Hobbies & Entertainment

Virtual Alternatives to Games you Play with Family and Friends During the Holiday Season


Playing games with friends and family over the holiday season can be just as fun and exciting, even if you cannot be with everyone in person.

Digital apps and software have made it easier than ever to stay connected to spend time with the people you care about the most during Christmas, even if you are miles apart.

If you plan to host a virtual party this year, here are a few alternatives to many of the traditional games that are synonymous with festive get-togethers.

Messaging share-a-story

Collaborative storytelling can be replicated through messaging apps such as iMessage or video chat software like Skype. Give it a classic holiday spin by asking one person to regale the start of a festive-themed story. Just one sentence will do as the next person can then add another sentence.

When everyone has finished adding their piece, you will have crafted an engaging and exciting Christmas story that has brought friends and family together.

Christmas Bingo

One of the most fun, accessible and competitive games for all ages is Christmas Bingo. Get everyone to print off a free festive-inspired bingo board complete with iconography from the season, and then pick someone to start calling the numbers.

Video cam software is perfect for get-togethers similar to this, and rather than merely talking and catching up, you can play games. You could also offer a festive present for the person who completes their bingo card first by marking the required number of squares in a row.

Virtual charades

Another classic game that is ripe for a virtual twist is charades. You can also give it a festive slant by focusing on holiday songs, movies, and themes. This is a game that is usually played together with a family in the lounge, but it translates well to online settings and group chats.

Online poker

Pull out your smartphones and gather round laptops to indulge in a range of online casino games with friends and family during the Christmas period. Even better, new players can make use of NJ online casino bonus codes to get free money or bonus dollars with certain wagering requirements.

Casino games are a perfect stay-at-home activity as you can log on at any time and partake in numerous card games and slots.

Virtual scavenger hunt

Scavenger hunts can be replicated online and are a great way to increase engagement and excitement with a close circle of relatives or friends. All you need is a short list with items that people can grab from nearby rooms in their house and then show them on camera.

This list could include things like “the best gift you have ever received,” “your oldest winter coat,” and “your favorite Christmas movie.” Scavenger hunts increase interaction and competitiveness as the first person to bring back the related item gets a point. You can also award extra points to anyone who shares more detail about the item.

Holiday playlists and dancing

There is nothing like a classic Christmas song, so why not use your smartphone to create and share a holiday playlist with everyone you know via Spotify or Apple Music. You can then use this tracklist for a “name that tune” game where the person who guesses correctly gets a point. The person with the most points then wins a prize.

If you want to get people singing, you could start well-known songs or carols, stop them mid tune and ask virtual guests to sing the next line. That is sure to bring a smile to even the most reticent of relatives.

Christmas quiz

Zoom quizzes have been very popular this year, and you can give them a festive twist by coming up with a range of trivia questions related to Thanksgiving or Christmas Day. Participants will be able to use chat or polls to answer the questions depending on how you host the quiz, so this should bring out their competitive spirit.

Guess the gift

Depending on who you spend the big day with, you could play a “guess the gift” game. Everyone is likely to have at least a few presents wrapped under the Christmas tree, so all you need to do is hold up the gift and get everyone to guess what is inside. Wrapping paper, shapes, and sounds can be deceptive, so this might be more difficult than you think.

The good news is that you don’t have to play just one of these games. You can bring four or five together for a virtual festive party that will be enjoyed by friends and family.

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BossMac Suba

Owner and lead reviewer for Back2Gaming. More than 10-year of corporate IT experience as well as consumer IT journalism. His extensive skill set and experience in communicating complicated technical details into easily understandable bits. He's been with you since dial-up and the ISA slot. His favorite animal is the scapegoat.

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