What it is: A silly, creative talking activity for anywhere from two to many players. Similar to the tell a story game, but with more direction.
Best for: Group of 3 to 8ish.
What you need: Nothing!
How to play: Have all your players sit in a circle, or establish a clear playing order. Then proceed to tell a story, with each person saying one sentence at a time. Here’s the catch: each sentence must start with either “fortunately” or “unfortunately,” always alternating. So here’s how a sample game might go. The first player, Rachel, starts out the story by saying a simple statement of fact, like
One day I got a new puppy.
(The story can be in first person, but it doesn’t have to be.) The next player, Brad, would then add a sentence onto the story, but he has to start the sentence with “unfortunately,” like
Unfortunately, he ran away.
Then it’s Katie’s turn, but she has to start a sentence with “fortunately:”
Fortunately, he came back the next day with a 100 dollar bill.
The next player would say an “unfortunately” sentence, like “Unfortunately, the 100 dollar bill was a counterfeit and the cops nabbed me for it when I tried to use it to buy a pet canary.” As you can imagine, the game usually gets pretty silly pretty fast. And the stories tend to drag on without any clear ending, so just break it up when you want to start a new one. It’s a lot of fun, though, and good for car rides or killing time. Write your stories down or just tell them out loud; either way, have fun!
Variations: As said, this game is pretty similar to tell a story.
Example: If you want an example game, maybe you could watch the TV show I Shouldn’t Be Alive; sometimes I think those episodes tend to play out like a version of this game. (The man was starving in the jungle…fortunately, he found some berries…unfortunately, they were poisionous. But fortunately, he hunted a rabbit to eat…but unfortunately, he had no fire to cook it…) 😉
Okay, for real, here’s a sample game from me and my husband. Oh, which reminds me of something else: if you’re playing with only two people (or any even number), it means the same people will always be saying “unfortunately” or “fortunately” sentences. Which could be boring or could be fun. But you could just switch it up halfway through if you want. For now, you can guess who had the “fortunately” sentences in this example, me or my husband:
One day a man was flying on an airplane. Unfortunately, the airplane was out of peanuts. Fortunately, the man was allergic to peanuts and so he was happy about that. Unfortunately, the man was also allergic to chocolate chip cookies, and the airplane wasn’t out of those. Fortunately, the man was the pilot, and so he wasn’t offered any of the cookies. Unfortunately, the pilot was so distracted by the conversation about the cookies he was allergic to that he didn’t see the huge thundercloud. Fortunately, the plane’s autopilot took control and did a barrel roll around the thundercloud. Unfortunately…
Well, you get the idea. 🙂