Beyond Beer Pong: Drinking Games For Grown-Ups

Photographed by Maria DelRio.
So, our days high-fiving after sinking a ping pong ball in a red Solo cup are long over, but we hope we’re never too mature for imbibing with friends and partaking in silly antics. Playing drinking games in college was never really about the alcohol (though, it admittedly added to the fun), it about was the experience — making a plain-old party something of a jovial competition.
And though you might be totally up for making the next cocktail party with your friends a bit more interesting, you’re not about to relive your frat row days and set up a beer pong table. So, we rounded up fourteen very-adult and very-interesting games to play next time your rounds with buds could use some spicing up.
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photographed by Nicholas Blosie.
The Game: No-Hand Flip Cup
A messier twist on the with-hand college classic.

How To Play:
Similar to OG game's rules, two teams stand on opposite ends of a table thats exterior is lined with filled cups. Each player must finish their drink and flip the cup upside down before the next team member starts. The messy twist? You must drink and flip the cup without using your hands. *Hot Flip Tip: Clamp down on the cup with your teeth and throw back your head — but be warned, drinks will fly.
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Photographed by Julia Robbs.
The Game: Flip, Sip, Or Strip
Cue Donna Summer's "Hot Stuff".

How to Play:
Get your group, your drinks, and your spare change all rounded up into one (private) room. The game is fairly straightforward — and while it does rely on pure luck, there is also free-will decision making involved.

One player within the group will begin by flipping a coin and calling "heads or tails" while the coin is mid-air. If guessed correctly, the coin will then be passed to the right and the next player must partake in the ritual. If guessed incorrectly, the player must pass the coin to the left and either sip a drink or strip a piece of clothing.

The choice is yours...
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Photographed by Julia Robbs.
Mr. Freeze
Or Miss Freeze if you're nasty

How to Play:
Pick a Mr. Freeze at the beginning of the party. If, at any point, he or she freezes, everyone else must also freeze in place. The last person to freeze has to finish their drink or take a shot depending on what the group decides. They then become Mr. Freeze and a new round begins with the same rules.
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Photographed by Eric Helgas.
Fuzzy Duck
Fuzzy ducky, you're the one.

How To Play:
This game requires no special supplies, just a room full of people and their drinks. Player one starts by saying "fuzzy duck." The person to their left then says "ducky fuzz." The third person then goes back to "fuzzy duck." this continues until someone says, "Does he?" at which point the game changes direction. You can't say "does he?" after someone else, and once you say something wrong or stumble, you drink. Sound easy, but you'd be surprised how quickly it can get confusing (especially as the night goes on). The word combos can also turn into a bit of a NSFW tongue-twister as it becomes easier and easier to get confused and swap the first letters of "fuzzy duck."
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Photographed by Alexandra Gavillet.
Buffalo
Did you know that "Buffalo buffalo buffalo buffalo Buffalo buffalo" is a grammatically correct sentence? Well, did you know about this game?

How To Play: At the beginning of the night, establish that everyone must drink from their non-dominant hand. Anyone caught doing otherwise can be called out by anyone else in the game by saying, "Buffalo." The offending person is then obligated to finish their drink and immediately get another. You can really raise the stakes by making this game permanent — i.e., any time any participants are drinking around each other, for all time — but we recommend starting out with a party first.
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Photographed by Janelle Jones.
The Game: Roxanne
Yes, that Roxanne. Who doesn't need to put on her red light.

How To Play: This one is super simple. Turn up "Roxanne" by The Police, and drink every Sting sings the name Roxanne. This can be duplicated with any number of songs with repeated words. Great for any group with a Spotify account and a short attention span.
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Photographed by Sydney Hass.
The Game: Bite The Bag
A game that actively mixes coordination with drinking.

How to Play:
Gather your party into a spacious area, moving all breakable and precious goods out of the vicinity. Standing in a circle formation, make sure each player's drink is portable enough to hold or to keep nearby as the group will remain standing throughout the course of the game. One player will place a mid-sized paper grocery bag in the center of the circle. Commencing clockwise, each player will then bend down to "bite the bag".

