Apples to Apples vs Cards Against Humanity

Apples to Apples is a multiple award-winning card game that will light up any party or game night. The game was invented by Matthew Kirby in the late 90s and Out of the Box Publishing acquired its license from him shortly thereafter. To date, Apples to Apples is their best-known game.

There are two decks of cards in this game; one red and the other green. The cards in the red deck have nouns and the ones in the green deck have descriptions, or adjectives. The primary goal is to select the description, or green card that best matches the noun on the red card.   

Card Against Humanity’s core principles are similar to those of Apples to Apples. The game features one Black Card that everyone has to try and match. Each player is given a set of White Cards to match the Black ones, after which a judge chooses the player who made the best match.
So, Apples to Apples vs Cards Against Humanity: which game offers more fun? Well, by the end of this review, we will have an answer to this question. We will also discuss how to play each of the games and the main differences between them.


Apples to Apples

Cards Against Humanity

Apples to Apples Party Box Board GameCards Against Humanity Card Game
Play Time:30 Minutes30 Minutes
Year Published19992009
Publisher:MattelCards Against Humanity
Designer:Matthew KirbyJosh Dillon
Mechanics:Hand ManagementHand Management

How to Play Apples to Apples

Apples to Apples is best played by four or more players aged 12 years and above. Younger kids who love the game can be encouraged to play the Apples to Apples Junior version. If you have a larger group, you might consider getting the Apples to Apples Party Box which features several hundreds of cards. Here is how to play:

  1. Place a stack of Red apple cards and Green apple cards on an ideal card tray.
  2. Select the first judge from amongst the players. Don’t fret on who will be the first judge, as every player will get their turn to be a judge.
  3. The judge will then deal with seven red apple cards facedown among all players. He/she also deals with the cards to himself/herself. Each player should not reveal the contents of the cards to the playmates.
  4. In full view of all the players, the judge will then take a green apple card from the top of a stack and read it aloud.
  5. After reading the card, all the participating players will select a red apple card from their hand. You should try to match the card as close as possible to the green card that the judge played.
  6. The fun part is if a player lacks a match, they need to be creative by catering their choices to the judge. However, the judge’s opinion is final. The judge reads each of the submissions before choosing what he/she considers the best match. The players should select their cards speedily to keep the game moving. In a single round, the slowest person to choose a red card is disqualified.
  7. Start the next round of the game.

How to Play Cards Against Humanity

The Cards Against Humanity is a hilarious and fun game to play with other adult players. Warning – It’s for ages 17 and up.

The game’s main objective is to pair an answer to a question in the black cards using the cleverest, most hilarious and provocative way you can imagine. Here is how to play the game.

  1. Draw 10 white cards – You need four adult players to play this game. The ideal set of players should be between six and eight. Start the game by drawing ten white cards for each of the players. Once you receive the cards, look only at your cards while ignoring the rest of the cards (white cards with answers and black cards with questions) separated into the facedown stack.
  2. Play the first black card – The rule of the game states that the person who most recently pooped or one with the next upcoming birthday should be the first to start the round. The player will start the round by turning over the top card in the black card stack containing the questions. He then reads the card aloud before leaving it face down.
  3. Each player chooses a white card answer – As the card Czar waits, the other players pick one card from the hand. It would be best to pick a white card with the funniest answer that will impress the Czar most. You then put the selected white cards face down (if the black card says pick two, you should choose two white cards from your hand).
  4. The Czar will pick all the white cards selected and shuffle them so that players don’t figure out who put down which card. The Czar then reads the white cards one by one before putting them face up on a card tray. As the Czar is making his decision on the best answers, players can talk and try to influence the Czar’s decision.
  5. The Czar will then choose his favorite answer. The player that owns that card gets an “awesome point” and the next round starts.

Differences between Apples and Cards

Cards Against Humanity was invented about a decade after Apples to Apples and it does borrow heavily from its elder sibling. But whereas Apples to Apples seeks to match nouns to the most apt description, Cards Against Humanity seeks to complete a statement in the most humorous way.

Completion of the phrases in Cards Against Humanity is typically done with words or phrases that may come across as brash or offensive. It is considered the grown-up version of Apples to Apples.

When it comes to the rules of play, Cards Against Humanity gives players much more leeway than Apples to Apples. You can, for instance, trade points for cards if needed.

Apples to Apples vs Cards Against Humanity: Which is the Best?

The game one considers more fun is really a matter of personal preference. However, you need to take the adult content and the environment you are playing into consideration for Cards Against Humanity. For example, Cards Against Humanity would be out of place in a church youth group setting. It probably wouldn’t be in a game night of young professionals in their late 20s and early 30s. Apples to Apples would be more suitable for a family game night.

Frequently Asked Questions

1. What came first Apples or Cards Against Humanity?

Apples to Apples came first, followed by Cards Against Humanity. It is a widely believed notion that Apples to Apples heavily influenced its counterpart, Cards Against Humanity.

2. Can I play Apples Online?

Apples to Apples is an exciting game that you can now play online. There is a version of the game for Xbox that features single-player and multiplayer modes. However, it is not free and will set you back about $10.

3. What do Apples to Apples Mean?

The phrase, Apples to Apples, means to compare two things that are similar.

Apples to Apples, in the context of the game, means pairing green apples with red apples. The apples are represented by cards with symbolic colors, and the pairing of the cards is dependent on how well the descriptive word on the green ‘apple’ matches the noun on the red one.

Bottom line

Both Apples to Apples and Cards Against Humanity can be the perfect complement for an evening of fun, whether or not the crowd considers itself hardcore gamers. If you need a simple-to-play game that will inject some competition and humor into your family time, Apples to Apples is a great choice. If you’re more interested in a party time game that releases the wild in you, then Cards Against Humanity should be your pick. Explore more card games and other niches to experience the beauty of gaming.


Mattel Apples to Apples Party Box The Game of Crazy Combinations

$19.47  in stock
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as of 11/24/2020 1:57 AM


  • This infamous wild card and party game provides instant fun for 4 to 10 players; Packaging may vary
  • It's As Easy As Comparing Apples To Apples, Just Open The Box, Deal The Cards And You're Ready To Play
  • Select The Card From Your Hand That You Think Is Best Described By A Card Played By The Judge
  • Each Round Is Filled With Surprising And Outrageous Comparisons From A Wide Range Of People, Places, Things And Events
  • The Party Box comes complete with 504 green and red cards; the green cards have 2 clues per card, the red cards have 1 clue per card

Cards Against Humanity

$25.00  in stock
3 new from $25.00
Free shipping
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as of 11/24/2020 1:57 AM


  • Cards Against Humanity is a party game for horrible people.
  • This is the main game. Buy this first.
  • Contains 500 white cards and 100 black cards for maximum replayability.
  • Includes a booklet of sensible game rules and preposterous alternate rules.
  • America's #1 gerbil coffin.

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