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5 Second Rule Family Board Game: The Complete Guide

If you want the full lowdown on the 5 second rule family board game, then this is the guide for you! From what the 5 second rule game for kids and adults is all about to 5 second game questions you can use when playing, this article will outline all you need to know about this fun way to pass the time. And we all know that spending time for family and friends is good for your health!

Let’s begin by taking a look at the basic five second rule game rules. How do you play and why is it so called?

What is the 5 second rule family board game?

The Five Second Rule game can also be known as the name 3 things in 5 seconds game. Named like the rule that applies when a child drops food on the floor, this game involves coming up with quick answers. 

Name 3 things

In a nutshell, the 5 second rule game rules are very simple. All you have to do is name three things in 5 seconds flat. If that sounds too good to be true, then why not give it a try? You might well be surprised! 

Under that sort of time pressure, naming three foods of the same colour in that time can be trickier than you might think. Ditto trying to name three things people might drop down the back of the sofa, or a trio of famous people with the same first name. 

A fun board game for all the family

What can make this game great fun is the sort of 5 seconds answers people come out with. Some of these might be laughable, silly or even downright ludicrous. It’s really interesting to see how every member of the family reacts when they’re placed under this kind of pressure!

The five second rule board game is ideal for adults and children. From University Games, the classic edition is recommended for ages eight and up, and for three plus players. Whether for family gatherings during the festive season, a group of kids to play on a rainy day or an after-dark game for adults only, this is the quick-fire 5 second challenge that suits pretty much everyone. 

How do you play the 5 second rule board game?

5 second rule board game questions
5 second rule board game questions

So how to play, and what are the 5 second rule board game rules? As with most board games, the winner is the first player to reach the finish line. Fast thinking and nerves of steel are normally the key.

Answering the questions 

Every player takes a turn at answering the 5 second rule board game questions. These could involve any 5 second rule categories, such as naming three dog breeds or things you could paint. Five seconds isn’t long to come up with three answers – especially when you don’t know what the 5 second rule game questions list will come up with next!

Beating the timer

When answering the 5 second rule questions, all three answers must be spoken aloud before the balls reach the bottom of the timer. A player can move forward one space when they give three correct answers. If they fail to do so, the question passes to the next player, who must then supply a set of three different answers in five seconds to win the forwards move. 

5 second rule cards & the Danger Zone 

To mix things up, Switch and Pass On 5 second rule cards can help players out. Conversely, 

Danger Zones can slow players down as they mean missing a turn. If you’re concerned about the five second rule game questions being too challenging, then they’ve been written so that children aged eight can answer these name 3 things game questions as well as anyone else. 

So that’s the basic 5 second game rules covered. Now let’s move onto what editions of the board game ‘5 Second Rule’ you can buy. 

5 second rule family board game editions

5 second rule board game box
5 second rule board game box

Classic 5 second rule board game

  • Board game
  • Ages 8+
  • Players 3 – 6

The ‘Think Quick, Talk Fast’ game is available as the classic boxed edition. This comes with a total of 752 questions on 376 cards. Also in the box are 12 Pass On and 12 Switch 5 second rule game cards. 

Completing the classic edition is the game board, a set of rules and a spiral timer. There’s also 6 pieces for players to mark their space on the board with. 

Click here to shop for the classic 5 second rule game

Tinned 5 second rule game

  • Card game
  • Ages 8+
  • Players 2+

If you want a simpler, faster or more portable version, there’s an easier way than looking for 5 second rule game questions online and printing your own cards. You can buy a compact tinned version of the game, and it’s very affordable indeed to boot!

Like the classic, this one is suitable for players aged eight and upwards. Two players or more can take part. The tin includes the 5 second rule game instructions, question cards and the timer you need to check you’re providing three answers in five seconds. 

Click here to see the tinned 5 second rule game 

Junior 5 second rule board game

  • Board game
  • Ages 6+
  • Players 3 – 6

If any 5 second rule game sample questions you’ve seen make you think the game could be too challenging for a younger child, then you can buy the 5 second rule game online as a junior edition. This is aimed at kids aged six plus, so a couple of years younger than the standard version. 

The smaller, simpler version contains name 3 things questions that are easier for kids aged six or seven to answer. Such as name 3 farm animals, superheroes, zoo animals or even things you can dip in tomato ketchup! In addition to the game cards, you also get the board, the player counters and the spiral 5 second timer. 

Click here to check out the Junior 5 second rule game

Uncensored 5 second rule game

  • Card game
  • Ages 18+
  • Players 3+

If you find all the questions rather tame, then this version of the 5 second rule card game is only for grown-ups. It’s just like the tinned one, but aimed at over-18s. Like the tinned card game, you get the cards and a timer, plus a storage box (rather than a metal tin).

This variation on the classic game is made by PlayMonster, not University Games. Perhaps the latter wouldn’t be comfortable with naming three reasons to phone in sick, things you could set fire to, erogenous zones, ways to hide a fart or reasons to have a drink.

