Best Way to…

The presenter has a list of things made beforehand and is unknown to the players. The presenter then asks all players of both teams to show ‘the best way to…’ e.g. catch a fish, break up with your partner or land a plane. Players can step forward one at the time to present their best way (in a few seconds).

This game is also known as Worst Way to… and is similar to World’s Worst.

Company Shift

The Company Shift is a combination of the Soap and the Shift. You play the shift as you normally would, with two players in the front and two in the back calling +1, -1, +3 etc. However, all scenes are connected as they all take place at the same company and players are the same character throughout their different scenes.

Bard

One player (the bard) tells a story by singing, possibly in short rhymes, while the other players act out the story. At times the players take over the story from the bard. This creates an interplay between the bard and the other players. Elements that are often used in such stories are chapters and flashbacks.

This is a variant of the game Typewriter, also known as Storyteller.

Bench

Three players sit next to each other on a bench and tell different stories while staring forward. A player can interrupt another player’s story by associating with a word the previous player said and use it to start or continue their own story. Player 1: ”And then my wife left me and took all my possessions!” Player 2: ”I was in possession of the sacred book!” Player 3: ”So I booked a flight to Miami and then craziest things happened”. And so on.

Players can take over each other’s story whenever they want, they don’t even have to let the other player finish their phrase. However, make sure each player gets some time at the start to establish their storyline. After that, having more and more takeovers is great fun after which the players somehow how to find a climax for their stories. An extra challenge would be to have a climax where all three stories entwine.

Ballet

A free improvisation performed dancing.

Ballad

A song is sung in a specific musical style, requested from the audience. The song usually describes heroic events.

Bucket of Death

Theatresports group Kattekwaad from Utrecht stole the show with this game at the NSK in 2003. It is a guaranteed success during demos or to get the audience in a corny mood!

This game is similar to the ”As Many Ons and Offs” but with a dangerous twist.

One puts down a bucket of water;
One puts their head inside it;
Meanwhile, the other three players start a free improvisation scene.
If a players starts to suspect the underwater player is drowning, they find a reason to leave the scene, tag the underwater player and swap places with them. The soaked player enters the scene with an explanation why they are wet (”gee it’s raining like crazy outside!”). Or, the players can completely ignore the fact that the player is soaked as if it is completely normal for wet people to walk in and out of the scene.

  • Watch out when performing this game outside, you can quickly catch a cold!
  • When playing this game you might find out your lung capacity is smaller than you thought, so you will swap a lot creating a beautifully chaotic effect!
  • Put some towels at the ready and realize that the floor will get wet and slippery

 

In 2016 this game was played with a bucket of custard and thus called the ‘Bucket of Custard’ (‘Bak des Vla’). Be warned.
In 2016 this game was also played by Impact from Arnhem but with a camera at the bottom livestreaming the panicking underwater player’s face to a big screen behind the players.

Submitted by Loes van Schwung

Associating

The group stands in a circle. The first player starts with a completely random word. The next player directly has to say the first word that comes to their mind. This keeps continuing until nobody is thinking about what they are saying anymore. Instead, everyone is freely associating with what the player before them is saying.

Monkey Caging

The goal of the Monkey Cage is to make a story using as many game elements as possible. By rapidly using characteristics of different game structures the audience will keep recognizing different game elements. This not only gives a hilarious effect, it also allows for the story to be highlighted from many different angles. The challenge is to keep the story simple as to not overwhelm it with the many different game elements.

Notes:
– like the ‘Multigame’. this game only works if the audience is experienced in theatresports.
– this game gets its name from the Dutch ‘Apenkooien’ and is a great game to play during the last lesson before the holidays.

Red Light, Green Light

Player A stands with their back to the other players, who form a line at a proper distance (~5 meter) from player A. The goal of the other players is to reach and tag player A without player A noticing when they move. When player A calls ”Green light” the other players get to move closer to player A. But when player A calls ”Red light!”, player A turns around and the other players must freeze in place. If player A catches anyone still moving, they have to go back to the starting line. Then player A turns around again calling ”Green light”. The first player to reach and tag player A gets to take over player A’s role and the game starts over.

Variant: all players, including player A, get a handicap (crawling, hopping on one leg) or a characteristic (e.g. old grandma, combat soldier, gossiping aunt).

