Which Is Better: Sardines or Hide-and-Seek?

This season of Survivor is one of the most playful ever, at least from the perspective of the audience (with the new 90-minute format, there’s more time to show the contestants simply hanging out). The survivors have sung, bantered with Jeff, made up new fashion, and tried to list as many Taylor Swift songs as possible from memory.

Last week the contestants also decided to play hide-and-seek just for fun (though some chose this as an opportunity to also strategize). They went all-out, hiding in some really creative ways. Two of them were never found!

While watching, it occurred to me that I have a hot take on hide-and-seek: I think sardines is the superior game.

In hide-and-seek, one person seeks and everyone else hides. As people are found, they join the search. The last person to be found is the winner.

In sardines, one person hides and everyone else seeks. There’s only one hiding place, and when you find it, you hide in that place with everyone else who’s there. Everyone wins in the end (unless the last seeker gives up).

I think sardines is the superior game because you’re sharing a secret with an increasing number of people. Granted, there’s more of an opportunity for the game to completely fall apart if the hiding place isn’t good or big enough, but if you find such a place, the experience is magical as more and more people cram into it together.

I had one of the best gaming experiences of my life while playing sardines in the faux cave system at the City Museum in St. Louis many years ago. It took hours for everyone to find the hiding spot.

What do you think? Is sardines better than hide-and-seek? Or is there an even better version of this style of game that I’m not aware of?

2 thoughts on “Which Is Better: Sardines or Hide-and-Seek?”

  1. The other benefit of Sardines is that you’re utilizing less hiding spots, which is a limited resource in a game of hide-and-seek. There are only so many “good” ones, and forcing people to squeeze into compact ones makes it more hilarious. Traditional hide-and-seek is basically strip-mining whatever unique location you’re using.

    We played it in my house once when I was a kid. Like twelve people, and during one hunt there were only three of us wandering around. It created an air of mystery, like everyone else had been raptured.

    Great game.


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