A great activity for everyone

Fact or Fiction: Personalized Edition

Guess the Truth: Fact or Fiction in Our Personalized Team-Building Game!

Fact or Fiction: Personalized Edition
By Jon Zajac

What is Fact or Fiction: Personalized Edition?

“Fact or Fiction: Personalized Edition” is an engaging icebreaker activity designed to help participants connect with one another by guessing which facts about their peers are true and which are fabricated. The purpose of this game is threefold: to break the ice among group members, promote active listening, and reveal fascinating unknown details about each other’s lives. Ideally suited for small to medium-sized groups of 5-20 people, it can be adapted for all ages by adjusting the content to match the participants’ maturity level.

The game requires notepads, pens or pencils, and a timer (optional) for each participant. Before starting, everyone prepares three statements about themselves: two truths and one lie. The statements should be interesting and non-obvious to create intrigue and guessing difficulty. In virtual settings, ensure all participants have stable internet connections and access to group discussion platforms.

To play, participants take turns sharing their three statements with the group without revealing which is the lie. Then, others discuss or reflect on which statement they believe is false. Afterward, the participant reveals the fictional statement and may share more about the true ones, encouraging further conversation. The game continues until everyone has had a turn.

Larger groups can be accommodated by using breakout rooms or forming smaller sub-groups for intimate interactions. Adapting the game to include two lies and one truth adds an extra layer of challenge. “Fact or Fiction: Personalized Edition” offers several advantages, including fostering connectivity, building listening skills, encouraging sharing, and serving as an effective icebreaker. This activity creates a fun, barrier-free environment that helps people get to know each other better.

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Rules for Fact or Fiction: Personalized Edition

  1. Participants create three statements about themselves - two truths and one fiction.
  2. The game is played in a circle, with each participant taking turns to announce their statements without revealing which is the fiction.
  3. Other group members discuss or reflect individually to guess which statement they believe to be the fiction.
  4. After guesses have been made, the participant reveals the fictional statement and may offer insights into the truths shared.
  5. The game continues until everyone has had a turn.
  6. (Optional) For larger groups, use breakout rooms or smaller sub-groups for more intimate interaction and active participation.
  7. (Optional) Increase the challenge by inviting participants to make two fictions and one truth.

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Materials needed for Fact or Fiction: Personalized Edition

  • Notepads and pens/pencils: Each participant needs a notepad and writing instrument to write down their facts and fictions. Alternatively, electronic devices can be used if the setting allows.
  • Timer (optional): A timer may be helpful to keep track of time and ensure the game moves at a lively pace.

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Setting up for Fact or Fiction: Personalized Edition

To set up the “Fact or Fiction: Personalized Edition” icebreaker activity, follow these steps:

  1. Choose an appropriate venue or platform for your group size and age range. Ensure enough space for participants to gather in a circle for easy communication. If you’re using a virtual platform, check that all participants have access to it and can use its features effectively.

  2. Select a facilitator who will introduce the activity, provide guidelines, manage turn-taking, and encourage group discussion throughout the game. This person should be comfortable speaking in front of others and maintaining a positive atmosphere.

  3. If you’re using notepads and pens for this activity, prepare enough materials for each participant. Place them at designated spots or inform participants where they can find these supplies. For virtual meetings, ensure all participants have note-taking tools readily available on their devices.

  4. Determine the time limit for each participant’s turn and set a timer if necessary. This will help maintain a brisk pace and keep the game engaging. Adjust the duration according to your group size and the complexity of the statements being shared.

  5. Consider any adaptations needed based on your specific group dynamics, such as breakout rooms for large groups or modified rules for more advanced players. Make these adjustments before starting the activity to ensure a smooth experience for all participants.

  6. Finally, create clear guidelines and share them with the group. Include information about the purpose of the game, how it works, and what is expected from each participant during their turn. Encourage active listening, respectful discussion, and open-mindedness throughout the activity.

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How to play Fact or Fiction: Personalized Edition

1. Prepare Three Statements: Before starting the game, have each participant create three statements about themselves - two truths and one fiction. Encourage interesting, non-obvious facts to maximize engagement and surprise.

