One of the best things about video games is the way that they bring people together. Whether that’s laughing at the same ridiculous goal scored in FIFA or guffawing at a brilliant headshot in Call of Duty, games have the ability to turn a boring get-together into a jolly good time. Sure, Twitch has revolutionized the way in which people share games but some titles are much better for hangouts in person.
The following nine games are perfect for every party occasion, from birthday celebrations to casual gatherings. Feel free to leave any other party favorites in the comments!
1. You Don’t Know Jack
You Don’t Know Jack has completely changed the playing field for trivia titles; players aren’t just guessing stuffy old facts, they’re deciphering puns and trying to one-up their opponents in hilarious ways. You Don’t Know Jack is also fond of ridiculous tricks such as the ‘wrong answer’ where players pick a silly answer corresponding to a just as silly clue, or the ability to ‘Screw’ opponents by making them answer tricky questions in five seconds or less.
The game may not be ideal for brainiacs but it will give partygoers some laugh-out-loud experiences.
Available on: PC, iOS, Android, PS3, PS4.
2. Rock Band 3
Once upon a time, music rhythm games with plastic peripherals were all the rage, but with so many released and with instruments being so expensive, they fell out of favor. But even so, Harmonix, the developer of Rock Band 3, never stopped updating the game with new DLC and track packs, keeping the game alive long after its release.
This is just one of the reasons why Rock Band 3 is featured on this list; the other is that it’s just an incredibly good time. Everyone can have fun with this one, no matter which of Rock Band 3‘s instruments (the drums, lead guitar, bass guitar, microphone, or even the keyboard) they are playing.
Available on: Xbox 360, PS3, Wii, DS
3. Wii Sports
Sports allow people to compete against one another and have fun. So naturally, Wii Sports, a game in which players could do all that from the comfort of their own homes (letting them get 50% less sweaty while doing so), was a massive hit.
As it came packaged with the Wii console, Wii Sports is the second best selling game of all time. Although it doesn’t have a massive variety of sports on offer (bowling, baseball, tennis, boxing, and golf), there are more than enough there to get the party started. Or create an intense family rivalry, at least!
Available on: Wii
4. Mario Kart 8
For years, the Mario Kart games have offered a fantastic party experience and Mario Kart 8 is no different. As the game allows players to race as a variety of iconic Nintendo game characters on equally as iconic tracks (such as Rainbow Road), even party attendees who don’t game can enjoy this one.
Plus, with a variety of gameplay options (e.g motorbikes and underwater levels) and plenty of items to throw at one another (e.g banana skins), Mario Kart 8 will still feel fresh to fans of the franchise.
Available on: Wii U
5. Rocket League
Like Mario Kart 8, Rocket League has an easy to understand premise; it’s football with super speedy cars. Players whizz around a football pitch trying to hit a giant ball into the net and with speed boosts and the ability to scale the walls and jump/flip high into the air, it’s led to some extravagant goals and saves.
Not only is Rocket League pretty easy to jump into, but the exciting nature of scoring goals will mean that everyone will have something to talk about when the party’s over.
Available on: PC, PS4
In Norse mythology, the Nidhogg is an evil monster that ‘gnaws at the root of the world’, but in Nidhogg the game, being eaten by the creature means that a player has won. Nidhogg gives two players swords and tasks them with getting to the other side of the screen. By stabbing, punching, and kicking their opponent, players can win themselves time and use that small window to run a bit further.
The game is ideal for both big parties and small gatherings as it has a tournament mode, but each round is played as a duel.
Available on: PC, Mac, PS3, PS4, PS Vita
7. Mario Party 2
Board games like Trivial Pursuit are no fun if half of the players don’t know the capital of Australia and Monopoly will inevitably lead to an argument about how the Free Parking space works. The Mario Party games, however, are perfect party fare as they keep things varied, fun, and the disputes are kept to a minimum.
Just like Mario Kart 8, the six playable characters in Mario Party 2 are instantly recognizable. These players can take part in a variety of short and silly mini-games. As the mini-games are so varied, it should mean that partygoers won’t get bored. Plus, the host will have time to mingle and/or get snacks in between turns.
Available on: Nintendo 64, Wii (via Virtual Console)
8. Super Smash Bros. for 3DS and Wii U
Super Smash Bros. is a beat ’em up through and through. There are a ton of characters from numerous Nintendo series here, from Sonic the Hedgehog, Zelda, Charizard and even a Wii Fit Trainer. The goal – to beat up opponents and knock them out of the arena – is as simple as they come.
Super Smash Bros. makes this list because it’s brilliant as a spectator game as well as one for active players. There will be ‘oohs’ and ‘aahs’ as each player gets close to knocking another out; partygoers will be on the edge of their seats.
Available on: 3DS, Wii U
9. TowerFall Ascension
TowerFall Ascension has been described by some as a cross between Nidhogg and Super Smash Bros. so it’s quite fitting that this game closes out the list.
The game features multiplayer for up to four people, where the aim of the game is to kill or be killed. Arrows are limited and must be collected or caught, and if that doesn’t work it’s possible to jump on opponent’s head a la Mario.
Additionally, TowerFall Ascension features powerups such as those that offer shields, wings, or even arrows that do more damage. Between those powerups and the quickfire nature of the game, absolutely no one will be leaving the party bored.
Available on: PC, Mac, PS4, PS Vita
Which games do you like to play at parties? Leave a comment and let us know.