Do you know how to hand jive? If you were stuck in a coffee bar basement in London in the 1950s you probably do (apparently there was so little space to get up and dance that hand jiving was invented as it was the only option). Or, if like us you weren’t around in the 50s, but have seen the musical Grease, you might be familiar with it from that. But now, Cheatwell Games have their own version of it and it has nothing to do with dancing (which is great as I can’t dance and would probably trip over my own hands if I attempted to hand jive) – it is a family friendly ‘hands only’ charades card game.
Hand Jive! is manic miming card game fun for all the family that you play with your hands. Suitable for 2+ teams of players aged 8+. If you like playing charades, you will love Hand Jive! A twist on charades, players have to act out (mime) a wacky mix of words and actions, but you can only use your hands, fingers and thumbs and nothing else. With 56 double-sided card there are 440 hand charades to have fun with.
As already mentioned, Hand Jive is a card game that is suitable for all the entire family aged 8 to 108. It is played by two to four teams of roughly the same size. It is a game that the whole family can play together in teams, and it doesn’t really matter if it is children vs adults, adult and child vs adult and child, adults vs adults or children vs children – every age group can join in and in mixed teams.
To play, get into teams and think of a really cool team name. Write the team names on a piece of paper so that you can keep track of the scores. Shuffle the deck of cards and place the green or pink side face-down on the table within easy reach of everybody, if doesn’t matter what side (colour) you play with.
Each team selects a Hand Actor, the unlucky soul who becomes the first mime artist, and this changes with each round so that everybody on the team gets a go. The oldest player gets to go first.
The Hand Actor selects a card. There are 4 mimes on each card, graded from 1 to 4 (level 1 is the easiest level and worth 1 point, level 4 is the hardest and worth 4 points), and a successful hand mime guessed by their teammates earns the number of points attached to that mime. The Hand Actor selects a level they want to mime (hopefully one they think that their teammates are intelligent enough to decipher) and announces the level before passing the card to a player on an opposing team so they can check if any guesses are correct.
Now the fun and laughter begins.
The Hand Actor now has 30 seconds (timed by the other team) to act out the word or action they have chosen on the card, just using their hands – no other parts of the body can be used, no props can be used, no mouthing words or letters, no verbal clues, no air drawing letters, no singing, humming or cheating. If caught attempting to cheat using any of these methods their turn immediately ends
If the Hand Actors team decipher the hand mime and guess correctly then they get the points. If they guess incorrectly or time runs out then the card is returned to bottom of the pile and the next team plays with a different card. The first team to score 20 points is the winner.
Overall, despite how shockingly bad it seems each and everyone one of us is at hand miming (or trying to decipher other players strange disjointed clues) we all absolutely love this game. With things like miming how to make a paper aeroplane, jazz hands or even trying to mime a toilet, it is a barrel of laughs. Its quick to learn, fun to play and as it is just a deck of cards it can be played anywhere.
Hand Jive is a really great game for families of varying ages as everybody can play together. It provides lots of laughter and giggling throughout the entire game. Some of the mimes are quite easy with the difficulty levels ramping up but all were just hilarious and we did have to wonder about some of the thinking that went into them by the Hand Actor – it clearly made sense in their head. And the best part, the mimes will change every time the game is played depending on the players and clearly their way of thinking.
A quick fun game that will bring enjoyment to family and friends game nights, holidays or even sitting around a campfire. And with a cost of only £5, it is an absolute bargain!