10 Awesome Games For Teenagers’ Birthday Parties

None of which will result in your teens giving you the eyeroll treatment.

Teenagers are a tricky lot. They’re not your little babies any more, but they’re not full adults either, and need to be handled carefully.

On the other hand, disappoint them, and they’ll give you that eyeroll treatment that will make you hate yourself.

That’s why selecting games for a teenagers’ birthday party is so important. You want to nudge them to come out of their shells and interact with each other (instead of burying themselves in their phones).

You want them to enjoy themselves. And if they learn a valuable lesson or skill on the way, great!

We hear you.

And to help you, we’ve chosen 10 games for teenagers’ birthday parties. Games that will engage them, that they’ll relish playing.

Games that aren’t all that difficult to organize, can teach them a life lesson or two, and that will make it an awesome birthday celebration!

If you are wondering about an ultimate gift, explore our Entermission Gift Card for a special gaming delight!

10 awesome birthday party games for teenagers


Gif via giphy.

Gif via giphy.

A great game for somewhat large groups.

  • The players stand in a circle with their arms on their neighbours’ shoulders. They should all look down.
  • On the count of three (or any other signal you want), all the players must look up.
  • Any two people that are looking at each other have to scream and drop ‘dead’.
  • And then the remaining players play again.
  • This goes on till…you guessed it, till there are only two players left.

You can declare the final two players as the winners or the survivors, but the real fun of the game is listening to everyone scream and watching how each player ‘drops dead’.

Grab your gift!

Gif via giphy.

Gif via giphy.

A somewhat complicated game involving two decks of cards. This game will need your active participation.

What makes this a good birthday party game for teens is that it teaches them a valuable lesson/skill, as we shall see.

  • You’ll need TWO decks of cards and a number of (5-10) small gifts, all wrapped up (so nobody can guess what any gift actually is).
  • From the first deck, distribute the cards among the players, handing them out one by one till you run out of cards.
    • Some players may get more cards than the others; you can either ask them to give up a few cards at random, or just go with it.
  • Now take the second deck, pull out the cards one by one and call them out.
  • Players holding matching cards from the first deck go up and take a gift.
    • This goes on till all the gifts have been claimed.
  • Now the real fun begins. You still have some cards from the second deck. Keep calling them out.
  • Now, players that hold matching cards from the first deck can claim gifts from others who’re currently holding gifts.
  • This goes on till you’re out of cards.

This game is important in the sense that it requires players to hand over gifts they’ve actually won to others if their gift is claimed.

This teaches the teens about the importance of following the rules, even if they’re forced to give something up.

Would you rather?

Gif via giphy.

Gif via giphy.

This is a funny little game that works just fine with groups of as few as three players. Of course, the more, the merrier!

  • You can come up with a list of questions in the form would you rather do A, or do B? Or you can ask the players to come up with their own questions.
  • Get the players to stand around in a circle.
  • In turns, each player asks the person opposite them one of ten questions, and that person has to come up with an answer.
  • And it goes on till you run out of questions.
  • Some typical questions:
    • Would you rather journey to the North Pole or journey to the South Pole?
    • Would you rather be born in the 1990’s or in your actual birth year?
    • Would you rather fight a hundred duck-sized horses or one horse-sized duck?
  • You can make it a little more fun by providing part-questions, and then requiring each player to come up with their own alternatives, like…
    • Would you rather drive…(now the player in question has to come up with their alternatives to complete the question).

There are no losers in this game, only winners, as you will all no doubt get to hear some extraordinarily witty answers!

And that’s the beauty of this game – it teaches teenagers to think on their feet.

Nested Tic Tac Toe

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Gif via giphy.

This adds a whole new dimension to the traditional game with a 3 x 3 grid that we all know and love.

Kinda like how Rock Paper Scissors spawned Rock Paper Scissors Lizard Spock, or chess spawned 3 dimensional chess.

  • Take a LARGE (and when I say large, I mean it) sheet of paper and trace a large 3 x 3 tic tac toe grid in it. This is the outer grid.
  • In each cell/square of the outer grid, draw a smaller 3 x 3 tic tac toe grid. This is the inner grid.
  • To start the game, a player (say player A) chooses one inner grid, and places their symbol (A) in one of the cells of that inner grid.
  • The next player B now has to choose the inner grid that falls in the cell of the outer grid that corresponds to the inner grid cell that A placed their symbol in.
    • For example, if A chose the middle right cell of their inner grid, B will have to select the inner grid that falls in the middle right cell of the outer grid.
    • B’s inner grid is fixed but they can place their symbol in any cell of that inner grid that they want to.
  • And then player C has to follow B’s lead, similarly.
  • Any player that gets their symbol in three side by side or diagonal cells of an inner grid gets to mark that cell of the outer grid with their symbol.
  • And the player that gets their symbol in three side by side or diagonal cells of the outer grid wins the game.

Sounds very tricky, but it’s actually a game of skill, and can be a lot of fun when you actually get down to playing it.

Depending on who you ask, this game is also called ultimate tic tac toe and tic tac toe, squared.

Dots and boxes

Gif via giphy.

Gif via giphy.

