During the Victorian era, parlour games became popular among the upper classes, providing a way to pass the time and showcase wit and intelligence. Today, they are perfect way to connect with friends and family in the living room.
Split players into teams. Each team takes turns sending one player to act out a phrase without speaking. The other players must guess what the phrase is within a certain amount of time. The team with the most correct guesses at the end wins.
Reverse Charades: In this version, the entire team acts out the word or phrase together, while one player tries to guess what it is. This can be a fun twist on traditional charades and can lead to some hilarious group movements.
Sound Charades: This variation allows players to make sounds, but not use words or gestures. For example, if the word is "cat," players might meow or purr to get their team to guess the correct answer.
Double Charades: In this version, players act out two words or phrases at the same time, one with each hand. This can be a bit more challenging than traditional charades and can lead to some hilarious combinations, such as "surfing pizza" or "flying frog."
1. List People, Places, and Objects
Request each individual to jot down a single word on a piece of paper. The word can be the name of a famous individual, a destination to visit, a movie title, or even a preferred food item. Fold all the papers and put them inside a bowl.
2. Split into Two Teams
Divide the group into two teams. The game comprises of three rounds, and each round is played in a similar manner (refer to the regulations for each round below). Firstly, a member from the first team selects a word from the bowl and tries to get their teammates to guess it.
Once the word is guessed, the same player swiftly picks another word from the bowl for their teammates to guess. They keep selecting words until their 1-minute turn ends (a timer is necessary to keep track). After 1 minute, award the team 1 point for each correctly guessed word. Once the first team completes their turn, the next team goes until all the words in the bowl are guessed.
3. Round One: Verbal Hints
The player chooses a word from the bowl and describes it to their teammates without mentioning the actual word. Once the word is guessed correctly, they can choose another word from the bowl for their teammates to guess. They keep selecting and describing each word until their 1-minute turn ends.
4. Round Two: Charades
In this round, the player picks a word from the bowl and acts it out without speaking. Once it’s guessed, they choose a new word and continue until their 1-minute turn ends.
5. Round Three: One-Word Hint
For the final round, a player picks a word from the bowl and gives a single clue to help their teammates guess the correct word. The team with the highest number of points after all three rounds wins.
1. Choose roles: Assign roles to the players. The roles can include the following:
- Werewolves: These players secretly identify themselves to each other and must eliminate the townspeople without getting caught.
- Townspeople: These players are trying to identify the werewolves and eliminate them before they get killed.
- Seer: This player can secretly choose one player each night and the moderator will tell them whether that player is a werewolf or not.
- Doctor: This player can secretly choose one player each night to "heal" and save them from being killed by the werewolves.
- Village Idiot: This player's vote counts for double during the daytime vote, but they have no special abilities.
- Hunter: If this player is killed during the nighttime phase, they can choose one other player to kill before they die.
2. Set up the game: Have all the players sit in a circle. The moderator should secretly let the werewolves know who each other are. Then, the moderator tells all players to close their eyes and ask the werewolves to open their eyes so they can identify each other. Then, the werewolves should close their eyes again.
3. Nighttime: The moderator announces that it is nighttime in the game. Everyone closes their eyes and the moderator tells the werewolves to open their eyes and choose one person to "kill." The werewolves silently indicate their choice to the moderator, who confirms the choice and announces the victim. Then, the Seer and Doctor, if applicable, can take their turns.
4. Daytime: The moderator announces the victim and the game enters the daytime phase. The townspeople must now discuss and vote on who they believe the werewolves are. The person with the most votes is eliminated from the game and reveals their role. If the victim was the Seer or Doctor, their role is revealed but they cannot use their ability anymore.
5. Repeat: The game then goes back to nighttime and the werewolves choose another victim, starting a new cycle. The game continues with alternating nighttime and daytime phases until either all werewolves are eliminated, or the werewolves outnumber the remaining townspeople.
- The werewolves should try to blend in with the townspeople during the daytime phase to avoid suspicion.
- The townspeople should observe behavior and try to deduce who the werewolves might be.
- The Seer and Doctor should try to use their abilities strategically to identify or save key players.
Similar to charades, but instead of acting, one player draws a picture while the others try to guess what it represents. The team with the most correct guesses wins.
Players take turns holding a paper on their forehead with a word or phrase displayed. The other players give clues to help them guess what the word is within a certain amount of time. The player with the most correct guesses at the end wins.
Two Truths and a Lie
Each player tells three statements about themselves, two of which are true and one of which is false. The other players must guess which statement is the lie.
Never Have I Ever
Each player takes turns making a statement beginning with "never have I ever." Anyone who has done the thing mentioned must take a drink or lose a point. The last player remaining wins.
Players sit in a circle and one player whispers a phrase to the player next to them, who then whispers it to the next player, and so on. The last player says the phrase out loud and it is usually quite different from the original.
Player 1 leaves the room. The other players choose a secret task for the dolphin to complete (ex. jumping jacks, pick up a specific object and move it). When the dolphin returns, the only prompts the other players can give is clapping faster if the dolphin is getting closer to doing the desired task.
"Parlour Games for Modern Families" by Myfanwy Jones and Spiri Tsintziras. This book features a range of classic and contemporary parlour games, along with tips on how to adapt them for different family members and settings.
"The Book of Games: Volume 1, Family Games" by Steve Luck. This book presents a collection of family-friendly games that can be played with minimal equipment and preparation, including board games, card games, and outdoor activities.