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20 PEN AND PAPER GAMES YOU CAN PLAY AT HOME (UPDATED ON 29.11.2021)

APR 2020
17
20 PEN AND PAPER GAMES YOU CAN PLAY AT HOME (UPDATED ON 29.11.2021)

Suitable for small groups. Fun for the whole family. Keep reading till you get to the bonus game!


Looking for ways to entertain yourself with just a pen and paper?


Want to disconnect from devices, and engage with your family without having to step out of your home?


Searching for stimulating games that don’t require any equipment, or complex setup?


article-image-1

Gif via giphy.

Here are 20 fun pen and paper games that are everything from boredom busters on a slow evening to ice breakers for when you’ve got guests over.

1 - MASH

article-image-2

Image by Thomas Park on Unsplash.

Possibly the most popular 2-person game that’s still a mystery to a lot of folks.


MASH stands for “Mansion, Apartment, Street/Swamp, and House”. These are various kinds of living situations one may end up in.

So, how do you play MASH?

Step 0 - Write down MASH on a piece of paper.


Step 1 - Select a number of categories, such as spouse, occupation, pet, country you’ll be living in, and so on. Write them down on the paper.


Step 2 - Both players come up with 3 alternatives - 1 they like, 2 they dislike - for each category. These alternatives are written in a column under each category.


Step 3 - Player One closes their eyes, while Player Two starts making tally marks.

After waiting for a few seconds, One says “Stop”, and Two must stop drawing tallies immediately.

Count how many marks have been made.


Step 4 - Cross out items according to the number of marks.

For example, if 3 tallies were drawn, you should cross out every 3rd item.

Every letter of MASH counts as one item, the category names don’t count.


Keep repeating Step 4 till there is only one item left per category.


Now, the surviving items are Player One’s future, while Player Two can choose their future from the crossed out options.


Or, you can keep going with the crossed out options, shrinking the list till you have exactly 2 options per category.


And then the surviving items can be Player One’s future, and the crossed out ones Player Two’s future.

2 - Charades

article-image-3

Gif via giphy.

Divide up into two teams and hand out blank slips of paper to both teams.


Each team needs to write down different phrases on each slip of paper. The phrases can be famous quotes, titles of books, movies or songs, but they should be something that most people are familiar with.


When both teams have prepared their slips, ask them to place them in separate bowls or boxes.


That done, a person from Team A draws a slip from Team B’s bowl and tries to act out the phrase while the rest of Team A tries to guess what it is.

The team has three minutes to try to guess the phrase.


As you can guess, it can lead to some HILARIOUS situations!

3 - Tic tac toe, squared

article-image-4

Image by Visual Stories || Micheile on Unsplash.

Here’s the deal. You’re gonna need a somewhat large sheet of paper.


On the paper, draw a large tic tac toe grid stretching from end to end.


In each of the squares of the larger grid, draw in a smaller tic tac toe grid.


Say “X” goes first. They place “x” on a square on one of the smaller grids.


Now, “O” has to place “o” somewhere on the small grid lying in that square of the larger grid that “X” put their “x” in the smaller grid.


For example, If “X” placed the first “x” on the grid in the middle right square of their chosen smaller grid,

“O” would have to start from the smaller grid in the middle right square of the larger grid.

Subsequently, “X” has to follow “O”’s lead, and so on.


The player who wins in a smaller grid gets to place their symbol on that grid.


The player who gets 3 of their symbols in a row in the larger grid wins.


Depending on who you ask, this game is also referred to as nested tic tac toe, and ultimate tic tac toe.

4 - Who am I?

article-image-5

Image by Gerd Altmann from Pixabay.


This game is pretty simple.


Each player gets a sticky note stuck to their forehead with the name of a famous person.


And they have to guess the name of the person on their own forehead by asking everyone else simple “yes” or “no” questions. 

It can be questions such as: Am I a female? Am I a historical figure? Am I currently alive?


If the answer to the question is yes, then you get to ask another one.

If the answer is no, then it’s the next person’s turn to ask questions and try to guess the name on THEIR own forehead.


The first player to guess the identity of their mystery person is the winner!


Everyone else can keep playing for second and third place, or you can start a whole new round with completely different mystery people.

5 - Boxes

On a piece of paper, create a square grid (I’d suggest making it a 5x5 grid at minimum).


Now, hand each (there has to be more than one) player a different colored pen.


The point of the game is that each player takes turns drawing a single line on the grid, joining 2 adjacent dots.

Please note diagonal lines are not allowed.


Whoever completes a square gets to place their initials in the square and play again. They are also awarded one point.


The game continues till all the dots have been joined.


Seeing as I already said a player who finishes a square gets a point, do I really need to mention who wins?

