The Best College Drinking Games

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College life is often filled with memorable experiences and fun-filled gatherings with friends. One popular way to enjoy these social events is through participating in various drinking games. These games can add an element of excitement and friendly competition to parties and get-togethers, while also helping to break the ice and encourage camaraderie among participants.

Choosing the right drinking game can make a big difference in the overall experience. Some of the best college drinking games include classics like Beer Pong and Kings, while more modern innovations such as Slap Cup and Stack It Up are also gaining popularity. Before selecting a game, consider the preferences and skill levels of those in attendance to ensure everyone has an enjoyable time.

CollegeRanker is an advertising-supported site. Featured or trusted partner programs and all school search, finder, or match results are for schools that compensate us. This compensation does not influence our school rankings, resource guides, or other editorially-independent information published on this site.

Classic College Drinking Games

These classic college drinking games have withstood the test of time, providing entertainment and camaraderie at parties and gatherings throughout the years.

Beer Pong

Beer Pong is a staple at college parties, involving players taking turns to throw ping pong balls into cups of beer arranged on a table. Each time a ball lands in a cup, the other team has to drink the beer in that cup. The objective is to eliminate all of the opposing team’s cups. (source)

Flip Cup

Flip Cup is another popular drinking game, involving teams standing on opposite sides of a table with cups of beer in front of them. Each player must drink their beer and then flip their cup upside down using the edge of the table. The next player can only start after the previous cup has been flipped successfully. The team to complete the sequence first wins. (source)

King’s Cup

King’s Cup is a card game where each card has a designated action associated with it. Players take turns drawing cards and performing the corresponding actions, which often lead to drinking. This game can be customized with different rules and is a fun way to keep everyone engaged throughout the game. (source)


Quarters is a fast-paced drinking game in which players attempt to bounce a quarter (or similar-sized coin) off a table and into a cup. When a player makes the coin into the cup, they choose another player to drink. This game tests players’ dexterity and skill, making it a fun, competitive option for college parties. (source)

Section 3: Team-Based Drinking Games

Team-based drinking games are a great way to foster camaraderie and enjoy friendly competition among friends. In this section, we’ll introduce you to three popular games: Ride the Bus, Civil War, and Drunk Jenga.

Ride the Bus

Often played as a fast-paced drinking game, Ride the Bus involves players working in teams to accomplish specific card-related tasks. The game requires a deck of cards and drinks for each player.

  1. Deal the entire deck to all players
  2. Players take turns laying down cards of the same suit, in ascending order
  3. If a player cannot lay down a card, they must “ride the bus” by taking a drink
  4. The first team to run out of cards wins

Civil War

A variation of the popular game Beer Pong, Civil War divides players into two teams. Each team has an array of cups filled with a drink (usually beer) on their side of the table. The objective is to shoot ping pong balls into the opposing team’s cups, causing them to drink the contents.

  • Setup: Position cups in a triangle formation on each side of the table
  • Play: Players take turns attempting to throw ping pong balls into the other team’s cups
  • Drinking: When a ball lands in a cup, the player guarding that cup must drink its contents
  • Winning: The first team to remove all the other team’s cups wins

Drunk Jenga

Drunk Jenga is a creative twist on the classic block-stacking game, with each block featuring a pre-written rule or instruction related to drinking. Players take turns removing and restacking blocks, while adhering to the rules written on each piece.

Sample Rules Description
Take a drink Player must take a drink
Swap seats Player must swap seats with another player
Start a waterfall Player begins drinking, followed by others in a chain until the initiator stops

Games continue until the Jenga tower collapses, at which point the player who caused its collapse must finish their drink.

Card-Based Drinking Games

Card-based drinking games are a popular choice for college students due to their simplicity and ease of setup. All you need is a deck of cards, some drinks, and a group of friends ready to have fun. In this section, we will introduce two popular card-based drinking games: Asshole and Ring of Fire.


Asshole is a classic card game that can be easily turned into a drinking game. The game involves players trying to get rid of their cards as quickly as possible while assigning roles to other players based on their finishing order. These roles, such as the Asshole, dictate drinking rules for the next round.

To play Asshole, you will need:

  • A standard deck of cards
  • Drinks for each player
  • A group of friends willing to participate and follow the rules

The game begins by dealing all the cards to players. The player with the 3 of clubs starts the game by playing it, followed by other players playing higher-ranking cards. The objective is to be the first to get rid of all your cards. Players finishing last become the “Asshole,” who must perform various tasks and drink more as dictated by other roles.

Ring of Fire

Also known as Circle of Death or Kings Cup, Ring of Fire is another popular card-based drinking game among college students. The game revolves around a central arrangement of cards, each assigned with specific actions or drinking rules.