After nested tic tac toe, this might seem rather a tame game, but for those who find nested TTT too complicated, this is a great (somewhat similar) game.

  • On a somewhat large piece of paper, create a square grid with dots (I suggest making it at least 7 x 7 to give time for excitement to build up).
  • Give each player a pen of a different colour (of ink).
  • In turns, each player draws a line joining two adjacent dots in the grid.
    • Please note diagonals are not allowed.
  • Whoever completes a square on their turn writes their name/symbol inside that square.
    • You can also decide if they should get an extra turn or not.
  • The game continues till all the squares are drawn.
  • At the end, the player with the maximum number of symbols in the grid wins the game.

This is a good game of strategy. Every player has to figure out how to deny others the chance to finish a square.

What’s in the balloon?

Gif via giphy.

Gif via giphy.

A simple but fun game that takes players outside, and can get them in all sorts of ‘sticky’ situations.

Can even work with 2 players, but best enjoyed by larger groups.

Attention: This game needs a lot of prep, and you and the other parents would have to handle most of that, unfortunately 🙂

  • Take a number of balloons, equal to the number of players (or have a few more, just to add to the fun).
  • Full up a third of the balloons with a sticky and messy substance (slime or pasta comes to mind).
  • Full up a third with candies and cookies..
  • And fill up the remaining ones with anything you want from glitter to notes for prizes.
  • Hang a rope in the garden and attach all the balloons to the rope.
  • Players stand in a line, at a distance from the balloons, and choose a balloon for themselves.
  • Each player is given a small sharp object like a toothpick to prick open their balloon.
  • On the signal, everyone runs towards their balloons and pricks them, to joyful and hilarious results.

Balloon pop

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Gif via giphy.

An active game that will get everyone involved.

  • Get 20-40 balloons of two different colours (for two different teams). Blow them up, and hang them at different heights (from a full height of a teen to ground level).
  • Get two caps. On each cap, stick a toothpick (or something else sharp, to pop the balloons) pointing outwards.
  • Divide the players into two teams and assign each team a colour.
  • In turns, a player from each team puts on the cap and tries to pop as many balloons of their colour as they can.
    • A player gets 15 seconds, after which they have to hand over the cap to another player.
  • Adults can keep track of the time (15 seconds), or you can have a player from each team keeping time for the other team.
  • Each team has an equal number of balloons that they desperately need to pop. Who do you think wins?

A great game for teaching physical dexterity.

Pass the peanut

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Gif via giphy.

A cross between spoon and marble games and pass the parcel.

  • By all means, you can use a marble if you want, but a peanut works better as it’s smaller and lighter.
  • You’ll need a number of spoons, one for each person in the group.
  • Each player takes a spoon and holds it in their mouth with the spoon pointing outwards.
  • Place the peanut on any one player’s spoon, and the game begins.
  • Each player has to pass the peanut to the next person’s spoon.
  • If a player drops the peanut, he or she is out, and the game continues with the remaining players.

Now, you can keep playing till there are only one or two players left, but keep an eye on the group. If you feel the excitement fizzing out, switch to a new game!

A good game to learn how to be physically skilful.

Can you blow the gum?

Gif via giphy.

Gif via giphy.

Great for smaller groups, and best enjoyed by teenagers who don’t mind getting into a mess.

  • Each player gets a plate or a bowl with a single piece of bubble gum, hidden in a big blob of whipped cream.
  • At the word ‘Go’, players dig into their bowls with their mouths, hands behind their backs.
  • The first player to find their gum, and blow a bubble wins.


Gif via giphy.

Gif via giphy.

Also known as wink murderer, and wink murderer. In a nutshell, players have to find out who the killer in their midst is before they’re ‘killed’.

  • The killer can be selected by drawing chits (one chit will be labeled ‘killer’ while the rest won’t be). I think you’ve grasped that it has to be a secret draw so nobody knows who the killer is.
  • The killer can kill others by winking at them. Players stand around, looking at each other, trying to find out who the killer is.
  • When the killer winks at someone, that person counts to five and ‘dies’.
  • If someone thinks they know who the assassin is, they can say “I accuse”.
    • It’s important they not mention a name at this stage.
  • Then the accuser asks others if they think they know who the killer is. If anyone does, they can say “I also accuse” without mentioning a name.
    • To avoid confusion, only two players can accuse on a turn.
  • Then, at the count of three, both the accusers say who they believe to be the killer.
    • If they concur, AND have selected the killer correctly, the game ends.

Depending on how you view it, this is a game of observation or a game of chance. Either way, it should prove especially entertaining to fans of Scream, Knives Out, Pretty Little Liars and so on.

Found the games you want to include in your teenagers’ birthday party?

Which ones are they? Are they on our list?

If you think you’ve got better teen birthday games, please do tell us in a comment below. We’d love to hear from you, and update our own list of games that teenagers will actually like.

Obviously, hosting the birthday party can be a lot of fun, but it’ll also require a lot of effort and planning.

If you’d rather let a venue handle the party, you can check out Sydney’s best party venue for teenagers for an event filled with virtual reality games, cake cutting, and snacks!

Finally, if you found this post useful, bookmark Sydney’s best parties and events blog to easily access all future content.

Featured image by Isaac Chou on Unsplash.

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