Amazing Discovery

In the well-known fashion of TV’s Amazing Discoveries (”Say Mike, what can I do with this?”), a new product is presented. This is done in a playback setting: two players plays as Mike and an admirer who are going to test the product is different ways while the other two players act as their voices. This is done to recreate the dubbing effect. The product turns out to not be working but Mike will keep trying to sell it. The audience watches as it slowly gets out of hand. The product is chosen from an audience suggestion.

Advertisement

One player has put something on Marktplaats (or e-Bay) for sale. Through a television interview we find out why this person is selling the item and what the emotional attachment is they have with it.
(Submitted by Papaver.)

Variant: Ask for three items. The players read three advertisements out loud in which these items are either sold or searched for. Add a reason as well (e.g. ‘Cradle, because of family expansion’). The audience gets to choose which item they want to hear the background story of.

This game is also known as Marktplaats.

Adoption

One player is an adopted child and leaves the room. The other players ask the audience for examples of famous people and pick two. These are the kid’s original parents. Then they ask for a contraception method and what went wrong with it. The first player returns to the room as the adult version of the kid who is going to talk to their adoption parents. Through implicit acting, they try to explain to the adopted kid who their parents were and what went wrong.

Ridiculous Fashion Accessories

The game starts with a regular scene. When a teammate or the judges deem it necessary, they will clap their hands and request a ridiculous fashion accessory from the audience. This accessory has to be immediately implemented into the scene. Ideally the players act as if the accessory has been in the scene the whole time and that it is completely normal for that accessory to have been there.

Suggestions such as pink poodle and water-giving plant have resulted in hilarious scenes.

ACE

During the ACE, one player stands in front with three players behind them. The player in front will start telling a story using a suggestion from the audience. The three spots behind them represent ‘Action’, ‘Color’ and ‘Emotion’ (ACE). A player standing in one of these three spots can take over the story by clapping their hands, shouting ”More Action/Color/Emotion” (depending on which spot they were standing) after which they swap places with the player in front. The player that is now in front will continue the story by adding the element they shouted. For Action, you make sure something happens in the story, whereas for Color, you pause the story to describe the scene in extensive detail. And for Emotion, you describe in detail what the character(s) in the story is/are feeling. The new storyteller keeps doing this until someone else claps their hands and takes over the story again.

ABC-Game

Two players, one from each team, start a free improvisation where the first players starts a phrase with the letter A, the second with B, then the first again with C, etc. The story should be completed when the letter Z is reached. If a player falters or starts with the wrong letter, the audience may shout ‘Dead!’ and the players is replaced by a teammate. The winner is the team that has had the least replacements.

Variant 1: starting at a different letter than A.
Variant 2: continuing the story after Z, repeating the alphabet.

30 Years Married

Two players have been married for 30 years and are having a ‘nice’ conversation. Meanwhile, two other players play as their thoughts and say what the married players are really thinking. The married players do not hear these thoughts but as these thoughts can add background information, the married players can use this during the scene.

This game is also knows as Conscience.

3-Headed Musical Star

During the 3-headed Musical Star a musical is performed. Whenever somebody starts to sing, two extra heads pop up and the three of them will sing one word at the time. As this form quickly requires a lot of players, the players may ask the other team to help out.

1-2-3

Divide the group in pairs. Each pair is going to count to 3 together in the way: player A: ‘1’, player B: ‘2’, A: ‘3’, B: ‘1’, A: ‘2’, B: ‘3’, A: ‘1’, … etc.

This will prove harder than it seems. The difficulty can be increased or decreased, depending on the player’s experience, in the following way: A player saying ‘1’ has to jump, when saying ‘2’ they clap their hands and when a player says ‘3’ they shake their butt. Afterwards, ask the players if they experienced this as more or less difficult.

World’s Worst

The audience is asked for an action which is then performed in world’s worst way possible (the world’s worst way to catch a fish, to kill your neighbor or to tell your girlfriend she has a moustache). And all of this within one minute. The players enter the stage one at the time and the audience is invited to count out loud. ‘World’s worst’ can be used as an encore where both teams join in.

See also: Ten Ways to… and Best Way to…