A successful biting of the bag occurs with no use of hands, arms, or any other apparatuses, and the bag being lifted off of the floor solely with the player's mouth. After each complete rotation around the circle, the bag is trimmed down (gradually becoming lower and lower to the floor). If and when a player is unable to lift the bag without the use of hands, or a resulting tumble to the floor, then a drink must be taken.

The lower the bag goes, the lower your drink goes, and in turn your coordination too.
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Photographed by Sydney Hass.
The Game: Drunk Jenga (a.k.a Drunga)
As if this game wasn't difficult enough already...

How to Play:
Begin with your OG 54 Jenga blocks, a gathered group, drinks of choice, and a sticky note pad with pen. On each block, a rule will be written (e.g. "take a shot" or "take 3 sips"). When jotting down rules, aim for variety to keep the group on their toes. Once all the blocks have been prescribed, it's time to build!

Using one hand, players must carefully remove a single block. If successfully taken out, the written rule on the block must then followed. But if the structure falls, then the player responsible for the demolition must finish their drink and the game begins again.

Good luck to you all.
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Photographed by Sydney Hass.
The Game: Go Fish
The childhood card game fav just got a lot buzzier.

How to Play:
Grab a deck of cards and deal out 5 to each member of the group. Begin the game by asking each player if they have your card of choice, e.g. the queen of hearts (just like a regular old game of "Go Fish").

Here's where the buzz begins — once you've asked for selected card matches, the player's responses will determine the drinking. If you're a "yes", then keep your cards and your drink where it's at. But if you're a " go fish," then it's a boozy bottoms up!
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Photographed by Elliot Salazar.
The Game: Most Likely
Remember back in high school when peers (and the year book) hypothesized what your future would "most likely" hold? Now try adding alcohol to that impromptu future-reading equation.

How to Play:
Corral your clique (preferably in a circle) and begin with one player indirectly asking the group a "most likely" question. Once posed, everyone must the point to the person who most likely fits. How many sips you'll be required to take depends on how many fingers are pointing in your direction.

The most savage question of all: Who's most likely to finish their drink first?
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Photographed by Ly Ngo.
The Game: Water or Vodka
The Russian Roulette of drinking games.

How to Play:
Begin, first, by purchasing a shot roulette set along with a bottle of your chosen vodka (opt for a higher-end bottle, unless Burnett's is your jam). Once the group is gathered, the host will sporadically fill the shot glasses with either water or vodka. The game begins with a spin of the wheel and the daring question, "water or vodka?". The players must answer and select a fated shot glass to shoot.

Only rule? No smelling the shots!
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Photographed by Ly Ngo.
The Game: Booze Taboo
Get buzzed over buzz words!

How To Play:
Gather your group and give each player a secret card (for their eyes only). The cards will include either an action, a noun, or a phrase that is likely to occur during the evening. Each time another group member does or says your prescribed "taboo" buzz word, you must drink. Fast-paced and mysterious, the best part of this game is figuring out everyone else's taboo. Once the taboos are discovered, the players can tap out.

Note: Do not choose subtly frequent buzz words (e.g. breathing), unless you want things to get really turnt.
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Photographed by Davide Luciano.
The Game: Let's Go Camping
PSA: There is no actual camping involved in this game.

How to Play:
Get your group together with drinks of choice in hand. One player will begin by thinking of a place (e.g. the circus). The rest of the group will then proceed to guess what objects one might find in, and bring to, this unknown place.

For example: a guess could consist of a player stating aloud, "I'm going camping and I'm bringing a tent". This statement would be considered true and the player would not have to drink, as circuses do have tents. However, if a wrong object was to be guessed (e.g. a skyscraper), then the player would have to drink. The game is won once someone is able to accurately guess the place — but, be sure to guess only when certain as wrong guesses result in drink-chugging.

Note: Good luck with going "camping" to a circus, they have everything at those things.
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Photographed by Sydney Hass.
The Game: Drinktionary
It's drunk Pictionary: part Pictionary, part drinking, and a lot of fun.

How to play:
Each player has the chance to be both a timer and an artist. Before the timer starts the clock, they will whisper a word into the artist’s ear (be sure that no one else hears!). Once the clock is ticking, the artist will then draw the secret word until the players are able to correctly guess it. If the players guess the whispered word, the artist must then take a sip for every 20 seconds passed on the timer.

