Online Games

How To Play The ‘Six Degrees Of Separation’ Game …And The ‘Six Degrees Of Kevin Bacon’ Game

6 Degrees Of Bacon [History & Variations]

Did you know that you can create your own “six degrees of separation” between any two people? Or places, or things for that matter.

Six degrees of separation is the theory that anyone on earth can be connected to any other person on the planet through a chain of acquaintances that has no more than 5 intermediaries. 

The most famous, of course, is the Six Degrees of Kevin Bacon — where virtually any other individual on earth can be linked with this popular actor, by way of 5 other people or relationships.

When you stop and think of just how many movies Kevin Bacon has been in… it’s quite amazing!

Six degrees of separation is the idea that all people are 6 or fewer social connections away from each other. As a result, a chain of “friend of a friend” statements can be made to connect any 2 people in a maximum of 6 steps. It is also known as the 6 handshakes rule.


The funniest thing is the fact that someone has taken the time to calculate the percentages and “scores” for people who can be linked with Kevin Bacon… AND the fact that there are 565 OTHER people who are actually more popular and can be linked to more people than Kevin Bacon himself!

Who knew?

Play The Six Degrees Of Kevin Bacon Game

6 Degrees of Bacon (or Bacon’s Law) is a parlor game where players challenge each other to arbitrarily choose an actor and then connect them to another actor via a film that both actors have appeared in together, repeating this process to try to find the shortest path that ultimately leads to prolific American actor Kevin Bacon. It rests on the assumption that anyone involved in the Hollywood film industry can be linked through their film roles to Bacon within 6 steps.


What’s YOUR Bacon Number?

Want to see how YOU are linked to Kevin Bacon?

The Bacon Number for anyone is the number of degrees of separation they have from Kevin Bacon.

Wikipedia says it like this:

The higher the Bacon number, the greater the separation from Kevin Bacon the actor is. The computation of a Bacon number for actor X is a “shortest path” algorithm, applied to the co-stardom network:

  • Kevin Bacon himself has a Bacon number of 0.
  • Actors who have worked directly with Kevin Bacon have a Bacon number of 1.
  • If the lowest Bacon number of any actor with whom X has appeared in any movie is N, X’s Bacon number is N+1.

Average everyday people are running wild with this on sites from Reddit to LinkedIn! Have fun.

Even Kevin bacon himself tried it:

Variations For The 6 Degrees Of Bacon Game

The classic Six Degrees of Kevin Bacon is a fun party game, but there are lots of ways to spice it up!

Here are some fun variations to try:

  • Time Limit – Set a time limit for finding all the connections. For an easy game, set a 5-minute limit. Or, crank it up to 10 minutes for a more challenging experience.
  • Non-Bacon – Instead of focusing on Kevin Bacon, challenge yourselves to connect any two random actors, fictional characters, athletes, historical figures, musicians, or even objects. This can be a fun way to learn about different industries and people.
  • Group Challenge – Everyone works together in a group to complete the task of figuring out the number of “connections” each person in the group has to a famous person, a local person, or an international figure.
  • Reverse Bacon – Instead of connecting someone to Kevin Bacon, try to find the farthest-away actor you can who has NO connection to Kevin Bacon within 6 degrees. This is surprisingly difficult! Start by picking an actor, and then see how many steps it takes to get to them from Kevin Bacon.
  • Celebrity Race – Each person races to create an alternating chain of 6 actors and 5 films they have in common.
  • Icebreaker – At a party or meeting, have people move freely around the space, stopping to talk in pairs of two. Each pair makes a list of 5 things they have in common — like a favorite food, a unique skill, a favorite sport, languages you can speak fluently, etc. Then they move on to create a brand NEW list with another person. The first person to complete 5 separate lists with 5 different people wins.
  • Thematic Connections – Pick a theme (like superheroes, musicians, comedians) and try to connect two people within that theme using only 6 degrees of separation.
  • Category Challenge – Choose a specific category — like actors from a particular genre, directors who won Oscars, or musicians from the same decade. Players must connect 2 people within that category using the six degrees of separation game theory.
  • Two Truths And A Bacon – Each player provides 3 facts about an actor. Two are true, and one connects them to Kevin Bacon in six degrees or less. Others guess which is the “Bacon” fact.
  • Degrees Of Freedom – Remove the limit of 6 degrees. See how many connections it takes to link two people, and keep track of the longest chain you can find.
  • Competitive Connections – Divide into teams and compete against each other to find the connection between 2 people (or 2 places or 2 objects) first. This adds a competitive element and gets everyone involved.
  • Off The Menu – Instead of actors, use food items! Challenge each other to connect random ingredients or dishes through recipes or shared meals in movies or TV shows.
  • Team Up – Divide into teams and take turns picking people to connect. The first team to find the link within the chosen degree limit wins the round.
  • Random Connections – Instead of picking a specific person, use a random movie or TV show title. The goal is to connect the title itself to Kevin Bacon (or another chosen celebrity) through the actors, directors, etc who were involved in the production.
  • Real World Bacon – Challenge yourselves to connect real-life people through their professions, collaborations, or even historical events.

TIP: While the Six Degrees of Kevin Bacon game is traditionally played without the Internet, you can use an online movie database like IMDb to help you find connections quicker. This can be a good option for larger groups or if you want to focus on obscure actors.

The Fun Doesn’t End There…

In 2007, the actor launched the charity Six Degrees, which encourages people to donate or raise money for any charity within the United States. “If you take me out of the six degrees idea, it really is a beautiful concept because we really are all connected,” he said. “The things that we do here now, in our block, affect people on the other side of the world and they affect people on the other side of town.”