Gameless Game Nights

As a broke college student surrounded by other broke college students, sometimes we need to find ways to entertain ourselves that don’t cost money. One of our favorite ways to do that is to host game nights, without board games, video games or card games. Instead, we have games that you can play in large groups that we play to make each other do weird things. These game nights are typically some of my favorites because you can’t help but be close to everyone there, after looking like a dork for the past hour.

While I was living in Washington that was how I made some of my first friends there because we would all get together for game nights every week. And honestly, it was the highlight of my week. I loved seeing how creative everyone could be and it challenged me to open up. These games can be played anywhere and everywhere and are great to spice up a party when there’s some downtime. If you want to be the life of the party, memorize some of these games and whip them out whenever things start getting a little slow. So, without further ado here are five fun party games.

  1. Animal Noises

This is where you have one person standing in the middle of a room with their eyes closed. They have to spin around while everyone one else switches seats. After they are done spinning, and everyone has a seat, they point to someone. The person that is pointed at has to make an animal noise and then based off the noise, the person pointing has to guess who it is. If they guess correctly, the person who made the animal noise swaps places with the person in the middle, and it starts all over again.


  1. Signs

This again has someone in the middle. They have to try and catch someone in the group accepting and sending a sign to someone else in the circle. So, at the start, the middleman has to leave the room while everyone chooses their signs. Signs can be anything from hand gestures to facial expressions.  Once the middleman comes back, the person with the “sign” has to flash their chosen sign to another group member. If that group member accepts the person’s sign, then they will flash their chosen sign back to acknowledge that they received it. Once received, they pass it to another person in the group waiting for their acceptance. If caught flashing your chosen sign to another player in the circle, you become the middleman and switch places.


  1. Mafia

Mafia is one of my favorites and can go on for hours. In the game, depending on how many players you have, there will be one narrator, one angel, two mafia. Everyone else are townspeople. The idea is no one knows who plays what role, except for the narrator. The narrator opens up the game with where you guys are and the rules, they will tell everyone to close their eyes then tap on player’s shoulders to let them know which role they have. One tap mafia, two taps angel. The mafia’s goal is to kill everyone in the town. The angel’s job is to save the townspeople without knowing who the mafia are targeting. Every night the mafia attempts to kill someone, and the angel tries to save them. Every day, the townspeople get to vote who they think is part of the mafia and the player with the most votes will be “executed” and removed from the game. During the night the narrator will instruct everyone to close their eyes. Then they will tell the mafia to open their eyes and choose someone to kill, after that the mafia close their eyes and then the angel open’s theirs and chooses someone to save. During the day everyone’s eyes are open. The game is played until all the townspeople die, or until all the mafia are executed. If you are the narrator, feel free to get creative with the deaths and the scenery. You’re the one telling the story.


  1. Ninja

This is different than what most people think when they hear “ninja.” In this game, everyone in the room has a number. One person is in the middle with their eyes closed (this person also has a number). The person in the middle will call two numbers to switch spots. These two numbers have to get to the other number’s chair without getting tagged by the middleman. If they are tagged, then they have to be in the middle.


  1. If You Love Me Will You Please Smile

This is the most awkward game I know. You have one person in the middle, trying to get someone in the circle to smile. Anything goes. As a group you can set some ground rules, it depends on who you are with. The idea is to get someone to smile, so you get out of being middleman. When the middleman approaches someone, they have to say, “Honey if you love me will you please smile” now the other player has to respond without smiling or laughing, “honey I’m sorry, but I can’t smile.” When playing this game, I have seen people flirt with each other, steal each other’s glasses, make funny faces or even crack an inside joke. Pretty much anything goes, you just have to get them to smile.


These are some of my favorite games that we played during game night. Also, some of the most energetic games. Maybe you guys have played them. Maybe you haven’t. If you have or haven’t played them, I hope this inspires you to start your own game nights. Hint: add snacks into the mix to get people going. I love you guys and hope you have a fun Halloween week! I’ll see you all Wednesday!

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