Food & Drink

6 Easy Drinking Games You Can Play With Just a Deck of Cards

As great as a classic drinking game like Beer Pong or Polish Horseshoes can be, sometimes you just want to kick off your buzz without any intensive preparation or post-game cleanup. Fortunately, you can turn pretty much any game into a drinking game, and a few require just a deck of cards (and some alcohol of course). Here, the best ways to get the party started with just a deck of cards.


In Beeramid, 15 cards are laid out in a pyramid formation, starting with five cards at the base and ending with one at the top. Each player is dealt four cards. The dealer starts the round by flipping the top card of the pyramid. Any player with a card of the same value in their hand (or any player who pretends to have such a card in their hand) can tell another player to drink. The drinker continues to gulp for a period of time determined by the flipped card’s position in the pyramid (a card from the top requires the least amount of drinking time, while a card from the bottom row requires the most). If the person assigning the drink has more than one card matching the flipped card, the length of drinking time is multiplied by the number of matching cards he or she has in their hand (or claims to have). The player who is assigned to drink can either start chugging, or accuse the other player of bluffing. The accused then has to prove themselves or reveal that they were indeed lying. If they were not lying, the accuser must drink double the amount assigned, and the accused returns their revealed card(s) to the deck and re-draws. If the accused person was caught lying, he or she keeps their cards secret and must drink double the amount assigned. The game ends when every card in the pyramid has been turned over.

F the Dealer

Here’s how this game works: Everyone sits in a circle and takes turns being the “high roller.” The high roller faces off against “the dealer.” To determine who will be the dealer, each person, save for the high roller, draws a card. The player with the lowest card is the dealer. To kick off the round, the high roller wagers a certain amount of drinking time. Then, the dealer draws three cards. The high roller must guess one of three things correctly: the first card’s suit, the following card’s exact value, or whether or not the last card will be higher or lower than the second card. If the high roller doesn’t guess anything correctly, he or she drinks for the amount of time they wagered at the start of the round. If the high roller does get something right, the dealer drinks for that amount of time.


Start by building a small deck of cards that includes one card of a red suit, one ace of spades, and enough black numerical cards so the number of cards in the deck matches the number of players. Then, shuffle the deck and deal one card out to each person. The person who receives the red card is the killer; the person who receives the ace of spades is the detective, and the people who receive the black numbered cards are civilians. Once all the cards are dealt, the killer “kills” someone by winking at them, doing so as stealthily as possible. The person who is killed says “I’m dead” and drinks. After the kill, the detective tries to determine who the killer is. If the detective is right, the killer has to drink. If the detective is wrong, he or she must drink. Tip: If you’re the killer, try to figure out who the detective is before you strike because if you try to kill the detective, you’re going to get busted.

Screw Your Neighbor

The object of Screw Your Neighbor is simple: Don’t end up with the lowest card (king being the highest and ace being the lowest). At the start of every round, the dealer deals each player a card. The player to the dealer’s left starts the round by first looking at their card and then choosing to either pass and keep their card, or swap their card with the next person in the circle. That person then gets the opportunity to do the same, and so on. When the game reaches the dealer, he or she can either swap his or her card with the top card of the deck or pass. Everyone flips over their cards, and the player with the lowest card drinks.

Give and Take

Really get to know your fellow partiers with this boozy take on Truth or Dare. Lay out two parallel rows of 12 cards, one row being the “truth” row, and other the “dare” row. Then, deal each player four cards. Starting with the player to the dealer’s left, each person takes turns flipping over a card in either the truth row or the dare row. Anyone who has a card that matches the card that was flipped must participate in the truth or dare, the details of which are determined by the person who flipped the card (if no one has a match, nothing happens and the next person in the lineup draws). If someone fails to complete a dare or refuses to tell a truth, they have to drink for a duration of time determined by the flipped card’s position, ranging from one second on at the beginning of the row, to 12 seconds on the far end. The game ends when every card on both rows has been flipped.


Kings (also known as Ring of Fire) has a lot of rules, but don’t worry—they’re easy. Basically, all the cards in a deck are fashioned in a circle around a beer can or cup of alcohol. People take turns drawing cards and perform the action dictated by the card. The game ends when there are no more cards left to draw. Here’s what each card means:

Ace: Waterfall
Everyone starts drinking at the same time as the player to his or her left, starting with the person who drew the card. No one is allowed to stop drinking until the person to their left stops.

Two: You
The drawer picks someone to take a drink.

Three: Me
The person who drew the card drinks.

Four: Floor
Everyone has to touch the floor in “not it” or “shot not” fashion. The last person to touch the floor has to drink.

Five: Guys
All the dudes take a drink.

Six: Chicks
All the ladies take a drink.

Seven: Heaven
Everyone has to point up to the sky (or ceiling, more likely). The last person to do so drinks.

Eight: Mate
Choose a partner to drink with you. That person now has to drink every time you drink and vice versa, until one of you chooses a new mate.

Nine: Rhyme
The drawer says a word. The next person to the left has to say a word that rhymes with that word, and so on around the circle. The person who fails to rhyme has to drink.

Ten: Categories
Pick any category of things (states, spirits, classic cocktails, primary colors if you hate the fourth person from you). Everyone then has to name something within that category. When someone can’t think of anything or runs out of options, that person drinks.

Jack: Never Have I Ever
Everyone puts up three fingers and plays a mini game of Never Have I Ever, taking turns naming things they haven’t done, especially acts which they suspect (or know) others have done. Every time someone has done something named, he or she puts a finger down. The first person out of fingers has to drink.

Queen: Question Master

Whoever draws a queen is the question master. During the time as question master, he or she gets to ask anyone a question at any time. That person has to respond with another question to avoid drinking. If the person responds with anything other than a question or fails to respond at all, he or she has to drink. The next person to draw a queen becomes the new question master.

King: Make a Rule

The king of Kings gets to make up a rule that everyone has to follow. If anyone dares to disobey the rule, he or she has to drink.

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