A clever repackaging of the parlor game Dictionary, Balderdash contains several cards with real words nobody has heard of. After one of those words has been read aloud, players try to come up with definitions that at least sound plausible, because points are later awarded for every opposing player who guessed that your definition was the correct one.

Versions of the game as a parlor game go back at least as far as 1970, although Balderdash itself was not published until 1984.

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Balderdash is a hilarious party game that challenges players’ creativity and bluffing skills. It typically consists of a game board, question cards, answer sheets, and playing pieces.

Here’s how it’s played:

Setup: Players gather around the game board, and each player receives an answer sheet and a playing piece.

Gameplay: Players take turns being the “Dasher.” The Dasher draws a card containing a word that is obscure, difficult to spell, or little-known. They then read out the word and its definition to the other players. However, the Dasher provides a fake definition for the word, mixing it in with the real one.

Bluffing: Each player, except the Dasher, writes down their own made-up definition for the word. The goal is to craft a definition that seems plausible enough to trick other players into selecting it.

Guessing: Once all players have submitted their definitions, the Dasher reads aloud all the definitions, including the correct one. Players then vote on which definition they believe is the real one.

Scoring: Players earn points based on whether they guessed the correct definition and whether other players voted for their fake definition. The Dasher also earns points if players select their fake definition.

Rotation: After scoring, the next player becomes the Dasher, and the game continues with a new word.

Balderdash is known for its witty wordplay, outrageous bluffs, and moments of laughter as players try to outwit each other. It’s a fantastic game for parties and gatherings, offering endless entertainment and opportunities for creativity.