Instructions For "Scattergories"

By Megan Koos

Two to six players or teams can play the party game "Scattergories." The object is to come up with unique words or phrases in 12 categories that begin with a letter determined at the beginning of each round. Only unique answers count, so the first answer that comes to mind may not be the best one.

Preparation

Give each player a folder, pencil, category card and a blank answer sheet. Each player should have the same category card. Either select a card randomly (and then hand out the matching cards to each of the players) or decide as a group which card to use for each game. Players clip the answer sheet and category card into their folder. Roll the letter die. Turn over the timer to begin the first round.

Rounds

Players must come up with a word or phrase that begins with the letter showing on the letter die. One answer is given in each of the 12 categories on the category card. For example, if the letter is D and the categories include "Actress," "Game" and "Movie Title," appropriate answers would include Doris Day, Dodgeball, and "Dog Day Afternoon." The round lasts for three minutes. When the timer runs out, all players must put down their pencils and compare answers.

Scoring

Each legitimate answer is worth one point. A legitimate answer begins with the correct letter, and none of the other players can have the same answer. For example, if no one else used Doris Day as an "Actress" answer, the player who did use her name gets the only point. If there is some question about the legitimacy of an answer, the players must vote to decide if the answer should be counted.

Three Rounds

A game consists of a total of three rounds. If the letter showing has already been used, roll the die again until a new letter comes up. At the end of the third round, add the points from all three rounds. The player with the highest score is the winner.

About the Author

Megan Koos has been a professional writer since 2007, writing instructional and promotional content on everything from auto repair to Hungarian cuisine. She has a Bachelor of Arts in English literature and classical civilizations.