4 Youth Ministry Games You Have To Try

I’m fresh off a trip to the National Youth Workers Conference where I hosted a few Idea Labs and co-taught a session on Discipling The Busy Teen, but I wanted to share a few games you could use at your next youth meeting.

On our first night hosting we played a few games that were simple and prop light. You can also Christmas these games up with a little help.

First , Head Shoulders, Knees, Cup

Next Tic Tac Toe Dash

The Question Game

And Finally,

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New Game: Dice Spice The Firecracker Edition

If you have youth during the week of 4th of July, like I do, it can be a challenge to find a game that goes along with the holiday. Fear not, I, your youth ministry genie, have granted your wish for a fun 4th of July game.

Dice Spice: The Firecracker Edition is a print and play, dice rolling game where contestants compete to complete a list of items that come up when they roll the die.

This game is faced paced and you could have upward of 5-7 people playing. This makes a great stage game because of all the activity going on.

I hope you’ll check it out and have a fantastic 4th.

 

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17 Games For Any Size Youth Ministry

 

Kicking off my 17 in 17 Series. I’ll be posting things in 17’s at the begging of each month. This month is 17 Games. Keep up with my posts by subscribing to the Fresh Impact Newsletter over there ————————————>>>

Walk the Line

Four Fingers Challenge

Paper Ninja – Tape newspaper to arms and legs (ninja style) and then opposing ninjas can only use one hand to rip all the paper off their opponent. Guys vs Guys and Girls vs Girls is best.

Paper fight!

A video posted by Paul Turner (@thedproject) on

Mouth Guard Games <—– Click to buy from Amazon

Sing it girl!

A video posted by Paul Turner (@thedproject) on

Block Heads

Pac Man

PAC Man!

A video posted by Paul Turner (@thedproject) on

Top Five <——- Click to buy from Amazon

Have a 5 second video timer and some questions and boom! You have fun!

Head, Shoulders, Knees, Toes, Cup

__________ To Your Corner

If you are playing teams, divide your group evenly into four corners. Call out some creative way they must get to the corner across from them such as, cool, skip, crab walk, etc. Last person to their corner is out. Keep going until only a few are left and then start eliminating whole corners.

Shoot the Name

Mouth/Face Painting

I don’t think this is how you paint, but I’m no art critic.

A video posted by Paul Turner (@thedproject) on


Marshmallow Wars

Haulin’ Beans

Deathball

Electricty

The Maze Runner

Dragons Gold

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Games For The Geeky Youth Group : Super City

 

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I don’t know of a better way to get to know teens, or anyone for that matter, than to play a game with them. People are most themselves when playing a game because they let their guard down and show how competitive or silly they can be. It’s for this reason that I was super (see what I did?) stoked to be contacted by Crucifiction Games to give their new game Super City a look.

Chris Weedin, CEO of Crucifiction Games, sent me a demo of Super City, ahead of their Kickstarter, to get my impressions of this game for youth groups.  Chris is himself a believer and lover of youth ministry and I hope to have him on the YMIM podcast soon so he can tell his story behind Crucifiction Games. I am happy to say that this game looks really cool and I think Youth Pastors will love playing this game with their kids.

This post is not a review of the game but a quick overview of the game, a break down of the cards, and game mechanics.

Note: All cards are demos. The actual cards in the starter pack will look different.

The game comes in the box you see below with a total of 62 cards. The cards are broken down into Sidekicks, Super Heroes, Super Villains, and Citizens. This game is a mash up of the game One Night Ultimate Werewolf: Day Break, The Resistance, and Mafia. In all of these games you are trying to guess who is who and eliminate the “right people”. In Super City you are trying to keep your own identity secret while trying to eliminate everyone else, depending on who you are.

The cards are dealt out by the Narrator who keeps the game moving and all identities are secret until someone is eliminated.

 

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Each character has certain victory conditions. If you are A Super Villain, you want to eliminate Sidekicks, Super Heroes, and Citizens. Everyone else tries to eliminate Super Villains.

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The game is played in rounds which equal a full day. Each round the players put their heads down/close their eyes and a different player, depending on their card, acts in the round. Example:

In round one, Sidekicks lift their heads and choose to protect one citizen, at least they hope it’s a citizen and not a super villain, from elimination. Round Two belongs to the Super Villains, they raise their heads, while everyone has their head down, they will choose a citizen to be eliminated.

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Round three belongs to the Super Heroes, they run down clues in their super tights and choose a person and the referee will tell them, silently, whether that person is a super villain or not.

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The first three rounds represent the Night and now comes the day. The Day is kicked off with the the Daily New Report. The narrator takes on a bit of role play and shares what happens during the Night.

“This just in, the villain known as Toe Jam broke into a Foot Locker and stole 100 pairs of socks. A night watchman tried to run him over but his vehicle was was Toe-tled in the process.” The is one of the narrator’s j0bs but the role of the news anchor is taken over by others as they are eliminated. I like this aspect of the game because no one is truly “out” of the game forced to watch others play.

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The next to last round is Vigilante Justice. Someone’s gotta pay for all those socks. The citizens that remain in the game must accuse someone of being the super villain. Someone accuses, someone seconds the accusation, arguments from the accuser and the accused ensue (about 30 seconds each) and all in good fun, the narrator/storyteller then counts to three and on three everyone votes thumbs up or down on the accused. If the majority wins, the accused is eliminated. If the votes are not there, the accused survives another day.

In all, two people are voted out every “day” (unless a sidekick has saved someone) which makes the game go fast.

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Finally, it’s Breaking News. Breaking news cards are fun cards that get people moving and doing but have the potential to be game changers. Breaking News cards are like commercials in the game that allow for a little fun. If you happen to be the Paper Boy you have the power to choose the next headline.

