I thought we <would> play a game before you get too drunk

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Mina_

Senior Member
Turkish
Hi

In some of Ellen Show videos, she was talking about Cinco de Mayo and then she said "So I thought we would play a game before you get too drunk".

About the usage of 'would' in the sentence above, I wanna ask that which tense is it? Could someone help me out please?
 
  • owlman5

    Senior Member
    English-US
    This is a normal use of "would" to convey Ellen's intention indirectly and humorously. "I think we will play a game before you get too drunk" would be too direct and realistic.

    By using "thought" and "would", Ellen is making it clear that she is joking rather than making a serious statement about people getting drunk. "Would" and "thought" imply that Ellen's "thought" is hypothetical rather than real.
     
    Last edited:

    PaulQ

    Senior Member
    UK
    English - England
    would = could possibly -> it is the present conditional ->
    "So I thought we would play a game, if you want to play a game, before you get too drunk".
    "So I thought we could possibly play a game, if you want to play a game, before you get too drunk".
    "So I thought we might play a game, if you want to play a game, before you get too drunk".

    Would is used in these ways:

    1 -> I wish he would do what I asked. -> Regret about somebody's behaviour
    2 -> Would you follow me, please? -> Polite request
    3 -> He said he would do it tomorrow. -> Reported speech (past tense of will)
    4 -> I would rather you didn't do that. -> Expressing a preference about an action
    5 -> And every day he would go to work by bicycle. -> Past habit
    6 -> Well, he would say that, wouldn't he? -> Commenting on somebody's typical behaviour.
    7 -> Would you tell me the answer? -> Indirect question
    8 -> Would you like to go to the cinema? -> Polite offer
    9 -> I would imagine we'll arrive at about six . -> Softening an opinion you are not sure about
    10 -> He wouldn't do what I asked. -> Refusal in the past
    11 -> One day he would return to this university as a professor. -> Future in the past
    12 -> If he had known this he would never have asked her. -> Third conditional
    13 -> Be careful! It would fall over if you touched it. -> Predicting a high probability.
    14 -> etc.

    Will is used to indicate
    (i) a present intention
    I will buy a car -> present intention

    and,
    (ii) with if clauses, the future (predicted) action or state, of someone or something.
    If you build the wall too high, it will fall down - future action
    If stop building the wall now, it will be too low. - future state of something.
    If he continues eating he will become fat. - future state of someone.


    Look at the way she is eating those biscuits! That is her fifth -> she is eating it now.
    Look at the way she is eating those biscuits! That would be her fifth. -> if she starts eating it
    Look at the way she is eating those biscuits! That will be her fifth. -> when she starts eating it
    Look at the way she is eating those biscuits! This would have been her fifth. -> if she had eaten it.
     

    lingobingo

    Senior Member
    English - England
    The sentence itself is in the past tense, thought being the main verb. But the modal verb would in “would play” implies a condition rather than indicating the past tense. It’s used to make a suggestion: I thought we should/could/would/might play a game [if you want to]?
     
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