It can be hard to get people out of their shells during your virtual event.
In-person events have many interactive ways to keep guests engaged.
When you’re at an event with others, it’s easy to spend quality time together over drinks, dinner, raffles, and more.
Yet those kinds of organic opportunities don’t often arise when your event is held virtually. As a result, you must be a lot more intentional about the engagement between your attendees.
It’s not as simple as hosting a virtual event on a new and exciting platform.
As we’ve all experienced, there’s something slightly strange about how we interact on a virtual event. Where in-person events are alive, virtual ones can turn into a long conference call. (In other words, highly awkward.)
That’s where activities—and games—come in. Games are an easy way to anchor and liven up virtual events, so people can connect naturally.
In this article, we discuss criteria for selecting games—and share our 7 favorite games to play at your big virtual party.
How to pick a game for your virtual team building event
A few months ago, our clients tasked us with discovering more ways for their attendees to enjoy their events and meet new people!
We decided we could play some games—so our team began tirelessly researching and developing games that would make sense.
So, we started researching, evaluating games based on six criteria:
- Multiplayer: Yes, all attendees can participate and join in with each other.
- No learning curve: Don’t spend 45 minutes of a 60-minute happy hour teaching your team how to sign in to Kahoot.
- No installs: “Does it work on Mac? Our firewall blocked downloads.” Not ideal.
- Easy to join: Not everyone enters the event simultaneously, so easy to join games will allow zero disruptions.
- Free or budget-friendly: Many times, virtual events are held to save money, so why break the bank with a game?
- Safe for work: It’s much rarer for people to get fired after a remote office Christmas party than an in-person one. Let’s keep it that way.
- BONUS: The whole point of a virtual game is to get to know each other better. So, try to pick a game that helps you learn more about your attendees.
While using these criteria can help narrow your options, you will still have a wide array of games to choose from. Be sure to select one that fits your team and event goals.
Game ideas for your next virtual event
1. Scavenger Hunts
Atop our list of favorite games is our virtual scavenger hunt. Which is a fun and competitive way to have your attendees explore the virtual space and exchange information. Perfect for networking events and educational conferences.
How it works: Provide each vendor with their own branded scavenger item. Attendees visit tables, collect items, and vendors gather attendee information. Exchange information between vendors and attendees, be the first to collect all souvenirs and information from each vendor.
- Vendors have the souvenir (Each souvenir has vendors logo)
- Attendees move from table to table and interact with each vendor
- Attendees provide the vendor with contact information (email)
- Vendor sends attendee an email with the souvenir attached
- The First attendee to report to Tech Support with all the souvenir wins!
- Vendor will receive a customized digital scavenger item from Vsummits team before the event
- Keep these in an easy to access spot
- Draft an email to send to each attendee with the card attached
- Send each attendee an email after they come to your table
2. Read My Lips
This is a great way to get people talking and laughing! Use critical thinking and observation to guess what the attendee is saying before the timer runs out!
How it Works:
Objective: Guess the phrase before time runs out!
- Build a group of the event themed phrases for use during the game
- The oldest player will go first. Play goes clockwise around the table
- Randomly select a term to readout
- The host will set a 1-minute timer
- With the camera on, mute the microphone and read the selected phrase
- If the phrase is guessed before time runs out, the winner receives a point
- If the term is not found and/or the timer runs out, move on to the next player to read the following phrase
3. Virtual Escape Room
Like physical escape rooms, digital escape rooms provide a challenging adventure for you and your friends, family, or loved ones. You’ll get the same cooperative gameplay, puzzles, and tasks to overcome as you all work towards a shared goal — escaping the room, except it’s all virtual. To kick up the intensity, you and your crew will only have a limited amount of time to do it.
These games provide a unique hands-on experience, designed for corporate groups, significant events, virtual parties, and anyone else looking for an elevated unplugged adventure!
How it works:
Objective: Escape the room in under 60 minutes!
Login to your Zoom meeting where you are met by your Host and Game Guide.
Your host will give you clues and instructions while your Game Guide will be in the escape room with a live video feed acting as your eyes, ears, hands, and feet.
Use your online dashboard to watch videos and keep track of the items and clues you find along the way.
4. Pictionary (Drawsaurus)
Pictionary is excellent if you’re looking for a simple game that most of your team probably already knows how to play. Make sure to turn your video on to live comment on each other’s drawings.
Pro Tip: Make sure your room is password-protected, or other players may join your room.
This free game was made by Darcy Glennen.
5. Trivia Games
There are many different platforms that can be used for virtual trivia we have separated our top three below!
Many different platforms can be used for virtual trivia. We have separated our top three below!
- Quizziz.com: A multiple-choice format quiz to help make education fun!
- How it works: Engage people anywhere, 10 or 10,000 at a time. Add fun competition to in-person and virtual events. Make sure customer education doesn’t feel like homework.
- Build your brand: Make sure everyone sees your logo, colors, and other brand identifiers while they compete and learn.
- Include everyone: Join from any device — no signups or downloads necessary. Choose whether everyone engages at once or on their own time.
- Create a meaningful connection: See what your stakeholders know and get the feedback you need to support them.
- Try it out
2. Crowdpurr.com: Crowdpurr is an Audience Engagement Platform that helps you create incredible interactive mobile-driven experiences for your live or virtual events for Free!
a. The Experience Dashboard: The web-based Experience Dashboard puts you in complete control. Stop, Start, Configure, Approve Responses, Remove Posts. You’re in charge!
b. The Projector View: When you’re ready to show your interactive experience to your crowd, simply pop open the web-based Projector View. It’s reactive and can be stretched and full-screened to fit multiple display devices – from tablets to HD monitors, all the way to 4K event projectors. Simply drag the Projector View window to your display device. You can even stream it on free streaming services like YouTube Live and Twitch for virtual events.
c. The Mobile View: On their mobile device (phone, tablet, laptop, etc.), your crowd simply enters your experience’s URL and five-digit code into their web browser.
3. Kahoot.com: We love Kahoot! It is a fast, easy and straightforward way to create an engaging trivia game around whatever subject you want! You can even choose from one of their existing fun trivia subjects.
- Deliver interactive training, meetings, presentations, and events.
- Seamlessly host Kahoot via any video conferencing platform.
- Track progress, knowledge gaps, and participation in detailed reports.
- Build a culture where everyone feels valued, heard, and involved.
- Trusted by 97% of Fortune 500 companies
Taboo is a classic that most team members will likely already know.
How it works: At the basic level, players take turns prompting teammates to guess as many keywords as possible in the allotted time. Each keyword, however, comes with forbidden words that may not be spoken.
This free online version also features a timer and a score sheet, though you can also track the game separately. Taboo is always a big hit but be aware that speakers who are not native/fluent English speakers might feel disadvantaged. Online Taboo. Perfect for attendees who aren’t afraid to get rowdy.
7. Jackbox Games
Jackbox has an array of virtual party games, including You Don’t Know Jack, Quiplash (available in five languages), and Fibbage.
In addition to being a riot, Jackbox games have the highest production value among the entries on this list. Prices range from $7-10 for individual games to $18-30 for party packs.
Hosting virtual events doesn’t mean you have to forego opportunities to build rapport and community within your attendees and community.
Although your attendees’ socializing may look different in a remote environment, you can make virtual events as lively and rewarding as in-person events with the right approach.
Games—and other activities—are a natural way to close the distance, so your attendees can get to know each other outside of the video call.