Saturday!

Yesterday, I mentioned that I was invited to play Cards Against Humanity with co-workers.

Personally, I don’t particularly like Cards Against Humanity. It’s a game for people who want to pretend to make the jokes that horrible people would make without actually making the jokes that horrible people would make. But everybody else can still laugh at the horrible jokes. On top of that, if someone in the group gets their feelings scratched by one of the jokes, they’re in the middle of a group of people who are all laughing at the joke that just hurt their feelings.

AND THEN YOU HAVE TO STILL SEE EACH OTHER ON MONDAY

Who thought this was a good idea? I mean, other than the co-workers who invited me to play Cards Against Humanity.

SO! I’m going to bring a handful of games that are also good games for large groups of people (like, more than 4 or 6) because one of the reasons that Cards Against Humanity works as a game is because it’s sometimes fun and you can play it with 7 or more people and it feels like there just aren’t that many games made for 7 or more people.

So here are some good games for largish groups of strangers/co-workers:

One-Night Werewolf.
Each person gets dealt an identity, and one of the identities is that of werewolf. Then everybody puts their cards in front of them and closes their eyes… then you press play on the free app and the game starts in earnest. Maybe your card gets switched. Maybe it doesn’t. The app will tell you what to do based on what your identity was and then after going through all of the identities in front of everyone, it says “open your eyes” and you have to figure out who the werewolf is. Well, except for the werewolf, whose job it is to get you to choose someone else. It’s a fun bluffing game. Takes 10 minutes but you’ll play it 3 or 4 times in a row.

Citadels is an awesome game for up to 8 people.
The deck is shuffled and passed around. Each person picks a role from the deck and passes it on. The goal is to build districts with the money you have in front of you but, man, that can be a pain with other people going out of their way to prevent you from doing so. When it comes to the other players, the only thing you know about other people’s roles is what you saw of the deck by the time that you got it. Then, your role allows you to do various things… the assassin can make another player lose his/her turn, the thief can steal from anybody but the assassin/assassin’s target, the merchant gets gold every turn, so on and so forth. After everybody plays, the deck of characters is reshuffled and passed around again. If it doesn’t get bogged down by the guy who yells “I’m thinking!” and taking 5 minutes for his turn, this is an *AWESOME* game.

Morat also pointed out Bang! and that’s also a great one. Bang! is another game where you are assigned a role and then have a set of goals based on what your role is. The Sheriff wants to shoot the outlaws, the outlaw wants to shoot the sheriff, the deputies want to protect the sheriff… but you don’t know who’s who. Well, at first, anyway. By the time the bullets start flying, it’s pretty obvious.

Those are the ones off the top of my head.

So… what are you playing?

(Picture is HG Wells playing a war game from Illustrated London News (25 January 1913))


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Jaybird is Birdmojo on Xbox Live and Jaybirdmojo on Playstation's network. He's been playing consoles since the Atari 2600 and it was Zork that taught him how to touch-type. If you've got a song for Wednesday, a commercial for Saturday, a recommendation for Tuesday, an essay for Monday, or, heck, just a handful a questions, fire off an email to AskJaybird-at-gmail.com

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10 thoughts on “Saturday!

  1. We always play Cards Against Humanity at cast parties thrown by a certain director at the theatre I volunteer at.

    An important fact here is these cast party takes place at the *end* of the show and you don’t have to work anymore with those people you have now discovered are completely horrible. ;)

    CAH is not a game you should play with co-workers, or anyone you aren’t sure where the line is. (And don’t play it with *actual* assholes, either.)

    It’s a game designed to get you to offend other people, at least if you try to play it ‘seriously’.

    Just like a lot of other games like it, to win, the correct play is not what you think is best, the correct play is whatever you think the *judge* is going to like…which means for some judges you have to pick really perverted or sadistic things, and for other judges, you just pick any jokey thing.

    Which means, in any random group of people, you are forced to offend some people if you’re trying to please others.

    Granted, that’s if you care about ‘winning’ at all. Plenty of other people just pick the most horrible sounding thing always, regardless of the judge, or alternately (and you can sorta guess this as you watch their expressions and then what card they end up playing(1)) people think of horrific things, and then aren’t willing to play them.

    I’m not sure what the point is of playing the game halfheartedly, though. Either have fun playing the worst thing, or have fun trying to win by trying to read the mind of the judge. Don’t be the guy who has the perfect card that you know would win…but thinks it’s a bit too much. Of course it’s a bit too much…you’re playing Cards Against Humanity, that’s the *point*.

    1) Technically, only the winner has to announce what card is theirs, but in reality, everyone seems to.

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    • If you don’t like the game, and you don’t like the meta-game, then you should be playing something else.

      I mean, even something like Uno has a really fun meta-game even if you’re not crazy about the game.

      CAH doesn’t really have either going for it.

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  2. Pit’s a very old card game, but a lot of fun for small groups.

    Masquerade is pretty fun, but I can’t recall what the limit on players is.

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        • We ended up with around 15 people, so we split up into two groups.

          The Hardcore Gamers ended up over there at that table and a sacrificial Hardcore Gamer was thrown at the normies in order to walk them through a game that was safe for them to play in front of the 5 year old and the 3 year old who also showed up.

          I was the sacrificial Hardcore Gamer. We played Fluxx and Anomia, both of which will be discussed next week.

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  3. Apples to Apples is sort of a tamer (and slightly different) version of CAH. I’ve played it with a high-school youth group, with a bunch of cousins, with a bunch of friends.

    (In fact, I remember one of the few times I laughed so hard I started crying was when I played it with my cousins. I can’t even remember what the goofy link was that was so funny, but it was very very funny)

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  4. I played Tales of Arabia with my brother last night. Just the two of us (it’s fun even with two people, but more would be better).

    It ended up very classically Arabian. You had two brothers, both equal. And one apparently had the luck of the gods, where everything went right for him. And the other was accursed, grief-stricken, insane, and enslaved for quite some time.

    Seriously, my brother never made a decision that didn’t turn out great for his character — even the random “I have no idea what to do with this, so I’ll just do X”. Mine, however…..good lord. No matter what I did, it turned out badly.

    I finally went full evil at the end, because screw it — God hates me. :)

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  5. I don’t think I’ve ever had my feelings hurt by Cards Against Humanity, and I can’t even imagine how that would happen…to me. That said, it’s a throwback to the time when Being Shockingly Offensive was considered a valid mode of humor, and contemporary society is–rightly, I think most would say–in a place where not finding Shocking Offense funny is no longer a punchline in itself.

    That kind of got away from me. What I mean is, I don’t have a problem with CAH but I can see how someone would, and they aren’t wrong to have that problem. And you will certainly learn things about your co-workers and what bizarrely specific sex acts they are and are not aware of.

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