Why You Should Be Playing Codenames 🖲

A 2015 gem whose concept could easily be broadcast as a GSN game show hosted by Chuck Woolery. Previously on WYSBP: Why You Should Be Playing Hive 🐝
  1. In 5 words, Minesweeper and Pyramid somehow procreated.
    The paternity test is still out. "Password" could be the daddy.
  2. Codenames is a word puzzle game pitting two teams against one another in a race to uncover their agents' secret codenames first.
  3. Assorted words are aligned into a grid for all players to see.
    All shuffled and randomized, seemingly patternless.
  4. The teams are comprised of normal "field operative" players and one spymaster. The spymaster secretly knows which codenames match up to his or her's corresponding team from a small key card, hidden from other players' view.
    From the grid of word cards, the red spymaster is responsible for the codenames highlighted in red, and the same reasoning applies to blue.
  5. And so the game begins...🕵
    "Sleuth Up!" - Barney Stinson, on the lost Codenames themed episode.
  6. It plays like Pyramid, in that you offer clues to your partner.
  7. Off the grid of words, the Spymaster has find one single clue word to connect several of their team's codenames. Additionally, they add a number afterward to signal the number of codenames related to their clue word.
  8. So for instance, say you're the spymaster and you want your teammate to guess any number of the circled words. You could offer up the clue: "Map, 3"
    Hoping they would guess America, State, and Africa
  9. Your relationship with your teammate comes into play big time. Say she's Katy Perry's biggest stan. Alternatively on this board, you could offer the clue: "Firework, 3"
    Hoping they would guess America, Night, and by a stroke of inspiration, Princess
  10. (Side thought: any better picture doodling apps out there than Snapchat? Help a brother out List App)
  11. And so it plays like Minesweeper, in that your team gingerly peels back your winning words.
  12. And in that, if your teammate guesses the Assassin Codename....
    The lone black square on the Codename key
  13. 💣💣💣
    Auto lose, reminiscent of the auto throw your Gateway keyboard across the room
  14. Codenames challenges, wrinkles, and unites brains in ways unlike any game I've played. I warn you, you will oscillate between wanting to smack/hug/smack/hug your teammate.
  15. Dust off your dictionary and plunk yourself down for a GSN marathon. Codenames is great for parties, couples nights, and libraries alike. I rate it 25/26 letters in the alphabet.