Drama Mayhem is a party game for groups of friends who need an ice-breaker, a shell-breaker, or both.

On April 22, Drama Mayhem will launch its card game of the same name that will offer a charades-like experience based on different scenarios for role-play. The name suggests the temper of the game: there will be drama and, rather than rigid rules, quite a bit of mayhem.

The spirit of the game is to let players interpret different characters in scenarios, acting them out however they like. These scenarios are written out on cards and include outlandish setups like a vampire visiting a therapist or more normal ones like an employee convincing his boss to give him a raise. In any case, a pair of players will act out one of these two roles as written on the card. Additional cards, called Quirk cards, give players different traits they can apply to their role. Quirk cards could have a well-know name like “Darth Vader” written on them or a character trait, like always being in a hurry. These quirks are the main impetus for players’ creativity: how might you play the part of an old woman trying to get the last bus seat when you’ve drawn the “James Bond” quirk card?

The player who is the judge will determine which two other players will act out the scenario. Using the quirk cards they draw, each player will then play the part of their character for roughly 60 seconds. At the end of this, the judge will choose a winner and award the scenario card accordingly. Judges change each round. This is indicated by a game coin that is passed clockwise after each round. Two other coins will go to the role-players in each scenario. These will be flipped by the two players to determine their role.

drama mayhem scenario example

Each card has a scenario and two roles to act out. Quirk cards add new angles to the roles.

There are two sets of rules. One, “House Rules,” lays out the above setup: a player who will be the judge and who will choose any two players at a given time to act out two roles in a scenario. Under these rules, the two role-players will announce the Quirk cards they draw. Everyone will know, then, how they might act. With the “Open Play” rules in effect, the players will keep the Quirk they draw to themselves. Thus, those watching will not know how the two are trying to act. At the end, they must guess the Quirk the player drew. Thus, this ruleset makes Drama Mayhem like charades.

The instructions also allow for players to adjust the rules as they see fit. The purpose is to have fun and open up in a big party setting,, whether by Drama Mayhem’s rules or not. The instructions encourage this: “There’s always something special about letting your hair down and being a goof-ball.”

The final release will have 60 scenario cards, 60 quirk cards, and the three game coins needed for determining judge and role-players. Note also that players will be able to record and share their drama online. A website, organized by scenario, can be found at playdramamayhem.com. There are also social media channels for the game.


Trevor Whalen

I am a lifelong, enthusiastic gamer, freelance writer and editor, blogger, and Thief FM aficionado. I think that exploration-heavy, open-ended first-person games are the best vehicle for story-telling, with the finest Thief missions leading the pack.



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