22 Best Drinking Games for an Unforgettably Good Time

Liven up your next gathering with a little friendly (and boozy) competition.

Looking forward to your next party but not all the awkward small talk? No problem. Just work your way around it by having a few fun drinking games planned. Not only will these activities help break the ice amongst your guests, but they'll also help establish a certain playfulness to set the tone for your event. And you don't need to spend a fortune preparing for the night, either. Read on for 22 raucous drinking game options that don't require anything special to set up.

RELATED: 191 Truth or Drink Questions for Adults in Need of Some Fun.

Drinking Games With Cards

group of friends playing drinking games involving cards while out at a bar
Jacob Lund/Shutterstock

Before we dive into the games themselves, a quick note on drinking responsibly: While you want to have fun and show your guests a good time, making sure everyone is comfortable and safe is the real win here. When playing, always monitor the amount of alcohol consumed, stay hydrated, and never pressure anyone to drink more than they're comfortable with.

Now, let's get this party started!

1. King's Cup

Kings Cup, or Kings, is a classic drinking game that revolves around chance, strategy, and—of course—drinking. Everyone who wants to play should arrange themselves in a clockwise circle and take turns drawing cards. The first person to grab a king is responsible for choosing a liquor. The next person to do so will have to pick out a mixer. If they're nice, they'll choose something easy like seltzer or soda, but if they're feeling a little more playful, they might go with something a little harder to get down. The third person to pick a king will be tasked with making a drink out of the two ingredients previously chosen, and the fourth person to draw a king has to drink it!

2. Circle of Death

Invite everyone back into the circle and agree on a dealer, who, from that point on, will be referred to as the "dealer of death." The game begins with the dealer distributing cards clockwise and face up, starting with the person to their left. If a player is dealt a card that matches their neighbor's in suit or in number, the card is considered "active." Those with active cards must take a sip of their drink and continue chugging for as many seconds as their card says. So, if you're dealt a three of spades, you'll be challenged to drink for three seconds. The dealer is responsible for timing the players and the game ends once everyone has finally finished their drink!

3. Beeramid

Pick a dealer and ask them to make a pyramid of cards by laying them flat and facedown on the table. The bottom row should include seven cards, with the next row containing six, and so on until you just have one card on the top. The rest of the cards can be divided among the rest of the group. Each player will be given 10 seconds to look at their cards before putting them down. Then, the dealer can start flipping over each card in the pyramid. Any player who claims to have a card with the same number can tell another player to take a sip of their drink. That player can either oblige or call their bluff. If it turns out their teammate was lying, that player will have to drink twice as much as they originally requested!

4. Screw the Dealer

There's not a lot of strategy to go along with this game. Instead, it's all about luck. Gather the group in a circle surrounding a facedown deck of cards to get started. You guys can then take turns being the dealer, turning the cards over one at a time. Each time, the group will have to decide whether the next card will be higher or lower than the one previously dealt. If you guess wrong as a group, then you'll have to take a drink altogether. The game continues until everyone decides they've had enough!

RELATED: Party Games for Adults (And Sometimes Kids) in Need of Some Fun.

Drinking Games With Cups

plastic beer cups on an empty table following a game of beer pong
KG Design/Shutterstock

5. Flip Cup

If you and your drinking buddies are looking for a slightly more physical way to pass the time, then you should definitely give Flip Cup a try. You'll need a long table and a bunch of plastic cups to get started. Once you've got everything set up, divide the group in two and have both teams stand on opposite sides of the table. The goal is for each player to finish their drink and successfully flip over the empty cup with their fingers. It might take a few tries, so be sure to have some patience. Once the cup successfully lands flat on the table the next player is free to go. The first team to finish wins the game!

6. Beer Pong

If you've ever spent any time around a fraternity, then you probably already know the rules of this game. If not, here's how it goes: arrange six cups in a 3-2-1- formation on opposite ends of your table. Fill each cup halfway with your drink of choice. Split the group up into two teams and allow players to take turns throwing a ping-pong ball towards their opponents. If they successfully land the ball in one of the cups, a member of the opposite team will have to chug what's in there and remove the cup from the table. The first team to eliminate all six cups wins!

7. Sixes

This requires a dice and six cups, each a different size. So, you can grab some shot glasses, regular water glasses, champagne flutes, or whatever else you have lying around the house. You and your friends should assign each cup a corresponding number on the dice. You'll have to chug the cup that corresponds to whatever number you roll, so think wisely about what you put down!

8. Titanic

Grab a glass and fill it up with whatever kind of alcohol you want to drink. Then, place a shot glass in the center of the glass. Each person in the group can go around pouring tiny bits of their drink into the shot glass. Whoever causes it to sink to the bottom of the cup must chug the whole thing—or at least as much as they can handle!

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Drinking Games That Will Make You Think

group of women toasting to one another during a night out
Jacob Lund/Shutterstock

9. I Drink and I Know Things

Think of this as the adult version of your classic trivia challenge. When it's your turn, say "I drink and I know" followed by any statement you know the answer to. So, you could say "I drink and I know the capital of Iowa," or "I drink and I know how many feet are in a mile," and so on. If anyone else in the group also knows the answer, they should blurt it out as quickly as they can. That way, they can make every other player (including you) drink. If no one knows the answer, then you can make the rest of the group drink and make another statement about something you know!

10. The Name Game

This one is simple to play but hard to win. Just toss out the name of a random celebrity to get started. From there, the group will have to think of another famous person whose last name starts with the first letter of the previous celebrity's first name. If it's your turn and you can't think of anyone who fits the bill, you drink!

