18 of the best virtual game night ideas

Thomas Paris
November 12, 2021
18 of the best virtual game night ideas

Company game nights are an excellent way to develop teamwork among groups and reward your employees for their hard work. But following one of the biggest event trends in our world, these parties too have started going virtual.

With the rise of remote working, millions of people around the world are now working from home. This lack of office camaraderie makes it even more important to use online team building activities as a way to bring everyone closer together.

According to a survey from Gensler, people see team building as the most important aspect of great workplaces. So even when employees don’t work together in person, it’s still essential to ensure people feel a sense of group connection and team pride.

Ideas and strategies for virtual game nights

Hosting a virtual game night is a great way to promote team building, but it’s not always easy to pull off an engaging and memorable event. There are some classic game night activities that can be modified to work despite the lack of a physical meeting place, and the digital component opens up several new opportunities to bring your team together even while attending far apart.

In this guide, we’ll look at some of the best virtual game night ideas, as well as outline a few strategies to keep in mind when planning your team’s party.

1. Escape room

Escape rooms have evolved into a popular team building exercise, and the concept has found a way to go virtual in light of the COVID-19 pandemic. It’s a fun challenge to see if your employees are able to work together in order to find their way out of the room before time expires, providing them with an engaging experience from the comfort of their home. Escape rooms take some time and effort to complete, but they’re always entertaining if the game schedule allows.

2. Team trivia

Trivia is an easy choice when it comes to picking game night activities, but do it while dividing people into groups as a way to emphasize and celebrate teamwork. Other than simply being fun, the significant amount of audience participation that’s required in trivia contests makes them even more worthwhile to do. You can select a wide variety of themed categories, pop culture questions, work-focused anecdotes, or other topics — it all depends on what you think works best for your particular team.

3. Board games

You don’t need to have fully-packaged board games in order for your guests to enjoy the pleasantries of them. Essentially every iconic board game has an option for people to play online, which is perfect for virtual game nights. Whether you’re planning to play Scrabble, Monopoly, Catan, Codenames, or another classic game, you’re now able to play those board games for free online. Players are put into virtual rooms with their team members, giving them a chance to bond while enjoying the spirit of friendly competition.

4. Video games

girl playing video game on red background

It shouldn’t come as a surprise that video games have seen a major surge in popularity since the pandemic began, so consider adding that trend to your game night schedule. You have many RPG options to choose from, including vintage Nintendo games, music-based games, puzzle games, or party games that divide people into teams and assign them various tasks. A huge reason for the rise of video games is how immersive they are, so use them as a way to create an engaged audience.

5. Arcade games

Not many people actually go to arcades for games anymore, but that certainly doesn’t mean people don’t enjoy playing those activities. You can find free online versions of renowned arcade games like Pacman or Mortal Kombat, and there are also options to play more sports-style alternatives like skeeball or pop-a-shot basketball. Use the strong sense of nostalgia these arcade games can have as a way to provide your team members with a memorable game night experience and a positive impression of your company culture.

6. Game shows

Virtual game shows are a perfect way to gamify friendly office competition among your employees. Popular game shows like Jeopardy, Wheel of Fortune, Family Feud, and Deal or No Deal can all be found online if you’re hoping to inspire people to interact together and share strategy. Another bonus is that a lot of game shows are easy enough to plan that you don’t need to find specific software in order to play them, making them a good fallback option.

7. Charades

girl yelling in charades game with yellow background

Charades is one of the oldest party games out there, and it’s still ridiculously fun to play virtually. All you need is a video chat system to see people on-screen, and to have a text or email system to tell each person whatever it is that they’re supposed to act out. This game can get loud from the shouting, but it also causes instant laughs among coworkers due to the embarrassing suggestions and poorly-executed acting gestures that always arise.

8. Scavenger hunt

Just because you’re stuck at home doesn’t mean you can’t enjoy a scavenger hunt. At-home scavenger hunts involving household items have become a fun trend with the rise of virtual events, making them a solid option for your game night. The players are told to find various things around their house before time expires, and you can mix it up by adding some tasks for them to complete as well.

9. Icebreaker questions

If you’re working with a new team and looking to learn more about everyone, you can’t go wrong with icebreaker questions. There are many different games designed to learn little tidbits about your peers, but don’t feel obligated to keep score during these activities. Keeping the vibe as relaxed as possible can help people loosen up, which should lead to more interesting conversations that can create lasting bonds between colleagues.

10. Coworker quiz

man and woman looking sly taking a quiz

Conducting a coworker quiz is a fun way to keep score while still encouraging people to learn about their teammates. You can pair long-time friends together to test how well they know each other, and you can also partner up new coworkers to encourage them to learn things about one another that can lead to friendships. A fun alternative is to have people answer surveys ahead of time, then ask the collective group who they believe gave particular answers.

