5 online board games perfect for playing from social distance
If there’s one thing that’s become the norm over the past few months, it’s seeing friends via online video more often than in person. That probably won’t change for the foreseeable future, but online friendship doesn’t have to be fun. During the quarantine, my friends and I got together several times, whether on Microsoft Teams, Zoom or Discord. Getting together once meant a party with Smash brackets, pizza, and swimming. Now we have started playing a number of online board games together.
Skribbl.io is probably the online board game I’ve played the most during quarantine. Of the games on this list, it’s also probably the easiest to understand. The game is essentially an online Pictionary. Up to 12 people can play in a room and players take turns drawing.
Unlike the actual Pictionary, the Drawer has three choices that he can choose to draw from. Players get a varying number of points. Those who answer sooner earn more points than those who answer later. Likewise, the designer gets more points the faster his drawing can be understood and correctly guessed.
Drawings that are more realistic and artistic sometimes take longer to guess than simple stick figure drawings. This means that skribbl.io is the perfect opportunity to explore your drawing skills without feeling the pressure to be good at the task. Skribbl.io is a game for everyone, and you can even create custom words to draw.
2. Jackbox Games
Online board games developed by Jack Box Games have been around for a while and are playable on a variety of devices, including PlayStation, Xbox, and Nintendo Switch. Even better, they are also playable on mobile devices.
Games cost money, but only one person should have them so everyone can have fun. Games include Quiplash, where you find fun answers to questions for other players to vote on, and Trivia Murder Party, where the losers of each round are slowly killed.
When you and your friends are virtually connected, ask the person who has the games to stream the game in progress, while everyone else joins in the fun via their phone, laptop or tablet.
3. Spy Drop
There’s nothing like a good old-fashioned spy game to stimulate everyone’s competitive spirit. spy drop is an online board game best suited for a large group. Each round of the game takes place randomly in a different location – with a crusader army, a liner or a beach.
A person is designated as a spy, but has no idea of the setting. During this time, everyone is aware of the spy’s location and is randomly assigned a locale-related role. For example, if they are in a hotel, possible role assignments could be hotel guest, hotel employee, or housekeeper.
Players take turns asking each other questions. The goal is for everyone to find out who the spy is before the spy finds out what the location is.
The ridiculous questions and answers that can result from Spyfall can only bring you and your friends closer.
4. Cards Against Humanity
You knew this one was coming! The Cards Against Humanity physical game was released nearly 10 years ago, and it’s still going strong. Luckily, for those who can’t get together in person to play with the physical cards, there are plenty of counterfeit versions of Cards Against Humanity online.
If you’re not aware, Cards Against Humanity is a game heavily influenced by Apples to Apples, although its content is much more crude, inappropriate and politically incorrect. It’s definitely not a game for everyone, but it’s a way for people to bond over topics and conversations that would normally be considered off-limits.
Heads up is a game usually played in person, but with video chat it can also be an online board game. Heads Up involves a person trying to guess a word based on the clues that other players are shouting or acting. It’s a chaotic, high-energy game, but it gets everyone in on the action. Playing the game forces you to think whether you guess or not.
Although Heads Up costs money on the App Store, there is a different version called Charades! it’s totally free. The game format of Charades! is similar, if not identical, to Heads Up
Fun online games are not limited to these options. There are all kinds of creative moves that can turn traditional games into online board games, like puzzles, Scrabble, crosswords and more. It can even be fun to create a whole new game to play virtually, like a kind of role-playing game.
With quarantine measures still in place in most areas and many colleges canceling in-person classes, it can be difficult to keep in touch with groups of friends and even more difficult to make new friends. But online games can be a great icebreaker if you’re running out of things to say or if you’re bored. Moreover, they maintain the spark of friendship. Exciting gameplay will only encourage future virtual encounters for more games to play and memories to create.