2. Form a Circle: Participants should sit, stand, or appear in a circle on a digital platform so that everyone can hear and be heard clearly.

3. Take Turns Announcing Statements: Each participant takes turns reading their three statements to the group without revealing which is the fiction.

4. Guess the Fiction: After a participant has read their statements, other group members discuss or reflect individually to decide which statement they believe is the fiction.

5. Reveal and Share Insights: Once guesses have been made, the participant reveals the fictional statement and may share insights into the truths they shared, opening up further conversations.

6. Continue Until Everyone Has Had a Turn: The game continues until each person has had an opportunity to present their statements.


  • For larger groups, consider using breakout rooms or forming smaller subgroups for more intimate interaction.
  • To increase the challenge, participants could be invited to create two fictions and one truth.

Benefits of Fact or Fiction: Personalized Edition

  1. Fosters Connectivity: This game facilitates deeper connections as participants discover new, often surprising facets of individual personalities and experiences.
  2. Builds Listening Skills: Active listening is naturally promoted as participants pay close attention to subtle nuances in stories to guess correctly.
  3. Encourages Sharing: Points toward an environment that values openness and sharing, which are critical in team bonding and creating friendly spaces.
  4. Ice-breaking: Serves its primary role of breaking the ice effectively, easing initial discomfort and fostering a sense of community.

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Benefits of Fact or Fiction: Personalized Edition

  • Fosters Connectivity: By revealing fascinating and previously unknown things about one another, this game creates a path for deeper connections and understanding within the group. I have observed that participants who may not have interacted much before the activity become more comfortable with each other as they discover shared interests or experiences.
  • Builds Listening Skills: As participants actively listen to catch subtle nuances in stories, their listening skills are naturally sharpened. This attentiveness allows them to guess which statement is a fiction and contributes to an engaging atmosphere where everyone feels heard and valued.
  • Encourages Sharing: The game encourages openness and sharing among the group, fostering an environment that appreciates individual stories and experiences. In my experience, this has led to participants feeling more comfortable expressing themselves and contributing ideas during future discussions or collaborations.
  • Ice-breaking: “Fact or Fiction: Personalized Edition” effectively breaks the ice, easing initial discomfort and creating a sense of community among participants. As people guess correctly and engage in friendly banter, they form bonds that help establish trust and rapport within the group.

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Skills built with Fact or Fiction: Personalized Edition

  • Active Listening: Playing “Fact or Fiction: Personalized Edition” encourages active listening skills as participants pay close attention to each other’s stories, trying to identify the fictional statement based on subtle cues, inconsistencies, or exaggerations in the narrative. This heightened sense of attentiveness fosters a deeper understanding and connection among group members.

  • Empathy: By sharing personal facts and experiences during this icebreaker activity, participants can develop empathy for one another, as they learn about each other’s backgrounds, challenges, achievements, and interests. This increased emotional intelligence enables stronger interpersonal relationships and a more harmonious group dynamic.

  • Critical Thinking: As players analyze the given statements to determine which one is false, they exercise their critical thinking skills. They must evaluate the plausibility of each statement and weigh various pieces of information against one another to make an informed decision, ultimately enhancing problem-solving abilities.

  • Public Speaking and Presentation: This game offers opportunities for participants to improve public speaking skills, as they practice presenting themselves confidently in front of a group. Additionally, the game setting encourages clear communication, storytelling techniques, and proper pacing, ensuring that everyone can follow along and engage with the speaker’s statements.

  • Respectful Curiosity: The game cultivates an atmosphere of respectful curiosity by prompting participants to ask questions about each other’s lives and experiences. This inquisitive mindset fosters a supportive learning environment where individuals feel comfortable expressing themselves, sharing ideas, and seeking common ground with others.

  • Inclusive Communication: Playing “Fact or Fiction: Personalized Edition” supports inclusive communication by inviting participants to share unique aspects of their identity, culture, or personal history in a safe and welcoming space. This not only celebrates diversity but also promotes cross-cultural understanding and appreciation, ultimately leading to more cohesive teams and communities.

