St. Patrick's Day Drinking Games!!!

beer small

Look, Paddy's Day definitely looks very different this year, but that doesn't mean it can't be a good time!

As long as you're safe and smart about it, why not play some drinking games?! Maybe you live with enough people to play these with, or maybe you can play and socially distance yourself at the same time, but regardless these look like a lot of fun! 


1. Luck O’ The Irish

Number of Players: 4 or 6
What You Need: Deck of Cards
Who’s The Winner: Last Bloke with cards!

How To Play:

“Luck O’ The Irish” is an Irishman’s take on the classic card game “war.” The difference is, you can play with either 4 or 6 players, and you’ll need green beer to participate!

Begin by dealing out a full deck of 52 cards among all four players. Each player should have 13 cards in their starting deck. Keep the cards face down. Add a couple of Leprechauns (a.k.a. jokers) to the deck to expand the game for 6 players. Then each player will have 9 cards in their starting deck.

Two’s are the lowest, and aces the highest (unless you add jokers). Each numbered card is equal to it’s value. Jacks have a value of 11, Queens are 12, Kings are 13, and Aces are valued at 14. If you added in the jokers, they have a value of 15.

Each round consists of flipping over the top card of your deck. The person with the highest card value wins the round. The losing lads (or lasses) must drink the difference between their cards value, and the value of the winning card. For instance, if the winning card is a Jack and you flipped a 4–you must drink 7. The winner scoops up all the cards and puts them on the bottom of their pack.

Deciding The Tie

In the event that there is a tie for the highest card, any player with a lower value card must drink the difference between their card and the original winning cards value.

However, the two winners go to a tie breaker, and flip an additional 2 cards. The person with the highest sum of card values wins. The loser of that match must drink the difference between the combined winning cards values and the combined losing cards values. If there is another tie, repeat the process. The final winner gets all the cards on the table.

A player is considered knocked out of the game when they are required to play a card, and can no longer do so.

However, if two players run out of cards at the same time during a tie breaker, they collect all cards they’ve played that round (including the first) shuffle them up, and continue the tie breaker until a winner emerges.

But, if only one person runs out of cards during a tie breaker, that person is eliminated and the other person is the victor (and they get the spoils!)



2. Seamus’s Pot of Gold

Number of Players: 4+ (Add an extra pitcher for every 4 players beyond the first 4)
What You Need: Shot glasses, quarters, pitcher of beer
Who’s The Winner: Last man standing

How To Play:

Here’s a unique spin on the classic game of quarters. Each round is an elimination round, so distribute shot glasses to each player. The best way to do this at the bar is to order a round of shots to kick things off.

You’ll need a pitcher of beer, or as the name implies, Seamus’s Pot of Gold. Each person starts with a full glass of beer as well. This game is a snipers game, one shot one kill style. The goal of each round is to bounce a quarter off of the table and into your shot glass.

Before you try to bounce your quarter into your shot glass you have to take a sip of your beer. If you miss, you’re out of the round and have to finish your beer. All players take their shot at the same time. This continues until there are only 2 players left.

These two players continue until only one is left. The winning player has to bounce their quarter into the pitcher. The winner only gets one shot to do this.

If that player misses, they yell “I Lost Seamus’s Pot Of Gold” and have to take a shot of Irish whiskey. Use that pitcher to refill everyone’s cup and order a new “Seamus’ Pot Of Gold” to restart the game.

However, if they make the shot into the pitcher, they exclaim “I Found Seamus’s Pot of Gold, Drink Up My Friends!” All of the eliminated players must split the pitcher(s) and chug. Order up another pitcher and start a new game.

To add a degree of difficulty, get the tall thin double-shot glasses to play with!


3. Irish Name Game

Originally, this game was going to be titled “Murphy, Mickey, Mary, Margaret.” However, I opted for the “Irish Name Game” because it’s much simpler than the aforementioned. The premise of this game is that it’s a trivia type game with a Celtic twist.

Number of Players: 3+
What You Need: Your minds…though a smartphone will help
Who’s The Winner: Everybody wins

How To Play:

Basically, one person is designated as the game master, though you can pass this responsibility to whoever wins the round, or at your leisure. To begin a round, you’ll need to think of 3-4 common names. Ideally, 2 will be female and two will be male. However, you can make them all one sex if you like. Using unisex names definitely makes things more difficult.

The idea behind the game is to give the participants a multiple choice option by listing off several names. For instance, “Is it Peter, Paul, or Patrick?” Next, provide them a clue to a famous person (or fictional character) who has one of those names. The chosen person or character can have your choice as their first or last name.

A player rings in by slamming the table. If they guess the chosen name correctly, then they get to hand out a drink. Should the person answer incorrectly, they must take a drink and are eliminated from the round. At any point if the game stalls, you can provide additional clues until someone buzzes in. Increase the difficulty by setting a limit on the number of clues the game master can give.

Furthermore, if someone selects the correct name from the provided list, they have the option to guess the person’s full name you are thinking of. If they correctly identify the person, then all other players must take a drink. Guessing the wrong name means they must take a drink.


Given the Irish community’s’ affinity for Catholicism, we’ll take some biblical names. Ideally, the names you choose will be popular in the Irish community, though the identity you choose does not need to be Irish. Below is a mock round:

Game master: “Is it Peter, Paul, Patrick, or Ruth? This famous baseball player was known as the ‘Sultan of Swat’.”

Participant: *buzzes in* Ruth

Game Master: Correct, give out 1 drink. Which Ruth is it?

Participant: Babe Ruth (George Herman Ruth)

Game Master: Correct! Cheers everyone.

Obviously, this was an over simplified version. However, this is the concept of the game. The game master will need to make the clues progressively easier to ensure players can get the answer. If all of the players give up, they take a drink and the person reveals the secret identity. With a little knowledge, and the help of your smartphone this can provide lots of entertainment.

Here’s a list of some names to get you started:

  • Murphy (Eddie Murphy, Brittany Murphy, Daniel Murphy)
  • Mickey (Mickey Rourke, Mickey Mouse, Mickey Rooney, Mickey Mantle)
  • Kate (Kate Beckinsale, Kate Hudson, Kate Winslet)
  • Sean (Sean Bean, Sean Connery, Sean Penn, Sean “Puffy” Combs)
  • Catherine/Katherine (Katherine Hepburn, Katherine Zeta-Jones, Kathy Ireland)


4. Diffuse The Irish Car Bomb

Number of Players: 3+
What You Need: Glass of Guinness, Lots of Coasters, Shot of Baileys
Who’s The Winner: Whoever doesn’t get bombed!

How To Play:

Alright, here’s a fun drinking game based on the timeless drink, The Irish Car Bomb. You’ll need a bunch of coasters. The thin ones work the best and the ingredients for the Irish Car Bomb itself.

Get a pint of Guinness, and add your 1/4 shot of Irish Whiskey on top. Next, put 1/4 shot of coffee liqueur and a 1/2 shot of Bailey’s (Irish Cream) into a shot glass. Setup the coasters on top of the pint glass, with the shot glass centered above the pint.

I’ve found that using 3 coasters to make a triangle opening for the shot glass to sit on makes the best base. I recommend making this opening as wide as possible, so that any other coaster could tip the shot into the Guinness.

Add additional coasters to make the game last longer. Make sure the shot glass stays centered over the pint, as players take turns removing the coasters. Whoever causes the shot glass to fall has just set off the Irish Car Bomb and must chug the drink.