The best drinking game you've never played.

First, get a bunch of people together who want to drink. Everyone picks a name ending in "-shit" -- for example: Dogshit, Horseshit, Shi-tzu-shit, Newtshit, Clintonshit, Pikachushit, Drew Carey Shit.

One person (whom we shall call "It") starts by saying, "Someone shit in the parlor." Everyone else asks, "Who shit?" Then "It" accuses one of the players. The accused player protests his or her innocence by saying, "Bullshit!" Eager to discover the truth, "It" asks "Who shit?" The accused player makes an accusation against another player, who protests their innocence, etc. If anyone fucks up, they have to drink and start the next game.

So a game can go something like this:

Itshit: Someone shit in the parlor!
All: Who shit?
Itshit: Batshit!
Batshit: Bullshit!
Itshit: Who shit?
Batshit: Bugshit!
Bugshit: Bullshit!
Batshit: Who shit?
Bugshit: Sheepshit!
Sheepshit: Bullshit!
Bugshit: Who shit?
Sheepshit: Apeshit!
Apeshit: Bullshit!
Sheepshit: Who shit?
Apeshit: Drunkshit!
Drunkshit: Uh, bullshit!
Apeshit: Who shit?
Drunkshit: Uh...Uhh...

A few points of strategy: (1) The faster you go, the more confused your hapless opponents will become. (2) Pick a name that sounds like "shit", rhymes with "shit", starts with an "sh" or "ch" sound, etc., because your shitfaced comrades won't be able to pronounce it. (3) Try staring at one person while you say another person's name -- one or the other is likely to think you're talking to someone else and totally fuck up big time.

Happy binge drinking, all!

By Damian Yerrick and "Poiman".

Copyright (c) 2002 Damian Yerrick.
Copyright (c) 2002 Wikipedia Contributors.
Permission is granted to copy, distribute and/or modify this document under the terms of the GNU Free Documentation License, Version 1.1 or any later version published by the Free Software Foundation; with no Invariant Sections, no Front-Cover Texts, and no Back-Cover Texts. A copy of the license is included in the writeup entitled "GNU Free Documentation License".

This page courtesy of The Everything Development Company.

Bullshit, also called I Doubt It, is a card game in which each of three to eight players tries to get rid of eir hand by playing cards in sequence and lying if they cannot do that. It has a high ratio of fun to learning curve. It is mostly played by children and thus also mostly known as "BS".


The entire deck is dealt one card at a time face-down to each player. It is generally considered more important to have every card in play than for each player to start with exactly the same amount. The center of the table will hold a pile of cards played during the game. Play starts with whoever has the two of clubs in their hand and continues in a direction chosen in advance.

On each turn, the player must play the cards he has of a certain rank, one above the rank played by the previous player (twos, then threes, then fours). He selects the cards to play, announces how many he is playing and their rank ("two fours"), and places them facedown in the pile in the center. If he doesn't actually have the cards he needs to play at least one of the correct rank, he is supposed to bluff (lie about it), hence the name of the game.

After each player takes his turn and before the next player has, any of the other players can yell out "BS" to challenge the cards that were just played. In some games, the players agree to either wait before playing their turn so other players can think carefully about challenging, or to rapidly take their turns to put more pressure on challengers. When a player yells out to challenge, they turn over enough cards from the top of the pile to decide if the cards that were just played were legitimate (this should be the number of the cards that the player who just took his turn announced; however, it is generally acceptable to turn over more if cheating as described later is suspected). If it turns out that the player played the amount and rank of cards that he announced, the challenger takes the whole pile that had accumulated in the center. If the player was bluffing and did not put down what he announced, he takes the whole pile.

Depending on how you want to play, either the first player to get rid of all his cards (and not lose any challenge on his final play) is the winner, or the last player with cards remaining is the loser. Since Bullshit is almost never played for money or other stakes, players who don't have cards because they've already won can make a challenge that they intend to lose so they can get cards to continue playing.


Calculate ahead which cards you will need for the next few rounds so you can maximize your legitimate plays and bluff away the cards you won't be able to use legitimately.

Call BS on purpose to get cards you'll need in 13, 26, etc. turns.

Form alliances.

Hide your nose.


While bluffing is a necessary rule of the game, there are additional ways to cheat that are unacceptable. Why someone would cheat in this game is not obvious, since it is rarely played for money or anything other than fun. Nonetheless, cheating is prevalent in Bullshit. Probably the most common technique is to hide cards from your hand so you don't have to play them. Another is to announce the number of legitimate cards you will play but also slip extra cards below them. If you are challenged and the challenger turns over only the number you announced, it is impossible to detect this cheat. However, challengers rarely turn over only the number you announced. Other techniques can be adopted from those of the game of poker.


