Games at camp are a great way to build trust, teamwork, and knowledge between campers and staff alike. Just like the songs page, it is entirely possible that you have learned a game similar to one of the ones we have listed but you know it by a different name, or with some other quirk. We’ll see how this form works for now but it could change.
Large Group Games (without props)
There are three animals with motions; Bear, Crane and Fox. Bow first, yell as you come up. Play rock/paper/scissors countdown and then throw an animal sign, as leader v. crowd. If the players in the crowd do not have the same sign as the leader, crowd people sit down. See who is left standing.
All players close their eyes and the leader selects someone to be the ‘proovie’. The object is to find the proovie and connect on to it. Players walk around, asking the word ‘proovie’. The proovie says nothing. Once you find the proovie you connect on and become silent as well, you can open your eyes and watch other players. The last person to find the proovie is the new one in the next game. TIPS: remind everyone to have their hands up in front of their chests to avoid awkward touching.
Leader picks two or three (depending on size of group) vampires.
Play: Everyone walks around shaking hands. Vampires kill by scratching index finger lightly against the wrist when they shake hands. Victims have to shake three more hands before dying. Vamps do not have to kill everyone that they shake hands with. If a person has an accusation of a vampire, they can pause the game to make it. If they are wrong, they die, if they are right, the Vampire dies.
Giants, wizards and dwarves
Divide group in two. It’s like full body rock, paper, scissors. Giants step on dwarves, Dwarves kick wizard’s knees, Wizards take out Giants.
PLAY: Each team decides on a character. On the count of three both teams shout their character and position. Tie; nothing happens. If the characters are different, the losing team runs away and the winning team tries to tag as many before they cross a predetermined back boundary. If you get tagged, you go to the winning team. Game ends whenever or when one team goes down to 0 players.
Odd number of people. There rest of people pair off and form an inner and outer circles with the inner person sitting in between the outer person’s legs. Odd person out stands in the center.
PLAY: the center person spins around, jokes around, eventually points to pairs in the circles. When this happens, the inner person tries to get up and tag the center person. Who ever tags first is the new center person. The outer circle tries to restrain their partners and keep them from getting up. The center person can switch up the circles, make the circles shift # of spaces over, this mixes up the partners, way to meet new people.
Boy-girl pull up
Start with two girls and two boys in the center. The rest of the players sit in a circle in no particular order.
PLAY: on ‘Go’ the center people run to pull up a person of the opposite sex and sit down in their place. When the music stops, look at the 4 people in the center. If there are more girls, then the boys win that round and if there are more boys then the girls win that round. The number of center players can be adjusted to fit the number of people playing.
Honey if you love me
Players sit in a circle and one is selected to be “it”. The It has three tries to say “Honey if you love me, will you please, please smile” and get a smile in return. If the person tempted can reply “Honey, I love you but I just can’t smile,” with a straight face then the It moves on to another person. After three tries, another It is selected. If a person cannot reply without smiling then they become the new It.
Duck duck goose
Group sits in a circle, one person is It. They walk around the outside of the circle, lightly tapping each sitting people’s heads. Each tap is a “Duck” until It selects the sitting player they want and says “Goose” instead of Duck. The Goose must get up and chase It around the circle, either tagging It before It sits down or beating It to the seat. If neither is accomplished then the “Goose” becomes the next It. Variations for older players can include multiple laps around the circle, one lap around before free chasing, no cutting through the center etc. Some rules say that if It gets tagged then It remains It. If It is beaten back to the spot then It goes into the center.
Same rules as with the cards except the narrator picks the Angel/doctor, Detective and Mafia.
The Narrator makes sure that the right number of roles are filled. Usually 2 mafia, 1 doctor, 1 detective. Narrator shuffles cards and players select.
PLAY: The towns people ‘go to sleep’, the mafia wakes up and select one person to kill. The Mafia goes to sleep. The Angel wakes up and picks one person to save. They go to sleep. The Detective wakes up and picks one person they think is the Mafia. They go to sleep and everyone wakes up. If the angel picked the correct person then that person is ‘saved’ from a horrible death. The towns people then vote off one person. If the towns people vote off both mafias before they all die off then the people win. If the mafia kill off the angel or detective then no one has the opportunity to be saved.
PLAY: one person calls the orders; the players are grouped in front of them. There are several orders that can be called out and if someone does the wrong action or is left out of one of the groups then they are out. Commands:
Poopdeck- back of the playing area
Hit the deck- get down on the floor
Captain’s coming- stand at attention
Rowboat- two people facing the same way rowing
Chow time- four people in a square eating
Man overboard- two people holding hands with a third person in the center.
Red Light/Green Light
PLAY: All players line up across a field, playing space. At Green light, players walk as quickly as they can but when someone says Red light they have to stop. Anyone who doesn’t stop or who falls over is out. First one who touches the player calling the colors wins.
PLAY: Person(s) marked as It chase others. When tagged, others become It. Game has no end.
Sharks and minnows
PLAY:Person(s) marked as Sharks run in the middle of the playing field and tag other players (minnows) as they run from one side of the field to the other. If tagged, the minnow becomes seaweed. Seaweed cannot do more than pivot on one foot but they can tag minnows and make them more seaweed. Last minnow running wins. Last three usually become the next sharks.
PLAY:Once a person is tagged they hold hands/link arms with It to form a blob. Once there are four people in the blob, it splits into pairs. This continues to happen until there is only one person left running solitary.
Roving partners/elbow tag
PLAY: Everyone partners up, pairs standing apart from each other in the playing field with arms linked with their partner. There is the chaser and the chased. When the person being chased is tired, they latch onto a pair and the other side of the pair becomes the chased. If the chaser tags the chased then they switch roles. If there is a really large group there can be more than one pair chasing/being chased. If it gets too confusing, occasionally stop the game and have everyone running point at who is chasing them/who they are chasing. Game has no end.
PLAY:Person(s) marked as it tag the other players. When tagged, players must crouch down (sometime kneel on one knee) and stick out one arm. To be unfrozen an active player must pretend to sit on a knee and gently tap the extended arm and the frozen player must make a flushing sound (imagine a person sitting and flushing a toilet, hence the name). Game has no end.
Through the legs freeze tag
PLAY: Person(s) marked as it tag the other players. When tagged, players must freeze in that spot with legs a little wider than shoulder width apart. To be unfrozen, and active player must crawl through the frozen person’s legs. For this reason, this is not a good choice for groups with a large age/size range. Also it can be inappropriate if played with the wrong people. Game has no end.
PLAY:Person(s) marked as It tag the other players. When tagged, players must freeze in that spot. In order to become unfrozen, an active player must tag the frozen one. In some versions, there is no way to be unfrozen.
PLAY: Person(s) designated as IT tag the other players. When tagged, players must freeze in some compact shape. Another player can come along and “unzip” the frozen player. Frozen player must expand after being zipped. Zipper noises are encouraged.