Jack Straws have been played since the 14th century in one form or another. The earliest references describe it as a game played with straws in the shape of various farm implements and instruments of war. The game is played just like pickup sticks except that a small hook is used to pluck your chosen straw from the jumble. Any number of people may play. This set comes in a charming reproduction box. The straws are plastic. Unfortunately there is not a company reproducing these in wood at the present time.