Guide to party games

Guide to party games

How to play

There are many variants of this, but the principle remains the same. Everyone has the name of a famous person (fictional or real) stuck on their back or forehead in a way that everyone can read the name except them. Cigarette papers and sticky memo notes are a good way of doing this. By asking questions with yes/no answers, everyone has to work out who they are.

If you and your friends are of a fancy dress persuasion, provide a box of costumes and accessories that couples have to run and get once they have worked out who they are (for example, provide a pipe for Sherlock Holmes, a blonde wig for Marilyn Monroe, outrageous corsetry for Madonna).

Once couples have found each other, you can use these ready-made pairings for other party games.

A prize could be awarded for the first pairing; a forfeit for the last.

Or instead of pinning names to everyone, issue them with one half of a photo or postcard and ask them to find the other half. This simpler version is good for children.

The flour party games

You will need: Pudding basin, plate, sweets, flour, knife, newspaper, face cloth, and towel

Aim: To avoid making the sweet fall into the flour

How to play

This is a fun, and frighteningly addictive party games. To begin you will need pens, paper and a calculator. Attribute numbers to all the letters of the alphabet, with A worth 1 and Z worth 26 (i.e. based on simple alphabetical order rather than frequency in the English language). Call out categories and have all players write down a word or title for that category. Add up the numerical value of everyone’s word, and find a winner. Easy!


Introduce a poker-style element. Rather than everyone declaring their words, get players to bid on whether they think they have the highest-scoring word.

This is also available as a new board party games, Summit Showdown. This party games features a handy online “testator” and a texting service, both of which do the hard work for you by providing instant word-score calculations.

Guide to party games

Top tactic

R, S, and T are among the most commonly used letters scoring 18, 19, and 20 so will be easy to get into words.

Or so you think. It actually takes a while for the brain to adjust to the idea of how much a word might be worth – a long word containing lots of As, Bs and Cs will score less than a short word with lots of R–Zs. For example, in the category newspapers, Observer beats Daily Mail by 104 to 80, though Mail on Sunday scores 148.

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