Unforgettable 18th Birthday Party Games to Mark Your Milestone

While your 18th birthday scratch-off might be a bust, these party games won't be. You might be legal, but these games are so fun they probably shouldn't be.

Updated February 15, 2024
happy friends playing charades game

You only need a few things to have the best 18th birthday party ever — good music, great food, plenty of seltzer, and fantastic games! You only turn 18 once so you've got to make it memorable. When you've rallied a bunch of your favorite people together to celebrate, there's a ton of chaotic energy just waiting to be harnessed. Channel that wild young adult abandon into these totally Tik-Tok-worthy party games perfect for 18-year-olds. 

13 Party Games for 18-Year-Olds to Tear Up the Night 

Anytime you bring a bunch of friends together, you're bound to have a good time. But at 18, you're well past playing telephone and crank calling. Step up your party with these memory-making games. 

The Most Fun Facts Game

Want your friends to really get to know each other? Create a list of questions on little sheets of paper and place them in a jar. Put everyone's name on separate pieces of paper in another jar. Draw a slip from both and ask everyone except the person whose name was chosen to answer. Once answered, toss the pieces back into the bowls and keep going. Tally up everyone's correct answers, and the person with the most correct answers wins. 

When crafting your questions, think of ones like these. 

  • What's their favorite song or band?
  • Who is their bestie?
  • Where is their favorite hang-out spot?
  • What's their middle name?
  • What's their best subject in school?
  • If they could trade places with anyone at the party, who would it be and why?

First Impressions 

If you want an ice-breaker to bring all your friend groups together, then play this gem of a game...if you dare.

  1. As each guest arrives at the party, tape a slip of paper with their name on it to the back of their shirt. 
  2. Once everyone begins to mingle, have folks write their first impression of each other on those slips of paper. 
  3. For example, if a person has amazing hair, you could write that. Or if they have a great voice, jot that down.
  4. Make sure no one peeks at their first impressions before the host calls time. 
  5. Once everyone's talked, collect the papers and have each person read theirs out loud. After each one, take a vote to see if people thought it was accurate.

Outdoor Picture Scavenger Hunt

At 18, a little bad weather won't stop you from having a good time. So, whether it's rain or shine, it's time for a scavenger hunt. 

Start off by setting a few boundaries like staying in a certain area or within a few blocks. Hand out a pre-made list of what people need to find. As they find them, they can snap a photo of it on their phone for proof. Set a timer for 30 minutes and once that time is up, everyone has to return to the home base. The team that brings the most photos in at the end of the hunt are the winners.

Some items that might work include: 

  • The number 18 (in honor of the birthday!)
  • Birthday candles 
  • Two different trash cans
  • A weird lawn ornament
  • Something totally out of season (holiday lights in July)
  • A lost water bottle alone on the street
  • A wrapped car 
  • Something that starts with the same letter as the birthday baby's first name

Sports Tournament

Everyone loves a bit of competition, right? If your party has lots of people attending, you could play sports — tournament style. Divide into groups and play against each other until there's a winner.

Choose a couple of different games to keep it interesting. You can set up a poster board with tournament brackets and write in each team's name. Basketball, volleyball, darts, and table tennis are all awesome options but don't discount simpler staples like a game of tag. 

Board Games

Friends having fun while playing board game

No one's too grown up for some friendly board game competition. We're not talking about the usual fare you play at family game night — we're talking about board games that pack a punch. If there are too many people for one game, set it up tournament-style so everyone has a chance to play. We love Taboo, Exploding Kittens, Cards Against Humanity: Family Edition, and Mysterium.

Need to Know

Get your whole body into it with giant versions of beloved board games like Jenga Giant (starts at three feet tall!) and Giant Connect 4

Video Games

While it might be a good idea to have a party where everyone isn't looking at their screens, let's face it, a little hand-eye-coordination practice never hurt anybody. Embrace the digital age with iconic multiplayer games like Super Smash BrosMario KartGuitar Hero, or Just Dance Now.

Pool Games

If you're a blessed summer baby that's hosting a pool party, you're probably ready to play the watertime classic Marco Polo — but there are other aquatic games! Some other pool party games include water volleyball, swimming races, water basketball, and something like seeing who can do a handstand underwater the longest. Capture the creative spirit while cooling off with these poolside activities. 

Related: 100+ Inspirational 18th Birthday Quotes for Family and Friends

Water Balloon Battle

Filling colorful water balloons with water

In the spirit of pool games, add a water balloon battle to your birthday bash itinerary. Sure you can peg each other with exploding balloons or you can create teams and toss the balloons to each other without trying to pop them. The team with the last person holding a water balloon wins.

Win, Lose, or Draw

For this game, you need to set up an easel or two (depending on the number of people) and have large sheets of paper and markers.

