Games That Test Your Nerves


Cover Photo by Jonathan Petersson on Unsplash

There’s no fun in playing a game that doesn’t test you, that’s why FIFA has leagues, divisions and difficulty levels. You want to play something that will really test your nerve and your ability at the same time.

Holding your nerve and harnessing your brain power to win something provides a satisfaction that can rarely be found elsewhere. With that in mind, we’ve brought you 5 of the best games to test your nerve and get the adrenaline flowing.


The card game took off in a big way at the beginning of the Millennium when amateur player Chris Moneymaker became an overnight sensation after bluffing seasoned card shark Sammy Farha in the World Series of Poker.

Since then the game has risen enormously in popularity with millions of people playing daily around the world in casinos and online. It is the ultimate game to test your nerve and your brain power at the same time.

In a tense game of Texas Hold’em, can you work out the odds of getting a straight on the river at the same time as keeping your nerve whilst your opponent raises and raises?


Even more nerve-racking than poker as the odds are so much higher and the lines between success and failure much, much finer. Going on a roll at the roulette table is incredibly difficult, and winning big from a single number is incredibly rare.

Could you do what Ashley Revell did in 2004 when he sold his entire life possessions including his house, car and most of his clothes and bet it all on red? Probably not, as it’s almost mad to even think of it, but it paid off for Revell who used his $270,000 winnings to start his own gambling company.

Football Manager

Have you ever sat in a stadium and questioned the substitutions of your team’s manager or called him clueless to your friends? If you have then Football Manager is the perfect game for you. Take charge of your favourite football club and see if you can do better than the current manager.

Have the confidence to stick by your decisions even in the face of increasing criticism from the media and your own fans. Not only will you be testing your football knowledge, but you’ll be testing your nerve and ability to stick to your principles.


The traditional English sport has had its detractors around the world for a long time, but it is the ultimate game to test your nerve when the going gets tough. Most sports last at most a couple of hours, but cricket can take up to 5 days of your time.

With a result in the balance do you back yourself to hold your nerve when you’re the last recognised batsman in chasing a 50 runs? Could you bowl the decisive ball to snatch victory from the jaws of defeat?

And perhaps even more nerve-wracking, could you take that all-important easy catch that seems to take an age to come down from the skies?


Snooker is perhaps the ultimate test of skill and hand-eye coordination with the difficulty level being incredibly high. It takes years and years of practice to reach the top of the game, but it also takes a tremendous amount of composure and calmness under pressure.

You could find yourself sat down in a darkened corner for 15 minutes watching your opponent racking up the points until he gives you a way back in. Knowing that you have to pot the remaining balls on the table to put your opponent to bed, can you do that?

Knowing that one small misjudgement will give him a chance back in and see your chances of victory go up in smoke? Imagine doing that in a final, now imagine doing that in a final that’s taken almost two days to complete with a crowd watching on by the table and a massive television crowd waiting with bated breath.

Notable mentions – Above is our list of the top 5 nerve testing games to play, but we must give an honourable mention to a few that didn’t make the final cut. Saturday accumulators – not so much a game, but a massive test of nerve especially with a cash-out icon flashing in your face. Football – the penalty shootout specifically, what makes you think you could hold your nerve when Gerrard, Lampard and Beckham couldn’t?

Like it? Share with your friends!