11. Bucket list discussion

People love talking about things they’re passionate about, so consider playing a game that involves your audience discussing their bucket list items or passion projects. It’s a terrific way to learn about everyone’s interests, and generates strong engagement because most people feel excited when talking about their goals and dreams. You can even instill challenges that motivate guests to pursue their bucket list items or passion projects, which shows your team members that you care about them and appreciate their interests.

12. Talent show

If you’re looking for a laidback way to learn new things about your workers, try staging a virtual talent show. You don’t have to worry about the hassle of wrangling any required gear, because everyone should be able to perform their respective acts from the comfort of their own homes. Talent shows are a great way to learn about your teammates’ unique skills, while also letting those not taking it seriously to enjoy themselves with a light-hearted routine that can bring smiles to everyone in attendance.

13. Choose the right night

When it comes to strategizing your virtual game night, the first thing to do is pick the perfect night for it. Aim for a night that’s most likely to get a good turnout, so Friday after work is generally a safe choice. But you should also keep other important factors in mind, like the overall workplace atmosphere. It’s never a bad idea to show your employees appreciation with a virtual party, but staging an event when people could use a jolt of fun can really boost team morale.

14. Generate excitement for the event

coworker excited for virtual game night

The best way to get people to show up to your virtual game night is by giving them reasons to attend. Promoting the event with interactive invitations and hyping it up with progress updates will keep your party entrenched in the minds of your team. And let’s be honest: It’s super easy to hype up how much fun game nights are! Voicing excitement about them should spread quickly and motivate everyone to show up.

15. Ask your guests for ideas

In order for your game night to be enjoyed by everyone, don’t hesitate to ask your guests ahead of time for ideas and feedback. They might recommend some fun activities that you hadn’t considered and would be great additions to your party. Also seek out their feedback when you tease the schedule, because it will give you a better idea of which games are necessary to play and which ones are droppable if there are time constraints.

16. Provide catering everyone will enjoy

Catering your virtual game night can be a nightmare. First of all, it’s tough knowing exactly when the best time to stop for a dinner or snack break is. On top of that, delivering the items to everyone spread out in separate locations only adds to the challenge. Hoppier is a great tool to help deliver tasty and timely office party catering to all of your virtual guests. Our system lets each person customize their orders from a wide variety of vendors to ensure that everyone gets things they’ll like.

17. Use multiple game rooms

Using multiple game rooms is incredibly important if your event has large groups. The last thing anyone wants at a game night is to spend most of the evening waiting for their turn to play, so split your audience into smaller groups as a way to keep each person fully engaged at all times. Also try to develop a system where you can have your groups rotate between different games, as this system helps maintain a steady flow at big parties.

18. Keep your schedule flexible

As much as you might want to play every game on your list, chances are the night’s activities won’t follow your exact timing plan. Keep your schedule flexible in case certain games are generating great participation and you want to continue them for longer than planned. Go in with a plan of which activities would be dropped due to time limitations, and also prepare a handful of fallback options in case technical difficulties prevent you from playing certain games.

Hoppier: the solution to virtual game night catering

It’s hard enough to follow through with your plan to deliver a fun and memorable game night to your team, so allow us to focus on the catering concerns. Hoppier virtual cards are an easy solution to help solve the logistical challenges you’ll face when trying to coordinate virtual catering requests.

hoppier screenshot

All you need to do is sign up and start customizing the virtual cards that will be sent to your guests. These cards can be filled with whatever amount of money you feel is needed, and we’ll offer you refunds for any amounts left over. The cards can be used for a wide variety of vendors who will deliver each person’s order themselves, meaning the only thing you’ll be in charge of is deciding when to stop the games for dinner or snack breaks.

Hoppier is also a perfect addition to any events that involve gamification, and virtual team game nights certainly apply. Thanks to our simple system of distributing and updating the cards, they’re a great idea to use as an incentive or reward for the dedicated people who are winning your virtual celebration games.

Bring your team together with engaging virtual game night ideas

Hosting a virtual game night not only provides people with that temporary break, but it can bring your employees closer together. Get creative when planning your activities and craft a schedule that keeps everyone having fun, because an engaged experience for all can help your team grow as a group.

Game nights are just one example of how virtual events can be used to enhance team building and corporate culture. To learn more remote-based ideas about elevating your group, check out our seminar on 7 ways to create memorable and engaging virtual events, or read our article outlining 6 ways to create incredible virtual event experiences.

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