As promised in a previous beer game-related article, I will neither encourage nor glorify irresponsible drinking. I will however, gladly share with the readers the many wonderful games which may happen to involve drinking. I just hope that people don’t misuse this knowledge and get dangerously silly playing them. But have a little silly by all means. Life is too short.
Let’s begin with some standard drinking games and their rules and highlights. I will also give ratings based on the playability and danger aspects of each.
TV based games.
There have been a few of these developed in recent times and they are easy to play. But beware, they can easily descend into lager-fuelled madness if you are not careful. The rules are simple; pick a TV show and sit all participants evenly around the television set. Decide on three or four ‘cues’ that players must be alert to. Upon identification of the ‘cue’, all players must drink – amounts to be decided upon beforehand. Repeat until program has concluded or when all beer has been exhausted. Or when all players have been exhausted.
Here are a few examples. And a few warnings. Home & Away. Players must skol a beer every time Alf says ’Flamin’ or ‘Strewth’ or each time a young & dumb girl gives a shocked or vacant stare upon hearing some life-changing news in the surf club cafe which is accompanied by foreboding background music. Sea Patrol. Drink every time the ships propeller is seen winding up or when someone uses the ships radio. Law & Order. Players drink every time the deep tonal two note BOOM- BOOM is heard. Do not apply this game style to Big Brother if you decide to drink whenever someone says anything banal or inane.
My personal favourite is Dent The Can. A simple game in which an empty can is taken by a player and bashed into his or her own forehead. The can is then passed to the person on his or her left. This player repeats the forehead bashing. On their own forehead. The can is passed again to the left. The first person to bleed wins.
Word based games.
These can be the most fun you can have while drinking because the chances of someone cocking up and saying something hilariously funny and stupid is not only high but these chances increase as the game goes on.
I went to the Shop ... This game is a simple memory based word game in which players create a shopping list which is added to at each turn. The first player begins the game by saying; ‘ I went to the shop and I bought an apple’. The next player adds an item as well as repeating the first, i.e.; ‘ I went to the shop and I bought an apple AND a banana’. Players take turns, each adding a new item and repeating each preceding item until someone stuffs up. Then they have to drink. The game is made more interesting by changing the shopping location to, say, The Marital Aids Warehouse, from which players can choose from such fun supplies as ‘a Jumbo tub of Keep-It-Up-Cream’ or ‘King Kong Butt Plug’.
Categories. Nice and simple but very enjoyable once participants have had a few. Just pick a category and each player gives one example in turn until someone repeats an example or cannot think of one. E.g. Car Manufacturers; Holden, Ford, Lada, etc. Or Brownlow Medallists; Skilton, Hird, Dipierdomenico. Or words for Boobies; Yar-Yars, Funbags, Norcs. This is also a great game to play with kids as it improves word skills and vocabulary volume.
The best drinking game of all, however, is ZOOM. Beautifully constructed, intricately regulated and intoxicatingly addictive, ZOOM combines every necessary element to ensure hours of lager frenzy, full-bore, fall-over drunk fun. And then some.
The game is played thusly. A Grand Poo Bah is nominated and he or she controls the game. The Poo Bah can abdicate at any break in the game. The game is broken up into innings which are controlled by the Pooh Bah. Each innings is divided into top and bottom halves. The Grand Pooh Bah begins the frivolities by saying; "It’s the bottom of the first, the ball is live and ...( He looks into the eyes of any one player and says...) ZOOM! The play is now in the hands of the person who has been ‘zoomed’.
This player has THREE options. He can ZOOM any player except the player who has ‘zoomed’ him, he can play the ‘ball’ back to the player who ‘zoomed’ him by saying SCHWARTZ, or he can ‘sell the dummy’ by looking at another player and by saying PERFIGLIANO thus returning the ‘ball’ to the person who actually ‘zoomed’ him. Simple, eh? But wait, there’s more.
You cannot ZOOM a ZOOMER, you cannot SCHWARTZ anyone except the person who just ZOOMed you and you can only PERFIGLIANO a player other than the one who just ZOOMed, SCHWARTZed or PERFIGLIANO’d you. These indiscretions will cost you a drink. Get it? But I know you want more!
At all times during the game the following rules are in permanent effect. You cannot swear or point your finger. That’ll cost you a drink. Pointing must be effected by raising your elbow in the direction of the player you are accusing. If you are deemed to have made a false accusation, that’ll cost you a drink. Swearing because you failed to correctly accuse, that’ll cost you a drink. If your ZOOM, SCHWARTZ or PERFIGLIANO is deemed to be either ambiguous, that is, not directly directed in the exact direction of the intended recipient, or too slow, you will be found guilty of CHINESE EYES or GROSS HESITATION respectively. Either of which will cost you a drink.
In addition, the Grand Pooh Bah must correctly ‘call’ each phase of play. Beginning with the bottom of the first, he will follow with the top of the first, then the bottom of the second, top of the second, bottom of the third, top of the third, etc. He may wish to deliberately throw in a fake call – in other words, go from the top of the fifth to the bottom of the seventh for example – to either see if players are concentrating, or because he is thirsty and wants to have a drink.
The Grand Pooh Bah must also have the final verdict on any and all accusations and challenges.
This is possibly the most entertaining game to play or watch in the history of interesting games to ply or watch and can be enjoyed on many levels. The pointing, the swearing, the drinking, the gross hesitations, the tongue-twisting, the drinking, the Chinese eyes, the drinking, the Pooh Bah-ing, the falling over and the drinking. This game is not for the faint of heart. But it is fun.
Feel free to send in your own favourite drinking games and any match reviews of games you might try as a result of seeing them described here. Good luck and good drinking.