How to Play 2 Truths and a Lie

And Inspiration for Your Statements

Students talking
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Two Truths and a Lie is an easy ice breaker game, and you won't need any materials—just a group of people. Also known as Two Truths, One Lie or Two Truths and One Not, it is ideal for 10 to 15 people. If you have a larger gathering, divide people up into teams so it doesn't take longer than 15 to 20 minutes to get through everyone.

How to Play Two Truths and a Lie

The main instructions of the game are that each member of the group introduces themselves by stating two truths and one lie about themselves. The statements don't have to be intimate, life-revealing things—just simple hobbies, interests, or past experiences that make each person unique. The lie can be outrageous and wacky, or it can sound like a truth to make it harder for the other participants. 

One at a time, each person shares their statements. The group has to guess which statements are true and which statement is the lie. You can keep score to see who correctly guesses the most lies, or just play for fun to get to know one another—it's up to your group.

Tips for Playing

When giving your own two truths and a lie, be sure to speak slowly and clearly on all three statements. Some players opt to stick with three short and simple statements to avoid giving away too much information with tone or body language. Others choose a theme to stick with for their statements: "Hi, I'm John. I used to have blue hair. I drive a blue car. And, I love blueberries."

Some people use two boring statements (one of which is the lie) and one outrageous statement which is surprisingly true. The group is likely to fall for the trick and pick the unbelievable statement as the lie even though it is true.

Others make two unbelievable statements that are both true with one believable statement that is false. The group will likely choose one of the unbelievable statements as false.

When guessing the lies of the others in your group, watch for changes in tone, rate of speech, voice changes, and nervous body language, all of which could be signs that the statement someone is giving is a lie. You can always ask them to repeat their statements, as well. 

In the instance that you're in a group with someone you already know well, don't give away the lie and rob the other players of a chance to get to know that person. Hold your comments and speak up only at the end if no one else gets it. Afterward, you can share how you know that person.  

Once you get started, gameplay is super easy and can be very funny. You'll often find that some people's truths are more unbelievable than their lie.

Examples

A woman named Mary could introduce herself this way: "Hi, I'm Mary. My hair was almost to my waist in high school. I talked to Cher in an airport coffee shop. And, I speak four languages." Many people might assume that talking to Cher in an airport would be the most unlikely of the three, and choose that as the lie. But it's not impossible. And it could be that Mary doesn't speak four languages, or maybe her hair was never that long.

Here is another example for a boy named Brian: "Hello, I'm Brian. When I was six, I fell off my bike and broke my arm. My older sister attends Harvard. And, I've been on television before." Maybe Brian did fall off his bike, but he broke is nose, not his arm. Or, his sister attends a different college—maybe he doesn't even have a sister! Either way, you'll learn some fun facts about him.

Sample Statements

If you're getting ready to play Two Truths and a Lie, here are a few sample statements to give you inspiration:

  • I love horror movies.
  • I have never been ice skating.
  • I can't stay awake past 10 p.m.
  • I am afraid of birds.
  • I am color blind.
  • I love chocolate chip pancakes.
  • I love solving math equations.
  • I have been interviewed on the BBC.
  • I home-schooled my kids.
  • I love eating tomatoes and mushrooms.
  • I studied three languages but can't speak any of them.
  • I can do a pirouette en pointe.
  • I can run five miles in under 45 minutes.
  • I have autographs from Sonny and Cher.
  • I can play the guitar.
  • I have been ice fishing.
  • I have flown in a hot air balloon.
  • I have been bungy jumping.
  • I have never been to Vegas.
  • I am a classically trained pianist.
  • I play the harmonica.
  • I have a banana tree in my yard.
  • I am shy on the phone.
  • I love camping.
  • I drive a convertible.
  • I have never broken a bone.
  • I was an Olympic swimmer.
  • I have been stung by a jellyfish.
  • I have driven a monster truck.
  • I have been in a Hollywood movie.
  • I can juggle seven oranges.
  • I won a pie-eating contest.
  • I have met Julia Roberts.
  • I play in a rock band.
  • I grow most of my own food.
  • I love eating oysters.
  • I can play guitar behind my back.
  • I won a "Funniest Home Videos" prize.
  • ​I am a vegan.
  • I have a tattoo of a shark, but I can't show you.
  • I climbed the Grand Teton.
  • I have eaten kangaroo.
  • I had lunch with George Clooney.
  • ​I sleep only four hours a night.
  • I won a national drawing contest.
  • I was in the Peace Corps.