Addicting Games News

October 2009

Guessing games – To play or not to play...

I’d tell you what a guessing game is – but then I’d be disqualified…ok, ok, A guessing game is a game where One player on a team has the answer to a word or a phrase. Simple? Not quite. This piece of information that the one player knows must be guessed by their team without the player who knows it writing it down or speaking it out loud. They can act a goofy as they want, and in some games they can draw or sculpt things, but they can’t divulge the actual word or phrase as their team (or the opponent’s team if their time runs out). This is because the opposing team then will get to correctly guess the bloody word or phrase…yes, it can get hilariously frustrating!

I’d have to make a guess and say that the most well known game of this type is definitely Charades. Whether sitting around the house or sitting around a campfire, charades is awesome!

Since the inception of charades…who knows how long ago…many many different varieties of these totally addicting guessing games have spawned, all with some variation of the rules but all still classified as guessing games:

Catch Phrase – get your buzzer finger ready – ‘Eat my shorts’ – quick! …who said it? That’s right, Bart Simpson. And that’s what this addicting game is all about! Famous Catch phrases.
Taboo – played by 4 to 20 players…a really unspeakably fun party game!
Pictionary – around since 1985, this great game was even made into a TV show
Not to mention the many guessing game shows that have appeared both on TV and as Board or Video games, such as Win, Lose or Draw, Password and $25,000 Pyramid…even the well known Jeopardy can be considered a guessing game…in reverse!

Why are we so driven to ridiculous lengths to amuse ourselves? You can ask, but really…who cares…let’s play!


So…what’s your idea of a great addicting game?

So, if you had to name an addictive game that you could get addicted to, how would you describe it?

You’d think it would be really easy to come up with a set description, wouldn’t you!

After much thought on this, while playing backgammon against my computer partner, and a bit of research into addicting games, I determined that the game

  1. would need to give me some payoff almost immediately, continually, and just enough to help me get further on without turning me into an invincible being…so that I still have to work at it

  2. would need to be flexible enough to allow me to try different tactics so I’m constantly learning as I go forth and conquer!

  3. suck me in so that I ‘just need a few more minutes’ before I quit for the day, night, etc…

  4. be expandable, so that when I finally do win and finish…I’m not finished, because now I get to start a new level or find a really cool add on to the original game that allows me to continue without losing everything I’ve done so far

  5. interact with other players – or not – as I choose

  6. should let me realize some kind of reward as I complete levels…whether with harder opponents, or stronger weapons, or more money…

I’m sure you can find lots of things to add to this list…but bottom line, if a games is going to be addictive, its going to make you want to play and play and play again. And it should be fun…not work! So find your addicting game …and start playing.


The classic party game your momma never told you about

Back in the 70s and 80s, anyone who ever went to college probably came across the game Pass Out.

That’s because this addictive game is probably the most infamous college drinking game on the market. Pass out is definitely not for everyone – especially those underage and/or attending AA...but it is the perfect accompaniment along with all the other fun stuff you just need to have at your next bachelorette party. That’s right...everyone knows that you’re all there to try to get your game on and just let loose! This game should help with that *grin*

And this classic drinking game certainly does its job - Pass Out will get you looped, and its not for everyone. But yes, it is a classic board game with dice, game pieces and cards and everything. Where it differs is that playing it involves rolling the dice, drinking, and "lighting up," which I imagine is optional... good are you at tongue twisters? Well, start playing, get one wrong and pay the consequences! Then try the tongue twister again. We’ll see just how good you end up as you roll and move around a board taking a drink when the board square instructs. And, each time you pass the 'start' square you get to take a 'Pink Elephant' card containing a tongue twister. If you actually manage to recite the card three times successfully you get to keep the card.

If you’re the first player to earn 10 'Pink Elephants' , you win! Let’s just hope someone remembers it was you that won...

Now having said all this, you’ll note that there’s a large disclaimer at the end of the rules that says: "Not intended for use with Alcoholic Beverages."

So pick up your copy...just make sure you play Pass out with soda’ll be bouncing off the walls in no time!


Adventure games – What type do you go for?

Adventure games are highly thematic and mostly focused on exploring new (usually fantasy) worlds. You play as a unique character, as they are also usually role playing games, starting out with very little and gathering strength of ability or equipment as you go along in the game.

