You found our list of virtual game show ideas!
Virtual game shows are online contests where players compete for prizes. Participants gather to play together on video meeting software like Skype, Zoom, or FaceTime. The purpose of these games is to promote fun and team bonding.
These contests are a subset of virtual team building games, virtual team games, video call games and quiz games. These activities are a method of virtual employee engagement and are perfect for large group virtual team building activities.
This list contains:
- virtual game show ideas
- digital game show apps
- prizes for virtual game shows
Here we go!
List of virtual game show ideas
Here is a list of classic game shows you can play with groups on Zoom, Microsoft Teams, and similar platforms.
1. Ultimate Game Show (Hosted)
Ultimate Game Show is a fully hosted experience for remote teams. The event includes elements of various popular game shows, and is a fun, competitive way to bring your people together.
Ultimate Game Show is a 90 minute event, and led by an expert host.
Learn more about Ultimate Game Show.
2. Virtual Jeopardy
Jeopardy is a quiz show that tests players in random areas of knowledge. Contestants pick a category and a point value, for instance, World History for $400. The host reads a question. The first player to ring the buzzer answers in question format, for example, “what is the Yucatan Peninsula?” If correct, then the player gains the corresponding points.
Daily Double questions are worth twice the number of points. During final Jeopardy, players wager a percentage of points before hearing the question, and then either gain or lose those points depending on whether or not their written response is correct.
Playing Jeopardy on Zoom or similar platforms is easy. You can download premade templates as the game board, and display them by using the share screen function in the video conferencing software. Groups play as teams, answering individually during regular rounds and conferring in breakout rooms for Final Jeopardy.
3. Virtual Minute to Win It
Minute to Win It is a game where players complete a series of physical challenges. Each mini game lasts one minute or less. Examples of popular minute to win it challenges include stacking cups, moving pieces of candy between bowls using a straw, or blowing a deck of cards off a table.
You can also play minute to win it games remotely via video call software. Participants divide into teams, and select one team representative per challenge. You can use a smartphone clock app or an online stopwatch to keep track of time.
After each round, award points to the winning team. At the end of the game, name a winner and award prizes.
Pro tip: Record the meeting and make a highlight real of the funniest moments.
Check out our full list of virtual minute to win it games.
4. Virtual Amazing Race
Amazing Race is one of the most popular new game shows in recent years, since it combines elements of reality TV and unique challenges. You can do your own version of Amazing Race online and include fun activities like trivia games and scavenger hunts.
Here is a list of virtual amazing race games to try.
5. Whose Line is It Anyway?
Whose Line is It Anyway is an improvisation game where players perform impromptu skits.
Unlike traditional game shows, there is no set point structure. In fact, the slogan of the TV show is, “where everything is made up and the points don’t matter.” This element adds extra fun to the game, as there is no reason for the point values beyond the host’s feelings. For instance, the emcee might award one team five points and another ten thousand points. Or, the host could award negative points.
At the end of the game, the host names a winner. Then, all players perform one final skit together along with the host.
Check out our list of group improv games.
6. The Newlywed Game
The Newlywed Game quizzes pairs about each other’s preferences. Partners or teams answer questions about each other, and gain points for every matching response.
There are a few ways you can play the game online. The first method is to have both parties complete a form, and display the results side by side simultaneously via screen share. Or, go the traditional route, and have players respond on paper and show their answers at the same time.
If playing in teams, then ask teammates to answer the question about one player, and award one point per teammate who gets it correct.
Here are some starter questions:
- Favorite movie?
- Where do they live?
- Where were they born?
- Introvert or extrovert?
- When did they start at the company?
- Where did they go to college, and what was their major?
- What is their favorite work snack?
- What social media site do they use most?
- What kind of pets do they have?
- How many kids do they have?
- Where did they take their last vacation?
- Preferred method of communication?
For more game material, check out our list of team bonding questions.
7. Family Feud
Family Feud is a game where two teams battle to guess the most popular survey responses. Before the meeting, take a survey of your coworkers. If your company is small or you struggle to get responses, then you send your survey to friends or acquaintances, or post to an online forum.
Here are sample categories:
- Types of doctors
- Zoom meeting faux pas
- Animals you wouldn’t want to chase you
- Things you associate with Batman
- Annoying things cats do
- Why did you have a bad day at work?
- Songs you might hear at a wedding
- Drinks you might find at a beach bar
Collect the top five most popular answers, and assign a point value to each based on the popularity of the answer. Then, input the answers into a Family Feud template.
Here is a list of Family Feud questions and answers.
Check out our full list of virtual family games.
8. Virtual Team Trivia
Team Trivia is a fully-facilitated 60 minute quiz show. A knowledgeable and personal host leads teams in rounds of questions and answers. Possible topics include rock and roll, international, and holidays. The trivia formats are different with each round, with mechanisms that include team breakout rooms, fastest-in-the-chat wins, and “odd couple” brain teasers. The purpose of this event is to promote fun and team bonding. Best of all, since it is fully facilitated, you can compete alongside your coworkers instead of assuming hosting duties.