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Super City can be played with as many as 25 people; which is great because a small to mid-sized youth group could play this all together if they wanted to.

This is just the basic game. There are variant character cards with writing on them that can change game play dramatically but they are probably best used in larger groups unless you want to play super quick games.

I look forward to testing this with my group and will probably put up some live game play on on YouTube Channel.  This is only my first impressions but I think Super City will have our kids begging to put on their capes and play this  game over and over again.

Check out the Kickstarter and maybe you could be part of the game, literally.

Creating A Messy Obstacle Course On The Cheap

We recently had a Messy Night at youth going along with our Summer Blitz program. The best game of the night was our epic Slop-sticle Course. Here’s the break down

Station #1  Kids fish gummy worms out of kiddie pool filled with kool aid and oats.

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Station #2  Kid belly flops into the pool and then crawls under some ropes, tied between chairs, while baking soda is poured over them

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Station #3 Kid crawls through a garbage bag filled with Mayo, Ketchup, Mustard and any other goodie you can think of.

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Station #4 Two kid sit in chairs. One kid puts whip cream on the face of the other and then throws popcorn, cheetos, or some other light chip at their face. I put a bag of 20 pieces on the chair and 10 must stick before they move on.

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Station #5 Manwhich Mouth. Kids empty a bowl of Manwich Sloppy Joe mix, with their mouth, onto a bun. They have to empty the whole bowl before moving on.

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Station #5 Puzzle. Two kids put together a 24-48 piece puzzle. I went to high and got 100 pices puzzles and that station took too long.

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Ingredients

Kool Aid (4 small containers)

Oats (2 generic containers)

Baking Soda (8 small boxes, usually under 60 cents each)

4 jars of Mayo (generic are around $2.50 each)

Cheetos ($3 a bag, cheaper if you go generic)

Whip Cream ( about $2.50 each)

Manwhich ( 2 medium sized cans and four bowls)

Puzzles ($1 each at the Dollar Store)

In total I spent under $60.

You can watch the video of the how the course went below

You can also listen to me talk it through on this video

I thank all my Periscope friends for offering all their ideas that made this course epically messy. Feel free to share your ideas and thoughts below.

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Spice Up Your Youth Ministry Game Night With Dice Spice

Dice Spice Logo

 

Are you looking for an inexpensive way to spice up your youth ministry games? Dice Spice is here to help you. Dice Spice is the  new, fun, and printable game for your whole youth ministry.

I created this game because I wanted high involvement, high engagement, chaos, and laughter and so Dice Spicand was born. Here’s what you receive for only $2.99

In this game you receive

  • Instructions on how to play
  • Six Printable Holiday Dice Spice Cards
  • One Back To School Dice Spice Card
  • One Generic Any Old Time Dice Spice Card
  • A Graphic for your Power Point or Keynote

These are instant winners for those holiday season and beyond. Never be left unprepared. Add some spice to your youth ministry games and pick up Dice Spice in the Disciple Project Store today!

Free Youth Ministry Resources: Get It First Goodies

I hope you enjoy the video. I am including a fair amount of goodies in the next Get It First newsletter. Here is a short list

2 Midweek Youth Group Lessons:

Everyone Is An Artist: The Art Of Discipleship and 13 Ways To Love Like Jesus

1 Really fun youth group game: Dice Spice (contest with prizes to be explained in the newsletter)

Creative Commitment Cards for your altar time

18 Reasons To Be Generous, ( a small group discussion)

To get these free youth ministry resources just subscribe to the Get It First newsletter.

 

 

Youth Ministry Is Not A Game..Or Is It?

When I was in youth group (a very long time ago), I remember my youth pastor doing a contest called L.I.F.E.. He broke down the youth group into four teams and we would have weekly contests between team members, etc. and at the end the winning team received X. This is still a viable tool to use today to get more kids to show up or get involved but I wonder how certain aspects of social media have changed this game dynamic or changed this medium of game play.

I belong to several social media apps that use Funware to keep me coming back.  Funware is a game dynamic that offers points, badges, etc. to get us to keep coming back to the app or webpage. Frequent flyer miles are an example of the earliest Funware used. If you earn enough points you get a free flight. I remember an episode of the Brady Bunch where they collected greens stamps and they had to decide what they were going to buy.

I use apps like Get Glue and Foursquare for fun. Get Glue offers special digital stickers you can post on your Get Glue page and will they will even send you the real stickers once once you have accumulated enough. You get stickers for watching movies on opening weekend or watching  new t.v shows several times in row. Foursquare is an app that allows you to “check in” to places. If you check in enough times you can become mayor of that location.

There are many more kinds of apps like this available and more coming out every year. Old companies are trying to revamp their model by using Funware. I am working on a project for our youth ministry that involves a similar mechanic. This game play mechanic will only available to our Get It First Newsletter Crew, well, because they are awesome. If you would like to receive it, you can sign up in the top right corner of this page.

So, is youth ministry a game? Do you use contests, exclusivity, earned titles, loyalty programs or privileges to get kids to come back to your group? If you don’t, why not? Please share your best idea(s) so we can all benefit.

You can debate the topic of games in youth ministry HERE

Here is a link to a great video on the topic of Gamification by Gabe Zichermann author of Game Based Mechanics. I should warn you, he does use some salty language in the video.

I have been pondering this blog for quite some time. As the world of social media and apps becomes more game centric, I am wondering if this has impacted the way we engage students and build loyalty to our students. Is it possible that the under use of games, in the broadest sense, a missing link? Let me know if you’ve retooled your contests or games for youth ministry based on funware or social game mechanics.

I have a created a lens on Squidoo.com that includes comment areas, polls, and a debate so you can weigh in on any of the topic I have covered here and a few new ones.