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Few memories are more vivid to me from my Freshman year of college than playing Super Smash Brothers in my buddy’s dorm room. Albeit, I wasn’t the best player, but pregaming a Badger tailgate while trying to avoid Kirby’s annoying-ass rock move was a memory that I will always cherish. Nintendo has shrewdly decided to play into this nostalgia by bringing Super Smash Bros to college football tailgates across the nation this Fall, starting with the Stanford vs Oregon game next weekend. And while the ability to play Smash Bros at a football tailgate is appealing, it got me thinking about how it would compete against the other tailgating competition staples that frequent parking lots across the U.S. To ensure a quick read so you can get back to scrolling Twitter, I narrowed it down to five.
5. Finger Game
I was really debating between standard cards and the Finger Game for this last spot, but I decided on the former mostly because it gives you more opportunities to drink booze you wouldn’t otherwise drink – namely, college-brand alcohol that somehow made its way into your possession. The finger game is easy to pick up for newbies and also requires very limit skill or guile to play. The only downside is the controversy it often creates following a particularly contentious final showdown.
4. Beer Pong
Like Smash Bros, beer pong is probably better indoors due to things like wind, the presence of cars and the higher probability that you’ll lose the ball in the vast expanse of the parking lot. That said, being able to compete with other tailgating groups, especially visiting fans from opposing teams, helps get the competitive juices flowing. While you can’t act out your hatred for Ohio State on the football field, the ability to convincingly sweep a group of Buckeyes from the table was one of my fondest memories of Badger football tailgating. And yes, we did end up losing that game on the field…maybe next year.
3. Corn Hole
This might be my favorite tailgating game, mostly because I get better when I’m about three beers deep. Balancing the weight of the corn bag in your right hand with a koozied-up tall boy in your left is a great feeling. Plus, it requires minimal movement and effort, making it a perfect reprieve from your reservation at the snacks table. That said, much like beer pong, the only real limitation of this game, outside of the arguments around board styles, is that it’s basically limited to four people. There are few things more boring than watching someone try to hit the hole.
2. Dizzy Bat
I’m bad at dizzy bat. How bad? Freshman year, I busted my face at the Mifflin block party. Since then, I’ve tried to avoid it at parties and tailgates as my balance tends to be worse than my hangover on Sundays. That said, few things are more exciting than taking an Instagram video of a friend trying to hit a crushed Busch Light can after 6 successive spins. It’s a great spectator sport, which I appreciate.
1. Flip Cup
I’m hoping this top pick isn’t as contentious as my Always Sunny ranking. Flip Cup is undoubtedly the best tailgating game for numerous aspects. One, it lets everyone from the party get involved, which is a great way to enact a bit of peer pressure on the stragglers of the group. Two, the bigger the game gets, the more entertaining it becomes. The drinking component aside, the competitive aspect of the game isn’t as overbearing as corn hole but still allows for a significant amount of friendly shit-talking when your buddy inevitably chokes as the anchor. Here’s hoping everyone gets to win at least one game on Saturday. .
Image via YouTube / Michael from Texas A&M