Games you've invented

Anyone ever invented any games, or come up with interesting variants of common games?

For me it was the game Tag, that we used to play all the time as kids. My neighbor had a lemon tree, so we came up with an interesting variation, better than Freeze Tag, IMHO. We called it Lemon Tag. The idea was to have one person be it, and their goal was to chase the person carrying the lemon, which, of course, could be replaced with any kind of ball. Now in times of stress, the person with the lemon could throw it to anyone else, so that way they could avoid being tagged. To make things interesting, no one could be tagged when the lemon was in the air, but anyone could be tagged if the lemon was on the ground. Once you figure out the balance (number of “its” and lemons) the game becomes real fun, and real tiring…

Besides for the people I’ve actually played the game with, no one I’ve talked to has heard of it. Maybe someone else has invented it and I never heard about it.

And next up in the Olympics it’ll be the Lemon Tag quaterfinals between the underdog Brazilians and the heavily favored Japanese team.

I came up with Reverse Family Feud one night in a noisy bar. You watch as the answers to the question are revealed on the big board, then you try to figure out what the question might have been. For instance, one night the revealed answers were “a lot of water,” “barrels,” and “weddings,” and one member of our party divined that the question probably had something to do with Niagara Falls. The drawback, of course, is that, in a noisy bar, it’s impossible to know for sure if you’re right. But all we wanted was something to occupy our minds, and Reverse Family Feud did the trick.

Our game was Bullet. Not as good as Lemon Tag, but we were easily amused as wee lads. Basically, we’d hum a Koosh ball at each other as hard as we could. Wherever you got hit was assumed to have been blown off, and thus unavailable for use. Once you’ve lost the use of most of your extremities, dodging that Koosh to the torso or head for the coup de grace is understandably difficult. We usually played two to a team, across a living room (obstructions, shields, and a greater chance of serious injury or property damage from a misjudged dive being essential to a proper game of Bullet).

Like I said, we were easily amused.

I made up a card game called Persimmon. I forget how you play, but I remember that aces, deuces, one-eyed jacks, and suicidal kings were persimmons.

My sister and I are close in age, and as kids we palled around a lot. The game I “invented” was a variation on dodge ball. We had a tall wooden fence next to the house to use as a back-drop. One of us stood near the fence and the other had the ball (a volleyball or soccer ball). But you had to kick the ball to try to nail the other person. Check that; I think you had the option of kicking or throwing. Anyway, I called the game “scrudge” for some unknown reason.

I’ve contributed heavily to the development of Agora Nomic, although I can’t claim to have invented it entirely by myself. :slight_smile:

Ewe Ball

It involved a 2 inch bright green plastic sheep we found in the shrubbery, a bright green rubber ball, about the size of a baseball, and chalk.

We live on a fairly quiet one-way street. We would set the sheep on the curb on the opposite side of the street, draw all sorts of official-looking chalk lines on the pavement, then throw the ball at the sheep, trying to knock it off the curb.

It was actually pretty difficult, especially after a few beers. (I should point out I was 28 when we invented this lovely little game)

This game sort of evolved while I was in college living in a house with 5 other guys–

Everyone takes a seat in somewhat of a circle in the living room. Whoever has the volleyball sets the ball to someone else. After three sets, you are free to spike the ball at anyone in the room (mind you, the farthest guy was probably only 6 feet away from you). Some additional rules came up as we went along:

-If you spiked before the third set, you had to lie down on the couch in the fetal position (well, it didn’t have to be, but believe me, this was the preferred position), while everyone else playing gets to whip the ball at you as hard as possible.

-The ball is live until it comes in contact with the floor, a ball the bounces off a table, phone, lamp, bookbag, etc. is still a live ball. (This rule, at one time, had to be amended to include pizza boxes as part of the floor - hey, we were a bunch of 21 year old, male college students, what do ya want?)

Oh, yeah…college. Nothing like taking a volleyball straight to the face to make your day.

It’s amazing what entertains my friends and I. When I was in college, I ran track, and the double doors to the locker room had a crack approximately 1/8 inch in between the doors. My friends and I would take our ID cards and try to flip them trough the crack in the door from about 8 feet away. The game never had a name and we simply kept a running tally of “goals”, but there were times when we would play for at least an hour.

