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Extended family games night

Updated: Aug 13, 2023

In an attempt to stay connected with our extended family and have

some quality time together, creating lifetime memories, our Big House idea

was born. Once a year we would search for a house, within an hour of where we lived, that could hold 8 adults and 10 kids (no easy task) and then spend the weekend together, drinking tea, sharing meals, exploring the neighbourhood and then come night time, playing games. Finding a game that caters for up to 16 players with ages ranging from 6 to 60 is a challenge but here's a few that worked a treat with my tribe.

The Name game: Have all players sit around on chairs or on the floor in a big circle. Ask the players to think of a name. After a few minutes have every person come to the leader and tell their made up name (this can be anything from household products to disney characters or real people. The leader writes down the made up name next to the persons real name. When everyone has given their name you are ready to play.

Leader reads through the list of make believe names slowly and in any random order, so that everyone can remember them. He then re-reads the names. Randomly choose a starting player. This player must point at someone in the circle and say the name they think that person is, (from the list they just heard). If they are correct, that player is out and the guesser gets another go.

If not, the player who was just pointed at now makes a guess at someone else. Last one left is the winner. The leader may need to re-read the list latter in the game if the players left are struggling to remember them. You cannot return a guess to the person who just made a guess at you.

Marfia: Before commencing take a deck of cards and take out the following; 1-3 Jacks, 1 Ace, 1 Queen. And 1 of any number card for each player, (minus the Jacks, Ace and Queen) Have all players sit in a circle on chairs or on the floor.The conductor hands out one card to each person. He tells everyone to look at their cards. Players now know who they are in the game. The game plays best when the conductor gets into the role of storyteller and enhances the atmosphere with his storytelling. The basic script is below;

"Night has fallen. Everyone please close your eyes. Marfia open your eyes" (The Marfia open there eyes and see who else they are working with if any. They then through signing decide who they are going to kill by pointing at a person). The leader continues; "Marfia close your eyes. Detective open your eyes. The Detective points to someone he thinks might be a Marfia. If he chooses correctly the leader nods, if not, the leader shakes his head). "Dectective close your eyes. Doctor open your eyes." (Doctor opens her eyes and points to someone, or themselves. That person is safe from being killed).

"Day has broken and there has been a murder." Leader tells the group who has been killed. That person is out of the game. The group take a majority vote on who they want to accuse. The accused can defend themselves. The most voted person is out and reveals their identity. Game continues in this fashion. Marfia win if all villages are killed. Villages win if Marfia are killed.

Card distribution: Jacks = Marfia. Have one Mafia for every 7-8 players

Ace: Detective

Queen: Doctor

Numbered cards: Villagers (1 for every other player)

4 on a couch: Make a circle using chairs, bean bags, couches or whatever is avaliable. There must be one extra empty seat. Allocate 4 seats that are the winning seats, (the couch). Sit 2 boys and 2 girls on the couch. Have everyones name on separate slips of paper. Shuffle, then hand out one slip to each players. Players look at their slip.

The objective of the game is to get 4 players from your team onto the couch. (4 boys or 4 girls. If you don't have even numbers players can play on the other team). The person to the right of the empty chair is the starting player. She says a name. The person who has that name on their slip now stands up and moves to the empty seat. As they do they exchange slips of paper with the person who called the name. So people are constantly changing names.

The person to the right of the empty chair now calls out the next name. They are not allowed to say the name that has just been called. All the while they are trying to get the opposition off the couch and their own team members on the couch. The trick to this game is to remember a name from both your team and the opposition. In this way you can call the opposition off the couch and put your own people on the couch when their is an empty seat there.

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