Youth Group Games – Card Ninja, Starbursts War & More

Crazy Youth Group Games

Our friend Nick Bremmer sent us some really cool games perfect for your preteen youth group. They’re some of his favorites 🙂

P.S. – Nick, you’re awesome!! Thanks for sharing these games with the world!

Card Ninja

You’ll need 5 playing cards for each player. Pass out the cards to the players. Players mix around and challenge one other player at a time. If you’ve been challenged, you have to accept. Flip the top card up and whoever has the highest card is the winner and gets to keep their card along with the loser’s card. You cannot challenge the same person twice in a row. Here’s the fun ninja part. When presenting your top card, you have to strike a ninja fighting stance and give your best ninja noise (like in kung fu movies when they throw a punch or kick). When the leader calls time, whoever has the most cards wins whatever prize you have.

Starbursts War

This is my favorite camp game (that’s the only time I play it). I save it for the very end of the week for when my students have really gotten to know each other. Note: It’s more of a guy game, but I’ve seen girls really enjoy it as well. You will need 3 starbursts for each person playing.

There are three battles in this massive war that need to won :

1) Thumb War – The players face each other and each holds out their left hand or right hand in a “thumbs up” position and they link hands in a monkey grip.  The object of the game is to pin the opponent’s thumb, to a count of three.

2. Rock, Paper, Scissors – Players simultaneously form one of three shapes with an outstretched hand. The “rock” beats scissors, the “scissors” beat paper and the “paper” beats rock; if both players throw the same shape, the game is tied.

3. Finger Fencing – Lock hands like a bro hung, stick out your pointer finger and try to stab the opponent anywhere other than the forearm of the arm in use. If you hit them, you win.

Each person gets 3 starbursts which represent their lives. You have to wonder around and challenge random people to one of the three battles. If you’ve been challenged, you have to accept. If you win, you get to keep your starburst as well as the loser’s. You cannot challenge the same person twice in a row (unless you have a small group). If you run out of starbursts, you are allowed one ghost challenge to try to win a life. If you lose, you’re out for good. Sharing lives is allowed.

Note: Finger fencing can get a little crazy and sometimes out of hand, so keep an eye on the competitive students!


It’s simply Pictionary with a slighter degree of difficulty. Instead of going up to a dry erase board and drawing it, take a marker and tape it to a 2-3ft long stick. Same rules as Pictionary but this time, they have to draw by holding the end of the stick. Pass out 3 pieces of paper to each student. Have the write down their favorite tv show, a random activity and tv/movie/celebrity. Make sure you add some random ones in there like “burning toast” or “sizzling bacon” for your viewing pleasure.

Name ‘Em

This is a name guessing game. You’ll need a tarp or a dark sheet (something that can’t be seen through). Divide your group into two teams. Have one team on each side of the tarp. Next you’ll raise the tarp so the teams cannot see each other (that’s important) but leave about 3 feet between the tarp and the team (that’s where one person will sit during game play). Here’s how to play – have one student move all the way to the front in the open space from each team. That person will sit, squat, laydown, move to one side, whatever they want to do as long as they do not hide their face. On the count of three, drop the tarp so the upfront participants can see each other. First person to shout the other person’s name wins a point for their team (their team cannot help the upfront participant or they forfeit the round). Play till all have had a chance to go.

Like these Games?

Like these games? Check out our pack of Easter Games & Object Lessons we just released, which includes 15 Easter games & 15 Easter Object lessons designed specifically for preteens. They’re a great addition to your Easter programming. Also perfect for midweek or Sunday night services. Learn more

Who is Nick Bremmer?

Nick Bremmer has spent the last couple of years overseeing the 5th-8th grade ministries at his church. Currently, he a high school pastor in Oklahoma City.

2 Responses to “Youth Group Games – Card Ninja, Starbursts War & More

  • Card Ninja Questions: What do you do in the event of a tie? Are the players supposed to shuffle their cards in between battles?

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