Another game originated in high school. This one called Ledgeball took the place of Reader’s Digest whilst on the crapper. The toilets in my high school locker room didn’t have doors, and there was a brick wall about three feet in front of them. The brick ended about 5 1/2 feet off of the ground and formed a ledge about 1 inch deep. The object of the game was to ball up one of those little sheets of toilet paper (not from a roll, but actually separate sheets) and while remaining seated, toss them up to the ledge. If they stayed, you scored. There were records for most scores for one sitting. I briefly held that record, and there’s a plaque in my high school lobby to mark the occasion. I’ll never forget how proud my parents were.

My wife swears up and down that she’s never heard of this game and that my friends and I had to have made it up. I don’t think that we did. But, I’ll throw it out there and let me know if anyone else has heard of it.

The name of the game is Butt’s Up. You can play with any number of people as long as you have at least two. You need a tennis ball and a large wall. One person starts by throwing the ball at the wall. Upon it bouncing back, anyone can catch it provided

  1. They must catch it with one hand
  2. They cannot change hands once they catch it
  3. Once they have caught the ball, one foot must remain frozen, ie they can only pivot. [sub]It took everything I had not to write “Hi Opal!” here.[/sub]
  4. They must then throw the ball back at the wall.

The fun starts when one of the following happens

  1. A person tries to catch the ball, but it bobbles in their hand and falls out
  2. The ball hits someone
  3. They move their pivot foot
  4. They do not hit the wall when they throw the ball (This happens often when you’re trying to make a left handed throw when you’re right handed.)
  5. The ball bounces before it hits the wall

Should any of the above happen, the person who has committed one of the violations must (First dropping the ball if they had control of it.) run and touch the wall before any of the people they are playing with get the ball and hit the wall with it.

If the person tags the wall before the ball hits it, they are safe and can go back to playing the game. If the ball hits the wall before they tag it, then their “Butt’s Up.”

The person whose butt is up places their faces the wall and puts their hands against the wall like they are being frisked. All the other players then line up 7-10 feet away and each get a turn to try to hit the person on the wall in the butt with the ball.

Now, has anyone else ever heard of this or did we make it up? It’s really a fun game. Plenty of the violence and ridicule that makes a childhood game great.

Tommy the Cat:

I worked at a summer camp this past summer, and the kids at the camp would often play this game during rec time. I think one of the goals of the game was to say “Butt” as often as possible.

Well… there was The Game where we took a soccer ball, stood about 8 feet apart, and tried to kick the ball past each other. We made little goal areas that were about 6 feet wide and about 4 feet high. It was lots of fun. There was also a fence on one side that you could use to hit the ball off of. Never hurt ourselves either (no broken noses etc.)

Then when we couldn’t go outside, we played The Sock Game. It was the same idea, except we used a rolled up pair of socks, and laid on the floor in front of the couch and the entertainment center (which were across from each other and the same width). You couldn’t throw the sock, you had to hit it with your hand (and eventually feet became valid) Same idea, but the goal area was only the bottom part (about 2 feet high). Eventually we took metal curtain rods and made real goal nets, that were about 2 feet high and 6-7 feet across.

Those were the days.

We played The Alphabet Game on long trips. We didn’t invent it, but this variation is mine.

To use a letter, (i.e. “A”), a word must be found on a sign beginning with the letter A. You can use license plate letters in any order. Words on cars or trucks, first letter only. Only the first w from a web address can be used ( Hyphenated words: only the first letter. You can’t use the Q from Bar-B-Q. You can’t use the rearview mirror and view the letter backwards. Doesn’t count.

I now am so addicted I play by myself on the way to and from work. I know where all the Q’s are… sad, I know.

Funny, all of my invented games seem to center around drinking.

Though this may have been spontaneously created elsewhere, I and my college roomies invented Beer-Pong.

It’s regular ping-pong, played on a standard table, but add keg beer and those plastic cups in which it is typically served.

Each player places his or her cup wherever on their side of the table they think it is most safe (and where it won’t get in their way so much). You then play standard ping-pong. If you score a point, the other guy drinks.

