The NBA ratings took a massive dip of almost 35% when LeBron James was unable to play against the New Orleans Pelicans. The audience associates LeBron and Westbrook when they think of basketball. When the spark of the show goes missing, they either lose interest or move away from the game.

The same applies to virtual events. Games are the exciting factors of a virtual event that help keep the momentum going. Attendees look forward to participating and engaging in games. When not executed well, organizers may witness a considerable attendee drop-off.  

In this article, you’ll learn why organizers need to include games at virtual events and which ones can be organized to amplify audience engagement.

  • The need for games at virtual events
  • Fun virtual games to play at events 
  • Best time to play games during virtual events
  • Virtual game best practices to follow

Why do we need games at virtual events? 

Games are like the LeBron of virtual events. Without them, the show may turn into an unexciting field goal. Here’s a list of reasons why we need games at virtual events. Take a look! 

  1. Hosting a game spree at virtual events promotes networking.
  2. It encourages team-building effort and fosters healthy competition.
  3. It is easier to create memorable online experiences for global audiences.
  4. Games help in breaking the “webinar” fatigue at virtual events. 

Organizing games helps organizers reduce the attendee drop-off rate.

Games to play at virtual events

What are some of the fun virtual games played at events?

Here’s a look at 16 virtual event games, categorized into four segments.

1. Online mystery games for virtual events

Looking for some fun virtual event ideas? Mystery games should top that list. These games can be played in groups of 4-10 and are a great way to beat the dullness monster at career fairs, training workshops, trade shows, and corporate meetings.

1. Escape room – Digital escape rooms require players to work in groups to solve a mystery and find their way out of a room.

2. Emoji riddles – Emoji riddles are a fun take on traditional riddle challenges. Each player has to guess what the riddle is through a succession of emojis.

3. Game of things – All players pick a card with incomplete statements, write a witty answer to complete the statement, and throw it in a (virtual) jar. One by one, players guess the answer by picking up the cards. The player with the maximum correct guesses wins the game.

4. Scavenger hunt – In this game, players/teams have to seek items from a given list. The first player/team to complete the list by finding all the missing pieces wins the game. 

Hubilo Treats: Here are some kick-ass engagement ideas for virtual and hybrid events that you can capitalize on, in your next event!

2. Trivia night at virtual events

Trivia games are virtual event ideas that work best at training workshops, internal sales kickoff events, or special events. Groups of 4-6 can play these games.

5. Skribble – It’s a multiplayer drawing and guessing game that can be played in a shared game room. The groups can go to the website, create a room and share their screen to enjoy the most out of the game.

6. Would you rather? – Would you rather is a great game for breaking the ice and starting conversations. Each player gets a card that has situations written on it with two possible outcomes. The player has to pick one of the two possible outcomes on the card.

7. Two truths and a lie – This again is a great ice-breaker game. As the name suggests, each player has to write two truths and one lie about himself/herself and read them out to other players. The player calling out the most bluffs wins.

8. Quizbreaker – This is a multiplayer game, played in groups. Before the game starts, each player answers certain predefined questions about themselves. As the game starts, players have to guess which situation best describes their teammates.

Quick tip – If the game is not being played between a known group of people then questions should be chosen carefully, to be neutral. This way you can avoid the risk of offending attendees unintentionally.

3. Easy-to-organize virtual games

These games are played in groups of 5-7. They are best suited for corporate-style events such as conferences, kick-offs, meetups, and networking events. Games like the ones listed below, foster healthy competition and encourage networking at your event.

9. Digital poker – Similar to how in-person poker is played, this is a multi-player card game where players wager cards to win a game. It is a deck variation game where cards are distributed amongst the players to place a bet according to the game rankings. 

10. UNO – UNO is like a childhood sweetheart for most. It requires players to match cards’ base color or value and the first player to finish all dealt cards wins.

11. Bingo – In this game, players have to match the numbers printed on a card as the host draws numbers at random. The one who matches the numbers the quickest wins the game.

Hubilo Treats: In collaboration with Drag Taste we organized this game at one of our recent events – Events. Reimagined. Find out 10 more things we did to drive engagement at this event.

, 16 simple-to-organize games to increase engagement at virtual events

12. Digital slot machines – A slot machine is one where the player inserts a coin and spins the wheel to get a successful pair of three items. Organizers could gamify this experience by providing certain specific attendees exclusive access to this slot machine. How you decide on exclusivity is your choice.

13. Spin the wheel – Much like the slot machine, spin the wheel is a game where a player gets to spin a wheel on the screen to earn rewards. The rewards are subjective to the game and the organizer. Hosts or guest speakers can play this game in between the sessions to reward the attendees with special prizes.

4. Virtual board games

These games can be played in groups of 2-4. They can be played at community events, fundraisers, chapter meetings, or virtual reunions.

14. Catan digital – This is a multiplayer game where participants take the roles of settlers of different holdings. Each settler has to trade and acquire resources to build the holdings through strategic planning and negotiation skills.

15. Pin me on a map – Organizers can create whiteboards with an outline of the world map and allow attendees to mark where they are attending the event from. The markings can be in different colors to create a colorful world map of active participants of the event.

16. Chess – Chess needs no explanation. It is played on a board of 64 black and white squares, and the winner takes away the opponent’s queen.

When to play games at virtual events?

Games to play at virtual events

  1. In-between sessions – Shorter format games played in between sessions help kill boredom. They also keep the audience hooked to the event, and reduce the drop-off rate.
  2. During networking hours – Games are the best icebreakers for people meeting each other for the first time at events. To get the conversation flowing it’s best to organize games just before the event starts, during the networking break, and after your main sessions have ended.
  3. With speakers at the end of the session – This is a concept that every event prof must explore. The host of a session can play a game with the speaker at the end of the session. People love to watch game shows, why not recreate one at your next virtual event with your speakers?

Virtual game best practices to follow

What good would Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. do, if no one taught him how to read? To be able to create experiences as impactful as Dr. King’s speeches, follow these seven easy ways to host virtual games at virtual to maximize participation is to: 

  • Ask people to register for games at the registration desk.
  • Match-make them and put them in groups. 
  • Inform the groups about pairing via emails. 
  • Enable mobile gaming via the virtual event platform’s mobile app
  • Put the rules of games on the respective game pages at the event reception
  • Enable video and audio features for attendees to have fun and talk during the game.
  • Encourage participation with the promise of reward.
  • Track audience engagement metrics derived from playing the games.

What’s your favorite virtual event game?

There are numerous other games that can be played at virtual events. Have you tried any other games that have amplified audience engagement? Tag @Hubilo on LinkedIn and give us your suggestions. 10 of the most amazing posts that tag @Hubilo on LinkedIn, will get a swag gift from Hubilo.