Ye Olde Drinking Games: a List
In this Internet age, there’s something sweetly old-fashioned about a drinking game. You don’t need any fancy props, extension cords or air pumps—just booze, partners and a will to compete.
It’s Saturday night. Are you sitting around with friends, talking about the same old stuff? Play a drinking game. At a party, but no one mingling? Try a drinking game. On Rounds talking to a new friend and feel like mixing it up a bit? Point your webcam at your liquor cabinet and challenge them to a drinking game. Drinking games bring people together.
For your drunken pleasure, I now present you with a list of drinking games.
GAMES WHERE YOU WANT PEOPLE TO ACTUALLY GET TO KNOW EACH OTHER
Questions is sort of like Truth or Dare but without the dare. Each player takes a turn being the questioner. The questioner addresses another player by name and poses a yes/no question, which he/she must answer without hesitation. The answerer then becomes the questioner and must ask another player a question immediately. Repeating questions are not allowed. Laughing before answering or asking is not allowed. Any violation of these rules is punished, obviously, with drinking.
Questions gets pretty silly very fast. If you ask the right questions, it can be a very interesting way to get to know new people.
Tools needed: any kind of alcohol, slight imagination
2. I Never
I Never is a great game to play with good friends. So you can embarrass them.
Each player takes turns making a true statement in the form of “I’ve never…” For example, if you’ve never been to France, you’d say, “I’ve never been to Paris.” Anyone at the table who has been to Paris then must drink. No further explanation is necessary—no “well, technically just the airport”; no “I had a wonderful time!” Just drinking is answer enough.
Naturally, when I play this game with my friends, we don’t make statements about vacations. Rather, we prefer to say “I’ve never done [embarrassing thing that someone else there has done].” Like most drinking games, it all gets a lot more fun as the game gets drunker.
Tools needed: alcohol, a sordid past
3. The Name Game
The Name Game is a good emergency icebreaker game, since it requires no props except for alcohol and basic spelling ability.
Someone begins the game by saying the first and last name of someone famous. The next person says the name of a famous person whose name begins with the first letter of the last name of the previous famous person. For example, if I say “James Bond,” the next player could say “Bill Clinton.” The following player could say “Clint Eastwood.” And so on. If someone says a famous person whose first and last names begin with the same letter, the direction reverses.
The drinking happens when a player can’t immediately rattle off a name and the player must continue to drink until he comes up with a name. It’s harder than it sounds—especially under pressure and, uh, the influence.
Tools needed: alcohol, knowledge of the alphabet
This is a fun game for the theatrically inclined. Each player chooses a gesture to represent his/herself over the course of the game (I favor “moose antlers”—two open hands waggled at either side of my head).
The first player performs her own gesture and then signals another player by performing his gesture. That next player must respond by repeating his own gesture, then signaling another player, and so on. If anyone hesitates or fails to respond or recall a gesture, they must drink.
Tools needed: alcohol
FUBAR is a simple card game that integrates Questions and I Never. It’s good for a big group of people. It’s more fun with good friends, but it can also work as a getting-to-know you game. There are no rules except for following the commands that correspond to each card:
Ace: Take one drink
2: Take two
3: Take three
4: Questions (see Game #3)
5: Make five players of your choosing take a drink
6: I Never (see Game #10)
7: Master of the Thumb (see Game #8)
8: Categories. The first person provides a category and then everyone else must give an example. e.g. Drinking games: Quarters, Flip Cup, I Never and so on.
9: Busta Rhyme – Everyone must give a word that rhymes with yours. e.g. drink, think, pink.
10: Social – Everyone drinks
Jack: Guys drink
Queen: Girls drink
King: Waterfall. As soon as the first player begins to chug their drink, the second must follow him, and so on. All players continue drinking until the player previous to them stops drinking. If the first player is a big drinker, this can be quite a difficult card.
Tools needed: deck of cards, alcohol
GAMES OF CHANCE
6. High Or Low
High or Low is played with a full deck of cards. The first player is dealt a card and has to guess whether it’s high or low. If correct, he guesses again. After taking at least three cards, the player may choose to pass or keep guessing. When a player guesses incorrectly, he takes a drink for each card showing and his turn ends. The idea is to build up a lot of cards and then pass them onto the next player.
