Be ready to get emotional. We’re Not Really Strangers is not your typical card game.
The game comes in a pocket-size red box with familiar minimalist typing and design— but with a wholesome twist.
What is it?
The founder, Koreen Odiney, was inspired to create the game after having her heart broken, and finding solace in interviewing strangers and asking them about love and life.
So, unlike most games, the goal here isn’t to win. The goal is to make deep meaningful connections.
This is done by making use of the question cards, which prompt the player to answer questions about themselves, their past, and their experiences.
How do you play?
Each player will take turns to pick up a question card and read it to another player. The player then answers the question. It’s that simple.
“Dig Deeper” cards are placed in the deck at random and the player that picks one up has to explore their previous answer a little further. This takes the player to depths of themselves that they wouldn’t normally explore, which can trigger emotions and meaningful conversations with the other players.
It is divided into three thoughtfully created levels of questions and wildcards — Level 1 is perception, Level 2 is connection, and Level 3 is reflection — with each level offering the players the option to either develop or build new relationships.
We’re Not Really Strangers questions range from simple ones like, “Do I appear to be a morning person or a night owl?” to more serious ones like, “Are you lying to yourself about anything?” The different Levels allow you to build-up to the really deep stuff, and Level 1 is much easier than Level 2, and so on.
Level 1 is dubbed the “perception” level, as it is based around impressions and assumptions, and how deep you go increases with each level. Finally, for the “final card,” players write a handwritten message to each other, but you can only read it once you have parted.
You can play with 2-6 players and you have everything you need to get started when you buy the original pack. It comes with a WNRS notepad and pencils, too. You can buy the game for $25 from their website or in-store at Urban Outfitters.
At first glance, this price seems a little steep. And we were apprehensive; but after playing, you’ll understand what we mean. The conversations brought on by these cards are priceless, and it’s a must-have for quite literally everyone!
What’s the point?
WNRS is designed to take players to places they haven’t been before by having conversations they otherwise would never have had. You can play the game with actual real-life strangers, or you can play it with people you think you already know. Many players report playing the game with their siblings or parents and finding out much more about them than they ever knew possible. You’ll be surprised by some of the things you’ll learn about the people you think you know like the back of your hand.
Many people have found it to be a great icebreaker tool that can be used in corporate situations as well as being just a fun party game. Think of it as a more introspective, structured, and wholesome adaptation of the classic Never Have I Ever.
To get a feel for the game, we recommend watching the following clip of real strangers playing it. Be warned, it may induce tears.
Some of our favorite question cards include the following:
- How are you really?
- What about me intrigues you?
- What’s the most non-physical pain you’ve ever been in?
- What are you still trying to prove to yourself?
In your deck, you’ll have 150 cards, made up of both question cards and wildcards. Wildcards are akin to “action” cards, meaning they prompt the player to perform an action, rather than just answering a question- These are a little more nerve-wracking than the regular cards, just like choosing “Dare” would be in Truth or Dare.
Some wildcards let you off easier than others. For example, one wildcard reads, “Admit something.” This sort of demand can be met by admitting something arbitrary and unimportant, such as when you last used the bathroom. But if you want to get deep, you could admit your deepest and darkest secrets (at your own risk).
Other wildcards require a little more bravery. One reads, “Call someone you admire and tell them why you appreciate them! (Put on speakerphone).” While this may seem daunting, we can only imagine how rewarding it may feel afterward.
There’s a whole lot more to WNRS than just the original card game. The brand has branched out and created expansion packs, as well as a bunch of other products available on their online store.
Their Relationship Expansion Pack contains 54 cards and wildcards that prompt you to dig deeper with who your partner is today, not just the person they were when you met them.
The website warns that this pack is perfect for established partnerships and for couples who aren’t afraid of having the “I love you” conversation.
If you’re not quite at that stage in your relationship yet, it could get a little awkward. The Relationship Expansion Pack is best played when added to the original WNRS card game.
They also have an Honest Dating Expansion Pack that prompts players to be completely open with their potential new partner. The website states this pack is perfect for first dates all the way up to the, “What are we?” stage
This particular pack contains 50 cards and wildcards and once again, it’s best played when added to a deck of the original WNRS card game.
