No matter how geographically close you are to your friends, playing online games with them is a great way to have fun. Recent studies disclose that playing online games can help tackle stress levels and boost mental health and well-being in adults – something we all need, given how the pandemic is playing out.
Game developers and publishers remark that the right set of games can bring friends and families together during a difficult time and help them stay positive. Gamers who lost out on friends in the real world have already switched to games like Fortnite to connect with people in the virtual world. Younger kids love collaborating on Minecraft and Roblox, whereas adults would love to sharpen their brains by playing an online word game or de-stress themselves by playing a hidden object game. There are plenty of choices when it comes to online card games, too, if you’re into it.
Nowadays, competition exists at every level. You don’t need to get into a sophisticated online multiplayer game to feel the heat of competition. You can play by yourself, hit up a few friends with a screenshot of your score, and challenge them to beat your score! If you’re looking to have some virtual fun while indoors, here’s a list of the best online games to play with friends and family to foster a sense of unity in trying times.
Epic Games’ 2018 family-friendly battle royale game still draws millions of active users daily. While some gamers prefer to focus on winning their next Victory Royale, the game also has dozens of challenges in store for gamers to overcome. The game evolves with frequent map and navigational changes based on the play. So, the game’s universe won’t be the same post eight weeks of playing. The game’s cartoon-like graphics appeal to gamers of all ages, but it’s suited more to adults as it involves some level of gun-play. Fortnite is free to play on PS4, Xbox One, PC, Switch, and mobile.
2. Best Fiends Stars
Best Fiends Stars is a puzzle game challenging players to match and blast their way through a series of over 1700 “explosive” puzzles, collecting adorable characters and teaming up with friends as you keep playing. Challenge your friends in a race to gather fallen treasures and stars before a team of slimy slugs snags them. Explore the game’s fascinating universe and collect rewards!
3. Words with Friends 2
The title pretty much explains itself. Bring everyone from your mom, dad, aunts, uncles, cousins, colleagues, peers, bosses, neighbors, and challenge them in games where you rush to create words out of letters given to you. Whoever secures the most points wins the game. It’s ideal to consider the game a mental workout as it pushes you to the limit in terms of time, knowledge, and quickness. Try the Solo Word Challenge or play the Daily Word Play puzzles based on your preference.
Quite possibly the ultimate gaming collaboration, Minecraft offers one of the most significant communities that exist in gaming today. As many as eight friends can join an online game on different PCs and build based on their creativity in the creative mode, or band up and see how long they can survive in the survival mode. If you’re a gamer parent with a young gamer at home, you can introduce them to Minecraft without hesitating. It can help turn kids into prospective engineers. The game is suitable for all ages and playable on PC, PS4, Xbox One, Switch, and mobile.
5. Jackbox Games
Many consider it to be the gaming platform that defined the recent lockdowns. There has been a crazy surge in new account creations on the platform after many people discovered how much of a fun, popular trivia game it has – You Don’t Know Jack – which you can play with friends online. The game keeps all players on their toes as it asks pop culture trivia questions as quickly as you can answer them. Host Cookie Masterson takes you through the entire routine, while you can also spot a celebrity or two lend a hand of assistance.
6. Spider Solitaire
From its original Windows version to its now play-anywhere-anytime version on the MPL Pro app, the classic game of Spider Solitaire has come a long way. Contrary to the standard version of the game, where the difficulty levels increase with the number of decks and suits, the version on MPL sticks to a single deck and adds a timer to each 1v1 battle. Not only is this timed version of the game infinitely more thrilling, but it also urges you to create the necessary set of cards in ascending order from Ace to King as fast as possible and move them to the foundations to defeat the opponents.
7. Sea of Thieves
If you’re in search of a game that pushes you further away from the glum vibes of current events and takes you into a world of pristine beaches coupled with a few rounds of pirate adventure, Sea of Thieves is just the game you need. Play as a pirate in its massively multiplayer gaming experience that’s brimming with possibilities.
Players seek out treasure, turn over skeleton hoards and discover the long-winding tales the world holds. They can also clash with other players for each other’s hard-earned loot. Players of all ages can tag up with three friends on their voyage as you battle with different crews of pirates in rough waters. Sea of Thieves currently costs $50 on PC and Xbox One. It is available to play for free on the Xbox Game Pass.