How it works:

  1. Before the party write down an assortment of words, phrases, and even movie titles on small slips of paper.
  2. Place the slips of paper into a basket.
  3. The group can play as a whole or be divided into two groups.
  4. One person from the team will be the drawer and the others will try to guess what they're drawing.
  5. The person drawing can't speak and can only draw using images. No words or letters!
  6. Team members will call out answers until someone guesses correctly.
  7. You can set a time limit for each round and award points to the team that guesses the correct answer within the time frame. If the drawing person's team doesn't answer correctly within the time frame, the other team can "steal" with a single correct guess.
  8. At the end of a designated number of rounds, the team with the most points wins.

Name That Tune

If your Spotify list is full of music you're not embarrassed to share, then this game is for you. Designate a DJ and either work with a pre-made playlist or choose on the fly. Shuffling just got a whole lot more sinister. 

  1. Have one person choose a song and play it for five seconds.
  2. Have your guests try to name the tune, as well as the artist.
  3. If no guesses, play five more seconds, and so on until someone nails the song.
  4. The winner gets to pick the next song.
  5. Keep a tally of everyone's wins to see who's the most well-versed in music.

Flip Cup (With Soda)

You'll need a bunch of plastic cups and a whole lot of soda (prepare for plenty of burping, too) for Flip Cup. Divide everyone into two teams and have everyone sit on opposite sides of a long table, with a cup in front of each person. 

  1. Fill every cup with the same amount of soda. 
  2. Starting from one end of the table, the two people facing each other drink the full contents. 
  3. Then, they set their cup face-down on the edge of the table. 
  4. Using only their tongue, they have to flip the cup back to sitting right side up. 
  5. Once the teammate's cup is flipped, the next person can start drinking. 
  6. Go down the line until one team reigns victorious. 

Two Truths & a Lie

There's nothing like having an excuse to air each other's dirty laundry. In this game, one person starts by sharing two truths and a lie about themselves. Everyone else gets to guess which is true and which is a lie. It's not so much a game with winners and losers, but more of a chance to dig deep into your besties personal lives. 

Pop Culture Charades

happy friends playing charades game at home in evening

All the (useless) trivia you've got stashed in your brain will come in handy for this one. In this version of charades, one person starts and acts out something from pop culture without using words. Using only hand gestures and actions, they'll try to get their friends to guess what it is. You can have someone not playing the game create cards to draw from so they know what pop culture reference to act out — or ask each guest to come up with one when it's their turn.

Helpful Hack

If you're stumped for prompts for this one, there are a ton of apps with ideas you can rely on. Relieve some of the pressure by getting some good old third-party help. 

6 TikTok-Inspired Party Games to Take Things Up a Notch 

TikTok isn't just for mindlessly scrolling through cat videos and learning how to microwave mug cakes — there's a ton of party game inspiration just waiting to be found. Here are a few standouts that'll take your 18th birthday party up a notch. 

Mystery Taste Game

If you're into something a little sinister and everyone's taste buds are ready, this game has players gulping down something mysterious and then guessing what it is. Is it a true birthday if you don't leave your friends a little scarred? 


Play this game with your friends!

original sound - adi

Cup Hands 

For a dose of ridiculousness, try this Cup Hands game where you try to add as many small candies like Starburst into a bowl while your hands are shoved into large plastic cups. Amp up the intensity with a classic Jeopardy countdown. 


Fun Party Game Idea

original sound - Evan Era

Can You Blow It? 

Capture the birthday spirit with this flametastic birthday game. Light up a long line of tea candles, and have each person try to blow all of them out in one breath. If high school pep rallies are anything to go off of, you and your friends should have iron lungs ready to take this one on. 

@partydelightsuk Party game idea! Tag the friends you’ll be playing this with! #partygame #partygames #partygameideas #partygames2023 #partyideas #partygamechallenge FEEL THE GROOVE - Queens Road, Fabian Graetz

Relay Dribbling Game

It's billed as a team-building game but how wonderfully absurd would it be to play with friends? Get a large ball, line up, and pass it backwards. 

@mamiekwok Team-building games #groupfun #partygame #gamenight #funactivity #entertainment #holiday #christmasgames #familytimefun #christmas #playtogether #funny #humor #comdey #laugh #tiktoklaughs #fyp #foryourpage original sound - mamiekwok

Flip Cup Tic Tac Toe

When you take the skill of flip cup and add it to the brainpower that goes into Tic Tac Toe, you've got yourself a unique party game! Using masking tape, create a Tic-Tac-Toe grid. It's a two-player game, so people can take turns playing the winner of each. Both players get five cups. Once a player flips a cup properly, they can place it in the grid. The successful flipped cup dictates when you can make a move on the grid. The person who gets three in a row first, wins. 

@partydelightsuk Party game idea! Tell us who you’ll be playing this with! #partygames #partygame #partyideas #partygameideas #partyideasforadults #partyinspiration #partyinspo The Ketchup Song (Aserejé) - Spanish Version - Las Ketchup

It Should be Illegal to Have This Much Fun 

Everyone wants their 18th birthday party to be memorable, and one way to make it the talk of the town is with some exciting party games. Mix and match the party games that speak to you, and wrangle your friends together for some much-needed fun. 

Unforgettable 18th Birthday Party Games to Mark Your Milestone