How to Play Never Have I Ever Card Game: A Quick Start Guide

Jacob Frink
By Jacob Frink 4 Min Read

Looking for a fun, engaging, and slightly revealing game to play with friends or at parties? “Never Have I Ever” could be just the game you need. Traditionally enjoyed as a verbal game, the card version adds an extra layer of excitement and unpredictability. In this guide, you’ll learn the basics of how to play the “Never Have I Ever” card game, ensuring your next social gathering is unforgettable.

Setting Up the Game

Before diving into the gameplay, it’s essential to set up correctly. Here’s what you’ll need:

  • Players: A group of 3 or more people.
  • The Card Game: Purchase or prepare a deck of “Never Have I Ever” cards. These can often be found online or at a local game store.
  • A Comfortable Space: Make sure there’s enough room for all players to sit in a circle.

The setup is simple, allowing for quick transition from opening the box to gameplay.

Understanding the Rules

The essence of the game lies in its simplicity combined with the potential depth of revelations. Here’s a quick overview of the core rules:

  1. A player (the reader) picks a card from the deck and reads it out loud.
  2. Each card starts with “Never have I ever…” followed by a statement.
  3. Anyone who has done what the card mentions must do a predetermined action, commonly taking a sip of their drink.
  4. The game can also involve collecting cards as points for things you’ve never done, with specific rules adjustments.

Adjust these basic rules according to your group’s preferences for a more customized experience.

Playing the Game

Once everyone understands the rules, it’s time to start. The game operates on a turn-by-turn basis, with each player drawing a card when it’s their turn. Amidst laughter and surprised exclamations, participants may learn unexpected things about each other, making “Never Have I Ever” an incredible icebreaker.

Creating Your Own Variations

Flexibility is one of the game’s best features. Feel free to introduce new rules or adjust existing ones to fit the mood and preferences of your group. Here are some suggestions:

  • Add a “Confession” rule, where players elaborate on a story behind their “guilty” answer.
  • Mix in “Wildcard” cards that allow players to reverse a question or skip their turn.
  • Set a point limit to determine a winner for a competitive twist.

Such variations keep the game fresh and engaging over multiple rounds.


“Never Have I Ever” offers an unparalleled blend of humor, bonding, and unexpected revelations. Whether you’re looking to break the ice, stir up nostalgia amongst old friends, or simply pass the time, this game ranks high on the list of must-try party games. With the guidelines provided, you’re now ready to host an unforgettable round (or several) of “Never Have I Ever.” Gather your friends, shuffle the deck, and let the revelations begin!

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