By incorporating “Fact or Fiction: Personalized Edition” into workshops and other group activities, facilitators can effectively build essential skills while breaking the ice, fostering connectivity, and promoting a positive atmosphere for all participants.

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Why I like Fact or Fiction: Personalized Edition

I am a big fan of the “Fact or Fiction: Personalized Edition” icebreaker because it effectively fosters connections among participants and promotes active listening in a fun, engaging way. The game’s adaptability makes it suitable for various settings, from classrooms to team-building events, ensuring that everyone can learn something new about their peers.

What I appreciate most about this icebreaker is its ability to reveal fascinating aspects of individuals that might not come up in regular conversations. By encouraging participants to share unique and creative facts about themselves, the game creates a space for openness and sharing, which are essential for building trust within teams or communities.

The competitive element of guessing the fiction also adds excitement to the activity while fostering active listening skills. Paying close attention to each participant’s story helps group members make informed decisions and contributes to an environment where everyone feels heard.

Additionally, “Fact or Fiction: Personalized Edition” is simple to organize and requires minimal materials, making it accessible for facilitators and participants alike. The game can be easily scaled up or down depending on the group size, ensuring that no one gets left out of the fun.

In summary, I like the “Fact or Fiction: Personalized Edition” icebreaker because it encourages connectivity, builds listening skills, promotes sharing, and breaks the ice effectively. Its versatility and simplicity make it an excellent choice for anyone looking to build stronger relationships within their group or community.

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Tips for making Fact or Fiction: Personalized Edition more inclusive

  • Tip: Use gender-neutral language Ensure that the statements used in the game are inclusive and respectful to all participants, avoiding gendered pronouns or assumptions about someone’s identity. This creates a welcoming atmosphere where everyone feels comfortable sharing their stories.

  • Tip: Encourage cultural sensitivity Make sure the facts and fictions shared during the activity do not stereotype or appropriate any culture or group of people. Promote understanding, respect, and appreciation for diverse backgrounds and experiences to foster a positive and inclusive environment.

  • Tip: Offer optional sharing Allow participants to choose whether they want to share their facts and fictions with the group. This gives individuals control over their level of comfort and ensures that no one is forced to disclose information they would prefer to keep private.

  • Tip: Emphasize non-judgmental listening Encourage participants to listen without judgment, showing empathy and genuine interest in the stories being shared. This helps create a safe space for open communication and fosters trust among group members.

  • Tip: Accommodate different learning styles Adapt the game for visual learners by allowing them to display images or videos related to their facts, making the activity more engaging and accessible for all types of learners.

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Reflection questions for Fact or Fiction: Personalized Edition

  1. What did you learn about someone in the group that surprised you? Understanding what surprised participants can help highlight the unique aspects of individuals’ experiences and backgrounds, showcasing the value of sharing personal stories.
  2. How many truths and fictions did you guess correctly? Why do you think that is? This question allows introspection on listening skills and attentiveness during others’ turns, helping participants recognize their strengths and areas for improvement in active listening.
  3. Which of your own truths or the fiction received the most interesting reactions? Why? By understanding which statements sparked curiosity or engagement, facilitators can encourage future discussions that tap into shared interests or questions among group members.
  4. How did sharing your own facts and fictions make you feel? Did it change your perspective on any other participants’ shares? This question explores the emotional impact of sharing personal stories and listening to others’, promoting vulnerability and empathy within the group.
  5. Did any truths or fictions remind you of something in your own life? If so, how? Encouraging connections between participants’ experiences can foster a sense of community, making it easier for members to relate to one another and collaborate effectively.

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About the author

Jon Zajac

Jon Zajac

Founder & Chief Icebreaker

I started Icebreaker Spot because I truly believe that strong connections are the foundation of successful teams. I wanted to create a platform that would make it easy for people to find and share icebreakers and team building activities, empowering them to build trust, foster collaboration, and ultimately, achieve greatness together.

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