How to Play 'Scattergories': Challengingly Creative Thinking Game

Scattergories thinking game rule
'Scattergories' is an interesting icebreaker word game, wherein players have to answer the categories mentioned in the lists, starting from a specific letter, and within a predetermined time limit.
Books on Scattergories
'Scattergories Categories List 19-24' by Stephanie Hazeem
'Cactus Games Scattergories-Bible Edition' by Talicor
Word games like crossword puzzles, scrabble, etc., have been enjoyed over decades by one and all. The good part about word games is that, along with recreation, you also get to test your vocabulary and expand your knowledge base of words. One such unique game is 'Scattergories'.
As the name suggests, there are various scattered 'categories', and players simply have to give answers that belong to that category. However, the answer should start from a selected 'key letter' every time, and should be answered within a predetermined time frame. This has been a very popular game, that can be enjoyed by kids and adults alike. Though it was originally designed by Hasbro, it can also be played with a few modifications in the rules too. You can accordingly select the theme of the categories that will suit the members of the group. You can also come up with your own creative lists to play Scattergories.
Following are the various ways to play 'Scattergories'.
Original Game by 'Hasbro'
This game was originally developed by Hasbro and produced by Milton Bradley Company in 1988, and since then, there have been many variations in the game.
Following are the basic guidelines to the original game.
Object of the Game: Earn highest scores giving unique answers to the categories mentioned in the list, starting from a specific key word, in the given time limit.
Number of Players: 2 to 6 players
Instructions to Play the Game
Arrange the setup of the board game.
Distribute the answer pads and lists to the players. All the players should have the same list. A list contains 12 categories to answer.
Ask one of the players to roll the 20-faced die, to choose the 'key letter'.
Start the timer. The players have to start answering the categories mentioned in the list, starting from the 'key letter', until the timer stops.
For every category, the players have to read their answers aloud. If their answer is unique, they'll have to circle them. For every circled answer, the player is awarded 1 point. Check all the categories in the list.
The game continues for three rounds. After completion, each of the players takes a sum of their scores. The player with the maximum points wins the game.
Rules for Answering the Categories
You cannot use the same word more than once for any category in a single round. Example, 'Paris' is the 'Name of a Celebrity', as well as 'Name of a City'. However, you cannot give the same answer if the category questions belong to the same list in a round.

Articles such as 'A', 'An', or 'The' cannot be used as a key letter. Example: If the key letter is 'A', and the category is 'Name of a Movie', you cannot answer as 'A Walk to Remember'. This answer will be valid for the key letter 'W'.

If the answer is a proper noun, the key letter can be the starting letter of either the first name or the last name.

You can challenge the answers of the opponents as invalid, however, the decision will be taken by all the players by voting.

Today, there are slight variations with improvisations in the board game, such as increase in the number of faces of the die, number of category cards, etc.

What You'll Need to Play Scattergories at Home
Make your own creative list to play the game. It can be based on a theme or on random subjects. Each list typically contains 12 categories.

If an alphabet die is not available, select a letter from a bag of words, or make chits of words and select from it. Distribute notepads and pens to write down the answers. If you desire, you can put a timer for the game.

Once the time starts, select a key letter, and start answering the categories. Once they're answered, compare your answers with others. The uncommon answers will get scores.

Play three rounds of the game, and take the total of the scores. The player with the maximum score wins.
What You'll Need to Play Scattergories at Home
Make your own creative list to play the game. It can be based on a theme or on random subjects. Each list typically contains 12 categories.

If an alphabet die is not available, select a letter from a bag of words, or make chits of words and select from it. Distribute notepads and pens to write down the answers. If you desire, you can put a timer for the game.

Once the time starts, select a key letter, and start answering the categories. Once they're answered, compare your answers with others. The uncommon answers will get scores.

Play three rounds of the game, and take the total of the scores. The player with the maximum score wins.
Scattergories: The Card Game
This is a card game developed by 'Winning Moves'. The company has transformed the traditional Scattergories into a unique card game. Instructions to play the card game are slightly different than the original game.
How to Play Scattergories Card Game
Place both the decks of cards―'Category' and 'Key Letter' cards―on your playing desk. Select from each of the decks, and place it upside-down, so that the cards are not visible.

Once everyone is ready, flip them to reveal the category and the letter.

This is a fast-paced game, and the person who immediately responds and slaps the 'I Know' card gets to answer. Other players decide whether the answer is valid. If it is valid, the player gets to keep either of the 'Category' or the 'Letter' card, which also serves as a count of his score.

If he does not give the correct answer, another player gets to answer the question. For every incorrect answer, the player has to toss out one of his previously won cards.

The game continues until one of the stack of cards get exhausted. The player with the maximum cards wins the game.

Every time you choose one card from both the stack of cards, you get a different combination of letters and categories. This game requires one to compete against other players by thinking fast and giving the correct answer first.
In short, this game is a unique word game that increases our creative thinking and tests our general knowledge. Designing the categories for the game can be fun too. You can also modify the rules to suit your requirements. Like most games today, Scattergories can be played online on a multi-player basis.
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