For example: if it took the players 2 minutes to figure out the word, the artist will have to take take 6 sips. If everyone is stumped, then the artist must take a shot! Although the drawers have higher winning chances, by the 4th round everyone ultimately ends up on the same (drunk) playing field.
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Photographed by Anna Sudit.
The Game: Straight Face
This game will put your sense of humor AND your poker face abilities to the test.

How to play:
Straight Face is sweet, simple, and hilarious. Gather your party people, drinks, pens, and some paper. The game begins with each player writing down one sentence on a piece of paper, crumpling, and piling it at the center of the group. Turns are then taken around the circle where each player must pick a paper strip from the pile and read it aloud. The catch? The sentences are odd, raunchy, awkward, and hilarious — and the reader MUST keep a straight face while reciting.

Any giggles, cracked smiles, or gasps will result in, you guessed it, a drink!
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Photographed by Amy Lombard.
The Game: Questions
Get to know your friends better AND maybe get a little drunk at the same time.

How to play:
Get your drinks in hand and get comfortable, because you’re in for an "informative" ride. Questions is played exactly as you may have already intuited: a member of the group begins by asking a yes or no question to another player who must then answer without hesitation. Drinks must be sipped if there is any pause prior to answering, and also if any questions are repeated by the asker.

Go around the circle clockwise to keep things moving and get creative — who knows what you'll learn.
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Photographed by Anna Alexia Basile.
The Game: Kings (or Queens)
When this game is over, we'll all be feeling like the Queen of England.

How to play:
Grab your group with their drinks of choice, a deck of playing cards, and one solo cup (the King or the Queen’s cup). Place the royal cup amidst the fanned out cards (faces down) on the center of a table. The first player begins by lifting a card from the table and displaying it to the group and then that player, or everyone else, must drink accordingly. E.g. if they drew a three, that stands for "me" so the player must drink; if they drew a four, that stands for “floor” so everyone must touch the floor (and the last one to do so drinks). If you are feeling creative, you can make your very own cheat sheet — or just download a pre-made one.

This is a game of pure chance, not skill — so good luck!
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Photographed by Sam Kaplan.
The Game: Quarters
Who knew money could bounce so high?

How to play:
This game is pretty simple and requires very little (friends, quarters, drinks, and a tabletop). First, gather your group, your spare change, and your shot glasses (you can either play for shots, or have separate drinks for sipping). The two “shooters” at either end of the table start off by attempting to bounce or “shoot” their quarter from the tabletop into their shot glasses. Once one succeeds, they then pass their shot glass to the person on their left who must continue to shoot and pass. The drinking part? If you are unsuccessful in shooting your quarter before the second glass gets passed your way, you must drink or take a shot!

It’s fast-paced fun with money and alcohol — what more could you want?
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Photographed by Maria DelRio.
The Game: Drink While You Think
Thinking while drinking, WHAT a concept.

How to play:
Pick your poison, grab your group of comrades, and gather around a campfire/table/you name it. Once you’ve all circled up, one person will start by stating aloud the name of a notable person (i.e. a celebrity, president, historical figure, etc.)— for example: Taylor Swift. Going clockwise, the next group member will follow with a figure whose first name begins with the letter of the previous figure’s last name— for example: Sarah Silverman. The drinking catch? You must drink while you are thinking up the name! The quicker you think, the less you drink.

For all the pop culture whizzes out there, this game will be a breeze. For the rest of you, good luck and drink up.
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Photographed by Aaron Richter.
The Game: Heads Up!
Get ready to get seriously animated, a little overwhelmed, and, above all, tipsy.

How to play:
Heads Up! is the adult, inverse version of Charades, where the participants act/sing/dance out a word for their unknowing team members to guess. There are two ways to play this game: the millennial way with Ellen DeGeneres’ iPhone app, OR the old school way with hand-written cards “lick and stick” style on your forehead (Inglorious Basterds' bar scene, anyone?).

Any category goes (celebs, animals, song titles, movies, historical figures, you name it), with the only rule being to drink if you are unable to interpret your teammates’ flailing and grunting abilities (i.e. acting skills).
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Photographed by Amy Lombard.
The Game: Cheers To The Governor
This game requires remembering a set of random, made up rules, which inevitably gets trickier (and more fun!) as you continue to play.