Make yourself comfortable in lands of magic and farm your way through enchanted lands to see if you can reverse the curse. Decurse allows you to connect with Facebook friends and make new friends on the go. Collect happiness points that open up more exciting possibilities and show off your skills in building and crafting in this vibrant, colorful game. Players can collaborate on unique challenges by joining a clubhouse, earning club points, and scaling up the leaderboard. Exchange valuable resources with your buddies to help in your journey. You can find this game on Google Play, Amazon, or iOS if you’re over the age of four.
9. Pokemon Go
Take a stroll around your home, backyard, and even the locality with a mission of collecting hidden Pokemon that could be moving around anywhere from your living room to the porch. The game requires mobile GPS and clock permissions to play, allowing you to interact with your mates and track their activity in the process.
You can also create a friends list and engage in trading and gift exchange whenever you feel like it. After the COVID-19 outbreak was in full swing, the game’s developers brought changes to allow more monsters closer to home and added more features that make the game individually more consumable.
10. Exploding Kittens
This award-winning card game offers the possibility to play online with friends or random strangers. Think of it as a highly-strategic, kitty-powered variant of Russian Roulette in which players draw cards until one of them ends up with an exploding kitten. When this occurs, they blow up and are taken out of the game unless that player possesses a “Defuse card” to defuse the kitten using tricks like a laser pointer, a belly rub, or a catnip sandwich. In the meantime, you can use other cards in the deck to mitigate risks and steer clear of the exploding kittens.
11. Mario Kart Tour
Take Mario, his princess, and many of your favorite childhood Nintendo buddies, put them in a go-kart, and you’re ready to roll! This exciting version ups the stakes and amplifies that rush of adrenaline, with courses that you need to hang-glide and navigate underwater. The mobile version also allows friendly competition by adding your friends into the mix. Many healthcare workers in the US remarked that Mario Kart Tour is the game that got them through the most challenging stages of the pandemic.
Club the excitement of playing at a bingo hall with the convenience of playing on your smartphones and tablets with MPL’s super-exciting version of 75-ball Bingo. Be quick to dab every called-out number to fetch maximum points – once you see chances of clearing an entire line of numbers in a row, column, or diagonally, yell “Bingo!” and win more points. Each game session lasts about two minutes, so you don’t have to wait for long to see who’s the winner in thrilling 1v1 battles. In tournaments, the winnings depend on your position on the leaderboard.
13. Final Fantasy XIV: A Realm Reborn
At one point, World of Warcraft dominated the MMORPG market, but now the honors go to Square Enix’s Final Fantasy series. The most recent expansion – Shadowbringers – includes the game’s best story thus far. It incentivizes group play by offering added rewards and allows new players to level up for the latest content—team with seven other players to conquer dungeons and the intense boss battles. While the game doesn’t feature in the child-friendly category, it is currently available to play for $60 on PS4 and PC.
UNO, everyone’s favorite party-card game, is playable on desktops and mobile phones. As exciting and challenging as the original card game version, the objective is to become the first player to put away all their cards on the table like other Crazy Eights-styled games. Use your action cards and wild cards to the fullest, but also remember to keep some with you to place at essential junctures in the game. Don’t forget to shout “UNO!” when you place your penultimate card. Play the game amongst two, three, or four players at a time. The more, the merrier!
15. DRL Simulator
This is a premier online FPV racing game and simulator where players can compete with their buddies. It is currently available for download for $9.99 on Steam and offers a technically robust, evolving feature set, including high-intensity drone racing.
Players can form groups and race against each other for an action-packed session of thrills and bonding. DRL even announced free access to the DRL sim (which also packs robotics training sessions on how to build and fly a drone) for students pursuing education remotely as part of their latest STEM program – DRL Academy.
16. Call of Duty Warzone
Activision’s first-person shooter series – Call of Duty – has been one of the top gaming franchises for over a decade now. Its tightly-knit controls and progressive online multiplayer gameplay are among the top-rated in the industry. Warzone, its latest iteration, is an equally enjoyable online game. It’s a hot new take on the well-established battle royale genre that features multiple worlds (with 150 players) and different-sized squads. Variations of the game are already available in many online playlists. It is currently free to download on PC, PS4, and Xbox One.
17. Stardew Valley
Fan of farm-based games? With its committed universe and gameplay, this little indie game has won over the hearts of many such gamers. Start by inheriting your granddad’s old farm plot set in Stardew Valley. You set out to begin an all-new life, aided by some coins and hand-me-down tools. Take care of your first ever crop on a from, but also discover a town full of memorable characters (who you can date and marry), dungeons to inspect, mysteries to reveal, and more. Fifteen minutes is the equivalent of one in-game day, with the game covering around five years of stories and adventures. Gamers of all ages can play Stardew Valley for $15 on PC, PS4, Xbox One, Switch, mobile for $15.