As well as expansion packs that add onto the original game, WNRS also makes special editions of the entire game. These are great if you’re playing with certain people, or under certain circumstances.
They have a Breakup Edition of the game which doesn’t require any other players, as you play it by yourself as a form of self-reflection. Breakups are important
They teach us about ourselves; what we want, and what we don’t. The end of a relationship is the beginning of a new one, the one with yourself. Alternatively, you can play it with a friend if you’re both going through the same thing.
Buyers of the Breakup Edition report that it’s great to use as journal prompts, and can help you work through issues within yourself that you wouldn’t normally take any notice of.
It’s perfect for those seeking validation and want to be on the road to loving themselves.
If your pain isn’t romance-related, we recommend that you opt for the Healing Edition.
It’s perfect for those who want to self-reflect on their mental health journey and it can be played with a friend who’s ready to dig deep with you, or you could use them as journal prompts. This pack contains 50 cards and wildcards.
If you only plan on using the game for personal-development, then we recommend getting the Self-Reflection Kit. Self-awareness is a superpower we can all cultivate.
It starts with asking ourselves the right questions and answering honestly.
Especially when the answers are hard to admit. The Self-Reflection kit was made with the intention of empowering us to get to know ourselves on a deeper level.
The kit comes with everything you need to get started including Self-Reflection Edition Pack, pen, notebook. They come in a super cute design with a reflective, almost holographic cover.
They also have a new Self-Love Edition made to be played on a date night with yourself- it’s all about being kinder and gentler to yourself, even when you mess up. It also helps you to appreciate yourself, even when nobody else does.
WNRS’ Social Media Presence
As well as being a physical card game, WNRS also has a huge online presence. Their Instagram account and their Newsletter promote healthy conversation and self-love.
Their Instagram page has over 4 million followers and it’s still growing! Warning- scrolling through the WNRS insta will make you feel things. Their bio even reads “warning: feelings may arise”
On their page, you’ll notice an array of inspiring posts and quotes, all of which seem to follow their signature minimalist red and white color palette. It is designed to inspire introspection and get you thinking about your own experiences, circumstances, and how you react and feel about them.
Although this page has been going since 2018, it peaked in popularity during the 2020 lockdown, as many people found themself isolated and looking to connect with others who are feeling the same way.
This is what inspired Odiney to release digital “Quarantine Edition” expansion packs featuring 20 brand new questions for the WNRS game in April, which is a free and downloadable PDF format to be used with the core game (or to be enjoyed on its own).
On their Twitter account, WNRS post thought-provoking statements, questions and quotes daily. They have a very informal tone across all their social media accounts, which makes them relatable and approachable, especially to Millennials and Gen-Z. Their tweets take on an almost “tough love” approach, and encourage the reader to rethink their own beliefs or situations.
One of their recent tweets reads:
“The things you’re attracted to may also be hurting you.”
Is We’re Not Really Strangers worth it?
The game will set you back roughly $30 with international shipping, which as we’ve already discussed, is pretty pricey for a deck of cards. However, we think that it truly is worth the price.
The conversations you’ll experience and the connections you’ll form just from playing this little card game are priceless- really. But if you still need more convincing, here’s what some of their customers had to say about it:
Can you play We’re Not Really Strangers online?
No, The game is a physical card game that can be purchased on their website or in store at Urban Outfitters. However, WNRS did run a promotional online version of the game during Lockdown 2020 called Quarantine Edition.
It was free to download and all you had to do was print out the cards and cut them out yourself. However, this promotion has since ended and it’s uncertain whether or not WNRS will offer another online version of the game again anytime soon.
Do We’re Not Really Strangers ship internationally?
Yes. WNRS currently ship internationally to most places around the world.
What is their exchange policy?
Unfortunately, WNRS don’t accept returns or exchanges unless the item is damaged on arrival or incorrect. So, all sales are final and can’t be returned, cancelled, or exchanged. If the item is damaged on arrival, or you’ve received the wrong item, email their customer service team at [email protected].
Make sure you do this within 7 days of receiving your order, and don’t forget to provide your name, order number, description of the issue and a photograph of the item if damaged or incorrect.