Scattergories Lists to Play With Your Friends

Updated on October 10, 2019
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My name is Tatiana, but my friends and family call me Tutta. I like writing articles that help bring people closer together.

Learning to Play Scattergories

Scattergories is very easy to learn how to play because the directions are straightforward and simple. You do not even have to have a table or a lot of room for a good game. The best part is the game enables you to really use your mind and learn!

Unlike many of the popular board games, it does not rely on moving a game piece or collecting cards to progress. Scattergories is all about exercising your creative thinking skills!

The game starts with the roll of a huge die with 20 different sides (certain letters of the alphabet are not on the die because they are just too difficult). Four players have a specific period of time to think of a word that fits each category and begin with the letter rolled. Although this sounds really easy, it is harder than you may think...

Every word you choose has to be unique and creative because if another player chooses the same word first, you do not get any points.

A good example is a topic is "Animal." If the first letter is "D," then "dog" will be a very common answer. A more unique answer would be a dachshund or a dalmatian because the other players are less likely to come up with these answers.

Learning how to think quickly and strategically will help ensure you score more points than your friends!

Creating Scattegories Lists

Scattergories comes with ten lists, and because the first letter of each word is always different, there is plenty of playability. While the die introduces a random element to each round, the list order can become repetitive if this is one of your favorite games (speaking from experience).

While you're given plenty of category cards, I find that it's even more fun when you create your own lists.

There are a couple of ways to do this, but my favorite way is to have everyone write down a bunch of categories on paper and put them all in a bowl. Then draw 12 categories from the bowl and roll the die! After the round, draw 12 new categories and start again!

If you don't know what makes a good Scattergories list, then here are some example lists to get those creative juices flowing!

Example Scattergories Lists

1st List

  1. Old-fashioned boy's name
  2. Items that are frozen
  3. Television shows from 2000
  4. Rivers
  5. Vegetables
  6. Things that are yellow
  7. Trees
  8. Marching band instruments
  9. College subjects
  10. Dishes made from pasta
  11. Books about animals
  12. Insects

2nd List

  1. Types of sports
  2. Poems
  3. Parts of the human body
  4. Old fashioned girl's name
  5. Ethnic dishes
  6. Types of transportation
  7. School supplies
  8. Items found in a library
  9. Types of birds
  10. Flowers
  11. Types of shoes
  12. Halloween costumes

3rd List

  1. Foods found in a submarine
  2. Politicians
  3. Flavors of ice cream
  4. Reasons a child is grounded
  5. Television actors
  6. Semi-precious gemstones
  7. Country foods
  8. Types of balls
  9. Animals in zoos
  10. Things in the circus
  11. Things found in a park
  12. Types of cats

4th List

  1. Book authors
  2. Countries
  3. Things that are round
  4. Types of clothing
  5. Games played at recess
  6. Mammals
  7. Countries
  8. Types of relatives
  9. Holidays around the world
  10. Fruits
  11. Things found in a forest
  12. Colors

5th List

  1. Sports stars
  2. Restaurants
  3. Villains
  4. Toys
  5. Weapons
  6. Things that are square
  7. Things used by a bodybuilder
  8. Things in the bathroom
  9. Types of exercises
  10. Desserts
  11. Newspapers
  12. Things found in space

More Scattergories List Examples

6th List

  1. States
  2. Tools
  3. Things found in a cafeteria
  4. Things found on a farm
  5. Fears
  6. Sweet things
  7. Dental procedures
  8. Perfumes
  9. Types off candy
  10. Accessories
  11. Things used by the handicapped
  12. Sounds animals make

7th List

  1. Things that are hot
  2. Breakfast foods
  3. Graduation gifts
  4. Types of drinks
  5. Things found in the ocean
  6. Hobbies
  7. Child actresses
  8. Types of cheese
  9. Types of transportation
  10. Reasons to be late
  11. Professions

8th List

  1. Things that are cold
  2. Toppings for pizza
  3. Colleges
  4. Things with spots
  5. Things from the Civil War
  6. Items in a dresser drawer
  7. Ways to relax
  8. Ethnicity's
  9. Things found in the sky
  10. Figures from history
  11. Types of drugs
  12. Types of bread

9th List

  1. Fictional characters
  2. Items on a lunch menu
  3. Magazines
  4. State capitals
  5. Things with tails
  6. Crimes
  7. Vanilla items
  8. Types of popcorn
  9. Large ticket items
  10. Items in Grandma's kitchen
  11. Dog toys
  12. Items found in the backyard

10th List

  1. Sticky things
  2. Awards
  3. Types of vehicles
  4. Herbs
  5. Cosmetics
  6. Utensils for cooking
  7. Bad habits
  8. Scandals
  9. Reptiles
  10. Leisure activities
  11. Monthly expenses
  12. Things found at a construction site

Establishing Friendly Game Guidelines

The most common issue involves the Scattergories lists because the players will often argue as to whether or not certain words are acceptable. A few good examples are:

  • if "red apple" if acceptable for "R,"
  • "crystal bowl" for "C,"
  • if a turtle can be considered a type of transportation,
  • if a specific street name exists somewhere on the globe, and
  • if hamburgers can be found in a park.

The correct answer is dependent on the way the players think. Players are not going to fight very hard to help one of their competitors score extra points. This is why it is important to play with friends or at least a group of people who know one another and get along fairly well.

It is important to remember Scattergories is a game created for enjoyment and fun, not arguing about what words are acceptable and which ones are not. In some cases, this issue can be resolved by appointing an independent referee. Just remember, friends can accept unacceptable words more easily instead of letting things get out of hand.

It is important to be graceful if one of your words is not accepted or when another player receives a point even though you thought their word was incorrect. Make sure you're still friends, before and after you play!


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    • profile image


      19 hours ago

      great list to play with my family. Last time we were short of refill sheets and we were looking for a solution. Fortunately we found this on Amazon -

    • profile image


      7 weeks ago

      Juice kangaroo trucks New York video games corner store Mario jelly fish trolls wouild tour fairy tales cupcakes juan

    • profile image


      9 months ago

      Thank you for the new list!

    • profile image

      Blessed grandma 

      12 months ago

      Thank you for the great lists for the Scattergories Game, I wanted to take our boxed game to our family reunion next week along with a few other games but the Scattergories game box is big so just taking the printed word lists, timer, dice cube, pens, and paper will be fun and much easier. Creating lists sounds like fun also so we will probably try to play that way also.


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