Guide to the Game of Sardines

A simple way to describe the game Sardines is it’s similar to “Hide-and-Seek.” The only difference with this game is the gameplay, which is in reverse. Middle school kids usually play this game, but it also works well for adults. The game doesn’t have any special equipment to play and, like Hide-and-Seek, it works best if performed by a group of ten or more.

This game is full of fun and excitement. Just make sure to bring extra shirts and towels because the bodies are bound to sweat while playing this. Like the actual sardines, it comes with a very tight space, which basically where the game derived.


The first thing to do is to set the boundaries of the game field. You can either play indoor or outdoor; it doesn’t matter, as long as you set the limits of the area. Some people suggest playing indoors in a bit of a dark room. It will ensure that the hiding spots are not that easy to find.

Once you set the boundaries, choose the player that will be it. We can tag him as Player A and will be the first person to hide, and is allowed to go anywhere they want within the area – cabinet, curtain, under the bed, etc.

As a rule, all of the other players will have to close their eyes and count to 50. When time is up, the players should shout, “Ready or not, here we come!” then everybody can open their eyes and look for Player A. Make sure that everyone splits up and try to find the person individually.

After minutes of finding, Player B suddenly found Player A inside a cabinet. Unlike Hide-and-Seek, the game is not yet over. Instead, Player B will join Player A inside the cabinet. So there are now two players inside the cabinet while others are still looking for Player A.

After some time, Player C then finds Player A inside the cabinet. He or she is now also required to join them inside. Next comes Player D, then Player E, and so on, until several players found the hiding place. It will come to a point in the game that many players will hide inside the cabinet altogether, which is why the title of the game is Sardines.
The last player to find the hiding place is the loser and will be it on the next round.

Popular Variants

1.Hide and Seek

This version is probably the most famous of all. It is the simpler version of Sardines, where the players will hide. The person tagged as it is the only one who will “seek.”

2.Kick the Can

This game is a combination of Tag and hide-and-seek. This version involves using empty cans and a jail area. Like the hide-and-seek, the game requires other players to hide, while one person seeks. One thing different from this game is the players are also needed to run to chase other players, putting them in jail, and knocking down the cans.

3.Hit the Dirt

This game is played best in large groups. The rules of the game are simple. All people will have to hide, and one person is it. The person tagged as it will stay on the home base, which the rest of the players will try to reach. The players will need to be continuously hidden until they reach the home base. If the person in the home base spotted them, they’d be out of the game.

4.Capture the Flag

This game is one of the most exciting and engaging of all. Your competitive spirits will surely come out while playing this game. Divide the group into two. The main objective of the game is to bring the opponent’s flag to your base. So to do that, the players need to hide their respective flags to keep it safe. However, there is a jail booth where the opponents can lock you up if you got caught.