Think you know your friends? It’s time to put your money (and your taste buds) where your mouth is.
Hot Ones: Truth or Dab The Game takes the best (maybe the worst?) of the Hot Ones talk show and makes it all easy to play at home. You don’t have to know the show to enjoy the game — but you do have to have a handle on your spice.
The first step — if you choose — is to order some wings from your fave restaurant. Rather than eating them in a nice restaurant with a glass of beer, you are going to use them as a torture device (just like the show!). The game recommends buying them naked (not you, the wings!) and dousing them in the sauce provided in the box. You can also just buy the spiciest wings your local chicken joint has to offer if you don’t trust hot sauce provided to you by a game.
Those who don’t eat wings can put the sauce on a snack of choice or use the included spoons. Just make sure to have three to four of whatever hot sauce vestibule you’re using for each player.
When your order comes, grab some milk and two to five other players to get started. Make sure to shuffle the cards and then make a pile of black cards and a pile of white. The youngest player gets to pretend they’re Sean Evans (the host) first and the person to their left acts as the interviewee. The host asks a question on a card from the black card pile and if the contestant doesn’t want to answer — they take a dab of hot sauce or eat the chicken wing.
The black cards include 150 truth cards, 25 pop quizzes, 34 roasts, and 10 BFF trivia cards. “Contestants” either have to answer a question (get it wrong and dab), share their secrets (don’t and dab), or allow their friends to roast them based on a certain topic (or save their feelings and dab instead).
The cards are all pretty fiery. You may be asked which family member of someone in the room you want to sleep with or rank everyone by their intellectuality. Basically, sometimes if you don’t choose the hot sauce, someone’s going to hate you.
A little background about me, your trusty reviewer, I kind of assumed the hot sauce wouldn’t be hot at all. There are two types of dads in the world: Ones who can’t handle more spice than salt and those who add hot sauce to EVERYTHING. My dad was the latter — seriously I feel like my name was almost Tabasco — and always insisted that things he had me try weren’t spicy. I would constantly find out two seconds later that his taste buds must have died in the ’80s because dear God, yes, Dad, Ghost Peppers are actually spicy.
Because of this, I built a pretty good tolerance for heat. So when I say the included hot sauce made my mouth feel like what I imagine the inside of a stove is like — I mean it. The directions on the game say there is no right or wrong amount to dab. If you’re going the spoon route instead of the wing route (side note: the spoons flip open and it’s adorable) make sure to only fill them up with how comfortable you are. Don’t let your friends peer pressure you like a seventh-grader doing the cinnamon challenge.
Once each player has acted as the contestant the round is over. To celebrate, one player picks up a white card and each person has to try to one-up the others on whatever it says. All players need to respond and all players need to vote on who has the worst response (it’s your decision what these means but the best route is the least funny). You may be asked to rap a verse of a song or share an awkward social media mishap. Some of the prompts get kind of raunchy so if you’re the kind of person who turns bright red when embarrassed, maybe just wear some extra foundation that day. At any point in the game, people can challenge those who they think are lying and that person will have to dab unless they come up with the receipts, so be sure to stay truthful even if you turn into a tomato.
Two things can be certain for those playing this game: You’re going to learn some things you wish you didn’t know, and you’re going to have a hell of a good time doing it. Gameplay can go on as long as you’d like it to, as there aren’t really any clear winners — although everyone can feel like a loser at some point. Players can adapt the game to our dumpster fire of a year by choosing the box’s owner to act as the host and meeting virtually.
Good luck, and make sure to grab the milk.