A fun twist on the fast-thinking categories game.


Components

  • 250 word challenges on 125 cards
  • 2-minute sand timer
  • plastic card base
  • player score sheet pads

Object of the Game

To be the first player to score 25 points by thinking of answers to categories and clues.

Players list their answers on a score sheet. Points are scored for those that no other player matches.


Setup

Each player receives a score pad and a pen or pencil.

Take 10 cards from the card deck and place them in the center of the table along with the sand timer and plastic card base.


Game Play

One player takes the top card and inserts it into the card base so that the card is visible by all players. This player then reads aloud the category (in large print) on the card. For example, "marriage".

Players then write down the letters of the category, vertically, on their score sheets. In this case "M" goes in the first box, "A" in the second box, "R" in the third, and so on.

Once all score sheets are ready, the phrase (clue) along the side of the card is read aloud. On the "Marriage" card the phrase is: "Things you might see at a wedding".

The two-minute timer is flipped and players race, simultaneously, to fill their lists. In this example, players would be thinking of things seen at a wedding. M could be "Minister", A "Altar", "R" Roses. "R" "Rice", etc.

When time is up, players stop writing! (It's not unusual if your list is not complete before time runs out-that's okay-you'll score for the answers you came up with!)

Starting with the oldest player, players take turns reading their lists. One point is scored for each word that does not match any opponent's word in the same slot.

Once everyone has read and scored their list, play another round. Flip the card or choose the next card in the pile. Play continues as above, with players filling out a new column for each card played.

When one or more players reaches or surpasses 25 points, the game ends and the player with most points is declared the winner. Tying players share the win.



Scoring

Players score one point for each acceptable answer that is not duplicated. There is one important exception. If a category word contains multiples of the same letter (such as "marriage" which contains 2 R's), compare the answers for each multiple letter.

For example, if two players wrote "Roses" for the first "R", neither would score. But, the first player wrote "Roses" for the first "R" and the second player wrote "Roses" for the second "R", each will score 1 point because they did not duplicate the word adjacent to the same "R".

Tip: It's good to think about where you write such an answer, to "outfox" your opponents.


Acceptable Answers

  • The first word of your answer must begin with the key letter-the letter that is in the box on that line of your score sheet.

  • The articles "A", "An" and "The" cannot be used as key letters.

  • Answers can be comprised of more than one word. For instance, sometimes adjectives are necessary to make the answer "work" with the category/clue.

    For example, "Grizzly Bear" would be an acceptable answer for the "G" in Camping Trip (Things you would take with you or see on a camping trip).

  • The same answer cannot be written more than once on the score sheet for the same category. For example, the category is desserts ("Things you might do after dinner"); you cannot put Sleep for the first "S" and Sleep for any other "S" in the word.

  • When answering with a proper name, you may use the first or last name, as long as the key letter is the first letter of your answer.

  • The more creative your answers, the better, if you want to score big. However, if one player challenges an answer, the group must vote on whether it is acceptable. Majority rules!


End of the Game

As soon when a player scores 25 points, the game is over and he/she is the winner of the game.


Variation

When answering with proper names and titles, players score an extra point for using the key letter more than once as a first letter in their answer. For example, Donald Duck would score two points.


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