Party Games

Amy Hoover
Guys playing a party game.
Guys playing a party game.

Liven up every party with an exciting game. From birthday parties to wedding showers, playing games will help insure that your guests will have a good time at your event.

Five Fun Party Games

Party games can range from icebreakers at an adult theme party to an active game that all generations can take part in at a fun family reunion. Pick the one best suited for your event.

Game 1: Who Am I?

This is a simple party game that can be played with a small group of people. Get some index cards and write a name of a famous person on each one. Then tape each individual card face out to the back of each guest without that person getting to see what's written on the card. Have everyone walk around the room and talk to each other as the person mentioned on the card. Continue until everyone has figured out the "identity" of the person they are portraying. Award the winner with a small prize.

This is a good game for teenagers and adults. Upper elementary kids will understand the concept, but they may have trouble recognizing some of the famous names. Modify it for the younger set by using famous cartoon characters instead of people.

Game 2: The Question Game

Play this game with four or more players. Have everyone sit down on chairs in a circle. Going clockwise, the first person asks the individual next to him or her a question. That person then goes to the following person and asks a question. If the person responds to the question with either an answer, a laugh, repeats the question to the next person, or makes a statement instead of a question; they are out of the game. The game will get everyone confused, which will add to the hilarity of the situation. The last person left in the circle wins.

This is a perfect teenager party activity or fun corporate party game to get the party started. Use it as an icebreaker for some hilarious results.

Game 3: Name That Tune!

A great game for all music fans of any age, from young to old. Get together a bunch of CDs with current hits, golden oldies and some classic kids' favorites, and then prepare for a fun time. Before playing, create a list of the songs on paper with the answers on the back. Make copies for everyone. When the game starts, play a couple of seconds of the song, and then stop it and have one of your participants try and guess the name of the song. Score points for the right answers. At the end of the game, award the player with the highest points with a new music CD.

Game 4: The Couples Game

The Couples Game is ideal for a party with a lot of couples, and adults at a co-ed bridal shower will have a blast. It is also perfect for teenaged prom-goers at an after party. Similar to the Newlywed Game, have one person from each couple leave the room. Next, have the remaining partners that are still in the room answer questions about their date/girlfriend/boyfriend/spouse. When the people asked to leave the room return, the fun begins. See which couple knows each other the best. Score points for correct answers and at completion, award the winning couple a prize.

Game 5: Balderdash

Balderdash is a great party game that can be played with small or large groups of people. You can find it at most game stores or online. The game is broken into categories: words, movies, people, initials and laughable laws. A category is chosen and everyone playing tries to come up with the perfect bluff to fool everyone and writes it down on a piece of paper. After everyone is done, the person who pulled the category card reads the original word or phrase, and then reads everyone's version of what they think the word, person or phrase means along with the real answer. Everyone then tries to guess which one they think is the real deal. Guaranteed to promote fits of laughter, this is a fun game that your partygoers will get a kick out of playing. The game is recommended for players ages 12 and up.

Tips for Playing Party Games

While playing games is usually a good time for everyone, it is important to keep in mind some helpful tips to keep things moving along and fun.

  • Mix it up: Pick out a variety of games. Make sure you have a few board games, a few trivia style games and a few somewhat physically active games to choose amongst.
  • Keep it simple: Look for games with simple directions that are easy to remember. While complicated card games are fun with close friends, it may be discouraging for newbies to try to learn the rules during a big party. Choose games with easy instructions and a short list of rules.
  • Set a limit: Guests grow weary of games after a certain amount of time. Set a time limit for games like charades or a score limit for games like Pictionary. This helps keep things moving along.
  • Plan ahead: Not everyone will want to play every game, and that's okay. Plan to have alternative activities available for those who don't want to participate, such as a craft for kids or drink mixing for adults. For physical games, encourage those not participating to pick a team and root for them to win.

Additionally, it may be a good idea to have some indoor and outdoor party games ready to go. Even if the weather looks like it will be sunny and perfect, a shower or storm could still threaten the fun. Make sure you have a back-up game plan ready to go.

Fun Games for Guests

A game isn't a required part of party planning. However, many guests do enjoy the option of a fun activity to do together. At birthday parties, showers and parties where people aren't acquainted, they are the perfect way to get things rolling. Pick out a few fun games and start the party off right!


By Sheila Robinson

Party Games