cards against humanity

Rachel Naidich Critical Play: Competitive Analysis

Cards Against Humanity

Cards Against Humanity is a social game with a theme of adult humor. At the beginning of each round, players draw enough cards so that they have 7 white cards in their hand. The white cards have various words or phrases on them. One player is selected to be the Card Tzar, and a new player is selected to be the Card Tzar each round. The Card Tzar draws a black card, which has a prompt with blanks in it, and reads it out loud. The rest of the players submit white cards to fill in the blanks. Then, the Card Tzar reads the player responses out loud and selects the funniest one. The player with the response that gets chosen wins one point.

This game differentiates itself from many other social games that have clear answers, such as social deduction games, because the selection of players who win points is completely subjective. This makes the game fun and relaxed because it makes the game about appealing to your audience rather than having to think really hard about strategy.

The game also differentiates itself from games like Quiplash because rather than having a group of people vote on the best response, there is just one person each round who determines the best response. This mechanism is interesting because it removes any potential issues of there being a tie, which could happen if you had players vote instead.

Also unlike Quiplash, Cards Against Humanity does not allow players to write their own responses and instead restricts them to using pre-written responses on the white cards. This is super important in making Cards Against Humanity a funny game because it forces players to respond with outrageous words and phrases that they otherwise probably wouldn’t use. However, by doing this, the game potentially restricts players from being their most creative selves. While players can express some creativity through choosing which cards to put together in their responses, they are not able to show off their own humor and wit through writing their own original responses.

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