How To Play:
Sit in a circle with a group of people and go around one by one, each counting a consecutive number from one to 21. Once you get to 21, everyone yells, "Cheers to the governor," and takes a drink. The person who said the number 21 picks any number (between 1 and 21) and replaces it with a rule. (The only numbers you can't choose are 7 and 14, which must remain as numbers the whole game, except they are switched. So each time you go through the count, you say 6, 14, 8, and 13, 7, 15.) Rules can include anything from spinning around in a circle 10 times, having to sit under the table until your next turn, or coming up with a new fruit each turn without repeating one that has already been named.

For example, you could choose "six" and replace the number with an animal sound, such as mooing like a cow. Then you re-start the count from one to 21, but any time someone gets to the number six moving forward, they have to moo like a cow instead of saying six. Every time you get to 21 everyone yells, "Cheers to the governor," takes a drink, and that person comes up with another rule.

When someone forgets a rule or messes up, that person has to drink, and then the count starts over at one (or whatever the rule for one is) with the next person. As the group gets closer to replacing all the numbers, it becomes harder and harder to keep track of everything.
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Photographed by Ruby Yeh.
The Game: True American
Popularized by the roommates in the show New Girl, you’ll need to play this one in a living room with lots of furniture, and with very-willing friends.

How To Play:
On a table in the center of the furniture, you build a castle made out of, you guessed it, alcohol. A liquor bottle sits in the center as the King and beer cans are lined up in four rows stemming out from the King as the Pawns. The castle is then surrounded by four access points that are made out of furniture. And around that is a circle of varying furniture pieces that the players will hop on, because the floor is made out of lava — obviously.

To start the game, a player yells, “One, two, three, JFK” at which point all the other players yell “FDR,” grab a Pawn from the castle (remember, that's a can of beer), and retreat to any piece of furniture. Everyone jumps from furniture to furniture in a clockwise direction. The person whose turn it is has to move from one space to the next by completing tasks with patriotic themes. Every time a player gets to a center piece, they take a Pawn. Once all Pawns are removed, the King is vulnerable. The first player to land on one of the center pieces, finish their beer, and take a swig from the King wins the game! Sound complicated? Don’t worry, you can read all the detailed directions on the True American website, here.
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Photographed by Amy Lombard.
The Game: Never Have I Ever Instagrammed
We all remember the “Never Have I Ever” game from grade school sleepovers, right? Well, this version targets our Instagram habits.

How To Play:
Everyone sits in a circle and takes turn being “it.” When it’s your turn, you say, “Never have I ever Instagrammed...” and fill in the blank with a cliché Instagram photo, like “a glamour selfie” or “my lunch” or “a sunset.” You can also say something more personal to your group of friends by naming photo-worthy spots in your city, canine friends, or even pics of an event you all attended. Everyone who has Instagrammed what you mentioned must drink!
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Photographed by Davide Luciano.
The Game: Thumper
This one’s great to break shy people out of their shells.

How To Play:
Each player comes up with a seated dance move. Once the moves are decided, everyone demonstrates their selected jigs while others commit it to memory. To start, everyone thumps their palms on the table in unison to make a beat. The first player performs their dance move (to the beat of the hands, of course) and then performs another random player’s move. Then it's that player's turn to perform his or her move before doing another player's jig, passing it on. Whenever someone misses the move being passed to them or forgets someone else’s move, they must drink!
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Illustrated by Isabelle Rancier.
The Game: Is It A Hashtag?
Hashtags can target everything from celebrities (#northwest) to current events (#doma), making it easy to find multiple thoughts on the same trend. Sometimes, though, hashtags can get a little too silly or unreadable, which is kind of what this game is built on.

How To Play:
Each player writes a word on a piece of paper —be it a noun, proper noun, adjective, or slang. Then, you fold the paper in half so that the word isn't visible, and give it to the person picked to be in charge. The game master then draws two pieces of a paper at a time, creating the teams. Each team combines their words to make a compound hashtag. The game master then searches Instagram or Twitter for the possible hashtags. If the hashtag exists, the team members are safe. If not, they must drink!
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