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Cranium: A Board Game That’s Great At Parties!

Have you played the Cranium Game yet?

Each year at Christmas time, my side of the family buys a new board game. And a couple years ago, Cranium was it.

Since we had so much fun playing it there, Jim and I went out and bought our own game soon after that.

These days, it goes to almost every party we go to.

Okay, so that’s usually only the boring adult New Year’s Eve parties and an occasional football-themed party or something, but still…

You can download Cranium Game Instructions PDF – or just check out our quick overview below.

Why We Like The Cranium Game

Because it’s 4 games in one! And you have probably played each one before – now they are a set! You probably aren’t familiar with games that have names like Creative Cat, Data Head, Star Performer and Word Worm, but trust me – you know these games. Think of it as their cousins – Pictionary, Charades, Name That Tune and Trivial Pursuit.

You’ve got:

Creative Cat

Creative Cat is one of my favorites. The team must draw, sculpt, or act out a word or phrase without using any spoken words. Think of it like Pictionary and Charades. (except you sometimes have to draw with your eyes closed!)

Inside Creative Cat is a sub category called Sculptorades. It’s where you use a hunk of Play Doh to “sculpt” the word that’s on the card for your teammates to guess.

Star Performer

The team must hum a song, act out a scene, or impersonate a celebrity.

I’m undecided about the Star Performer portion of the game. It’s kind of like Name that Tune.

While the songs you’re supposed to “hum” to the other players on your team are typically popular 80’s songs and other long-standing classics… it’s next to impossible to get the “key” right. (For all of us non-singers, that is.)

Plus, sometimes it’s easier to hum the background melody than the chorus itself, and since there’s no words it’s harder for your teammates to pick up on the tune.

Our friends Neil & Abby never seem to have a problem with the Name That Tune portion of Cranium.

They’re “the designated hummers” every time we play the game together!

Data Head

The team must answer a trivia question. My least favorite. It’s like Trivial Pursuit — the questions are pretty hard, but not as hard as the “original” Trivial Pursuit game questions!

For some reason, the guys always seem to do pretty well with these questions.

Word Worm:

The team must spell a word forwards or backwards or unscramble a word. For some of us this might seem easy. For others (Jim), it can be a challenge. Choose your partners wisely!

It’s easier than it sounds, but it does take a small bit of skill to be able to mold the clay into meaningful shapes well enough that others will be able to guess what you can so clearly see in your own mind!

Okay, Here’s the Cranium Game In Action…

This past New Year’s Eve, we went to Neil and Abby’s and took Cranium with us.

Creative Cat- The word was “blowfish”… act it out!

Creative Cat- The word was “backbend”… sculpt it!

Creative Cat- The word was “paintball”… act it out!

[For the record, they never even got close to guessing that this was ‘painting’… and this was ‘a ball’… dribbling the ball… shooting the ball with this amazing paintball gun… Nothin’!]

Star Performer- The song was “I Can’t Get No Satisfaction“… hum it out!

Are you still reading – trying to figure this game out? Maybe you’re more the audio – visual type.

This “How to play Cranium Game” video could help:

Happy New Year, Everybody!

Here’s to another year of playing fun board games like Cranium Game…

Next up, a card game of Euchre in action. Watch out Neil & Abby… it’s ON now!