From the introduction:
“You’ve got cooties!” is a familiar cry in many schoolyards in English-speaking countries. Most kids only have the vaguest idea what that means, but they know it’s nothing they want. They know they’re contagious and can make you a pariah, and that’s all they need to know.
“Cootie” is actually an old word for “head louse,” but when I was young we thought of them more as germs or even a contagious social-psychic condition. In this game, they can be something far worse than either lice or bacteria.
Cootie Catchers is set in a non-specific schoolyard in a non-specific time – the Game Master (GM) should choose one she knows or makes up. The players are elementary school children, perhaps 8-10 years old. The game begins with the taunting of a Non-Player Character (NPC) child that she has cooties. At that point, the players notices that the NPC really does have something strange going on. Very strange – it almost looks as if the NPC is not herself anymore. As if something else is controlling her. As if Cooties really do exist and are far more baleful than has been supposed…