Top Trumps is not actually the name of the company, but the name of the game that is produced. It is a card game, each of which displays data which can be used to trump the other player’s cards.
The first pack of Top Trumps was available on the market in 1977 and produced by the company Dubreq. Eleven different packs were produced to begin with, all with different designs. By 1982, the company had been taken over by Waddingtons, who continued to bring out different packs. However, in 1999 the game was purchased by the company Winning Moves, who completely re-launched the game.
There are many varieties of card to choose from, most of which are based on something like cars, characters, or animals. Each card has information about a different item. For example, a different jungle animal, with information about how fast it is, how large, etc. If it’s a character from a popular film, it might be based on how brave they are, or how beautiful. The cards are dealt equally between the players, and then turns are taken to try to trump the other players. The winner gets all of their opponent’s cards, and the overall winner of the game is the person who gets the whole pack.
The game was particularly popular when it first came out, in the seventies and eighties, and most of the cards were aimed at boys. The subject matters to begin with were cars, military weapons, or planes. It was a popular playground game and relatively cheap so that pocket money would be used to buy packs. The game lost its popularity in the 90s, but the re-launch has given the game a second wind. Winning Moves are now a massive company because of its success with Top Trumps.
There is now a huge variety of card packs to choose from. Some of these include characters from books (Jacqueline Wilson and Roald Dahl), characters from films (Star Wars, Harry Potter, and The Lord of the Rings) and TV shows (Top Gear, Buffy, The Simpsons), sports (Rugby and Football), comic books (Marvel Comic Heroes and the Beano), and wildlife (sealife and sharks), as well as many other general topics.
They are immensely popular once more due to their collectability. Old packs from the early nineties tend to fetch a decent price, particularly limited edition packs. Now that the Top Trumps brand has taken off again, there is also a lot of other merchandise available. Winning Moves have released a line of books about the game, on each of the different subjects. The game can also be played online (Top Trumps Live) on the Winning Moves website, two games of which are not available in the packs on sale in stores. There is also a version available to download onto your phone, which has been particularly successful on the iPhone.
Top Trumps is a useful game for a child to play as it encourages maths skills and logic, as well as memory and data comparison.