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. 🙂


  1. Unfortunately, as he was reaching in the ground to pull out the bone and identify it, he somehow triggered a wormhole that transported him back to the Cretaceous period.

  2. Hahahaha wow, I just read over all those comments together, that was one great story. I hadn’t expected it when I posted this, but this is actually my most frequently commented post!

    Let’s start another game, shall we? One tip: to keep the story fun and moving, have your sentence include an action verb (like jump, break, fall, spill, dig, etc etc) rather than verbs like “there was” or “she knew.” Also no undoing the last statement in your own!

    So here we go:

    One day Goldilocks was out in the woods for a walk with her friend Little Red Riding Hood, going to visit Little Red’s grandmother. Fortunately, the sun was shining and the weather was nice so they could clearly see the path.

    …anyone else? 😉

  3. Fortunately she found a path through the woods with trees that would keep her covered from the rain and take her to her grandma’s home.

  4. Fortunately, Goldilock’s friends (the bears) were also in the bushes having some porridge so they chased the wolf away.

  5. Unfortunately, when Goldilocks and Little Red Riding Hood eventually arrived at grandma’s house, they knocked on the door and the wolf answered!

  6. Fortunately, Goldilocks’ three bear friends has the tooth of the wolf that they once chased. the tooth will help grandma prevent its werewolf form.

  7. Unfortunately, The bears got hungry, and remembered the time when Goldilocks ate all their Food…, and although they liked goldilocks just enough to not eat her , they had no obligation to her friend, Little Red Riding Hood, and her grandma.. So they got out their knives and forks.

  8. Fortunately, Goldilocks called for help, then “a white wizard” who is a friend of Goldilocks entered the scene like a lightening and used his magics to create food for the bears and all were saved from the danger.

  9. unfortunately the wicked witch who was watching all this from a bush got out and put a hex on goldilocks that she would forget everything about her family and friends for one whole year.

  10. Unfortunately, as they sat down there was a knock at the door and three little pigs came running in shouting about a wolf that was after them.

  11. Unfortunately, by the time the door was set back it was too late and hungry, unfriendly wolf managed to get in to house.

  12. Fortunately, Little Red’s grandmother had just finished making the most scrumptious Sunday roast and when the wolf got one sniff of the feast, he no longer was interested in eating the pigs.

  13. Fortunately he gagged as one was too fat and therefore inedible and the little pigs all managed to run away and hide in the woods

  14. Fortunately, the huts were located in front of a stone mountain, and the hay ricocheted and went straight into the wolf’s throat choking him to death.

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