18. Block Puzzle
Remember when we used to play Tetris on hand-held gaming devices and old cell phones? MPL’s Block Puzzle takes the essential elements of Tetris and modernizes it. Played on a 9×9 grid, each 1v1 Block Puzzle battle lasts two minutes. Get three shapes at a time which you need to place on the grid before the next set arrives strategically. Players need to clear as many lines as possible to earn points and defeat the opponent. You also get bonus points if you clear more than a single row at a time. Challenge your friends over this riveting puzzle game on the MPL app!
This list wouldn’t be complete without including one of the most popular board games in the US – Monopoly – which you can now play online. It is available for PS4, Xbox One, Switch, iOS, and Android devices. The game is playable between two to six players. Play against friends, versus bots, on the same mobile device with friends or via Bluetooth. You also have the option to invite Facebook friends.
As part of Monopoly, you trade lands, construct houses, win bidding wars, and most significantly – have fun. Your objective is to become a monopoly and lead the other players to bankruptcy.
Halo has been a popular name in the sci-fi, first-person shooter genre ever since the launch of the original installment – Halo: Combat Evolved. The game has had a cult following with multiple versions, including Halo 2 & 3, Halo Wars, Halo: Spartan Assault, and the most recent Halo Infinite, all critically and commercially acclaimed. Halo was a breath of fresh air during the pandemic while indoors, allowing gamers to connect over headsets and stay in touch. Several versions of the game are available on the Microsoft Xbox and its upgraded consoles.
21. Rocket League
The easiest way to describe the game would be with two words: “car soccer.” Enjoy sessions of arcade-style soccer coupled with vehicular destruction. You take control of a car on a massive soccer field featuring a giant ball and try to eliminate opposing teams in matches lasting five minutes each. Team up with three other player buddies for casual and ranked play. You keep earning slick, cosmetic looks for your preferred card as you score many goals. The game is available on PS4, Xbox One, Switch, and PC for $20.
22. Grand Theft Auto V Online
Who hasn’t heard of Grand Theft Auto? GTA V is one of the gaming industry’s most sold titles ever. The game features a fantastic story mode with nearly fifty hours of mission-based adventures set in a fictional version of Los Angeles. However, the story is just a warm-up for the game’s best part. The online mode, which can accommodate up to thirty players on different PCs, is packed with even crazier missions, over-the-top stunts, and regularly updates more gameplay types. The game is only suitable for adults and mature audiences and is playable on PC, PS4, and Xbox One for $30.
23. Cube Solitaire
Cube Solitaire is a game we all got accustomed to in the early days of using a personal computer. As you may already know, the main objective in Cube Solitaire is to create a sequence from Ace to King (of the same suit) in alternating colors and transfer them to the foundations. On the MPL app, you can play a quick 1v1 Cube Solitaire battle with a friend or a random online opponent or participate in tournaments to determine the ultimate winner. Every game follows a five-minute timer, so it all boils down to whether you complete the game objective first or score more points than the opponent.
24. Fruit Chop
If you’ve grown up on a steady dose of arcade games and you currently have a thing for fruit games, Fruit Chop is the one that needs to be on your smartphone. No, you don’t need to be an expert slicer of fruits in real life to become a pro at this game. All it requires from you is the quickness of the swiping finger, a watchful eye on the timer, and the patience to keep trying and winning. While slicing fruits is the way to go, avoid bombs as and when they arrive.
The game doesn’t have a timer, but you lose the game if you miss slicing three fruits consecutively. It also helps that the fruits are tossed at an even pace, enabling you to get better at the game with time.
25. Among Us
If there was one game that soared in popularity during the pandemic, it’d be Among Us. The whole world was talking about it in their social and internet circles, turning it into an obsession. Though it launched in 2018, it instantly became a hit during the first wave of the pandemic. A cluster of players move around a space shuttle finishing multiple tasks, but one of them is secretly an impostor who keeps eliminating other players. Each player gets the option of voting to declare the impostor’s identity. The game is available to download from the App Store or Google Play.
If you’re someone who enjoys making a fool of your friends, then you’ll have a great time with Psych! – a game created by the pop culture icon Ellen DeGeneres. As mentioned by the talk show host herself, it is a game where one makes up fake answers to actual trivia questions and subsequently tries to guess the correct answer.
