At a Glance: Balderdash attracts wit like a strong magnet, and invites a level of creativity that is rarely found in a party game.
Balderdash is a bluffing party game for 2-6 players where players write in creative, witty, and believable answers to quirky questions and prompts, and attempt to bluff other players into picking their answer as what they think is the “correct” one. Players score 1 point each time their fake answer is picked, 2 points if you guess the right answer, and 3 points if your answer actually matches the correct answer. Whoever reaches the finish line first is the winner. For clarification, this is the newer edition of Balderdash. Here’s a little backstory: Originally, the game of Balderdash just focused on obscure words with definitions. Then, later they expanded on that idea with an edition called “Beyond Balderdash” with a few more categories like Movies, Dates, People, and Initials. This version of the game was so well-received that the newer versions of Balderdash now have re-instituted those extra categories into the main game. Hence why I did not list it as “Beyond Balderdash” here. I would definitely recommend that you get one of the newer editions that include those additional categories.
As I said, you do get 3 points for actually matching the correct answer, so technically it could be seen as a trivia game. In reality though, the prompts are usually so obscure that that rarely happens. It is kind of a cool bonus when it does happen though. This game really shines with creative writers and those with quick wit. It helps to also have decent grammar, because anything that is poorly worded can throw a red flag that it is a fake answer. Among the right group, it can be one of the most hilarious party games out there. And the great part is, the humor is not forced (a la Quelf), it just organically and creatively arises on its own.
At this point, there have been many editions of this game. The newest one has a completely revamped board and aesthetic, and is very affordable. For the huge amount of prompts that come with the game, and the hours of fun, it is MORE than worth it.
Check it Out! https://amzn.to/2y87yc4
If you like Bluffing in general, here are some other games I enjoy that didn’t crack my Top 100:
Liar’s Dice – This is an old, raw game of pure bluffing where players secretly roll a number of dice, then take turns of increasing bets as to how many of a certain number of dice are on the table until someone calls the bluff. Really fun.
Mascarade – This is a small card game by acclaimed designer Bruno Faidutti where you can really get into character, bluffing other players into thinking you have chosen certain roles. It works as a cool party game that can handle up to 13 players, which is great.
Rumpelstiltskin – This really small card game, similar to Love Letter, involves trying to guess the other player’s character at the bottom of the deck. However, there are a lot of twists and turns in the gameplay.
Clue – The classic family game of mystery and deception, where you try to ascertain information, without giving too much away to the other players.