Hand Jive

How’s your hand dancing? Were you born to Hand Jive? Has the song popped into your head, and you are doing it now? If you have no idea what I am blabbering on about, here is a YouTube video. Whether you’re good or bad, it doesn’t really matter because the Hand Jive I’m going to be talking about is very different. I’m not talking about the song and dance from the classic movie Grease, I am talking about the family card game Hand Jive! from Cheatwell Games, which is a very good thing as I can’t dance (even with my hands!). This Hand Jive is a family friendly ‘hands only’ charades card game.

Hand Jive! is a manic miming card game. It is a game that can be played anywhere and is lots of fun for all the family. A game that is suitable for 2 or more players aged 8+ with 30 minutes playing time.

This hands only game of charades is played by two to four teams of players, roughly the same size (they teams don’t have to be exact). It is a family-friendly game that the whole family can play together.

If you have ever played the miming game Charades, you will love Hand Jive! It has a bit of a twist on that classic fun game of mimes. In Hand Jive, players have to act out (by miming) a wacky mix of words and actions, but they can only use their hands, fingers and thumbs and nothing else. The deck has 56 double-sided cards, which give 440 different hand charades to play and have quality family fun with.

When you are ready to Hand Jive, playing the game is easy (getting others to understand your mimes isn’t). Get into teams and pick a team name. After some negotiation, compromise and finally agreement on the 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, it doesn’t matter what side (colour) you play with.

Each team then selects a Hand Actor – this person will be the lucky/unlucky player who becomes the first hand mime artist. The Hand Actor will change with each round so that all players take it in turns and gets a go at miming. With the first Hand Actors selected, the oldest player gets to go first. It is now time to Hand Jive. Let the fun and laughter begin.

The Hand Actor takes a card from the top of the deck. Each card features 4 mimes, graded from 1 to 4 (level 1 is the easiest level and worth 1 point, level 4 is the hardest and worth 4 points). The Hand Actor must decide what level and how many points they are going for. A successful hand mime guessed by their teammates earns the number of points attached to that mime. The Hand Actor selects the level of that they think they can successfully mime with their hands and one that they think their teammates will be able to guess. They then announce what level and points they are playing before passing the card to a player on an opposing team so they can check if any guesses are correct.

Hand Jive

With the Hand Actor trying to mime their selection from the card just using their hands, hopefully they are skilful enough that their teammate(s) can work it out. If the team decipher the hand mime and correctly guess the answer on the card, then they get the points. But if they fail to find the answer or time runs out, then the card is returned to bottom of the pile and the team receives nil pois (no points). The next team then selects a card from the top of the deck and starts their turn. The first team to score 20 points is the winner.

Overall, I think Hand Jive is an excellent fun for some quick play! It doesn’t matter how good or bad you are at hand miming, and we were shocking, it’s great fun. The mimes are all family-friendly with things like miming how to make a paper aeroplane, jazz hands or even trying to mime a toilet. A quick game to learn, easy to understand the rules and lots of fun to play. As it is just a deck of cards, it can be played anywhere and by anyone making it an excellent travel game as well.

Hand Jive is hilarious fun. An excellent all-inclusive game for family game nights; from children to grandparents, everybody can play together equally as well. It is a game that provides lots of entertainment, laughter and giggling.

I would say that that some of the mimes are quite easy, but that depends on how well you mime it. Some are more difficult; how do you mime a toilet just by using your hands? With four different difficulty levels on each card, everybody can choose something they are comfortable miming on their turn. Whatever level is played, all were just as hilarious. Hand Jive is a game of interpretation, 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 some of the abstract guesswork wasn’t much better. The great thing about this game is that the mimes will change every time the game is played depending on the players and the way they think and interpret the mimes.

Hand Jive! from Cheatwell Games is a fun and quick game that will bring laughter, excitement and plenty of enjoyment to your family and friends game nights, holidays, when on your travels or just while you are waiting for dinner to be ready. With a cost of only £5, it is an absolute bargain, especially as it can be played over and over again with different mimes and results each and every time.

Rating: 5/5

RRP: £5

For more information, visit cheatwell.com. Available to buy from Amazon here.

DISCLOSURE: All thoughts and opinions are my own. This review uses an affiliate link which I may receive a small commission from if you purchase through the link.

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