an amusement or pastime: children's games.
the material or equipment used in playing certain games: The store started selling toys and games.
a competitive activity involving skill, chance, or endurance on the part of two or more persons who play according to a set of rules, usually for their own amusement or for that of spectators: Flag football is a game growing in popularity.
a single occasion of such an activity, or a definite portion of one: the final game of the season; a rubber of three games at bridge.
the number of points required to win a game.
the score at a particular stage in a game: With five minutes to play, the game was 7 to 0.
a particular manner or style of playing a game: Her game of chess is improving.
anything resembling a game, as in requiring skill, endurance, or adherence to rules: She's an expert at the game of diplomacy.
a trick or strategy: They can see through your game.
something treated lightly or lacking in seriousness; sport: That's enough of your games! When I was young, love was just a game to me.
wild animals, including birds and fishes, such as those hunted for food or taken for sport or profit: The area is particularly rich in game.
the flesh of such wild animals, used as food: The cook made a dish of game.
any object of pursuit, attack, abuse, etc.: The new boy at school seemed to be fair game for practical jokers.
Informal. a business or profession: He's in the real-estate game.
Informal. the ability to attract or charm romantic or sexual partners: He's got no game—hasn't had a date in months.
Archaic. fighting spirit; pluck.
relating to or composed of animals hunted or taken as game, or to their flesh.
having a fighting spirit; plucky.
Informal. having the required spirit or will (often followed by for or an infinitive): Who's game for a hike through the woods?
to play games of chance for stakes; gamble.
Digital Technology. to play computer or video games.
to squander in games of chance (usually followed by away).
to manipulate to one's advantage, especially by trickery; attempt to take advantage of: The policy is flawed and many people try to game the system.
Idioms about game
to die after a brave struggle.
to remain steadfast or in good spirits at the moment of defeat: He knew that as a candidate he didn't have a chance in the world, but he campaigned anyway and died game.
make game of, to make fun of; ridicule: It's cruel to make game of the weak and defenseless.
off one’s game,
Sports. playing badly: You can tell the pitcher's off his game—he's walked three batters in a row.
not performing as well as usual: The showrunner and her writers are off their game, and episodes this season drag on without the humor and lightness fans had come to expect.
on one’s game,
Sports. playing well: You need to recruit experienced players who will be on their game coming straight off the bench.
performing well, or as well as usual: She’s been noticeably sharper and really on her game since she came back from vacation.
play games, to act in an evasive, deceitful, manipulative, or trifling manner in dealing with others: Don't play games with me—I want to know if you love me or not!
play the game, Informal.
to act or play in accordance with the rules.
to act honorably or justly: We naively assumed that our allies would continue to play the game.
talk a big / good game, to make exaggerated claims or promise extraordinary results: The PR team talks a big game, but revenue for their department has been flat for three years running.
- game·less, adjective
- game·like, adjective
- game·ness, noun
- un·game·like, adjective
Other definitions for game (2 of 2)
lame: a game leg.
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2023
How to use game in a sentence
Still, the game of chicken between Pelosi and moderate Democrats is striking.Trump moves closer to Pelosi in economic aid talks, and House speaker must decide next move | Rachael Bade, Erica Werner | September 17, 2020 | Washington Post
The output of a restaurant cannot be defined in numbers or data like a game.Christian Puglisi Is Closing His Influential Copenhagen Restaurants. COVID Is Only Partly to Blame | Rafael Tonon | September 17, 2020 | Eater
“We’re using this as an opportunity to really understand our game at a higher level,” McCutchen said.Don’t Blame The Refs For All Of These Replay Reviews | Jared Dubin | September 17, 2020 | FiveThirtyEight
Hahn’s comments — and his later apology — affirmed the idea that politics was seeping into the work of health officials who are supposed to be above playing that game.The Trump administration’s politicization of coronavirus comes to a head | Aaron Blake | September 16, 2020 | Washington Post
When you write him off as being past his prime, he might just respond with a game like Sunday’s vintage performance — 364 yards, 73 percent of passes completed, four touchdowns and zero interceptions — against the Minnesota Vikings.
