Friday, June 21Royal Holloway's offical student publication, est. 1986

Socially Distanced Social Games

Florence Roberts

With COVID-19 not going anywhere soon it is becoming harder and harder to meet with friends and socialise, especially if you want to see more than five other people. If you have not heard of Discord, Google it, it is a blessing. It is a free site, a bit like Microsoft Teams, but it was designed with gaming in mind. You can message, call, video call, share your screen, and as it is designed to be non-intensive for your laptop or phone, campus and home wifi should still hold up as you chat and play.

Over lockdown and the summer, my friends and I were scattered over Europe, and we tried out many games that could be played together whilstapart. There are many wonderful (and sometimes even free) games out there that are great to socialise through, and I am going to talk about my favourite three from this summer. 

Among Us (free)

A game about betraying your friends and trying to survive, Among Us has had a massive surge in popularity over the last few months and it is not hard to see why. You and your crew are attempting to hold your spaceship together as you are headed back towards civilisation. However, alien imposters have infiltrated the team and will be doing everything within their power to murder you all! Until an emergency meeting is called, you cannot communicate with the rest of your crew, allowing the imposters to sneak around and pick you off one by one. The game is at its best with 7-10 players, however, you can also play with strangers if you can’t achieve those numbers. It is free to play on mobile and you can create a lobby for just you and your friends! However, if one of you is willing to shell out £3.99, you unlock two other maps and accessories for your crewmate. (free)

A completely free game where your drawing and guessing skills are put to the test. Although you are technically competing to win, it never feels that way, so it is a great way to chill and have a laugh. Each game consists of a few rounds where one of you or your friends will be given the choice of three things to draw. The quicker you guess the drawn word, the more points you get. Super easy, super fun, and full of laughs. Like Among Us, you can create a private room for just you and your friends, and you can play with up to 12 people!

Jackbox Games: Quiplash (£6.99)

All of the Jackbox Party Packs are really good fun, and if you have cash to burn, Party Pack 3 is my favourite (number 7 is coming soon). However, at around £20 each, it may not be something you want to buy into. Thankfully, Quiplash is available on its own for a far more reasonable price. Quiplash is a game for 3-8 players plus a 10,000 person active audience, so you will all be able to play in some way! You will be provided with two prompts and it is up to you to come up with the silliest/wittiest/funniest response to that prompt that you can think of. Once everyone is done, your response will be pitted against someone else’s, and the other players will vote on their favourite! As long as one person buys it on PC/laptop and shares their screen through discord, everyone else can just use their phone/tablet for free by heading to Easy. 

Hopefully these three games can help you with your socially distanced boredom and provide a much needed opportunity to socialise with your friends, wherever they are.