Learn more about Virtual Team Trivia.
9. Match Game
Match Game is a guessing challenge. The host reads a statement with a blank, and a panel of players complete the sentence by writing down the missing word. The participant whose turn it is then must wager a guess. The panel reveals their answers one by one. The guesser gains one point for every matching response.
Here are a few sample prompts:
- There’s free _________ in the break room!
- Last Christmas, I gave my daughter a _________, and when she opened it, she started crying.
- Congratulations! You won a ____________!
- Worst blind date ever. He said my ____________ reminded him of his mother.
- She just got back from a week in ______________.
- We got stuck behind a bus full of ____________ on the highway.
You can make a slideshow with the prompts if you would like. Otherwise, just read the statements and have players write down their answers on scrap paper or message you privately in the chat.
10. The Price is Right
The Price is Right is a game that invites players to guess the cost of various items. To play The Price is Right on Zoom, first look up the prices of different products. We recommend keeping track of the expenses by making a spreadsheet answer key. Be sure to download pictures of the products, and share the screen to display pretend prizes. Participants must guess the price without going over. The player who gets closest wins points. You can also play the show’s mini-games.
Pro tip: Pick products that are familiar but not too familiar. For instance, folks might have memorized the exact price of Apple AirPods, but will probably have to guess the cost of a specific brand and model of toaster. To make the game more fun and challenging, you could also select a few unusual products, for instance KFC crocs, as wildcard products.
Chopped is a cooking competition where chefs must create dishes using a set of mystery ingredients. Each round has a theme such as appetizers, entrees, or desserts. Contestants must use all of the ingredients in the dish. When time is up, a panel of judges tries the meals and eliminates the weakest entry.
To play Chopped virtually, send contestants boxes of mystery ingredients, and ask recipients to wait until the call to open the packages. Or, you could choose mystery ingredients that folks are likely to have around the house, such as soy sauce, cookies, and eggs.
Then, give contestants between 15 to 30 minutes to assemble the dishes. Attendees should remain on camera while cooking, and the host can ask chefs questions or provide running commentary.
Judges cannot taste the dishes remotely. However, other players can rate the concoctions based on appearance and creativity. You can also enlist the help of a household member to taste test and give feedback.
For more virtual fun with food, check out our list of online cooking classes.
12. Wheel of Fortune
Wheel of Fortune is a word-guessing game similar to Hangman. Players must guess the phrase one letter at a time. The game board contains blanks and spaces so that players know how many words are in the saying, and how many letters are in each word. The host gives a hint so that players know the category of the phrase.
Each round, the player spins a wheel to determine the amount of the prize, then guesses a consonant. For instance, if a player lands on $300 and guesses “T,” and there are 3 T’s in the phrase, then the player gains $900. Participants must buy vowels using accumulated points.
Check out more word games.
13. Hollywood Squares
Hollywood Squares is a combination of trivia and tic tac toe.
- Join a Zoom meeting.
- Designate nine participants as squares, and spotlight them.
- Pick two competitors, or divide the remaining players into two teams, x or o.
- Players/teams will choose a square.
- The host reads a trivia question, and the player in the corresponding square answers.
- The player/team decides whether they think the square is correct or incorrect.
- If player/team guesses correctly, then they claim the square.
- The square changes their virtual backgrounds to an x or o.
Here are pre-made X and O backgrounds the squares can display:
The first player or team to claim three consecutive squares wins.
14. Our Company’s Got Talent
Our Company’s Got Talent is a performance competition that encourages colleagues to showcase special skills. First, ask participants to volunteer as performers. Be sure to ask registrants to specify their talent so that you can structure the show accordingly. Then, invite team members to the call as audience members. During the competition, give each contestant up to three minutes to perform. It is a good idea to leave buffer time between acts so that audience members can react and provide commentary.
Once all performers have taken their turn, use the polling feature to ask participants to vote on the most impressive or entertaining acts. The top three will each perform once more, and audience members vote for a final winner.
Pro-tip: For extra fun, you can ask performers to invent extraordinary or amusing backstories and use these tales to introduce each act.
For more inspiration, check out our list of virtual talent show ideas.
15. Masked Dancer
Masked Dancer is a game that asks audience members to guess the identity of a disguised performer. For best results, film the dances before the meeting, and play the video via screen share.
We recommend recruiting “celebrity” dancers, like members of the C-suite or former colleagues. The dancers set up a neutral background and record a FaceTime call while dancing with an Animoji over their face. Or, contestants can opt for an old school approach and wear an actual mask.
When the video ends, players must guess who they think the dancer is. When all votes are in, reveal the answer, either by showing a picture or playing the end of the video. Or, you could coordinate for the dancer to join the call with a blacked out screen, and turn on their video for the reveal.
Check out our full list of FaceTime games.
Pyramid is a classic guessing game.
