By Wayne West, Spare Brains Games
All Rights Reserved, 2006
A game for 4-10 players. Each player, in turn, is The Simon, or Judge, for that round of the worst karaoke contest ever. More than four players is the preferred minimum.
There are two types of cards, Songs and People. Song cards have a song title and the name of the group who initially released the song or popularized it, tending towards the latter. For example, Bob Dylan wrote and released "All Along the Watchtower," but it was Jimi Hendrix who made it well known, so the Hendrix version would be the version most likely included.
At the start of the game, each player is dealt four People. The first player to be Judge is the one who owns the most music CD's. Downloaded MP3's don't count. You could also engage in a brief rock/paper/scissors tournament, whatever strikes your fancy for determining who the starting Simon is.
At the end of every turn, the Judge becomes the player to the left of the current Simon.
The game is played in two rounds: first is players choosing People to sing Songs, the second is players choosing Songs to be performed by a People card drawn by The Simon.
At the start of each turn, the current Simon draws a Song card and reads the card out loud. The other players now select the People card from their hand that they think would give the worst or most humorous performance of the current song. Put the card face-down in front of The Simon. The Simon now selects the People card whom he thinks would do the most miserable or amusing job of performing the song. The player who submitted that People card that The Simon selects is awarded the Song card. The remaining People cards are discarded and reshuffled as needed.
The first player to win five cards wins that round. Everyone keeps the cards that they have won.
We now go to the next round wherein Songs are selected by the players for the People drawn by The Simon. Once one player has won five cards in this round the overall winner is determined by the total number of cards won.
Note that it is possible to win the game without having won either round.
The Reject Rule. If more than half of the players, including the Judge, are not familiar with the current Song or People, that card shall be discarded and a new card shall be drawn.
You cannot discard cards, they must be played out of your hand.
The Slow Rule. If a player is taking an inordinate amount of time choosing a card from his hand, the Judge is allowed to encourage rapid decision making by saying in a loud, clear voice, FIVE, FOUR, THREE, TWO, ONE (in approximately one second intervals). If the slow player has not turned in a card when the Judge has finished his countdown, submissions are closed and judging can commence.
Karaoke Screams is based on the mechanics of a fine, award-winning game, Apples to Apples (A2A). As the mechanics to A2A are patented and the company who sells A2A, Out of the Box Games was not interested in selling Karaoke Screams, I have released this game for free on my web site with the kind permission of OotB Games.