Here is our list of the best icebreaker games for adults.
Icebreaker games are exciting event openers that help folks get to know each other better. Examples include Don’t Judge Me, Jenga Icebreaker Questions, and Crock of Questions. These games create a relaxing environment and allow teams to connect.
Icebreaker games for adults are similar to leadership icebreakers, large group icebreakers, and small group icebreakers. Playing these games helps create a positive work environment and encourages the benefits of employee engagement.
This list includes:
- funny icebreaker games for adults
- fun icebreakers for meetings
- icebreaker games for adults at work
- party icebreaker games for adults
- icebreaker name games for adults
Let’s get started!
List of icebreaker games for adults
From Storytelling Icebreaker to Hope and Fears to Mean Face Game, here are examples of games adults can play to break the ice.
1. Don’t Judge Me
Don’t Judge Me is a fun game that promotes inclusivity and acceptance. This game is a simple and fun way to improve communication between colleagues.
To play Don’t Judge Me:
- Give each employee a piece of paper.
- Colleagues will anonymously write down a work-related or personal action they took and still feel guilty about. Take, for example, drinking a colleague’s coffee at work.
- Toss the papers in a bowl, and shuffle them.
- Pass the bowl around, and each teammate will pick a random piece of paper from the bowl.
- Each worker will read the statement on their paper aloud and offer advice or encouragement for the anonymous writer.
This activity is a simple way for colleagues to build trust and become comfortable with each other. For a fun variation, colleagues can also anonymously write funny experiences to entertain the team.
2. Crock of Questions
Crock of Questions is one of the best party icebreaker games for adults because it allows colleagues to learn new facts about each other.
To play Crock of Questions:
- Write down fun questions on strips of paper. For example, “How often do you eat burgers in a week?”
- Fold the papers, and toss them into a bowl.
- Employees will take turns drawing questions from the bowl.
- Each teammate must try to answer the question honestly.
- If the player refuses to answer the question, then the team can choose a task for them to perform. For example, the group can ask the player to do eight push-ups.
This game can get quite interesting depending on how funny and weird the questions are. In addition, this activity is a great opportunity for employees to express their personalities and connect with teammates.
3. Storytelling Icebreaker
Storytelling Icebreaker promotes creativity and pushes employees to use their imaginations. In this game, employees will create a story using a set of four pictures as prompts.
To play Storytelling Icebreaker:
- Print out several copies of four images.
- Split the colleagues into teams of three to four.
- Hand each group a copy of each picture.
- Teams get ten minutes to study the photos and create a story connecting them.
- When the time is up, each team will take turns sharing their story.
- Other teams may suggest how the group can develop their story.
- If employees fail to create a story connecting the images, then they must repeat that session.
- The team with the best story wins the game.
To make this game more engaging, you can reward the winners. This brainstorming activity is one of the best icebreaker games for adults at work because it improves employees’ focus and helps them develop social skills.
4. Hopes and Fears
Hopes and Fears encourages employees to reflect on their expectations and helps them conquer their fears.
To play Hopes and Fears:
- Encourage employees to write down their greatest expectations and fears for a specific project on a piece of paper.
- Put the papers into a bowl, and shuffle them.
- Pass the bowl around, and each teammate will pick one paper from the bowl.
- Colleagues will take turns reading out the statements on each piece of paper.
- Then, the team will brainstorm and offer ideas and suggestions for tackling the problem. For example, if a colleague has issues coming up with novel ideas for a project, then colleagues can guide the teammate to the right path.
To make this game even more engaging, teammates with similar difficulties with a project may team up and get encouragement from other workers. This icebreaker game is a simple and fun way to build a positive and encouraging workforce.
5. Jenga Icebreaker Questions
Jenga Icebreaker Questions is a fun party game where colleagues must remove pieces from a tall tower of bricks without toppling it over.
To play Jenga Icebreaker Questions:
- Write icebreaker questions on each Jenga brick.
- Stack the Jenga bricks in threes until you have a complete tower.
- Press the pieces together so they are firm.
- Teammates will take turns pulling Jenga bricks from the tower without toppling it over.
- Colleagues will answer the questions on the block before adding the block to the top of the tower.