- Divide the group into pairs or teams. If teams, then each team designates a pair to play each round.
- Split the pairs into clue givers and clue receivers.
- Privately message the clue givers a list of words.
- Put 30 seconds on the clock.
- The clue giver describes the words without using the words themselves, and the clue receiver guesses the word.
- The pair or team receives one point for each correct answer.
Players have the option of passing difficult words and returning to them later. At the end of the game, the high scorer plays the pyramid round. There will be six categories, arranged in a pyramid shape. The clue giver names items that fall under the description, and the clue receiver guesses the category. This round lasts 60 seconds, and if the guesser completes the entire pyramid, then the pair wins a big prize.
To play Pyramid on a virtual meeting platform, spotlight the pairs during their turn. Be sure to have lists of words and categories ready to privately send to clue givers.
Digital game show apps
Here are mobile-friendly software applications you can use to run online game shows.
TriviaMaker is a game app that permits players to enter their own content into show templates. The platform hosts four formats: grid, list, trivia, and wheel. Players can use the program to play a variety of game shows, and can even enjoy pre-made games crafted by other users. TriviaMaker has four tiers of pricing, including an always-free basic version.
Learn more about TriviaMaker.
Kahoot! is an app that facilitates live competitions between groups. This technology is geared towards schools and work as a way to gamify the learning process and make meetings and lessons more interactive. First, administrators create a multiple-choice style quiz with optional photos. Players join by following a link and entering a pin code. The app automatically tallies scores based on response speed and correctness. The program displays an animated leaderboard throughout the game and declares the winners after the final round. Kahoot! is an easy way to run trivia-style virtual game shows.
Learn more about Kahoot!
19. Jackbox Games
Jackbox Games is an online party game app that offers bundles of games. Each party pack contains five assorted games. Only one player needs to be a registered Jackbox users. The other players can join by entering a room code on their mobile devices. Participants use personal devices to answer questions and prompts, and the program keeps score and names a winner. Jackbox Games can serve as mini games that combine to form a virtual tournament.
Learn more about Jackbox Games.
QuizShow.io is a quiz show tool. Gamemasters create custom quizzes through the platform. Players use their mobile devices as buzzers and only the fastest can answer. The app has seven different question formats, including estimates, fill in the blank, and word pairs. The presentation can include pictures, music, and animation. QuizShow.io has three cancel-anytime price tiers, plus a free trial version.
Learn more about QuizShow.io.
Prizes for virtual game shows
Game shows are known for lavish prizes. Chances are, sending an oversized $10,000 check or a speedboat to the winners of your online game night may be out of your budget. Here is a list of affordable and emailable prizes for virtual quiz shows.
21. Time Off
Extra time off is one of the easiest prizes to award for remote work game shows. Simply award the winner or winners with permission to log off of work a few hours early or take an extra day off. You can stipulate that awardees must take their bonus time within a limited period, for instance by the end of the quarter, to make the award more orderly.
Rewarding winners with complimentary meals is one option for distanced game show prizes. You can reimburse remote employees up to a specified amount, or email credits to a food delivery service like UberEats or DoorDash. Be sure to ask winners to snap and share pics of the grub before they dig in. Or, invite winners to participate in a virtual lunch. To sweeten the deal, you can even offer winners the opportunity to Zoom chat with the CEO or founder while they enjoy their free eats.
Sometimes game show contestants compete to avoid embarrassment instead of earning an award. You can decree consequences for the losing teams, for example, serenading the winning team. Or, the winner may get to think up a truth-or-dare style prompt for a teammate of choice. Maybe the loser gets a whipped cream pie to the face. Consequences can be silly, but should not be humiliating. You can ask all contestants to consent to the “punishment” before the game to ensure all participants are comfortable. Or, a volunteer from each team, perhaps the manager or captain, can take the consequence for the group.
24. Digital Gift Card
Sending e-gift cards is one of the easiest prize options. You will likely already have your winners’ email addresses from sending the meeting invitations. However, you can also ask your winners to confirm their emails. After the game show ends, purchase digital gift cards and opt for email delivery at checkout. Some of the more popular virtual gift card options include Amazon, Starbucks, and Target. However, many stores provide all-online options, and you can even give winners a choice.
25. Credit for the Company Swag Store
If playing games at work, then you offer company swag as a prize. Simply send winners credit to the online company swag store, or offer a stipend towards the purchase of organizational apparel. Be sure that the award is consistent with the prices in the shop. Receiving a $10 credit is not as attractive of a prize if there are only one or two items within that range. You could also give winners access to highly-desired and rare company apparel, for instance an original vintage t-shirt or a limited edition logo fleece.
Quiz shows can liven up the typical online game night. The chance to win prizes brings out folks’ competitive spirits. Not to mention, friendly rivalry is fun from time to time. Running a game show on Zoom is simple yet entertaining. There are many tools and apps that can make planning the show a cinch. Plus, since most folks grow up watching game shows, your crew will likely already know the rules and show up with enthusiasm.