Did you know that the origins of the two types of adventure game are – go figure – related?

In early 1970, Dave Arneson introduced his brand spankin’ new role-playing, campaign playing, mini wargame, Blackmoor, to a group of eager young players. One of them, Gary Gygax, had previously collaborated with Arneson in creating Dungeons and Dragons …the granddaddy of modern role playing games and indeed the gaming industry. Oddly enough… yet another member of that same group, Dave Meggary, translated the experience into the first adventure board game, Dungeon!, which brings us to the whole point of this ramble. Bunch of smarties weren’t they…but enough about the history of adventure games, the reality, or the fantasy, is that they are really fun, and really addicting. Especially since they minimized the role of those bloody mazes throughout the games!

A few good ones in board game format to try are:

Descent – These are a series of descent games to go for – courageous heroes, shadowed dungeons, lost cities, forgotten ruins…what more could you ask for!

World of Warcraft (Fantasy) – Another great series of game, many heroes and many perils. As each foe falls, a new enemy is revealed; as each hero falters a new champion stands forth

Hidden Conflict (Horror) – A great tile-based, skirmish game that allows you to decide whether you are feeling good, or evil as you fight for global domination

Runebound – (Fantasy) - travel through the land via a die roll, fight monsters and complete quests, defending and attacking as tactically wise – good luck, you’ll need it!..

Frag (SciFi) - a computer game without a computer – move your fighter and frag your foes; draw cards for weapons, armor, and gadgets; restore your health, respawn and come back shooting!


Dice Games – Are you felling lucky?

Dice games obviously rely more on luck than they do on skill. But... Dice games have a long and detailed history. And perhaps the first "dice-like" games were played at the dawn of history...

So if you’re good with calculating probabilities and enjoy playing the odds, then these skills can help you win these games. No brainers, but if you’re looking for addicting fun, you need to add a few dice games to your game collection now.

I’ve listed a few of my favourite addicting games so you can get yourself a copy quick and discover – or re-discover them and get playing!

  • Yahtzee– designed by a Canadian couple and the grandfather of modern dice games, yahtzee is my definite favourite. Yup. Hundreds of millions of buyers can’t all be wrong!

  • Liar’s Dice – Based on poker, this one is right up my alley! Each player rolls five dice, doesn’t keep the results secret from the other players. Everyone then takes turns bidding on the total results (for example “There are seven 4s or eight 2s”) When a player believes the bidding has gone too high, he challenges the previous bid. Depending on the results, at least one player will lose at least one die. The last player holding any dice is the winner. Great addicting fun!

  • Can’t stop - The board is a series of columns, numbered from 2 to 12. Players roll four dice, then decide in which two columns they will improve their standing. Then the mind games begin -- do you stop or roll again and risk losing your progress? Can't Stop takes about 30 minutes per game.

  • Pass the Pigs - Pass the pigs is a dice game with no dice. Seriously. Instead, players roll small rubber pigs. Points are won depending on how the pigs land, and then you decide whether to roll again, risking the points you've earned if you "pig out." When you have about 30 minutes to spare – this game is’s snort? More great addicting fun.

me...I’ll play them any time I have at least one die and a wish to play the numbers with or without my friends!


How to Win at Monopoly

The games’ goal is to knock all you opponents out of the game by forcing the into bankruptcy. Nice. And addicting! And although there is a strong element of luch involved, if you’re skilled enough and completely merciless against your opponents, you’ll win most of the time! Monopoly, published in 1935 by Parker Brothers, was brought to the company by Charles Darrow, after copying the idea from its direct ansester, The Landlord’s game designed by an Elizabeth Magie.

How he got away with this when the inventors of a really cool game, Anti-Monopoly has been fighting in the courts for the rights to sell for over 30 years is beyond me!

But enough about that…down to the brass tacks. How can you win Monopoly?

