Board games have certainly evolved since I was a kid! Little bits of technology have been creeping their way into board games for some time now. Initially, games like Scene It incorporated DVD’s, but it was a bit hokey at times to just click a button “yes I got the answer right”. Then Monopoly gave us debit cards… no more Monopoly money scattered all over my house! These days though, it’s getting even more advanced, and more interactive, and I couldn’t be more thrilled.
There are a few games that you play through your phone, that are super interactive and fun. Psych and HeadsUp are both created by Ellen DeGeneres, and she clearly knows how to party. With Psych you are trying to psych out the other players by coming up with answers for a trivia question. If people fall for your answer, you get points! Psych is played on multiple phones, each player using their own phone to type in their answers and choose from the answers which one they think is right. HeadsUp is more of a “pass and play” game where I would be using my own phone, and I put it on my forehead. Then people are trying to explain what the answer on my head is. So, if the name on my forehead is Maroon 5, you may say “Adam Levine’s band”, and so on.
Another game along the same lines is called Charades! This game is similar to HeadsUp, but the people helping you guess what is on your forehead can’t speak, they can only act out what it is for you to guess. A little bit harder, but definitely could make for some hilarious times.
Platform: Game Consoles (Playstation, Xbox, PC, Mac, and Amazon Fire TV/Stick)
My absolute FAVORITE party game right now is Drawful and Fibbage. These games are part of the Jackbox Party Pack. My husband and I have been in LOVE with You Don’t Know Jack for AGES. I even remember playing You Don’t Know Jack with my brother when I was in college. It’s definitely my favorite trivia game. You Don’t Know Jack is also part of this Jackbox Party Pack, but can only have 4 players at a time. Drawful can have up to 8 players at once. Playing Drawful is a lot like pictionary, but way better. Each person connects into the game with their own devices, so you don’t need to have a ton of controllers on hand. The game will send something different to everyone’s phone to draw (also, you don’t need to download an app, you just use your internet browser on the phone) Once everyone is done drawing, the game will display one person’s drawing on the screen. Everyone else has to guess what they think it is. Once all the guesses are locked in, the screen will display everyone’s guesses plus the actual right answer. Next everyone decides which one they think is the right answer. If you got people to pick YOUR guess as the right answer you get points. If you guess the right answer you get points, and if you drew it, the more people that guess the actual right answer the more points you’ll get.
Fibbage is very similar to Psych discussed above. You type in your answers to an extremely obscure trivia question, and then everyone guesses what they think is the right answer. Everyone’s answers are then displayed and you pick which one you think is right. It’s really a lot of fun to see what answers people come up with!
Google made a big announcement recently about the ability to play some of your favorite board games through the Chromecast. Several games came out with “Big Screen Editions” that work specifically with the Chromecast so you can play through your phones and on the TV. Currently there are big screen editions for Monopoly, Scrabble, Risk, Life, Catchphrase, and Yahtzee. My husband and I were testing it out, and weren’t SUPER impressed with the game play. Especially since we are so used to playing Jackbox games. The only one we seemed to enjoy was Yahtzee. The others were fairly confusing, and we are regular players of the actual board games. It’s definitely still worth a shot to see if you like them though!
We played some of these games at our annual New Year’s Eve party, and seriously everyone had so much fun! I highly recommend adding a little tech to your next family game night!
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