- Employees will continue in this manner until the Jenga tower falls.
This game is a fun exercise to improve teammates’ decision-making skills and boost team engagement. This activity is best suited for teams with several new employees. By playing Jenga Icebreaker Questions, new recruits get to know their teammates individually.
6. Mean Face
Employees can use Mean Face to create a fun and engaging work environment. In this game, colleagues must try hard not to laugh or smile when teammates tell funny jokes or stories.
To play Mean Face:
- Split employees into two teams of four to five.
- Teams will sit facing each other.
- Employees will take turns telling jokes to the employees sitting opposite them.
- If a player laughs at a joke, then they will leave the game, and the opposing team will get a point.
- If a player keeps a straight face, then their team gets a point.
- The team with the highest points wins the game.
To make this game even more fun, employees can make silly faces while telling a joke to make other players laugh.
7. Sweet Story Game
Sweet Story Game improves employees’ communication skills. In this game, workers will apply their cognitive skills to tell interesting and entertaining stories.
To play Sweet Story Game:
- Put red, green, yellow, pink, and blue candies in a large bowl.
- Red represents love, green is weird, yellow is work related, pink is sweet, and blue is funny.
- Pass the bowl of candies around, and each employee must pick two candies.
- The colleagues will tell stories or tales matching the theme of their chosen colors.
- The teammates will then vote for the best story.
You can add a little element of surprise in this game by withholding the theme of each candy until each player picks their preferred colors. You may then share the candies’ theme for colleagues to share their stories.
8. Quotes Game
Quotes Game is one of the best icebreaker games for adults at work because it tests colleagues’ memories and challenges their cognitive skills. In this activity, colleagues will pick quotes from their favorite movies, books, songs, and TV shows for teammates to guess.
To play Quotes Game:
- Split the players into pairs.
- Teams will share quotes from popular movies, songs, books, and TV shows.
- Opposing groups must guess what the quote is from.
- The pairs get a point for every correct answer.
- The team with the most points wins the game.
You may even offer bonus points to colleagues who can name the character or figure out who said the quote. You can also offer hints for colleagues who need help answering the questions.
Tic-Tac-Toe is one of the easiest icebreaker activities for teammates. In this game, employees must apply their strategic thinking skills to win.
To play tic-tac-toe:
- Draw a tic-tac-toe board.
- Each player will choose a symbol or icon to represent them. For example, a player may use the first letter of their name or an asterisk as their marker.
- Teammates will take turns putting their symbols on the board to get three of their symbols in a row, vertically, horizontally, or diagonally.
- The first player to get all three symbols in a row wins the game.
You can make this activity even more challenging by asking players trivia questions. The teammate who gets the question right gets to make a move on the board. Any player who fails to answer must wait until they get a question right to make a move.
10. Name the Song
Name the Song is a great game that allows employees to vibe to their favorite songs and learn each other’s taste in music.
To play Name the Song:
- Split the players into groups of three to four.
- Each team will curate a playlist of songs for other groups to guess.
- Teams will play snippets of random tunes from their playlist.
- Opposing teams must guess the song title.
- If an employee correctly guesses a song, then their team gets a point.
- The team with the highest points wins the game.
You can award bonus points to players who correctly name the singer. To make this game even more challenging, players must add a mix of different genres into their playlists, including rap, R&B, and jazz.
11. Say Your Name Backward
Say your Name Backward is one of the best icebreaker name games for adults because it challenges employees intellectually.
To play Say Your Name Backward:
- Each employee will spell their name backward on a slip of paper and put it in a bowl.
- Shake the bowl to mix up the names.
- The teammates will draw a piece of paper from the bowl and attempt to guess the correct name within ten seconds.
This game is a great icebreaker activity for new team members. Colleagues get to know each other’s names without formal introductions. This activity is also a great way to introduce new team members. To further the introductions, you may have all new members share fun facts about themselves when colleagues draw their names.
12. Embarrassing Picture Game
Embarrassing Picture Game helps employees laugh and unwind. In this game, colleagues share an embarrassing picture of themselves and tell the story behind it.
To play Embarrassing Picture Game:
- Each employee will send embarrassing or funny pictures of themselves to a coordinator.
