This page is about how to have fun getting creative with the Youthscape Playing Cards, if you've found this link but don't have the cards yet, you can get yourself a pack here!
Get creative with the games you know
The playing cards are designed with the Ace-King, four-suit structure that most of us probably know quite well. That means you could integrate them with basically any card game that you already know and love. It could be Snap, Cheat, Go Fish, or maybe even a zero-stakes game of Poker (we can’t encourage gambling). Whichever it is, see if there’s a moment in the game where you can pause to explore one of the questions (e.g. when you ‘snap’ in Snap). Or you could just play it casually and occasionally use the questions whenever you feel like it.
Would you rather?
‘Would you rather’ questions can be fun ways to explore tricky dilemmas whether fun or serious. Sometimes you might just want to use these kinds of questions – e.g. you could use them as an icebreaker to get a group talking/debating. So you can get to these specific questions easily, all four of the Kings in the set are ‘would you rather’ questions, such as ‘Would you rather be successful and widely hated, or unsuccessful and widely loved?’ The Ace and Queen of Hearts are also ‘would you rather’ questions. Also, why not try and come up with your own fun dilemmas?
Guess the other person’s response
You could twist things up a little by instead of giving your own answer to the question first, pick a question and then guess the answer that someone else present would give. Then that person can give their answer and you’ll see if you were right. A fun way to see how well you know each other and get to know each other better if you don’t! You could even make this a competitive game where you get points or lose them for making correct guesses (a little bit like the couples’ game ‘Mr and Mrs’).
Just blast through the questions, one person acting like a quiz master, the other answering with the first thing that comes into your head (this game might work best in a small group or 1-1). The speed means you won’t have time to overthink your response, and the answers might be amusing and even illuminating! See how many you can do in a minute? Afterwards you could go back and explore what you said in the heat of the moment.
Here’s a game that could change your life. The Cube is a lot like the old card game ‘higher or lower’, but it’s much more exciting if you call it ‘The Cube’. Shuffle your deck and place nine cards face up in front of you, 3 across, 3 down. Next, you will choose one of the face-up cards you want to place the next card – drawn from the remaining pack – on top of. Before drawing that card, you need to predict whether this next card will be higher, lower, or equal in value to the one already face-up. If you guess correct, hurrah! You place the card you just drew on top, also face-up. If you guess wrong, oh no! That’s a point for The Cube. You have to take that card stack and place it face down.
You now have just 8 piles to choose from, and if you lost again you’d have 7, etc. Now it’s the next person’s turn to do the same thing: pick any face-up card and predict the relative value of the next card. Piles can get as big as you like but once a wrong guess is made, they’re out of play. Tip: if you guess the next card will be the same in value, it’s statistically unlikely and usually tactically foolish, but if you get it right you will feel amazing. The Cube wins once all nine stacks are face down, but you win if you can place all of the remaining cards before that happens. Warning: this game is very hard to win and yet also highly addictive.
Integrating that game with the conversational playing cards is pretty simple. Whenever it’s someone’s turn, they can just read out the question on the face-up card they pick and have a go at answering the question! They can just be quick answers so the game keeps moving, but they offer a fun way to get to know each other whilst playing, and might spark more conversation between people when the game is over.