College students have been playing games and getting played since Yale went coed. Everyone grows up — we all knew we’d have to do our own laundry someday — but who said the game-playing has to stop? In the spirit of maturing and expanding horizons, a little liquor naturally works its way into the mix. Below, you will find a sampling of the most beloved and time-tested collegiate drinking games. But proceed with caution: a good drinking game, like a steamy chess match, is highly addictive.
The More, the Merrier: Flip Cup
Beer Pong may be the MVP of drinking games, but sometimes having only one partner is boring. Kelsey Johnson ’07 said she enjoys the larger group dynamic of Flip Cup.
“It’s good because it’s drinking in a social environment, which makes it more of a bonding activity than just a purely alcoholic experience,” Johnson said.
Besides, drinking-game monogamy reeks of the late ’90s. Flip Cup is the new Beirut — same ingredients, different setup, but most critically, no balls. Two teams line up along opposite sides of a ping-pong table and a raucous relay race follows. Think part chugging contest, part ginger finger-flick. The object is simply to drink the beer and flip the cup over. As the race begins, the first player empties his or her cup and places it on the edge of the table face up. But before the next teammate can commence said chugging, player one must flip his or her cup over so that it lands face down on the table. Think of a perfect dismount off the uneven parallel bars. It’s that graceful. The team to drink and flip all of its cups first wins. It sounds easy, but it can take up to seven years to perfect the flip cup technique.
The Royal Treatment: Kings
If you like to party with a posse, but aren’t into competitive drinking, Kings is just the game for you. Circle up with a beverage in hand. To begin, place an empty cup in the middle of your circle of friends and fan a deck of cards out around it (obviously face down because secrets are fun). Each player takes a turn flipping over a card, which then corresponds to a previously established rule. Here’s where things get really crazy: the players make the rules. At Yale, students know a thing or two about tradition, and likewise, certain rules have stood the test of time. A couple suggestions to keep mind: “two for you” (choose another player to drink) “three for me” (you drink), “five for guys” (dudes drink), and “six for chicks” (catching on yet?). Each time a King is drawn, the player fills the center cup with as much beer as he or she chooses, and whoever pulls the fourth King must drink the entire contents of the cup. Next, the player — imbued with the power of the King — creates a royal decree, which all of the other players must abide by for the remainder of the game. With great power comes great responsibility, so be creative. For instance, it is often funny to forbid usage of the word “the.” Try it; it’s not so easy. Or every time a player misspeaks, he or she must drink. It’s a slippery slope, but someone’s got to stumble down it.
The Pop Culture Club: TV with a Twist
But alas, cards aren’t for everyone. Sometimes it’s nice to kick back, relax and watch a little TV. If college has taught young adults any lesson, it’s that everything is much better with a cold beer. Here’s the setup: pick your favorite TV show — think “The OC,” “Sex and the City” or even “Desperate Housewives” (yes, you can drink on Sunday), and then form a list of words and phrases commonly used on that particular show. For example, if you decide to play with “Sex and the City,” you’re sure to hear words such as Cosmopolitan, Manolo Blahnik, and certainly Mr. Big. That’s right — when the magic words are spoken, you drink. Feel free to imbibe at your leisure.
Rebecca Schwartz ’08 offers another way to use the pop culture game.
“During the presidential debates last year, my friends and I tried to drink every time a candidate said the word ‘terrorist,'” Schwartz said.
Sometimes you need a little booze with your Bush.