Again, by being smart, savvy, merciless and above all…bloody lucky to boot! In this addicting game, its best to beat the odds by:

  1. Knowing the odds of how long it takes most players to complete a lap around the board (5 turns), and how many of those turns will be doubles (~once)

  2. Buying smart – Always buy the property if it blocks someone from completing a set

  3. Remember so you’ll know the squares most landed on (Illinois, Jail, B&O Railroad, and GO) and the one least landed on (Park Place)

  4. Buy houses (3) as quickly as possible as the rent goes up huge when someone lands on it; if its cheap property (Baltic) buy 4 houses! You’;; decimate them
  5. Get out of jail – even if you have to pay the $50 early in the game; but later on in the game when playing is more dangerous…stay in as long as possible!

Yes, there’s a strong element of luck in the greedily addicting game of Monopoly, but there’s also enough nasty strategies to keep you satisfied and smiling all the way to GO…or the Boardwalk. Enjoy, bring out your nasty side, and game on!


Love Darts?

The high tech and addicting game of Darts we know and love today is much different than the medieval version that developed in England - where the bottom of an empty wine barrel was used by soldiers to throw shortened arrows at. This is just in case you were wondering how Darts ever ended up in every pub anywhere…

As the game evolved, naturally, the upper classes got hold of and refined it, and the pilgrims then brought it to America (apparently, the pilgrims happily played while crossing on the Mayflower …no word of a lie!).

And, once it made it to America, of course the British got hold of it and soon, the rest of the world was soon happily ‘Toeing the hockey’too.

It was around 1900 that the rules and darts of today began to appear and the numbering system used for scoring was devised and accepted as the norm. The barrel had already changed to a piece of wood and now to a round board and it was proved in court that it was a game of skill and not just another game of chance (which were illegal at that time)...

Are you bored yet? Not me. I have to admit that I’m totally addicted to these fascinating histories of most of these oh so addicting games that we mostly take for granted today!

And now, new, high tech and revolutionary electronics versions of Darts have raised the excitement level through the roof, so to speak…

With automatic scorekeeping and new and exciting versions of this addicting game, darts can be as hard or as easy as you want it to be.

Great fun for family and friends alike, this newly popular game of darts is worth a revisit!


Party Games you (and your friends) will play all night

Party games, are, simply, games suitable to entertaining in social gatherings and tend to include certain traits….boring….

Really? The goal and objective of any party game anywhere anytime is to have a good time. And a successful evening of these ever so addicting party games includes such revelry as laughter and teasing and carousing and probably even light hearted fast-paced arguments over rules or actions during play! Now that’s a darn fun time!

Unlike more traditional board games or card games, party games allow you to gather up a bunch of friends – however many of these also totally addicting games you may have – and to just start playing!

Loosely, party games encompass and embrace social interaction rather than strategy and tactics and a successful game usually allows for:

  • A large amount of players – much more fun to have no practical limits when it comes to playing with your friends, yes?
  • A high degree of flexibility in play, such as role based games like How to host a Murder – sure, why not murder a friend this Hallowe’en?
  • Cooperative and physical interaction – or not – player interaction is actively encouraged – try Barbarossa for a more relaxed entertainment. Or check out Victorian era games such as Charades, or Twenty Questions…that’s right, they’ve been around and enjoyed for that long!
  • Active participation in playing and contributing – Fictionary is a great game for the latent story teller (liar) in you
  • Great spectator entertainment value – so the people sitting out can tease, denigrate, otherwise malign…or join in. Whatever the situation calls for!
  • Fun and affordable play - The game equipment needed for play is not dependent on the number of players. Set up teams, and games like Pictionary or Fib or Not? are ready to go.

With so many choices of addicting party games around, your next get together will be a truly outrageously fun and rewarding experience for everyone you choose to involve! choose wisely, my friend, and enjoy!


Educational Card Games for Children

Those of you who feel that video games are harmful for children will have to rethink of their decision about restricting the child in playing games. Card games are a good way of spending some quality time with their children. You can actually manage to steer... (Read Article)


The Royal History of Tiddlywinks?

Royal, you ask while laughing your behind off?! Well, choke it back, because its quite true!
I’ll have you know that Tiddlywinks is not just some simpleminded and frivolous children’s game.

Oh no.

Instead, it’s a highly competitive adult game, thanks mainly to a strong comeback at the University of Cambridge (actually the birth of serious adult involvement in tiddlywinks)...back in 1955 (Although there is evidence of the game being played in the closet so to speak as far back as 1944-45). Bill Steen, a chemical engineering geek and his friend needed a legitimate sports club to belong to and impress chicks with since camel racing was pretty much out of the question

...I swear I am not lying... On the Mat backs me up here.
Now where does the ‘royal’ part come in you remind me?