Click here to take a look at the Uncensored 5 second rule game

Travel 5 second rule card game

  • Card game
  • Ages 8+
  • Players 2+

For a more portable version, try this five second rule mini game. It comes in a cardboard tube that’s easy to carry and store anywhere, and includes the spiral timer as well as the question cards. 

Switch and Pass On cards also come with this set, and 180 questions in total are provided. Like the classic, it’s for ages eight plus. Two players or more can settle down with this one. 

Click here to view the Travel 5 second rule card game

Spintensity 5 second rule spinner game

  • Spinner game
  • Ages 14+
  • Players 3+

Spintensity offers a twist on the usual 5 second rule family game. Instead of a board you get a spinner, and there isn’t a five second limit on answering. Instead, the timer will stop randomly, so each time you play you don’t know how long you have to come up with three things. 

Once your time is up, you can spin to see what happens next. You might have to name two or three more things, pass to the next player, or take another question card. This more grown-up version is for age 14 and upwards. 

Click here to find out more about the Spintensity 5 second rule game

Electronic 5 second rule game

  • Electronic game
  • Ages 10+
  • Players 3+

The 5 second rule Spintensity board game isn’t the only version that’s different. An electronic timer comes with this one. It makes for a more modern version of the game. The buzz of the electronic timer also adds drama. 

As with the classic, Pass On and Switch cards are included. 652 topics on 326 cards are supplied, and the game is again for 3 or more players. This time the recommended age range is 10 plus. 

Click here to discover the Electronic 5 second rule game

Other versions

The seven versions of the 5 second rule game listed above aren’t the only options. As well as the junior, tinned, electronic, classic, travel, spintensity and censored games, there are some more you can choose from to ring the changes. And here four of those are!

  • Uncensored 2 | Card game | Ages 18+ | Players 3+ | Shop here
  • All New Cards | Card game | Ages 10+ | Players 3+ | Shop here
  • Disney Edition | Board game | Ages 6+ | Players 3+ | Shop here
  • 10th anniversary | Card game | Ages 10+ | Players 3+ | Shop here

5 second rule family board game FAQs

What is the 5 second rule for kids?

In general, the 5 second rule refers to food being dropped on the floor. Common wisdom has it that if you pick it up within 5 seconds, it won’t be contaminated and is therefore safe to eat! However, in reality, floors are rarely as clean as they look – and bacteria can instantly attach to the food. Wet items – such as sliced fruit – will also pick up germs more easily. 

What is the game called the 5 second rule?

The 5 second rule game is a board game. To play, each person must come up with three answers to a question in five seconds. Question cards and a timer are provided with the game. 

This board game progresses as each player moves a space for each correctly answered set of three questions. 

What age is the 5 second rule board game for?

The classic edition of the 5 second rule game is for ages eight plus. However there are other editions of the game that are suitable for younger children – namely the junior and Disney editions. Spintensity, meanwhile, is designed for ages 14 plus. 

For adults only, you can also buy the Censored and Censored 2 versions. These contain questions that are aimed at grown-ups only. Things can be slowed down – or speeded up – via Switch and Pass On cards and the Danger Zone. 

How many players is the 5 second rule game?

The classic 5 second rule game is for three to six players. There are versions, however, that can be played by only two players. These include the tinned and travel variants of the board game. 

What are some common questions in the 5 second rule game?

The name three things in five seconds game commences with a simple question. This begins with ‘name 3’ and goes on to give a specific instruction. Such as ‘name 3 vegetables’, ‘name 3 people called John’, ‘name 3 late night talk show hosts’, ‘name 3 Ivy League universities’ or ‘name 3 countries that were part of the Soviet Union’. 

The junior version includes easier questions, such as naming 3 zoo or farm animals or superheroes. There’s also a Censored 18+ adult version, which includes questions that only grown-ups would fully understand.

When will your family play the 5 second rule game?

Whether you use 5 second rule printable cards you find online or invest in one or more versions of the board, card, spinner and electronic games, there are plenty of ways you can play the smash hit board game at home or away. 

The 5 second rule card game or board game is good for sharpening the mind, as quick-thinking skills are required to come up with three answers in five seconds. From the 5 second rule junior board game for kids aged six plus to the Censored versions for adults only, this game really is one that every generation can enjoy!

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Janine Mergler

Janine Mergler is a veteran Queensland teacher, graduating from QUT with a BEd majoring in Social Sciences. After many years in the classroom, Janine moved on to academia. She has proudly trained new generations of teachers in her role as a lecturer at Queensland University of Technology Faculty of Education. She has also worked in the Queensland Government as an education specialist, developing education resources and delivering community awareness programs to help families conserve water. Currently she is the owner and editor of Families Magazine, a publication specifically targeted at parents who value a quality education for children.  Janine leads a team of professionals who write about family lifestyle, early childhood, schools and education information and family-friendly events.

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