This or that

this-or-that-gameWhat it is: This or that is a simple talking game where players choose which of two items they prefer.

Best for: A small group, maybe even two players only.

What you need: You don’t need anything! You can use a pre-made list of items, like the one I provide below, but it’s not necessary.

How to play: Basically players take turns asking and answering questions in the form of “this or that?” Examples:

  • Mountains or beach?
  • Sandals or tennis shoes?
  • Cats or dogs?
  • Digital watch or analog?

Players ask these short questions, and then indicate their preference. It’s easy, simple, and a great way for players to get to know each other. It’s fun to compare likes and dislikes, too. “What?? Cats? Ew! I’m totally a dog person.”

Variations: This game is kind of similar to would you rather, but instead of choosing between two usually undesirable things, this game is more about choosing between two good things.

Printables: And here’s the free printable! It’s a list of “this or that” scenarios to get you started. You don’t need a list like this to play, though; half the fun is players thinking up their own questions.

Fun fact: Way back when my husband and I were freshmen in college, we played an extensive round of this game on our second date. What a great way for us to get to know each other! So not only am I promising you a great game here with This or That, I’m promising you relationship success, as well!*

*Kidding. Please don’t hate me if this game hasn’t led you to marriage or a significant other.

Printable-markerThis or That


Would you rather

What it is: A hypothetical talking game where players choose which of two scenarios they’d rather do.

Best for: Any number of players. It’s a great two-player game.

What you need: Nothing! Aren’t those games the best? It can be nice if you have a pre-made list of “would you rather” scenarios. Guess what? I made one! You can download it for free below.

How to play: Basically players take turns asking each other questions starting with “Would you rather…” and ending with two different scenarios. Like, “Would you rather have to wear ski goggles for the rest of your life…


…or have to wear a Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtle mask?”


(p.s. is Donatello your favorite?)

As demonstrated, the questions are usually a little wacky/silly/absurd. (In some variations, they’re also gross/weird, but I don’t like those questions as much.)

Some other examples of would you rather questions:

  • Would you rather live to be 90 with great health or live an extra ten years past 90 with not-so-great health?
  • Would you rather live off of bread only or live off of anything but carbs?
  • Would you rather be respected but feared or laughed at and loved?

The questions can be thoughtful, silly, or completely hypothetical. It’s fun for players to think up their own questions, too.

Once someone asks a question, everyone else must answer the question. Then another player gets to ask a question.

Another variation for a large group is to have one player draw a question (like from the list I made below) and answer it alone. Then another player draws another question and answers it for themselves, and so on. This could work well if you have so many people, it’s hard to have everyone answer each question.

Printables: Here’s the list of Would you rather questions I came up with. It’s two pages long, so not a ton, but definitely enough to get you started or get you thinking of ideas. Once you get playing with a good group, the ideas usually start coming to players. It’s a fun talking game to play.

Printable-markerWould you rather

Categories list

What it is: A very flexible game with lots of adaptations.

Best for: A group of about 4 to 10.

What you need: You’ll need a list of categories (I’ve provided one below) and possibly a timer and pens and paper.

How to play: Basically the challenge is to try and think of as many items in a category as you can. An example category would be fast food.


And items in the category? Chicken nuggets, tacos, hamburgers, hot dogs, French fries, McDonald’s apple pies, chicken sandwiches, and on and on. How many things can you think of?

Variations: There are many different ways you could set up your game. Here’s a few to get you started.

Like the game Scattergories, you can name as many items in a category that start with the same letter. Choose a letter from the alphabet, draw a category, set a timer, and go! For example, if the category were male names and the letter were C, you could write any of these:

  • Carson
  • Caleb
  • Cole
  • Christian
  • Connor
  • Carter
  • Cameron

You can play on teams, individually, or as a whole group. At the end of the game, everyone takes turns reading all their answers aloud, where questionable answers can be submitted to the group to see if they’ll be allowed or not. (For example: “Camille? That’s a girl’s name!” “But I totally knew a guy named Camille once!” “OK, fine, we’ll allow it.”) If you’re playing against each other, the person who writes down the most names wins. (One variation is to have everyone cross off any name that someone else wrote down, too. That way the person with the most unique answers wins.)

You could also play the above version, but without the restriction of a letter of the alphabet. Any boy name, for example, would work for the above example. Then follow the same rules for the rest of the game.

Another variation which works really well for car rides or killing time can be played one word at a time. In this variation, you pick a category and then take turns saying something from that category, one player at a time. The first person who can’t think of a word that hasn’t already been said is out of the game, and you start a new round with a new category. (The game first letter, last letter is an even more challenging variation of this.)

You could of course use your list of categories to play the pool game categories or a similar game.

What other rules or variations can you come up with?

