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So, you’re planning a party for your teen’s 18th birthday, and you’re on a mission to find some party games that the guests will genuinely love playing. I’ve got you! I’ve put together an arsenal of epic party games guaranteed to keep the energy levels sky-high.
This isn’t your average parade of party games. I’ve levelled it up to keep a crowd of 18-year-olds on their toes. These games promise a mix of laughter, camaraderie, and good-old competitive spirit that’ll keep their social stories buzzing.
10 INSANELY FUN GAMES THAT WILL KEEP A PARTY FOR 18-YEAR-OLDS PLAYING ALL NIGHT!
Jump in and start planning for a night of awesome game-fuelled fun that’ll make this birthday bash the stuff of legends!
1. POP CULTURE CHARADES
Charades is a classic party favourite, but how about levelling up for a teen crowd by making it Pop Culture Charades?
In this version, all the prompts have to be related to current pop culture references such as viral memes, TikTok dances, famous celebrities, popular movies or TV series, trendy songs, and so on.
How to play:
The rules remain the same, but the fun level elevates because of the inclusion of the latest pop culture trends that teens can relate to and enjoy.
This version of Charades will not only test everyone’s acting skills but also their knowledge of pop culture, making the game more relevant for 18-year-olds.
To make it even more interactive, you can divide the group into teams and have them compete against each other for the highest score.
You could also allow ‘stealing’ where if the team acting out the prompt can’t get their team to guess correctly within the time limit, the other team gets a chance to guess and steal the point.
Props: Write a set of Pop Charades cards – I’d suggest using Canva to create the cards and then print them out.
Oh, and it’s probably best to enlist an actual teenager to help write the charades; even the ‘coolest’ parents in the world just aren’t cool to 18-year-olds.
2. TWO TRUTHS AND A LIE
In this revealing game of intrigue, each player makes three statements about themselves – two true and one false. The aim of the game is to trick everyone into believing the lie. It’s a great game for tight-knit groups of friends and also a good ice-breaker game for brave teens!
How to play:
I find the best way to play this game and keep track of scores is to divide the guests into groups of four or five people – unless you have a smaller gathering, in which case everyone can play against each other.
Each player in turn has to say three statements about themselves. Two must be truthful and one must be a lie. The best lies should be believable rather than outrageous.
If a team guesses the lie correctly they score a point. Then the next player takes their turn.
Psych is an app-based game from the people behind the mega-popular game Heads Up! and created by Ellen DeGeneres.
The challenge of Psych! is for players to answer real trivia questions, but the twist is they provide fake answers to try to trick the players.
How to play:
Watch the video demo of the game to understand how to play.
Props: Download Psych! You do have to pay to play, but there is an offer to pay a one-off fee.
4. TRIVIA NIGHT
There are lots of online trivia generators and apps, but I think the best trivia nights are when someone who knows the guests well has created the trivia questions. We’ve done this with great success for gatherings with people of all ages.
How to play:
Someone needs to take charge of writing the trivia questions ahead of the party. Or you can get every guest to create their own category and set of questions.
A good way to come up with questions is to choose a few categories, things from within music, sport, food and drink, politics (divisive!!) work.
Then tailor the categories to the specific gathering of guests, so there could be a category on ‘Britpop hits from the 90s’ or ‘Random quotes from Romcoms’, you get the idea.
Once you have everyone gathered for the trivia quiz, you can either have everyone play independently or divide them into teams.
5. MINUTE TO WIN IT GAMES
Minute to Win It was a game show originally created by BUMP Productions. The show was first aired on NBC in the United States in 2010 and was hosted by Guy Fieri. The game show died a death by 2014, but the concept has been taken up by people around the world to play at parties.
Minute to Win It games are a series of fun, high-energy challenges that have to be completed in under a minute. These challenges often involve simple household items and require a combination of skill, luck, and strategy.
How to play:
I think Play Party Plan has the best list of Minute To Win It Games I’ve found so far.
6. COSPLAY KARAOKE
Karaoke always goes down well at parties. But how about taking it next level by adding a Cosplay element?
How to play:
Challenge everyone invited to the party to choose a song or songs they want to sing from a single artist or band. They must then arrive at the party dressed as that artist or a member of that band.
Comedic takes will score extra points!!
Props: A karaoke set.
7. GIANT CLASSIC BOARD GAMES
There is something really nostalgic about giant classic board games, I guess it takes us all back to childhood playing the actual games.
Scattering a few giant games around a party is a brilliant way to get everyone intereacting. Guests can challenge each other and run their own competitions.
Props: Here are a few brilliant giant versions of classic games
8. LIP SYNC BATTLE
Do Lip Sync battles ever get tired?! I don’t think so.
Inspired by the popular TV show, in this game, players or teams compete to deliver the best lip-sync performance of popular songs.
How to play:
You’ll need to set up a stage area and have a couple of microphones to hand (Clearly they won’t actually be turned on, but it adds to the effect).
You will also need to have a good sound system that is loud enough to be heard over chatter and laughter.
Create a song list before the party, include a good mix of current favourites, well-known classics, anthems and even some songs that lend themselves to comedic performances.
Challenge party guests to sign up to lip sync a song. You can either pit two people against each other, or simply have everyone take a turn.
The audience gets to vote on how good each performance is.
You could have a glittering Lip Sync prize or award ready for the overall winner.
Props: Microphones or something that can be used as fake microphones (hairbrushes?!)
Need some inspiration? Here’s Tom Holland competing against his girlfriend Zendaya on the Lip Synch TV show.
9. WOULD YOU RATHER
There are a couple of ways to play the game. Either have everyone take turns individually to answer a set of questions against the clock.
The other way, which is great for bigger parties, is to have one person read out the questions, and then the rest of the party guests divide up into a ‘yes’ side and a ‘no’ side for each answer.
I’ve put together a big list of Would You Rather questions for teenagers, so have a look at this list and then start creating a list of questions for your 18-year-old’s party – or ask them to put together the list.
10. BOARD GAMES NIGHT
Setting up a single boardgame or having a selection of boardgames to make a games night party is a great way to entertain a bunch of 18-year-olds.
I’ve put together a post on the best board games for teens, take a look and pick the games you think will appeal to your teen and their pals.
And finally. One of the most popular pieces of content on Mums Make Lists is a big roundup I put together of the best birthday party games for teens.
I created the list with younger teens in mind, however, you know your 18-year-old and their friends best, so it is well worth taking a look through the list to see if there are any games that you think will appeal.
Luci is the founder of Mums Make Lists (Est. 2011). Over the last decade or so, she has used her experience as a mum to create useful guides to organising family life. During that time, she has found the most joy in creating lists of ideas and inspiration to make it easier for busy parents to plan and host kids’ parties and find great gifts. Read more.