Tabletop Review: ‘What Do You Meme? Family Edition’ Is Good, Silly Fun

Entertainment Games

Lately, I often feel that I need a game that’s quick, easy, and fun to play without a lot of hassle and work. That’s where games like What Do You Meme? come in. Recently, newer editions have released including a What Do You Meme? Family Edition, where the offerings are a bit more appropriate for the whole family. I thought our fourth-grader, A, would get a kick out of trying this out, so I was excited to receive a copy for reviewing purposes. 

What Is What Do You Meme? Family Edition?

What Do You Meme? Family Edition is a card-based game where you match captions to meme images with a similar play mechanic to Apples to Apples or Cards Against Humanity. This version is intended for 3-20+ players ages 8+ and takes between 30-90 minutes to play. It has an MSRP of $19.99.

What Do You Meme? Family Edition Components

Components from ‘What Do You Meme? Family Edition.’ Photo by Elizabeth MacAndrew.

What Do You Meme? Family Edition contains the following:

  • 1 Instruction Booklet
  • 300 Caption Cards
  • 65 Photo Cards
  • 1 Easel

At first look, it’s mostly what you would expect from this sort of card-combining game. The Caption Cards are all playing card size and thickness and contain funny but family-appropriate sayings. (Prepare for some fart- and poop-related jokes.) The Photo Cards are actually larger but the same card thickness. Anyone who is familiar with popular pictures used for memes will see some familiar faces and situations from among the choices. The Easel is thinner cardboard and may end up a victim after being played with by kids for long enough, but is not the most necessary piece. It does allow you to prop up the Photo Cards for all to see, but anyone who has played similar games is probably used to playing without one.

Overall, it’s probably right within the price range for the number of components and overall quality. 

How to Play What Do You Meme? Family Edition

One of the best parts of What Do You Meme? Family Edition is how fast it is to set up and game and learn to play.

Goal

The goal of What Do You Meme? Family Edition is to win the most Photo Cards by coming up with the funniest Caption Card/Photo Card combos. The target number of Photo Cards needed to win varies by the number of players with 3 Player Games needing 7 Cards, 4-5 Player Games needing 5 Cards, and 6+ Player Games needing 4 Cards.

Setup

The setup for a game of ‘What Do You Meme? Family Edition’ along with one Player’s hand face down. Photo by Elizabeth MacAndrew.

The game takes very little setting up, which is extra nice. The hardest thing we had to do was get all of the card decks out of the plastic wrap for the first time playing.

This is what you need to do in order to set the game up:

  1. Put the Photo Cards and Caption Cards into piles everyone can reach. There will probably need to be more than one pile of Caption Cards. Leave space for a Discard Pile.
  2. Set out the Easel.
  3. Let each Player draw 7 Caption Cards. 

The game is now ready to play. At the beginning of a new game you may wish to shuffle the Caption Cards, but it’s not even necessary.

Gameplay 

Playing Rounds

In a 3 Player Game, the Judge must decide which of these choices wins. Photo by Elizabeth MacAndrew.

Like setup, the gameplay is actually pretty fast and fun. For a full round, each player takes a turn being the Judge (starting with the youngest). When you are the judge you do the following:

  1. Select a Photo Card and place it on the Easel for all the Players to see.
  2. The Players then try to make the funniest Photo Card to Caption Card match they can with the Caption Cards in their hand. The Players pass their choice to the Judge face-down and select a new card from the Caption Deck for their hand.
  3. The Judge reads all the choices aloud and, as hilarity ensues, they must select their favorite Caption Card.
  4. The Player with the winning Caption Card takes the Photo Card as a trophy and the used Caption Cards go into the Discard Pile.
  5. Judging moves to the player to the left of the previous judge.

Game End

A winning hand of Photo Cards. Photo by Elizabeth MacAndrew.

The game ends when one player gains the target number of Photo Cards and is declared the winner:

  • 3 Player Game – 7 Cards
  • 4-5 Player Game – 5 Cards
  • 6+ Player Game – 4 Cards

Why You Should Play What Do You Meme? Family Edition?

What Do You Meme? Family Edition is a great game for families or large groups that is easy to play and brings out a lot of laughs. 

The components match up well for a game that’s in the $20 dollar range, and the variety of Photo Cards and Caption Cards should help the game not feel stale and create lots of hilarious combinations. Setup is super easy and it means clean up will be just as fast, which is often a big bonus in me for games I want to play with our kids.

The gameplay mechanics are easy for casual gamers and kids to catch onto. For kids, there’s a real learning exercise in trying to judge the emotion in the Photo Card and find a caption to reflect that. The biggest challenge for players is knowing your audience. What one Player finds to be the funniest isn’t always what another Player thinks is the funniest. This can sometimes be trickier for kids to catch onto, but even A, our oldest, started to catch onto the fact that captions about being parents won my husband and me over more than the fart joke ones. (He, on the other hand, loved the fart joke cards.) The age suggestion is probably just about right, although if you have a kid close to age 8 who’s gotten pretty decent at a similar game like Apples to Apples, you can probably go ahead and deal them in.

While the idea of X number of Photo Cards to win is nice when you need to limit how long a game plays for, I often find that with a large group we play for several hours and are so busy laughing at shenanigans that we don’t check who has the most until we end the game and it’s mostly an afterthought. The beauty of this game is that it really feels less about competition and more about the fun you have along the way. It’s one of the few games really good for large groups, and if you’re casually playing, it’s easy to just squeeze in another player as someone is added to the group.

The game has an MSRP of $19.99, making it justifiable for picking up on your own or gifting to another family. You can get a copy via the official site, Target, or Amazon.

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