"" by Damian Yerrick in 2002, available at

"Bullshit: encyclopedia article from Wikipedia" by Poiman in 2002, available at

Believe it or not, there exists a two-player variant of this game, which is also known as Cheat and I Doubt It.


Of course, you'll want a standard 52-card deck of playing cards (I guess you could play with jokers, but I don't see the point). The entire deck should be dealt out.

Object of the game

The object of the game is to get rid of all cards in the hand.


The player holding the Ace of Spades must first place that card face-up in the pile. The other player gets 2s. The first player gets 3s and so on like this. From king, it goes back to ace until one player his eliminated all of his cards.

Decisions on the turn

A player may either pass or play a card.


A player's turn is skipped.

Playing a card

The player will play any number of cards (more than four, however, is not advisable) face-down and announce their number and rank (e.g., "3 tens").


The bluff is an integral part of this game. You obviously won't have the cards you need every time. However, especially in the two-player version, this can be difficult, because the opposing player has two weapons to combat the bluff.


The challenger says "I doubt it," "cheat," or "bullshit." The other player's cards are turned face-up. If the challenged player was bluffing, he must take the entire pile into his hand. However, if the cards are correct, the challenging player must take the pile into his hand.


The challenger says "force." If the challenged player cannot produce a card of the correct rank from his hand, he must take the pile. If he can, however, the challenger must take the pile.

There are some interesting strategies for this game. The first couple times, you'll probably get your friends by claiming to play all four cards of a rank and bluffing—chances are they'll try a force.

You should realize that this game takes a really long time to play and can be grueling.

You can also use these rules with more than two players, if it strikes your fancy.

This is a variation of the card game Bullshit that I learned in Middle School in Portland, Oregon. We called it "Holt BS", but only because we learned it from a teacher named Holt. This version involves a ton more lying than the traditional version, and is quite a bit more chaotic. Having played both, I don't know why anyone would ever go back.


Deal out an entire 52-card deck between the players. If you have more than 6 players, you can use an extra deck. Anywhere between 3 and 10 people can play this game, but it is probably best with 4 to 8.

Variation: Deal out an extra hand that will not be used in the game. This makes it so that the actual number of each card in play is not known.


The first person to get rid of all of their cards is the winner.


The game starts by picking one person to have the lead for the first round. This can be whoever won the last game, or can just be chosen randomly. All subsequent rounds are led by whomever played the last card in the previous round.

In Bullshit, whenever you play cards, they are placed face down in the center of the playing area (a pile of played cards will accumulate). When doing so, you must announce the number you are playing, and say their supposed value ("two fours"). It is acceptable to lie about the value of the cards being played, but not about the number that you are playing ("two fours" can be a five and a king, but can't be three fours).

Gameplay is broken up into rounds. At the begining of each round, the player with the lead puts some number of cards in the middle and declares the number and type, as described above. It is now open season on that card type: any player can play any number of them into the center at any time during the round. (If the player with the lead opens with "one three", all other players play "threes" that round, or at least try to declare that their eights and jacks are "threes" with a straight face). When no more players want to play cards of that value, whoever played the last one begins the next round with whatever card type they want.

Any player may at any time call "bullshit" (or "BS") on the last cards played. When bullshit is called, the play stops, and the appropriate number of cards are revealled to see if the last player was lying. If that player was lying, she takes the entire pile of cards, and the player that called "bullshit" leads the next round. If the cards reveal that the player was telling the truth, the caller takes the pile and the person who was called gets to lead the next round.

It is generally good form to wait at least a second or two between plays to give people time to call "bullshit". Don't count on it though - if play is going quickly you may have to cover up the pile when calling "bullshit", rejecting all cards played after your call.

A typical round using one deck and 3 players might sound like this:

Player A has the lead.
Player A: One four.
Player B: Two fours.
Player A: One four.
Player C: One four.
Player A: One four.
Player A looks around suspiciously
Player A: One four.
Player A: One four.
Long pause.
Player A: One four.
Player B: One four. Anyone?
Player B laughs in triumph and begins the next round.

You will notice that there were ten "fours" played in that round. Eight or ten cards played in each round is not at all uncommon in this version of bullshit.


Obviously, to be good at this game, you have to be good at lying. And then lie. A lot.

Save the Best for Last:
It is a natural tendency to assume that the more cards that have been played that round, the more likely it is that people are going to lie. After all, you would expect all the legitimate cards to be used up already. To take advantage of this, you should save your legitimate cards for the end of the round, and play a lot of junk early on.

