Good with Faces: A Mental Dexterity Game?


Playing a handful of dexterity games in the past few months has really given me some inspiration for how to apply these mechanisms to a game that doesn't require such able-bodied play.

My first thought is the Memory genre, which doesn't get much of a spotlight outside of some kids' games. It seemed to me that the tension of a rising Jenga tower could be translated to remembering a long sequence of randomized data.

Tonight I'm testing a little party game called Good with Faces, which aims to do to the memory mechanism what Wits and Wagers did for trivia. Namely, you don't have to be good at the actual mechanism, but recognize which players are good and bet for or against them. Below is one of the variants I'll be trying out.



  • A random player takes the first turn.
  • On your turn, you shuffle the face cards and set the deck face down.
  • Reveal the top card, look at it briefly, and set it it face down in a central lane.
  • Continue this until you've seen the whole deck in order and placed all the cards in the lane.
  • All other players secretly bet how many faces you can remember in the proper sequence.
  • Whatever number each player picks is the payout if correct, or penalty of incorrect. If you bet exactly the number that the active player got correct, you get double the payout.
  • Now starting from the first card, state out loud what you believe it to be, then reveal it.
  • Continue revealing cards until you get your first face wrong, thus ending the round.
  • Pay out bets.
    • For example, at the end of this round you remembered three faces correctly.
    • Bob bet you could remember five faces, so he lost five points.
    • Jane bet that you could remember one, and you did, so she gets one point.
    • Alex bet that you could remember three faces, which is exactly right, so she gets double the normal payout, which is six points.
  • The next player takes their turn in the hot seat to begin the process again.

For advanced variants or future rounds, there are first names and last names to remember in the sequence as well. In the examples above, those would be Tasha Ellis and Janie Carne. I'll try it with just faces first and see how it goes.
Daniel Solis
Art Director by Day. Game Designer by Night.