6 - Kaladont



  BLOGS
20 PEN AND PAPER GAMES YOU CAN PLAY AT HOME (UPDATED ON 29.11.2021)

Suitable for small groups. Fun for the whole family. Keep reading till you get to the bonus game!


Looking for ways to entertain yourself with just a pen and paper?


Want to disconnect from devices, and engage with your family without having to step out of your home?


Searching for stimulating games that don’t require any equipment, or complex setup?


article-image-1

Gif via giphy.

Here are 20 fun pen and paper games that are everything from boredom busters on a slow evening to ice breakers for when you’ve got guests over.

1 - MASH

article-image-2

Image by Thomas Park on Unsplash.

Possibly the most popular 2-person game that’s still a mystery to a lot of folks.


MASH stands for “Mansion, Apartment, Street/Swamp, and House”. These are various kinds of living situations one may end up in.

So, how do you play MASH?

Step 0 - Write down MASH on a piece of paper.


Step 1 - Select a number of categories, such as spouse, occupation, pet, country you’ll be living in, and so on. Write them down on the paper.


Step 2 - Both players come up with 3 alternatives - 1 they like, 2 they dislike - for each category. These alternatives are written in a column under each category.


Step 3 - Player One closes their eyes, while Player Two starts making tally marks.

After waiting for a few seconds, One says “Stop”, and Two must stop drawing tallies immediately.

Count how many marks have been made.


Step 4 - Cross out items according to the number of marks.

For example, if 3 tallies were drawn, you should cross out every 3rd item.

Every letter of MASH counts as one item, the category names don’t count.


Keep repeating Step 4 till there is only one item left per category.


Now, the surviving items are Player One’s future, while Player Two can choose their future from the crossed out options.


Or, you can keep going with the crossed out options, shrinking the list till you have exactly 2 options per category.


And then the surviving items can be Player One’s future, and the crossed out ones Player Two’s future.

2 - Charades

article-image-3

Gif via giphy.

Divide up into two teams and hand out blank slips of paper to both teams.


Each team needs to write down different phrases on each slip of paper. The phrases can be famous quotes, titles of books, movies or songs, but they should be something that most people are familiar with.


When both teams have prepared their slips, ask them to place them in separate bowls or boxes.


That done, a person from Team A draws a slip from Team B’s bowl and tries to act out the phrase while the rest of Team A tries to guess what it is.

The team has three minutes to try to guess the phrase.


As you can guess, it can lead to some HILARIOUS situations!

3 - Tic tac toe, squared

article-image-4

Image by Visual Stories || Micheile on Unsplash.

Here’s the deal. You’re gonna need a somewhat large sheet of paper.


On the paper, draw a large tic tac toe grid stretching from end to end.


In each of the squares of the larger grid, draw in a smaller tic tac toe grid.


Say “X” goes first. They place “x” on a square on one of the smaller grids.


Now, “O” has to place “o” somewhere on the small grid lying in that square of the larger grid that “X” put their “x” in the smaller grid.


For example, If “X” placed the first “x” on the grid in the middle right square of their chosen smaller grid,

“O” would have to start from the smaller grid in the middle right square of the larger grid.

Subsequently, “X” has to follow “O”’s lead, and so on.


The player who wins in a smaller grid gets to place their symbol on that grid.


The player who gets 3 of their symbols in a row in the larger grid wins.


Depending on who you ask, this game is also referred to as nested tic tac toe, and ultimate tic tac toe.

4 - Who am I?

article-image-5

Image by Gerd Altmann from Pixabay.


This game is pretty simple.


Each player gets a sticky note stuck to their forehead with the name of a famous person.


And they have to guess the name of the person on their own forehead by asking everyone else simple “yes” or “no” questions. 

It can be questions such as: Am I a female? Am I a historical figure? Am I currently alive?


If the answer to the question is yes, then you get to ask another one.

If the answer is no, then it’s the next person’s turn to ask questions and try to guess the name on THEIR own forehead.


The first player to guess the identity of their mystery person is the winner!


Everyone else can keep playing for second and third place, or you can start a whole new round with completely different mystery people.

5 - Boxes

On a piece of paper, create a square grid (I’d suggest making it a 5x5 grid at minimum).


Now, hand each (there has to be more than one) player a different colored pen.


The point of the game is that each player takes turns drawing a single line on the grid, joining 2 adjacent dots.

Please note diagonal lines are not allowed.


Whoever completes a square gets to place their initials in the square and play again. They are also awarded one point.


The game continues till all the dots have been joined.


Seeing as I already said a player who finishes a square gets a point, do I really need to mention who wins?

6 - Kaladont