Tools needed: alcohol, cards
7. Flip, Sip or Strip
Flip, Sip or Strip is the kind of game you could really play anywhere—as long as it’s warm.
Each player takes turns flipping a coin and calling heads or tails in the air. If you guess correctly, pass the coin to your right. If you guess wrong, you must pass the coin to your left and either remove one article of clothing or take a shot.
Think you can get away with just drinking instead of stripping down to your skivvies? Not so fast, buddy. Choosing the same option two times in a row is against the rules. Bottoms up—and out!
Tools needed: alcohol, shot glasses, a coin, clothing
GAMES OF SKILL
Despite what you may think from watching the guy in this video, Quarters can be quite hard.
Players take turns attempting to bounce a large coin into a shallow glass. If you succeed, you can make any other player have a drink, and then take another turn. If you succeed three times in a row, you can make a rule. Anyone who violates the rule is punished with—you guessed it, folks!—drinking.
Tools needed: one large coin, a shallow glass, a table, alcohol and a steady hand
This is a simple game, but you do need to pay attention. Basic math skills are required.
Each player takes a turn counting. First player says “one,” next “two” and so on. Whenever a player says a number divisible by seven, that player must say “buzz.”
If that player does not say “buzz,” she drinks. If a player mistakenly says “buzz,” she drinks. The challenge is to see how high a number the game will reach. Urban legend says one group once reached 1200.
Tools needed: alcohol
10. Flip Cup
Flip Cup is a fairly simple game, but it does require some skill. You may not be great at it your first time, but with a little persistence—and a lot of alcohol—you’ll surely improve.
Divide the party into teams of four or five. Everyone sets a cup of beer on the table (Note: If you play with liquor, you will surely puke) and races to chug their beer and then flip the empty cup from the edge of the table into an upside down standing position. First team to flip all their cups wins.
Tools needed: plastic cups, beer, a table
11. Master of the Thumb
This is a fun little addition to any drinking game. At the beginning of each game, one player is named the Master of the Thumb. At any point during the game (Flip Cup, Quarters, whatever), the Master of the Thumb may slyly place her thumb on the table. As the other players notice this, they must also place their own thumb discreetly on the table. The last player to put his thumb on the table has to drink.
However, he may immediately take his revenge, since this player now becomes the next Master of the Thumb.
Players can also be punished with drinking if they put their thumbs on the table when the Master of the Thumb does not have his thumb on the table.
Tools needed: table, alcohol, thumbs
GAMES WHERE YOU GET TO PLAY WITH YOUR BEER
12. Edward 40 Hands
Edward 40 Hands is a silly game for serious drinkers. In homage to Tim Burton’s film Edward Scissor Hands, players duct tape two 40 oz (~1.2 liters) bottles of malt liquor to their hands. Players may not remove the bottles from their hands until they have finished drinking them. Thus, they cannot do anything but drink—can’t answer their cell phones, go to the bathroom, or open doors—until there is nothing left to drink.
I’ve never played this one before. Sounds like a long night.
Tools needed: large bottles of alcohol, electrical tape, no prior engagements
13. Sink The Battleship
Sink the Battleship is a good game if you don’t mind spilling a little beer. It can get a bit messy. In fact, the point of the whole game is to get messy.
Fill a pitcher with beer then float an empty glass inside it. Each player takes turns pouring his own glass of beer into the empty glass inside the pitcher. The object of the game is pour just enough beer into the glass so that the next player is the one to sink the battleship glass.
Tools needed: beer pitcher, beer glasses, beer
14. Russian Beer Roulette
Russian Beer Roulette is a thrilling but messy game best played outside or inside an frat house. Players gather cans of beer on a table. One player takes a beer and shakes it vigorously. Then the beers are shuffled until no one knows which one is the shaken one. Each player then picks a can and opens at the same time. Ta da! The loser is the one who winds up being sprayed with beer.
In Russian Beer Roulette, everyone drinks.