If your opponent strikes your cup during the course of play, you drink three. If your opponent gets the ball in your cup, you must fill the cup and chug. Ditto if, during the course of play, you knock over your cup.

This game can get very messy. We kept our table in the front yard. (Sigh. I miss college.)

A variation for indoors Beer-Pong is to keep the cups on the table empty and the beer elsewhere.

In addition to a fun way to get plastered with friends, it leads to great strategical conundrums: Do you play for your opponent’s cup, or play for points? And its fun watching someone hovered over their cup, defending it like the Marines at Gitmo in Cuba.

We also have a drinking game that centers around Detroit Red Wings hockey broadcasts on television, and their very colorful, Canadian, former-player, color commentator Mickey Redmond. Different drink values are assigned whenever he says certain “Mickey-isms.”

But I won’t get into that. If you aren’t a Wings fan from Michigan, you aren’t going to get it.

Bloody knuckles is SO popular around here we have several variations, and i have a ton of stories. I’m not sure which is the official version where, so here goes;

Me and my brother play it where one spins a coin on the table. The other must then flick it to keep it spinning. The person who lets it fall must put his knuckles on the table and let the other player slide the coin across the table, as hard as he can, into a knuckle. My brother is very, very good at this. One game, by the end, every hit would send a plume of blood spraying onto the table. My knuckles all have small scars where the coins hit. I didnt lose 'cause I refused to give up :smiley:
Another time, two of my friends were playing, and one of the players had an even stronger slide than my brother. On one particularly viscious turn, he slid the coin so hard that it became lodged in the knuckle (we think it got stuck in the joint, ie, between the two bones!) Anyway, this guy is now running around with a coin stuck in his hand and the rest of us cant stop laughing. The McDonald’s staff freaked right out.

The second variation is one I learned from a REAL big guy when I was working as a ride operator for a theme park. You put your closed fists together, and the person whose turn it is must try and raise his hands quickly and slam your knuckles with his. This can get very painful very fast.
Now, I’m about 6’3" and well built. The guy I was playing with was something like 6’6" and 300 lbs, just HUGE. We were playing while waiting to get people on the rides. The customers became so enthralled in this duel between the giants that they forgot about the ride; they simply watched us, screaming in sympathetic pain with each hit. By the end both our knuckles were tomato red, but we were both laughing insanely at the ever-so-grossed out crowd.
I had trouble opening my fists for several days.

I didnt really invent either of these, but I’m sure mine are variations. And they’re funny, so I wanted to share.

'Cause it’s funny when friends get hurt :smiley:

That’s like having to drink whenever Jon Davidson says “Oh, Baby” during a NY Rangers broadcast.

Two games.

My husband and I play two games while we drive… starting in September, and we’ve taught it to anyone who rides in our car.

The first runs from September to Thanksgiving and it’s called “punkin”. Whenever you see a pumpkin, real, fake, paper, whatever, you yell it out. No one else can call that punkin and you score a point.

From Thanksgiving to January…it’s the same game, only it’s called “wreath”

We get bored in the car.


For surviving long car journeys to relatives’ houses, my sister and I invented “add-a-rule War.” This was the simple card game of War (two players turn up cards one-by-one; highest card wins) with the proviso that every time we played it, we would either add a new rule, or change the rank of the cards. We had the rules written down in a notebook; if either of us had to consult the book or ask about the current rules, that person had to forfeit ten cards to the other. This led to some interesting exchanges, like: “Is an eight higher than a joker?” “Only if it’s a red eight. Ten cards.”

We also tried working on a Super-Monopoly type game which had two boards, “foreign exchange” rates between the two boards, “elections” which could change the tax and property values on either board, etc. We got so far as to actually draw up the boards and property deeds for the game, but eventually bogged down in how to make the rules comprehensible.

Me and the lads made this one up in high school. It’s called Simp-o-mub. You start with a 2 inch thick wooden pole 4 feet long. One end, the “Simp” end, is painted orange, the other end “Mub” is painted green. The 2 players start the round facing each other, holding their end of the pole with both hands on top of their head. The ref starts you out “One, two, three, GO!” The object is to force the opponent’s end of the pole to touch the ground using any method shy of deliberately striking your opponent.

Very physical. Like wrestling, but with a pole.