The Lead:
To get rid of your last card and win the game, you pretty much have to have the lead so you can play it without lying (there is no reason for people not to call "bullshit" on your last card). But having the lead is a big help during the rest of the game too. The person with the lead picks the card type that people will be playing, so if you have the lead, you can pick a card that you have a lot of. Not only will this let you get rid of more legitimate cards, but will make the other players extra cautious of calling you.

The easiest way to get the lead is to play the last card in a round. Save one legitimate card until the very end - hold onto it right up until people are asking if it's time to start the next round. If one of the other players is looking suspicious, they are probably holding out too; just relax and wait for them to play their card.

Four of a Kind:
If you've picked up the pile recently, chances are good that you have all four of a particular card. To use this effectively, you should pick a bunch of cards to use as your bullshit cards, and then get the lead. When you play your first "four kings", players will most likely look around and go "ok, next round?". That's when you lay down "another four kings". Look smug like you tricked them - good work! Let them laugh it off before you play "another four kings". In my experience, the third set should probably be your actual kings because players will get fed up with you and call "bullshit".

Avoidance of Calling "Bullshit":
A truly ridiculous amount of lying goes on in this game, particularly because it is not in a player's interest to call bullshit on a pile of fours until she has already played her fours. You can lay down two or three junk cards at the begining of the round pretty safely. On the other hand, some player's first play of the round is always a lie, and you can quickly get the lead and start a new round by calling them on it.

Cards in Hand:
Most people naturally arrange their hand from low to high as soon as they pick it up. Do not do this! If you see other players do this, you will be able to call them based on where the cards come from out of their hand. Grouping numbers together (without putting them all in order) helps you avoid missing a legitimate play, but there is something to be said for the looks you get when you pull three cards from completely different parts of your hand and claim they are all eights.

My friends and I came up with a variant of the card game Bullshit tonight that is a total mindfuck (in a good way). The strategy involved in playing this game is off the charts, as is the potential for bluffing.


The setup and rules are the same as normal bullshit with a few key variations. As with normal Bullshit, deal out all 52 cards in the deck. The player (or one of the players) with the most cards goes first. Beginning with aces, that player may discard (face down) any number of putative "aces" between 1 and 4 aces, or they may "pass." The next player then has to discard a number of "aces" between 1 and 4 or pass, and so on. This brings us to the key rule change: namely, the card to be played remains on aces until all players "pass" in a row. Only then does play move on to the twos. You will find it convenient if each player announces the new total number of cards played, such as saying "8 aces" when adding 2 alleged "aces" to 6 previously discarded "aces."

Calling Bullshit

Any player may call "bullshit" on the last cards played. The cards are then turned over and the discard pile is given to whoever lied or guessed wrong, just as in regular Bullshit. However, once "bullshit" is called, whether correct or not, play advances immediately to the next card number, even if not all players have passed in a row on the previous number.

Winning the game

As with regular Bullshit, the game ends when one player successfully discards all of their hand.


As you can see, there is much more potential for bluffing in this version of the game. The number of alleged "aces" or "tens" or "jacks" or whatever can easily rise to 10 or 12 before somebody finally calls "bullshit" or all players pass. Players can set traps for other players by passing or bluffing even when they have the cards, or by slow-playing their cards of that number. Players can also orchestrate complex serial bluffs in which some cards are the right cards and others are not.

There is also significantly less luck in the outcome of the game. Players are allowed to pass, meaning that nobody is ever forced to bluff. Indeed, unlike regular Bullshit, where almost everything depends on the hand you are dealt and table position, in this variant almost everything depends on the players' actions and decisions, making the hand dealt and table position nearly irrelevant.

Calling bullshit is a delicate proposition in this version because as certainty increases (because you have some of those cards in your hand), the cost of calling increases as well (because those cards will be orphaned once "bullshit" is called and play moves on to the next number).

Ultimately, victory will go to the player who is best at sniffing out opponents' tells and strategically calling their bluffs, while simultaneously managing their own hand successfully and bluffing judiciously.

This game has many levels and will keep you thinking of moves and counter moves for a very long time. It's like rock paper scissors on steroids with regard to how far the I-know-you-know-that-I-know-that-you-know chain can go.

A Final Word of Warning

This game can be deeply frustrating (due to the uncertainty involved in each decision) but also crazy amounts of fun. If you do decide to inflict this deliciously nasty little card game on your friends, I would very much be interested in hearing your thoughts!

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