deserted island. The series ran on NBC from 1965 to 1970.
Players chose a magic disc colour to play throughout the game. Their seven discs were then placed on the Start space at the bottom of the gameboard. Jeannie was placed on the space illustrated with her bottle, indicating that she was “in” the bottle.
The high-roll started the game. Players rolled the dice and moved two discs from the starting position (based on the numbers that were rolled on each dice) during their first move. Subsequent plays allowed players to choose to move either one or two of their discs.
The game progressed as players raced up the board but the excitement began only once players reached the top portion of the board and encountered the spaces numbered one through six. This is when players could begin to release Jeannie from her bottle in an effort to penalize opponents.
A player announced their intention to use Jeannie by releasing her from her bottle and moving her to the top of the board where there was an illustration with her likeness. The player then hoped to roll a number on the dice that corresponded to a number on the board where opponents had discs. Players with discs sitting on a rolled number had to move their discs back down the board to the starting position and recommence their ascent. But, using Jeannie could be a risky move. If the player rolling the dice also happened to have a disc on that number, they too had to move back to Start.
Once the play was done, Jeannie was placed back into her bottle where she waited for another player to free her.
The goal was to obtain an exact roll that would allow a player to place their discs on the letters spelling JEANNIE. The first player to place all seven tokens (one on each letter) won the game.
IN THE BOX
A complete game included a game board, Jeannie with red plastic stand, cardboard tokens (seven each in red, yellow, blue, and green), and two dice. Instructions were printed on the underside of the box top.
The I Dream of Jeannie Game is an excellent addition to collections of simple family board games, games published by Milton Bradley, and games based on television series. The colourful board is a nice display piece but those wanting to preserve the game should be wary of colour degradation due to light.
Milton Bradley took full advantage of popular television series for many of its games. This includes the Addams Family Card Game (1965), Branded (1966), The Partridge Family Game (1971), Scooby-Doo Where Are You! (1973), Planet of the Apes (1974), The Jetsons Game (1985), and others.