Supriya Ghosh (Editor)

Kings (game)

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Kings (game)

Alternative names
King's CupHeroesRing of FireKings

Age range
Varies by legal jurisdiction

1 Deck of Standard playing cards

Never Have I Ever, Flip cup, Pyramid (drinking game)

Circle of Death (also known as Kings, king's cup, donut, jug, oval of fire, or ring of fire) is a drinking game that uses playing cards. The player must drink and dispense drinks based on cards drawn. Each card has a rule that is predetermined before the game starts. Many houses have their own variation of rules.



  • 1 Deck of Cards
  • 2 or more players
  • Alcoholic beverages – typically wine, beer, or mixed drinks - or non alcoholic beverages
  • A large cup which will be used as the King's Cup
  • Setup and common rules

    In this game, players perform actions associated with each card. Sometimes, rules on the cards "reveal interesting things about the participants".

    Usually, cards are shuffled and dealt into a circle around either an empty cup or a full can of beer (or a shot/cup of spirits or wine). Each player takes turn drawing cards, and the players must participate in the instructions corresponding to the drawn card.

    This game is highly open ended and all of the cards can signify any mini-game, the rules and the card assignments are normally confirmed at the start of the game. Depending on house rules, the game either ends when the last rule card has been pulled, or when the king's cup has been consumed; or when the cards are placed on top of the king's cup the game is over when the cards fall off, the one that knocked them off must consume the king's cup.

    It is also common for the players to make up and agree on a set of rules every time the game is played.

    Variations and other rules

    Like almost all other drinking games, Kings has endless variations of rules, and individual drinking groups usually have their own set of card effects. There will be similar rules, but there will most likely always be some that some players have never encountered before. Some games specify that playing a certain card allows that player to make up a new rule which lasts for the remainder of the game.

    A major variation in the US, UK, Ireland, Australia, New Zealand, South Africa or Canada is that the contents of the King's Cup are drunk by the player who breaks the circle of cards (known as the Ring of Fire in the UK).

    A popular variation in Australia is the Smoko or Toilet Card replacing Give Two Take Two. In this version, a player needs to possess a Smoko Card to leave the table to smoke or use the toilet. A player can have multiple copies of the card and they can be traded, typically under conditions such as; the recipient must refill drinks on demand, crawl for the rest of the game, talk in a funny voice, etc.


    Kings (game) Wikipedia