Scrabble is one of many games to enjoy while at home during quarantine. Countless games, including Scrabble, also have online versions, to play with friends or family from far away. (Annalise Kelloff/B&W Staff)

Games to play during quarantine


It’s easy to lose touch with friends and family now that all communication needs to be done virtually. Because many of us have spare time on our hands, it can be fun to have a good old fashioned game night with your family, housemates or distant quarantined friends. Here are some games you can play to alleviate boredom and reconnect.


For those who love English, Scrabble is the perfect way to show off obscure word knowledge and spelling ability. Words With Friends is the app equivalent of Scrabble. It can be downloaded and played with a group while on a video call.


It’s pretty easy to play Pictionary over Zoom by using the whiteboard feature and an online random word generator. As an added bonus, funny drawings can be screenshotted and saved. It’s also fun to play in person if enough people are quarantining together.


Who could forget that iconic background music? It turns out that even after graduating high school, Kahoot still exists. This is a great opportunity for the most competitive to shine. Unlike many other options, it works especially well for large groups. Kahoot is a rare way to make studying fun, and it can even be suggested to professors and teaching assistants.  


The Jackbox Party Pack can be bought for $20, and it offers a variety of video games that involve trivia, making up new words and definitions for them. Assign each person in the group personality traits based on popular vote. This is a great way to get to know friends better, and, perhaps more importantly, find out what they think of you.


Quizup is a free app with trivia quizzes to compete against a random opponent or a friend. It offers a wide variety of topics from pop culture to quantum physics and difficulty levels ranging from laughably easy to needlessly obscure. This app also includes detailed statistics about everyone’s progress.  

Evil Apples

Evil Apples is the digital equivalent of Cards Against Humanity. For people who have a dark sense of humor, this is the perfect game. This game entails endless fun, as long as nobody in the group gets easily offended.

Card Games

Card games are a bit harder to play using video chat, but the good thing is they are very flexible, and practically everyone has a deck. So no matter how many people are quarantined together, games such as Go Fish, War, Slapjack and more can still be played. In the spirit of social distancing, Solitaire can be played.


There are a variety of websites and apps for playing chess. If both players have chess sets, it’s fun to set up each board separately and play over Zoom. When someone makes a move, just make sure the piece is also moved to the same space on the opponent’s board.  This strategy can also work for a variety of other board games as long as everyone involved has the game.


What’s better than watching friends make fools of themselves while trying to act? Doing it all over video chat to easily record or screen capture the moment for future entertainment. A random word generator can be used and a webcam can be set up on a phone. Stand in front of it and play as normal.

Conversation Games

Games like Would You Rather, Never Have I Ever, Truth or Dare, or Two Truths And A Lie work well in person or on videochat, mainly because they don’t require equipment and are mostly played verbally. Despite requiring little technology, they can still entertain a group for quite a while.

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1 Comment

  1. How do you play Slap Jack over Zoom? I want to play a vocabulary game with my online students. I want to display several picture cards, then call out the word for one of the cards. The first player who slaps it gets to keep it. I can also play it musical chairs style–there are enough right answers displayed for all but one of the students. Another variation would be straight Slap Jack–I’d tell them what picture to look out for, then put the pictures up one at a time. The first player to slap the right picture keeps it. If you know or can think of a reliable way to do this over Zoom, I’d be thrilled to hear it.

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