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Jenga Rules: How Do You Play Jenga?

Jenga Overview:

Ahh, Jenga. The stacking game that’s almost as much fun to say as it is to play. This was a family favorite that arrived in the home on a Christmas morning sometime in the early 90’s. I fell in love with the game as a child, and as far as replay value, this dexterity game has held up and can still keep my attention for a game or two a good twenty years later.


How to play Jenga:

First choose a player to create a tower with your 54 wooden Jenga blocks. Using the plastic tower loading tray,  alternate between creating horizontal and vertical stories on your tower (three pieces placed side by side create a story).  When construction is complete, your tower should be 18 stories tall. Carefully remove the loading tray and begin play.

Once the tower is created, players alternate removing a single block from the tower from anywhere below the highest completed story and begin or add to a new story on top of the tower. Note, players must complete a story before expanding further.

  • Using one hand, remove/stack one block per turn.

  • Blocks may be tested to see how loosely or tightly they are in the tower prior to attempting to remove the block, and you don’t have to pull the block or blocks you touch; however, a jarred block must be returned to its original position (also using one hand).

  • Your turn ends when the next player touches a block or 10 seconds after you’ve placed your block on top of the tower. If the tower falls during the 10 seconds,

Winning the Game:

The last player to successfully add a piece to the tower before it is knocked over is the winner.  Whoever knocked over the tower has the privilege of setting up the next round.


The player who built the tower plays first, with play continuing clockwise.


One Comment

  1. Fred C. Ruiz says:

    The tower starts to wobble while a block is being removed and the player steadies it with the same hand that is on the block. Is it against the rules to steady the tower either while removing the block or before setting the removed block atop the tower?

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