Cards Against Humanity plays its cards right when you laugh at the things you should not.
Cards Against Humanity is a card game in which players match a white card containing a noun or an action, such as “Being a motherfucking sorcerer”, with a black card containing a question or one or more sentences with a blank slot, for example “Ain’t no sunshine when she’s ____.”. The cards often contain references to pop culture, nerd culture, celebrities and current events.
Intended for an adult audience, Cards Against Humanity is littered with dark humor – hence the game’s slogan “A party game for horrible people”. The game embraces a cheeky attitude all around, be it the rules determining the first “Card Czar” of the round as the player who “most recently pooped” or the rules in case the Card Czar has lobster claws for hands. The game’s success has spawned multiple expansion packs with content ranging from new cards to larger boxes to hold all the cards, and blank cards allowing the players to write their own custom cards. The whole game is also printable as a free PDF online.
Cards Against Humanity is fundamentally a party game, and a hilarious one at that. The game benefits from the customizable cards greatly, and is best enjoyed with a large group of friends – the recommended number of players ranging from 4 to 20+. The amount and creativity of the players is both the strength and flaw of the game, since it affects the experience greatly.
The game begins by each player drawing ten white cards, after which the first Card Czar is chosen as detailed above. The Card Czar then plays a black card. The players will answer its question or fill in the blanks with a white card, passing it onto the Card Czar. The Card Czar then reads all the card combinations aloud, choosing the funniest one and awarding the winner an Awesome Point. Afterwards, a new Card Czar is chosen, players restock their hands back to ten cards per player, and the game continues with another round. Some black cards have special rules such as “Play 2”, the sentences in them containing two blanks in such cases. There are also various optional “house rules” containing everything from small tweaks to larger alterations to the gameplay. There are no specific “winning conditions”, the objective is to simply have fun. This encourages spontaneous play with no need to “finish” the game, being able to stop anytime.
Having played the game multiple times, I feel its novelty has worn off slightly by now. The expansions do spice up the game with new cards, but the initial first-time experience provided the most hilarity – many players seem to agree on this. The game is still enjoyable afterwards, especially with different players having different joke preferences.
Simple to learn and infinitely customizable, Cards Against Humanity is sure to provide hours upon hours of laughter for players seeking to throw political correctness out of the window.
Developers: Josh Dillon, Daniel Dranove, Eli Halpern, Ben Hantoot, David Munk, David Pinsof, Max Temkin, Eliot Weinstein
Publisher: Cards Against Humanity LLC
Release Date: May 2011
Age Rating: 17+
All images © Cards Against Humanity LLC