11. Cheers to The Governor

This is a game of rules, the first being that you and your friends must sit in a circle and count from one to 21 while swapping the numbers seven and 11. So, the count will go, "six, 11, eight, nine," and so on. Once the group gets to 21, everyone says "Cheers to the governor." The person who 21 landed on gets to come up with a new rule for the group to follow, like "dance when we get to number 15," or "make an animal noise when we get to number eight." The more creative you get, the more fun the game becomes!

12. Would You Rather

Coming to a decision when between a rock and a hard place is never easy, which is what makes this game so darn fun! Think up a few good would you rather questions to ask your friends and watch them squirm when deciding between something bad and something worse. If they really can't come to a decision, then they'll need to take a sip from their drink!

RELATED: The 20 Best Games to Play With Your Most Competitive Friends.

Funny Drinking Games

group of people carrying their friend while laughing

13. Paranoia

This game is all about suspense and it works like this: Players take turns whispering questions to the person on their right, who then has to announce their answer to the entire group. This is all the group has to go on to figure out what the question actually was. If someone can't deal with the suspense, then they have to take a drink. The more creative the question, the better the challenge!

14. Straight Face

Have you ever tried to stop yourself from laughing, and failed miserably? If so, then you have all the experience needed to take part in the next game on our list: Straight Face. Before you can get things rolling, each player must write sentences designed to make their opponents laugh on small pieces of paper. Mix up the submissions and dump them in the middle of the table. Each player must pick one up at random and read it aloud while maintaining a straight face. Whoever laughs has to—you guessed it—take a sip of their drink!

15. Never Have I Ever

This game can actually be quite revealing, especially when combined with a few cocktails. Get the group together and choose someone to kick things off. That person begins the game by asking everyone to put up five fingers. Then, they'll repeat the phrase "Never have I ever…", and follow it with something they have never done before. Anyone who has experienced or participated in what was said must put a finger down and take a sip of their drink!

16. Taskmaster

This one is a great ice-breaker for when you're hanging around people you may not know too well. To begin, decide as a group who you want to be the "taskmaster." Once appointed, they're allowed to challenge anyone in the group to a new rule or request. And the weirder they are, the better the game becomes. You can make someone quack like a duck or speak in a silly accent, or anything else you might find funny. If they refuse to participate, then they drink. If they try to abide by your rules but fail, then they only need to take a sip. If they manage to pull off everything you've asked of them, then it's your turn to drink and their turn to start making the rules!

RELATED: 20 Fun Online Games to Play With Friends From Afar.

Best Drinking Games for Parties

group of friends playing jenga

17. Drunk Jenga

We all know that drinking doesn't exactly help fine-tune those motor skills, which is what makes this game all the more fun. If you already have a Jenga set at home, then you don't need to do anything more to prepare. Simply whip it out the next time you have guests over and see how far you can get in the game while drinking. You can always up the stakes by jotting down a few rules on each of the blocks. Think things like "drink two fingers of your drink," or "take a shot," to really get everyone good and sauced.

18. Quarters

This one is so low-key, you don't even need to be at a party to play. All you need is a drinking buddy and an accommodating dive bar, and you're good to go. It works like this: take a quarter and try to bounce it off the table and into an empty shot glass. The first person to make the goal wins while the loser is in charge of getting the next round of drinks.

19. Thumper

For this game, everyone in the room should choose a hand gesture they feel accurately represents them. Once that's figured out, the group can start "drumming" on the table. The "leader" will shout out, "What's the name of the game?" with the rest of the group shouting, "Thumper." Then, the leader says, "Why do we play?" to which everyone will respond, "To get [expletive] up." Then, the leader will throw up their hand gesture, along with one chosen by another player. That person must then recreate their sign and those of the two people next to them. The game goes on like this until someone takes too long to come up with someone else's move or forgets it altogether.

20. International Drinking Rules

If you're tapped out on games but still want to participate in a bit of fun, then this is definitely the way to go. Here, you'll establish a set of rules that your party guests must play by for the rest of the night. You're free to invent your own, but a few easy ones include:

  • No swearing
  • No pointing
  • No putting your drink on the table (you either keep refilling the same glass or carry around your empties)
  • No calling people by their first name
  • No saying the word "drink"

RELATED: The 21 Questions Game: 100+ Fun, Formal, and Flirty Things to Ask.

BONUS: Music-Infused Drinking Games

Group of friends playing karaoke at home.

21. Roxanne: The Police Drinking Game

Here's an easy way to loosen everyone up: put on the song Roxanne by The Police and encourage everyone to take a sip of their drink every time the name "Roxanne" is sung That's really the only rule. It's not a very elaborate game, but it will definitely help set the right tone for the rest of the night.

22. Taylor Swift Sing-Along

Be careful with how much you drink here because the rules of this game make it easy to overindulge. Throw on your favorite Taylor Swift album and take a drink whenever she starts singing about love or heartache. It's a fun way to celebrate the singer without taking her lyrics too seriously.

Frequently Asked Questions

Can I play drinking games if I don't drink alcohol?

It may sound contradictory, but it's definitely possible to play drinking games with your friends even if you don't drink alcohol. All you need to do is swap out what everyone else is drinking for a non-alcoholic option.

What's an easy drinking game?

The easiest drinking games are the ones that don't require a ton of people or any props to play. Question-based games like "Would You Rather" or "Never Have I Ever" are great options for when there's not a lot of time to prepare. Quarters and drunk Jenga are also low-maintenance options for those preparing for a fun night with friends.

Wrapping Up

That's it for our list of drinking games, but be sure to check back with us soon for even more ways to have fun! You can also sign up for our newsletter so you don't miss out!

Carrie Weisman
Carrie Weisman oversees all SEO efforts at Best Life. She specializes in content optimization and editorial marketing. Read more
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