Tools needed: cans of beer, willingness to take a risk
This game has the potential to get rather disgusting. But of course, that’s what makes it fun.
Deal a deck of cards one at a time, face up, to each player. The first person to get a King picks the liquor; the second King picks the mixer; the third buys the drink. The player dealt the fourth King has the dubious honor of drinking it.
Remember, you could be dealt the first King, pick beer to be mixed with coconut liqueur and then later receive the fourth King and be forced to drink your own icky concoction. Ho ho ho. Fun indeed.
Tools needed: deck of cards, full bar with mixers, a strong stomach
COUCH POTATO DRINKING GAMES
16. The Star Wars Drinking Game
The Star Wars drinking game follows the same basic premise as all movie/TV-oriented drinking games: You start watching and drink whenever some theme or catchphrase is repeated.
Watch any of the Star Wars trilogy and drink when:
• Someone exclaims “No!”
• Luke whines
• A Jedi is much more powerful than he looks
• Luke does some nifty acrobatic flip
Tools needed: Star Wars movie, any type of alcohol
17. The Ferris Bueller Drinking Game
Ferris Bueller can convince anyone to take the day off. So pop open a brewski, kick your feet up on the coffee table and drink whenever:
• Ferris addresses the camera
• Cameron unsuccessfully resists Ferris
• There is any reference to Ferris’ illness (including the school’s “Save Ferris” campaign)
Tools needed: alcohol, copy of Ferris Bueller’s Day Off
18. The Napoleon Dynamite Drinking Game
Everyone loves Napoleon Dynamite. There are many memorable moments, but you only drink whenever:
• Napoleon says “Heck Yes!” or “Yes”
• Uncle Rico reminisces about his heroic high school days
• You see or hear the words “Vote for Pedro.”
That will surely get you plenty tipsy.
Tools needed: alcohol, copy of Napoleon Dynamite
19. The James Bond Drinking Game
The James Bond Drinking Game is best played with martinis (shaken not stirred, obviously).
Put on a James Bond film. Every time someone says “James,” take two sips. Every time someone says “Bond,” take two sips. Every time someone says “James Bond,” drink half an imported beer.
Things will get quite rowdy. Especially when 007 says: “My name is Bond. James Bond.”
Tools needed: alcohol, a James Bond film. Black tie optional.
20. The Swingers Drinking Game
Swingers was a big hit back in the 90s in part because it featured twentysomething guys talking like seventysomething guys.
• Anyone says something is “money”
• Anyone refers to a woman as a “beautiful baby”
• Anyone calls anyone else an “ass****”
Afterwards, it is nearly guaranteed that you will find yourself using these expressions for at least the next 10 hours. “That game was money, ass****! Let’s go out and meet some beautiful babies!”
Tools needed: alcohol, copy of Swingers
S*M*A*S*H is quite simple. All you need is some alcohol and some episodes of the 70s TV show M*A*S*H*. Drink each time a rank is said (lieutenant, corporal, private, etc.). You should not play S*M*A*S*H on an empty stomach.
Tools needed: M*A*S*H episode, alcohol, potato chips
22. The Happy Gilmore Drinking Game
One of Adam Sandler’s most popular movies, Happy Gilmore, provides a lot of funny moments for drinking.
• Anything happens to Chubb’s hand
• Happy loses his temper
• The camera angle follows Happy’s “long drive”
Tools needed: alcohol, copy of Happy Gilmore
23. The Wedding Crashers Drinking Game
Since there’s always a lot of drinking going on at weddings, it seems to make sense to play a drinking game while watching The Wedding Crashers.
• Johnny and Jeremy use false names and/or identities
• Johnny or Jeremy references the rules to crashing weddings as established by Chazz
• Gloria or ”Kitty Kat” acts like a psycho and/or nymphomaniac
I’m not recommending binge drinking (you should always drink responsibly, boys and girls), but it’s true that drinking games can be a pretty effective way to liven up a boring gathering. I love playing, even if sometimes I have to take fake sips of my beer to keep from getting obliterated. (Luckily it’s easier to fake being drunk than it is to fake being sober.)
Happy playing and happy drinking!