When the Anchorman movie came out in 2004, we didn’t get a chance to see it in the theaters. Shortly thereafter we rented the DVD from Netflix (remember that?!). We liked Will Ferrell in his other movies, so we were looking forward to this one. However, I just couldn’t get into it. I ended up turning it off before the show was over. Years later I caught it on Netflix again, this time streaming. Maybe my tastes had changed. This time I “got it”.
While curating our annual gift guides, we found out about a new adult party game by Barry & Jason Games themed in the now-classic Anchorman movie. Anchorman: The Game is a party title for players 17+ that challenges people to fill out a cue card Mad-Libs style.
If you’re a fan of the movie, you’ll recognize the homage to the classic scene where Ron Burgandy (Will Ferrell) exclaims “F*ck San Diego”, since that was what he read off the teleprompter. It became a running joke that he would read anything on there without considering what he was saying. And because the game was all about recreating this famous scene, it was a shoo-in for inclusion in our recommendations for Pop Culture Toys & Games.
Set up for a round of Anchorman: The Game by allowing each person to choose one of the character news trays. The stack of news stories, teleprompter, Whammy cards, and magnetic words (nouns, plural nouns, verbs) are set in the middle of the play area. Each player takes ten of each word type and sets them so they are easily accessible.
The included 60-second “Sex Panther” timer is set and all players, except the active anchor, take a news story and fill in the blanks with words from their own piles. The magnetic tiles hold the paper on the back of the news tray, and when placed into the teleprompter, hide the name of the person who submitted the story. Players are trying to create a news story that will force the active anchor to break character.
Once everyone has submitted their stories (Anchorman: The Game supports up to eight players), the active anchor reads the submissions one by one. If they can get through all the stories without breaking up, they receive one point. Any story that makes them crack gives the author a point. At the end of the round, the lead anchor will also select their favorite story and award the writer an additional point. All points are tracked by magnetic score tokens, which are adhered to the anchor side of the character news tray.
All used word tiles are discarded, and players draw more to replace them. The active anchor role rotates in clockwise order and another round begins in the same way. Play as many rounds as your group likes, making sure all players have an equal number of chances at being the lead anchor. The person with the most points on their news tray at the end of the game is the overall winner!
Optional Whammy cards can be implemented to change the game play. These are drawn at the beginning of each round and will feature random things like awarding bonus points to specific characters, switching word piles, or even playing a modified version of spin-the-bottle!
A second word of warning. Anchorman: The Game’s recommendation for ages 17+ is well-warranted. There are many very adult nouns and words and even more ways to arrange them into something you don’t want to share with younger audiences. If this sounds like something perfect for your game nights, pick up a copy from Amazon or direct from the publisher. If you’re curious about what else Barry & Jason Games is working on, be sure to follow them on Facebook for the latest breaking news!
Are you a fan of Anchorman? Who’s your favorite character?