Video Call Games

They’re not in the same league as Hungry Hippos and you can’t tip the board over when you lose (apparently this is a thing, I wouldn’t know). Nonetheless, virtual game nights are becoming the new norm and we are loving them.

So, are you ready for a ‘winning’ night in? Send out the invites, grab yourself a drink, fire up Zoom (FaceTime, Google Hangouts, or HouseParty) and get ready to ‘win’ (unless you’re playing me that is – mu ha ha ha ha).

Here are some of our favourites. Enjoy and share your ‘wins’ using #sniffandsnails.

Tip: cast your game to a larger TV screen and connect to a Bluetooth speaker for a less cramped and audible experience.

Classic Board Games

Growing up, board games like Monopoly and Cluedo were a firm favourite in the Sniff + Snails household. Thankfully, classic board games such as these can now be played virtually with friends and family.

The Marmalade Game Studio have created 3D animated versions of Cluedo and Monopoly that are available for purchase on desktop and mobile devices.

For a simpler and free version of Monopoly check out

Either way, at least you won’t have to sort the fake money afterwards.

Guess Who or What

For families who like to flex their vocals, how about a good old-fashioned guessing game?

The easiest (and a super fun) option is to download the video-chat app Houseparty. The app is free and can host up to 8 people.

Once installed, invite your friends and family into a private video chat and select the game of your choice. Heads Up! is basically Articulate / Taboo without the boards.

If you’re more of a Charades fan, select the ‘Act It Out’ range of cards and get ready to mime out each word.

The Quick Draw! game is a virtual replacement for Pictionary and the Triva game is good for testing out that general knowledge.

There are plenty of Charades and Pictionary apps available for free in the App Store and Google Play. You could use the whiteboard feature in Zoom and a word generator for a Pictionary alternative. Or you could just stick to pen and paper.

Family Quiz Night

In the ‘80s, quiz nights in the Sniff + Snails household involved working our way through the ‘Pears All Year Round Quiz Book’. My distinct memory is only being able to answer one question “Who invented pasteurised milk?”. Just in case you’re wondering, the answer is Louis Pasteur. 

Today, there are lots of ways that you can host a quiz night for the whole family. You could try one of the many quiz apps like QuizUp or Jeopardy. Alternatively, if you’ve already downloaded Houseparty try out the Trivia game.

Our favourite is to create and host a quiz using the learning app Kahoot!. Typically used by teachers for in-class tests, you can sign-up for free and create quizzes for up to 10 people. Our theme this week was Space and it was a great way to test how our home-schooling was going.

For a more traditional approach, you could prepare a quiz in advance (try using something like the Random Trivia Generator), have everyone jump on a group call (video or audio), and then get ready to host your show. You may need to keep score one question at a time, unless you trust everyone to mark their own answers. There’s always one!

A Way With Words

For something a bit quieter, then a Scrabble-esque game may suit you. Words with Friends is free and available for download from the App Store and Google Play. For something a bit more fast-paced try out Scattergories, which is also free and available from the App Store and Google Play. Word of warning– there are ads, which can get a bit annoying.

After Hours

When the little ones go to bed, how about a game of Cards Against Humanity?

If you’ve never played CAH, it’s essentially a fill-in-the-blank game where being inappropriate is the key to winning. There isn’t an official online version, however, has a game called ‘Remote Insensitivity’ that’s similar. Don’t forget to host a separate video group call so you can see everyone’s reactions.

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