5 Great Psychological and Mind-Bending Games
There is something special about getting together with friends and family to enjoy board games, and nothing is more satisfying than successfully fooling everyone at the table. Games that force you to reach into the inner workings of your friends’ minds always lead to the most fun and surprising engagements one can experience. Whether you are playing with two people, or upwards of twenty, here are some of our favorite psychological and mind-bending games:
Bamboozled is an exciting, fast paced bluffing game that is fun for all ages. The core of the game is simple: roll the dice and land on a higher number than the player that went before you. If you do not, you have to bluff. If you are caught bluffing, you are given a strike. If a player calls a bluff but the other player wasn’t bluffing, then they receive a strike. Three strikes, and you’re out! The last player standing wins!
Bamboozled is a simple game that turned out to be more fun than we anticipated. The game usually starts out slow if players are afraid of bluffing, but once more players have at least one or two strikes, the game gets intense. It helps that when someone receives a strike card, the score resets to zero and the player that got the strike starts the next round. The game gets even crazier with the inclusion of action cards that range from reversing the play order, skipping players, and even changing the value of the dice. The best thing about Bamboozled is how easy it is for anyone to pick up and play, making it a must have for family gatherings and trips with friends.
Embers of Memory: A Throne of Glass Game
Embers of Memory is a game based on the Throne of Glass book series. Don’t worry, you don’t need to be familiar with the books to enjoy this game. I certainly was not. With that said, this game does take place during the events of the final book, so if you are interested in the series this game will contain spoilers.
Embers of Memory is a two-player cooperative game that will test your bond with your partner. The game is made up of multiple chapters, each with their own unique challenges. Even though the game is co-op, the players must work together without speaking, communicating only through card placement. You will have to learn to read your partner’s intention through their actions for every move in order to make it through all chapters of the game.
This is a game that can take a long period of time to complete. Each chapter plays like a campaign, so if you and a friend/family member are looking for a fun game to play together over an extended period of time, Embers of Memory is our pick for you.
Inhuman Conditions is perhaps one of the most unique games we have played. The core of this game is an interrogation between an investigator and a potential undercover robot. One player is the investigator interviewing the other player, asking them questions in order to uncover who, or what, they really are. The second player is the suspect whose job is to convince the interviewer, by answering their questions, that they are a real person and not a machine to be sent to the scrap.
This game can appear rather complex for new players with all of the variety the game provides, but once in the game it is easy to fully embrace the scenario your character has been placed in and fall right into your role. Each individual game only lasts for five minutes so there isn’t much of a time commitment; however, once you get a game or two in, you will find it hard to stop. We recommend this game for players in their teens and up. Since it is a two-player game, it is a great for friends, spouses, and siblings.
Medium: A Mind Reading Party Game
If you’re looking for an easy party game, look no further than Medium. Medium is a game all about reading the mind of your partner. All players are dealt a hand of seven cards with a unique word printed on each. Each player must play a card face up with their partner and read it aloud. It is now up to both players to find the Medium that connects both words. You gain points based on how many attempts it takes the team to match, and at the end of the game, the team with the most points wins.
Medium is an excellent party game for players of all ages. It is easy for players to understand and quick to set up. The idea of trying to read your partner’s mind and guess the same word as them can make for some fun and surprising moments sure to keep all players engaged. Medium is best played with a group of four or more.
Ultimate Werewolf Extreme
The most popular deduction game is perhaps Ultimate Werewolf. In this game each player is given a card telling them what their role is. Each player is either a villager or a werewolf. It is the villager’s job to determine who the werewolves are and kill them at the end of each day. It is the werewolves’ job to stay out of suspicion, surviving until all the villagers have been killed.
Ultimate Werewolf provides players with a multitude of unique character cards that allow the game to be as simple or difficult as needed. Each unique character card has its role and abilities listed on the card for everyone’s convenience. If you rely only on evidence and other player’s special abilities, you will only get so far. To truly embrace the madness of Ultimate Werewolf, you must be comfortable reading your friends and manipulating their emotions to survive the night.
Ultimate Werewolf Extreme takes the concept of Ultimate Werewolf and adds even more crazy and unique character cards and abilities to the mix. Since you can choose which roles are used in each game, we recommend getting the set with the most options. Ultimate Werewolf is a game that is best played with at least six players, but it is always recommended to play with more. The larger the group, the better!