Well, on March 1, 1958, despite the influential Spectator printing a glaring headline which posed the highly intriguing and defamatory question ‘Does Prince Philip Cheat at Tiddlywinks’, Prince Philips selected the famous radio comedy troupe, The Goons, to compete against CUTwC.

50th Anniversary? Correct. Because, despite the kick to the crotch of the Prince’s such dastardly lies, exactly 50 years later, Prince Philips designated members of the Savage Club (hoping the name would be prophetic I’m sure) to be his royal champions competing once again against the Cambridge University Tiddlywinks Club (CUTwC).
This match was to commemorate the 50th anniversary of the first royal match (alas, CUTwC won by the way)! Hah!
Guess he doesn’t least not well enough to win anyway, eh?

My point is, just because something is supposed to be a kid’s game, doesn’t mean some childish adult somewhere can’t pick a great game, start a club, and organize a start practising tiddling those winks, learn the Tiddlywinks anthem (again, not even kidding..I couldn’t make this stuff up) and get your game on!

Maybe a prince will challenge you one day, and let you win too! (‘cause let’s face it, that’s the only way you’d win - against a serious wanker..I mean winker... like me anyway)


Victorian Era Party Games are here to stay

Ok, so I got caught up in the Party game blog - curious about the Victorian Party games, and decided to find out more. Apparently, the Victorian era was all about games…I mean, really, what else was there to do back then in their strictly regulated society than to make up addicting games.

Given there was no TV, no electricity, but people were starting to make more money and work less, friends and families gathered often at one of their homes or another and played games.

Outdoor games were played, indoor games were played. They were fun, inexpensive, and quite addicting.

Outdoor games were played year round in whatever climate and enjoyed by all as a diversion from watching clouds pass by, I guess. Games like hoops, balls, or marbles. Sports such as boxing, cricket and football became popular. Croquet and Lawn tennis were played (but mainly by the lowly and weak Victorian women.

Indoor games were played. Games like

  • Lookabout – A knick-knack is hidden while everyone is out of the room - after everyone has been shown it, of course. When they return, they have to look until they find it. But instead of telling anyone, they sit down and wait for everyone else to find it too. No word of a lie. Try it, its fun. Unless you’re the loser who finds it last.
  • You're Never Fully Dressed without a Smile - One person is selected to be "it" and is the only one in the group allowed to smile. He or she can do anything they want to try and get someone to smile. If the person smiles, they that person is now it. The person who never smiles is declared the winner. I have an aunt that would win all the time!
  • Charades – everyone knows how to play charades. Now available in board game or still in the old fashioned head game version.
  • Alphabet Minute = Try this hilarious and addicting game – everyone will be in stitches! Everyone writes a general topic of conversation down on a slip of paper, along with a letter of the alphabet. A few people at a time pick a topic out of a hat and start a conversation with one another regarding the topic. The catch is that each sentence has to start with the letter written. The conversation has to continue through the alphabet, with each sentence starting with the next letter of the alphabet - ending back with letter in which they started.
  • Fun and affordable play - The game equipment needed for play is not dependent on the number of players. Set up teams, and games like Pictionary or Fib or Not? are ready to go.

OK, so there are so many games of yore that I’m sure you can recognize as ones that we still play today…addicting games for fun people - they're still fashionable!


The Addicting game of Risk – It's the ultimate wargame

Risk was designed by – no word of a lie - a French film director, Albert Lamorisse and first, contrary to popular belief, was published in France in 1957. It is a perfect example of how ancient games like Chess and Go have evolved. Hey, it’s true. We weren’t around way back in 2000 B.C. to see how these games first became widely popular, but (the collective) we have been able to watch the rise of Risk as it became the first true wargame to become an unqualified commercial success.

Although most games in the War Games category are loosely placed there, but...

Risk. Is. A. War. Game.

You build armies, move them about the world map, conquering your opponents territory by territory, using considerable skill (and perhaps just a little luck) to eliminate all of your opponents and take over the world! ...thereby winning the game (secondary pleasure).