This is going to be the game of Thrones of U.S. Senate races.The Golden State Preps for the ‘Red Wedding’ of Senate Races | David Freedlander | January 9, 2015 | THE DAILY BEAST
Dora is seen getting dressed as a mermaid by a cursor being manned by some omniscient game player.Sleazy Billionaire’s Double Life Featured Beach Parties With Stephen Hawking | M.L. Nestel | January 8, 2015 | THE DAILY BEAST
Think of it as game of Thrones—if you subtract the sex and violence and add drunken revelry and singing.
Actually, the guessing game is over; the weddings have begun, as have weird attempts to circumvent our constitutional democracy.The Back Alley, Low Blow-Ridden Fight to Stop Gay Marriage in Florida Is Finally Over | Jay Michaelson | January 5, 2015 | THE DAILY BEAST
When the game starts, there is only sand, a white ball, a flag indicating hole 1, and a “0” at the top of the screen.Lost For Thousands of Strokes: 'Desert Golfing' Is 'Angry Birds' as Modern Art | Alec Kubas-Meyer | January 2, 2015 | THE DAILY BEAST
And to tell the truth, she couldn't help wishing he could see, so he could make the game livelier.The Tale of Grandfather Mole | Arthur Scott Bailey
Jean clung to his English nurse, who played the fascinating game of pretending to eat his hand.The Joyous Adventures of Aristide Pujol | William J. Locke
Two many-branched candelabra, holding wax lights, brilliantly illuminate the game.The Pit Town Coronet, Volume I (of 3) | Charles James Wills
The unhappy applicant was naturally obliged to temporarily retire from the game, at all events for that night.The Pit Town Coronet, Volume I (of 3) | Charles James Wills
His head fell back limp on MacRae's arm, and the rest of the message went with the game old Dutchman across the big divide.Raw Gold | Bertrand W. Sinclair
British Dictionary definitions for game (1 of 2)
an amusement or pastime; diversion
a contest with rules, the result being determined by skill, strength, or chance
a single period of play in such a contest, sport, etc
the score needed to win a contest
a single contest in a series; match
(plural; often capital) an event consisting of various sporting contests, esp in athletics: Olympic Games; Highland Games
equipment needed for playing certain games
short for computer game
style or ability in playing a game: he is a keen player but his game is not good
a scheme, proceeding, etc, practised like a game: the game of politics
an activity undertaken in a spirit of levity; joke: marriage is just a game to him
wild animals, including birds and fish, hunted for sport, food, or profit
(as modifier): game laws
the flesh of such animals, used as food: generally taken not to include fish
an object of pursuit; quarry; prey (esp in the phrase fair game)
informal work or occupation
informal a trick, strategy, or device: I can see through your little game
obsolete pluck or courage; bravery
slang, mainly British prostitution (esp in the phrase on the game)
give the game away to reveal one's intentions or a secret
make game of or make a game of to make fun of; ridicule; mock
off one's game playing badly
on one's game playing well
play the game to behave fairly or in accordance with rules
the game is up there is no longer a chance of success
informal full of fighting spirit; plucky; brave
game as Ned Kelly or as game as Ned Kelly Australian informal extremely brave; indomitable
(usually foll by for) informal prepared or ready; willing: I'm game for a try
(intr) to play games of chance for money, stakes, etc; gamble
- gamelike, adjective
British Dictionary definitions for game (2 of 2)
a less common word for lame 1 game leg
Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition © William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012
Other Idioms and Phrases with game
In addition to the idioms beginning with game
- game is not worth the candle, the
- game is up, the
- game that two can play, that's a
- ahead of the game
- at this stage (of the game)
- badger game
- beat someone at his or her own game
- call someone's bluff (game)
- confidence game
- end game
- fair game
- fun and games
give away (the game)losing battle (game)name of the gameonly game in townplay a waiting gameplay gamesplay the gamewaiting gamewhole new ball game.
The American Heritage® Idioms Dictionary Copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company.