A yellow Volkswagon driving into a canyon, its inhabitants on a road trip.

Summer Road Trip Series: Games on the Go

You and your best friends are hitting the road for your next adventure, and you’ve thought of everything: the best tunes, the tastiest snacks, and your favorite pair of sunglasses. The sun is shining and everyone’s spirits are high! This is gonna be SHINY.


A couple hours later, and things are not so shiny. In fact, they’re rather… boring. When you’ve got hours on the road and all of your entertainment has wound down, what do you do?


You pull out some GEEKY GAMES ON THE GO!

Here are our top five picks to keep the fun flowing:

Geeky Mad Libs

You may remember these fun games growing up (and, yes, they are still around and very popular) where you fill in the blanks for a list of different types of words and then put the words into a story for hilarious results. But did you know that they have geeky ones? Or that you can make your own? Oh, yes! While this game does require some preparation in advance, it is 100% worth it.

  1. The original Mad Libs, when nothing else will do, is pretty spot-on.
    1. See http://www.madlibs.com/books/ for a variety of themed books for Marvel and DC, Cartoon Network, Buffy, Doctor Who, RuPaul, etc.
    2. They also have apps, if you prefer your jokes digital.
  2. There is a free site, Mad Takes (https://www.madtakes.com/), that lets you plug in words and get a short story right on its site.
  3. When nothing out there quite fits, create your own!
    1. This site suggests using a book of short stories and just replacing the nouns, verbs, adjectives, and adverbs:  https://www.instructables.com/id/Make-your-own-Mad-Libs/
    2. You could do the same as above on a few paragraphs out of your favorite book (or try a classic like those at https://www.goodreads.com/shelf/show/public-domain), a movie / TV / play script, news article, or even your own email, Facebook post, or snail mail!

Six Degrees of Sci Fi Separation

Sigourney Weaver, Jeffrey Combs, Ian McKellan, Michael Caine… and, yes, Kevin Bacon. The game Six Degrees of Separation challenges players to find how any two people are linked by six or fewer connections (i.e. relationships, business dealings, etc.). This game later mutated to Six Degrees of Kevin Bacon where you could say that any person on the planet could be linked back to Kevin Bacon, the actor, by six degrees or less, thanks to Kevin Bacon’s appearances in many movies.


In this version, we apply it to sci-fi because, MAN, there are a lot of actors that cross through multiple sci-fi series. Try to think of two actors who have been in a Sci Fi move or show and have fun finding the six (or less) degrees of Sci Fi separation!

Story Traveling

There is a game where you set a timer and one person starts telling a story until the timer dings. The next person takes up the story – but with their own style – for the same set of time until the timer dings. The next person does the same and so on. This continues until everyone is either laughing hysterically or arguing over the storyline.

The geek filter on this game is to change the genre with each change in the story. Before you know it, you’ve got vampires Kung Fu fighting fairies in space, YAS!



This Twitter game can keep you entertained for many miles! Name any film or TV show, book, comic, manga, etc. and summarize the plot in one phrase… but badly. Follow the link above for some good movie examples.


Cosplay Create Challenge

For you cosplay lovers, how far do you think you can stretch your creativity skills? Based only on what people are visibly wearing (i.e. nothing packed away in a suitcase, underwear, etc.), player A picks a clothing item or accessory to challenge player B. Player B has to then think up viable character costumes that you could make using that item or accessory prominently. This means you can’t hide it under a costume, but you can say that you would alter it by turning it inside out, cutting off the sleeves, etc. Player B gets a point for every valid costume idea (by group vote, if necessary) until there are no more ideas. Player B then chooses an item or accessory for another player and the challenge starts over. The player with the most costume idea points wins!


BONUS ROUND: Do the same game above but select an item in the car that is *not* clothing or an accessory. For example, you could choose a seat belt or a bag of chips for the challenge. The bonus round is not for the fainthearted!

For more ideas (after you’ve exhausted these five, haha), try searching the web for “road trip games.” And if you feel inspired to create your own game, please share! We can always use more. Happy traveling!


Featured image credit: Dino Reichmuth/Unsplash

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