To play Ring of Fire, you will need:

  • A standard deck of cards
  • A large cup for the center of the table (Kings Cup)
  • Drinks for each player
  • A group of friends ready to have fun and participate

Arrange the cards face-down in a circle around the Kings Cup. Each player takes turns drawing a card and performing the action associated with that card. Common actions include:

Card Action
Ace Waterfall (everyone starts drinking, and you can only stop when the person to your right stops)
Two You (choose someone to drink)
Three Me (player who drew the card drinks)
Four Floor (last one to touch the floor drinks)
Five Jive (perform a dance move, the next player adds a move, and so on)

The game continues until all the cards have been drawn or a predetermined end-point is reached.

Drinking Games for Large Groups

Large groups usually have more energy and enthusiasm, making them perfect for some lively college drinking games. The key is to find games that can engage everyone at once and promote a fun, social experience. Here are two exciting drinking games that work well with large groups.

Never Have I Ever

Never Have I Ever is a classic game that can accommodate any number of players. It begins with everyone sitting in a circle, holding a drink. One person starts by saying something they have never done before, starting with the phrase “Never have I ever…” If someone in the group has done that thing, they take a sip of their drink. The game continues with the next person in a clockwise direction, sharing their “Never have I ever…” statement.

This game is excellent for bonding and getting to know each other better. Some examples of statements include:

  • Never have I ever traveled abroad
  • Never have I ever been skydiving
  • Never have I ever failed an exam

Drunk Musical Chairs

Drunk Musical Chairs is a twist on the traditional musical chairs game, adding a drinking element to it. Set up chairs in a circle, ensuring there is one less chair than there are players. Have music playing, and while the music is on, players must dance around the chairs. Once the music stops, everybody rushes to sit on a chair. The person left standing must take a shot and remove another chair before the game resumes.

This fast-paced game brings out the competitive spirit and provides laughter and enjoyment to all participating in the game.

Section 6: Quick and Easy Drinking Games

Shot Roulette

Shot Roulette is a fun and fast-paced drinking game that adds a twist to the classic casino favorite. To play, you need a roulette wheel, shot glasses, and a variety of alcoholic beverages. Place the shot glasses around the roulette wheel and fill them with different drinks. Each number on the wheel corresponds to a shot glass. When the ball lands on a number, the player who placed their bet on that number takes the corresponding shot. This game is easy to set up and requires minimal equipment, making it perfect for a college party setting.

Russian Beer Pong

Russian Beer Pong is a variation of the traditional Beer Pong game, often played at college parties. Instead of filling all the cups with beer, only a few cups are filled, while the rest are filled with water. This creates an element of surprise for the players, as they won’t know which cups have alcohol until they take a sip.

To set up the game, arrange two sets of 6-10 cups on opposite ends of a table. Fill the cups with either beer or water, making sure to mix them up so that the players don’t know which cups contain alcohol. Each team takes turns tossing ping pong balls into their opponent’s cups. If a ball lands in a cup, the player on the receiving team must drink the contents of that cup. The game continues until one team has cleared all of their opponent’s cups. Russian Beer Pong adds an unexpected twist to a classic game, making it both entertaining and unpredictable.

Safety Tips and Responsible Drinking

While enjoying college drinking games, it’s essential to prioritize safety and responsible drinking habits. In this section, we’ll discuss some recommended safety tips and practices to ensure a fun and safe experience.

Knowing Your Limits

Understanding and respecting your alcohol tolerance is crucial in preventing overconsumption and staying in control. Here are a few tips to know your limits:

  • Keep track of your drinks
  • Set a personal limit before starting
  • Listen to your body and stop when you feel the effects of alcohol
  • Avoid participating in drinking games if you’re uncomfortable or unfamiliar with your limits

Alternate Drinks

Alternating between alcoholic and non-alcoholic beverages can help you maintain a more moderate pace and stay hydrated, thus reducing the risk of overconsumption. This approach can also minimize the effects of a hangover. Some options include:

Alcoholic Drinks Non-Alcoholic Alternatives
Beer Soft Drink or Carbonated Water
Cocktail Mocktail or Juice
Wine Non-alcoholic Wine or Sparkling Water

Having a Designated Caretaker

It’s always a good idea to have a designated caretaker or a responsible individual to monitor everyone’s well-being and ensure safe practices during the event. The designated caretaker can:

  • Monitor alcohol consumption
  • Assist those who need help or have consumed too much
  • Encourage responsible behavior and decision-making
  • Organize safe transportation for attendees who have been drinking

By following these safety tips and responsible drinking practices, you can enjoy college drinking games while ensuring the well-being of yourself and others.