How to Play the Guess my Name Game

By Contributing Writer
Rock, paper and scissors is a classic game that can be played anywhere.

Party games are a great way to enjoy the company of family and friends. The "Guess my Name" game is a party game for six or more. One of the greatest things about this party game is that it can be played well by six-year-old kids, but is enjoyable for adults too. The "Guess my Name" party game can provide hours of joint fun for kids, parents, and grandparents.

"Guess my Name" - a party game for all ages

Designate one player to serve as "reader" for the first round of the "Guess my Name" party game.

Each "Guess my Name" player (except the reader) chooses a name for him or herself. This can be the name of a famous author, a cartoon character, a president, a king or queen, a politician, an actor or actress, or any other well-known name. Once you've chosen your secret name, write it down on a piece of paper, fold the paper, and hand it to the reader.

Quickly verify: The reader must she can make out the secret name. If not, she can ask the player to rewrite the name more legibly or to whisper it in her ear. Once all the papers are in the reader's hand, she shuffles them and then slowly reads each name out loud. Once the reader has read out all the names, she reads them all out loud one more time. The other "Guess my Name" players must each try to memorize all the secret names. This will be critical for later success.

Starting with the player to the left of the reader, each "Guess my Name" player in turn tries to match one secret name to one player. If the guess is correct, the other player joins the good guesser's team. The team now pools its knowledge and suspicions about the other players and their secret names. Once the team has finished sharing its information, the good guesser tries matching one more secret name to one more player who is not on his team. Once a wrong guess is made, the play moves clockwise to the next person whose name has not been guessed yet.

Repeat step 4 until all of the players but one have had their secret name outed. The last player whose name has not been guessed is the winner of the round. If you wish to keep score, that player has one point.

Play another round starting from step 1. The new reader can be the player to the left of the previous reader or, if you prefer, the person who just won the previous round. Play as many rounds as the party has time for or until the players get hungry. With such a fun party game, everyone is sure to want to go on and on.

Tip

To make guessing your name more challenging, remember that you don't have to stay bound by gender, ethnicity, profession, or even reality. A man can choose the name of a queen, a child can choose the name of a politician, and a politician can choose the name of a Disney character, and an adult can choose the name of a children's show figure.

To throw the other players off, you can ask someone else if their name is the one you secretly chose for yourself. Many players will think that if you asked someone else if they are "Snow White" this means you yourself cannot be "Snow White", giving you an edge.

An advanced strategy may include deciding when to correctly guess another player's name to give yourself the best advantage. It may be best not to give away your knowledge of another player's secret name until you know everyone else's names too.

Warning

With a large party, one of the harder aspects of the game is remembering all of the secret names that are only read out at the beginning of the round. If there are very young players, you may wish to limit the number of participants to six or seven so they're less likely to forget the secret names. For the same reason, people suffering memory problems are not likely to enjoy the game as much.

If you're considering not outing another player's secret name until a later turn, to keep from giving away an advantage, keep in mind that someone else may win the entire round before the play returns to you.