Let’s face it, having to leave school and say goodbye to all of our friends so suddenly was hard for many of us. And frankly, it isn’t great for our mental health to simply press pause on our social lives indefinitely.
Just because we are physically distant from our friends doesn’t mean we have to press pause on our social lives. There are many different ways to engage with friends online, as Sharpay Evans said, “even if you’re miles, and miles, and miles apart.”
Most of these games are a great accompaniment to spice up group or video calls. Unless you are in communication with everyone else via a different platform, it may be difficult to be on the same page while playing many of these games. Like wine and cheese, these games stand stronger with a video call than alone.
Here’s a list of fun activities and ways to “hangout” with friends.
This website is the equivalent of sitting around and playing classic games with your friends. The website has games including, checkers, crazy eights, any 52-card deck game and even a knock-off version of Cards Against Humanity titled “Remote Insensitivity.” The games have no limitations, rules or restrictions. Play as you please.
Everyone’s mouse is shown live on the screen for cooperative play. The catch is that unless you are in communication with everyone else via a different platform, it may be difficult to be on the same page with everyone.
Virtual Pictionary is the best way to describe it. Members in the group take turns drawing a word while everyone else races to guess correctly. Unlike the website above, this one has a bit more structure to it. The artist each round is randomly selected and given a choice between three words to draw. Everyone else rushes to guess, and points distributed based on how quickly the word is guessed.
Netflix Party is your way to watching movies with friends, social distance style. Only available on the Google Chrome browser, Netflix Party is a downloadable application that allows multiple people to watch the same show or movie together, bearing the fact that they are available on Netflix. If you were watching a show together with friends pre-pandemic, this is your chance to keep doing so!
Jackbox Games are fun party games use with friends and family, either in your house or 3,000 miles away. Known for their trivia game, “You Don’t Know Jack,” these word games are an entertaining way to see what your friends know and don’t know.
The website features a large variety of games available for purchase and download such as “Fibbage” and “Quiplash.” To play remotely, one person has to download the game on their laptop and share their screen using a videoconferencing service. Everyone else can play along by visiting Jackbox.tv on their phones or computers.
This game is not for the faint of heart.
Trust is the first word that comes to mind with this game. The way it works: you and your friends download the app and give it full access to your camera rolls. The app then takes turns shuffling randomly through camera rolls when a random photo from someone’s phone and pops it up on everyone’s screen.
Everyone else must then guess who’s camera roll the photo was from. Although not necessary to play, one may want to be on a group call with the players to be able to justify and explain their photos.
Good Old-Fashioned Zoom Parties
Whether it be a dinner party or a trivia night, the opportunities are endless with just a little bit of imagination and some really good friends. Tea parties, mock award shows and party games that involve a ping pong ball are just a few ideas that are in the realm of possibilities. All the games listed above are fun, but all you really need to have a great time is your friends and a little bit of out-of-the-box thinking!