Adults aren’t so interested in child’s games like Snakes and Ladders (I love it!)...but kids love them – for the same reason adults don’t – its only a matter of luck and anyone can win.

But games like Risk are so addictingly popular because there is a real art to playing. The better a strategiser you are, the better chance you have to outwit your obviously lack witted opponent and annihilate them!

Me? I hate the game. Not because I can’t strategize the hell out of my opponents...but because of my cousins. That’s right. Every game I ever played with them was a long and drawn out painful process. They fought and argued and wrangled their way through a game...and if they had to quit before it was over, it sat there until they could take it up again the next day.

They loved it, and really, as do I, I guess - as long as I don’t have to play it with those lunatics!


Who’s crazy for Crazy Eights?

Crazy Eights, also known as Eights or as Swedish Rummy, is a distant relative of Rummy. It's known as a "stops" or shedding-type card game because players can be stopped from discarding if they don't have a proper card and yet the object of this addicting game is to get rid of (shed) your cards before anyone else to win.

When playing the addicting game of crazy eights, there are many different ways to play. And, just a warning...each different way of playing is savagely defended by the family members from whence the rules originated...

It may sound like a crazy game originally designated for – well crazies - and believe me, it can get really crazy - especially if you try to play crazy-eight countdown or *giggle* Naked 8s or Half Naked 8s with a bunch of crazies at a cottage or boat!

If you really want a messed up version, however, try playing the variation known as Mao (aka Bartok), where the rules aren’t told to newcomers, who have to learn them by trial and error as they play...nice.

As for who ever thought up this goofy yet strangely addicting game in the first place, although it's sometimes believed that Crazy Eights can trace its heritage back to the mid-1600s and a French gambling game known as Hoc, I can’t find any evidence other than a few mere mentions here and there on the net. Rather, I’m more inclined to believe the stated fact that it was derived in the 1940s for mentally unstable soldiers being discharged from the military with a Section 8. A much more fun fact and maybe even more believable!

A card game that can use either one or two decks to mess up even the most stable of minds, crazy eights is worth a look online - along with the many other addicting classic card games.


Arkham Horror – The First of the Horror board games genre

If you are looking for a great addicting game to play this Halloween...look no further than Arkham Horror, the first of the horror board games. Did you know that the original printing of Arkham Horror soon sold out, and throughout the 1990s and the early 2000s it was one of the most-wanted out-of-print American board games and is now a cult classic!

Thats because Arkham Horror, around since 1987, was one of the first cooperative board games where players go to work together to defeat the system. This is a genre that now includes Reiner Knizia's Lord of the Rings and Shadows over Camelot. And, it was also a rare board game which did a good job of adapting role-playing gaming.

Although made famous by the Batman series, Arkham, Massachusetts is a fictional city and featured in many of Lovecraft’s stories. Arkham is the home of Miskatonic University, which finances the expeditions in both At the Mountains of Mad...but I digress...

Originally based on the writing of H.P. Lovecraft, Arkham Horror has been updated and improved significantly before being re-released in 2005. The 1987 version of Arkham Horror has relatively simple rules in comparison with the 2005 edition!

This new, updated edition features some stunning new artwork , includes a new gameboard, counters, cards, and playing pieces, and revised and expanded rules from the game's original creator, Richard Launius.
Players choose between 16 unique playable investigator characters, each with unique abilities (to represent their strengths and weaknesses), and will square off against the diabolical servants of 8 Ancient Ones, including Ithaqua, Hastur, and the terrible Cthulhu! Each character has a starting inventory and special abilities. Most importantly, their stats include Sanity and Stamina which measure the character's mental stability and physical health. The back of each card includes a brief history for the character, in case players wish to add an element of roleplaying to the game.

If you already have the board game, try one of the exciting and addicting expansions to spice it up! I've listed each addicting pack in order of their release:

  • Curse of the Dark Pharaoh

  • Dunwich Horror

  • The King in Yellow

  • Kingsport Horror

  • Black Goat of the Woods

  • Innsmouth Horror

So, if you’ve got 2 to 3 hours this Halloween while serving those sweet offerings to the dark masters that knock on your door (thus preventing them destroying the town and possibly threatening the world), try Arkham’ll soon be addicted!


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