- The coordinator will then create a slideshow of these images.
- Project these images onto a screen.
- Teammates take turns identifying their pictures and sharing the events that led up to that image.
- The teammate with the funniest story wins.
The Embarrassing Picture game is one of the best funny icebreaker games for adults because it helps create a happy work environment and promotes team bonding.
13. Belly Balloon Pop
Belly Balloon Pop is an exciting game for colleagues. In this activity, colleagues must attempt to burst blown-up balloons between two bellies. This game requires speed and teamwork for colleagues to win.
To play Belly Balloon Pop:
- Split the players into pairs.
- Give each group ten inflated balloons.
- Set a timer for 60 seconds.
- The pairs must attempt to pop all the balloons between their bellies before the timer runs out.
- The team with the most burst balloons wins the game.
This fun game encourages colleagues to work cohesively. It is important to note that the game rules do not encourage colleagues to use their hands, teeth, or feet to pop the balloons.
14. Paper Ball
Paper Ball is an engaging game where employees aim to throw paper balls into a basket. This game will test precision, accuracy, and time-management skills.
To play Paper Ball:
- Roll up pieces of paper into a ball.
- Give each player five to seven rolled-up papers.
- Set an empty basket at a reasonable distance away from the player.
- Set a timer for 30 to 60 seconds.
- Colleagues will shoot the paper balls into the basket.
- Teammates who throw in all the balls before the timer runs out win the game.
This fun activity is great for colleagues to play during lunch breaks. You may even take this activity further by offering the top three winners gift cards for lunch at a local restaurant.
15. Act and React
Act and React is a fun icebreaker that challenges workers’ improv skills. In this activity, employees react to an event without saying what it is, and colleagues must use their investigative skills to guess the event.
To play Act and React:
- Write down events on slips of paper, and put them in a bowl.
- Colleagues will take turns picking a paper from the bowl without opening it.
- When each teammate gets a slip, colleagues take turns reading their acts silently.
- The players will react to the event using facial expressions, gestures, and words without saying what the event on the slip is. For example, you may write, “You won the lottery,” on the paper, and the player must react accordingly.
- Teammates must gauge the player’s reactions and guess what the act on the slip is.
- Colleagues get points for each correct guess.
- The employee with the highest points wins the game.
To make this activity more exciting and challenging, you can ask employees to act out their events without talking. This simple and fun game promotes colleague interaction and helps employees ease stress.
16. Trading Cards
Trading Cards is a fun way to encourage team communication.
To play Trading Cards:
- Give employees index cards and markers.
- Set a timer for four to five minutes.
- Employees will create personal trading cards with their names, photos, and fun facts about them.
- Employees will combine their cards in a deck and shuffle.
- Employees will then pick random cards from the deck and find the teammate who owns the card.
- Teammates will then ask the owner of the card questions to get to know each other better.
To make this game even more fun, teammates can ask hilarious questions to get funny responses. For example, employees could ask, “Is cereal soup?” This exercise makes colleagues more comfortable around each other and helps develop office friendships.
17. Magic Word Party
Magic Word Party is one of the best fun icebreakers for meetings because it helps improve teammates’ memories. In this game, colleagues will get a list of words they cannot use throughout the entire party.
To play Magic Word Party:
- Give each employee a wristband and a magic word they can not say during the event.
- Pick words commonly used in regular speech to make the game more challenging.
- Employees must pay attention when other colleagues speak to ensure they do not accidentally use the forbidden words.
- If a colleague overhears another teammate using their magic words, then the colleague will collect their wristband.
- The employee with the most wristbands wins.
This activity helps boost teammates’ vocabulary and teaches colleagues to pay attention to detail. This game is also a great opportunity for colleagues to connect, chat, and share ideas.
Icebreaker games are fun exercises that boost employees’ work performance and promote employee engagement. In addition, these activities encourage employee interaction, foster friendships, and create a fun and engaging work environment.
These activities are easy to organize, and colleagues can play individually or in teams. Teams can plan these games before meetings or during lunch breaks. These games also work well for small and large audiences. So, employees should choose an activity that can accommodate the entire team.