Printables: Here’s the list of categories! It’s a few pages long, so hopefully it gives you lots of categories to choose from for all of your game-playing needs. :)


License plate search

license-plateWhat it is: A road trip game, one of those seek-and-find games that gives you something to do on long car trips.

Best for: A long car trip across state borders, for however many players you want (even one).

What you need: A list of all 50 states, or a piece of paper or some way to write the states you find down. I have a free printable below.

How to play: The game is pretty simple: as you’re on your road trip, look out the window at the cars you see. Find the state name on each license plate, and try to spot a license plate from every state. You can cross states off of a list you already have, write them down, or just keep a list in your memory. You can play competitively, with each person in the car playing against everyone else. The player with the most states crossed off at the end of the trip wins. You could create teams. Or you could play cooperatively as a whole car or bus together.

It’s a pretty ambitious goal, I’ll admit. (My list includes Alaska and Hawaii, so I think you really might have to do some traveling to cross every state off.) I think it would be cool to save this list for multiple car trips, especially if you have several coming up. At the start of the summer, for example, you could print off the list and plan to take it on every car trip you take that year. You could even do it over a lifetime. See how long it takes you to cross off every state!

Printables: Here’s a printable I made that lists each of the 50 U.S. states. You can use it when you’re playing the license plate search game to cross off the states you find.

License Plates

Get to know you questions

get-to-know-you-questionsWhat it is: A really easy, adaptable game for all sorts of circumstances. Mostly it’s fun to ask get to know you questions (especially quirky or unusual ones) to family and friends.

Best for: 6 to 9 players.

What you need: Mostly just questions to ask! I’ve provided a free printable list of some below. You could also think of your own. Or I know there’s many commercial sets of conversation-starter type questions you can buy. Optional: Paper and pens.

How to play: The ways to play with get-to-know-you questions are endless. The easiest way is to just take turns asking questions to each other and answering them. You can all sit in a circle and take turns picking a question, reading it aloud, and then each giving an answer in turn. You could also take turns asking specific questions to specific people only. I’ve even used questions like this as journal-writing prompts for myself when I didn’t know what else to write about. If you have a creative set of questions, the good uses for them go on and on.

One of the favorite ways I like to play this game with my friends and family is to answer questions and then guess who gave which answer. This can be done a few different ways. One way that works well with a big group (like from 20 to 30) is to use paper and pens and have everyone write down his or her answer to a question. Then gather up the questions, have someone read them out loud, and together as a group discuss who you think gave which answer (this can be done informally, hopefully with a good amount of laughter). With a big group like this, the best way to do it is to ask several questions at a time, maybe 5 to 10. You could even just hand out a survey with the questions already written down. Then have each player fill out the survey, gather them up, read all the answers out loud, and guess together as a group who filled out that survey. You could even eliminate the guessing part and just read aloud the answers for fun. This could be a great icebreaker game.

Another way to play that’s better with a smaller group (perhaps about 8 people) is to take turns and keep score. It might look like this: Adam is playing with his family. He picks a question, he asks it aloud, everyone write down his or her answer, and then Adam’s brother Stuart collects the cards and reads them to Adam out loud. After Adam has heard all the answers, he has to correctly match each answer with each player. He gets a point for each one he matches correctly. Whoever gets the most points after everyone gets a turn wins. We played this way with my husband’s family last Christmas, and it was sooo fun. We all laughed harder than we had in months! It’s a good way to get more competitive and encourage creativity (since you’re trying to avoid making it obvious which answers are yours). You could even do more than one question at a time.

Variations: What other ways do you like to play with get-to-know-you questions? They’re great discussion starters or time fillers. My husband and I love to ask them to each other in car trips or on out-for-ice-cream dates.

Printables: If you want to print out some questions you can use, I’ve made some free printables for you! Just cut along the lines and you’ll have strips of questions you can fold up and put in a bowl or have people draw. You could also just read them aloud or use the list for ideas. The second list has some simpler questions that might be better suited for young children. So enjoy!

Printable-markerGet to know you questions

Printable-markerSimple get to know you questions

HEY! Wait! I just had an idea! Does anyone want to play? What if I pick a few questions now and we all answer them? Everyone loves to answer fun questions about themselves, right? Well, let’s play! Join in with a comment if you like with the answers to the questions below! I’d love to hear your answers.

  1. If money didn’t matter, what food or snack would you buy at the movie theater? Those nachos with the fake cheese! Mmm, fake cheese…usually so gross, but somehow when it’s at a movie theater or baseball game on nachos, so good. A close runner-up to the nachos is good old-fashioned movie popcorn.
  2. If you had a month of free time to learn a new hobby, what would it be? Dancing! I’ve always wished I could dance.
  3. What’s your favorite way to eat a potato? Twice-baked all the way!