When you play, you’ll be doing things such as coming up with false plot ideas for real movies and attempting to trick your buddies into believing it’s all true. It is available to download on Google Play and Apple Store.
Do you love playing Pictionary? Gather all your friends in a virtual, private game room and showcase your excellent skills in drawing with Skribbl. Like traditional Pictionary, every player gets a word they try to draw on the digital canvas, and the rest of the players must guess what the player is drawing. The game is a lot more enjoyable when played on a tablet, using a stylus (for better, clearer) illustrations, but you can certainly give it a shot on your smartphones, too, sketching with your fingers.
If you’ve played Mafia before, this game is somewhat similar. Wolvesville is an online multiplayer game that can accommodate up to sixteen players. Each game comprises various teams, including werewolves and villages, all fighting it out for the last ones to survive. You can use unique skills and abilities to reveal the roles of other players and urge your mates to join your team.
Whether you choose to become the village savior by eliminating werewolves or join a pack of werewolves to wipe off the same village, you’ll have plenty of fun playing Wolvesvilles. You can find it both on Google Play and Apple Store.
29. 8 Ball Blast
Well, many of us couldn’t visit bars or snooker parlors during the pandemic. But that didn’t stop us from getting our daily fix of 8 ball pool. MPL’s 8 Ball Blast is quite certainly one of the best online alternatives out there. It tweaks the rules to make it more engaging and fast-paced, but it still invokes the feeling of playing pool with your friends and random opponents. What’s more, you can also play cash battles and tournaments on the app to make some extra money. You must pot all the object balls in this version, including the eight ball, as quickly as possible to win. The app is freely downloadable on the Apple Store or their website.
30. Cook-Out: A Sandwich Tale
This multiplayer VR game is a must-add to your list of online games to play with friends. Up to four players can join at a time to collaborate and complete cooking missions in this fun game featuring a universe filled with magical creatures. When played using the Oculus Quest, it is a total blast, winning acclaim from game critics and audiences alike. Enjoy making and distributing delicious sandwiches to werewolves, raccoons, mice, and more.
Find this game on the Nintendo Switch eShop for a free download. It is an innovative way to bring the whole family and friend circles together – you take control of vibrant ninjas who manufacture weapons using “ninja gum” bubblegum. They also feature some super-cool costumes and accessories that you can use to personalize your avatar further. You can play solo, explore the Battle Royale mode and play with up to eight players from anywhere, or challenge buddies in a four-on-four battle.
32. 21 Puzzle
Say, if you aren’t that big of a math puzzle enthusiast, but you still enjoy playing them for fun, MPL’s 21 Puzzle is worth checking out. The card game employs basic math while pitting players against each other in 1-on-1 battles. Any player’s objective in 21 Puzzle is to get your score as close to 21 as possible by using the available cards in columns. The scoring system is based on the combinations of cards the players come up with. That’s it! You can attempt this in a cash battle or a tournament and walk away with many prizes.
Crucible is a team-based PvP action shooter that’s free to play and driven by the players’ choices. Every match is a quest for survival and control. You’ll go toe-to-toe with your opponents while attempting to adapt and overcome all hurdles the planet puts in your path. You and your teammates work together to eliminate aliens, accomplish objectives, and chase after opponents in your journey to success. Relentless Studios (owned by Amazon) developed Crucible, which is currently available only on Steam. Time will tell if it becomes a cult favorite within the online gaming ecosystem.
34. Gummy Drop!
There’s nothing quite like a relaxing and engaging match 3 puzzle game to turn your day around. Yes, we’re talking about Gummy Drop! – where you play traveler and architect revamping cities made famous by their landmarks, hanging with the locals and lending them a helping hand. The game keeps adding new content and new cities regularly. You can connect with friends on Facebook as you play and check in on their progress frequently. Anyone four years and over can play the game, available on Google Play, iOS, and Amazon.
Hasbro’s original mystery board game now finds a digital version downloadable on your smartphones and tablets. Become the best detective by solving every mystery at every difficulty level. A high-risk party is taking place at the mansion, and every guest on the list is a murder suspect. Roll the dice, turn into a detective, and let the game of Clue begin! The classic board game is now available online for solo play or with your pals. It is available for $1.49 on Google Play and $3.99 in the App Store.
If you enjoyed playing any of these fun games online with your friends, let us know. Also, find some of the featured titles on the MPL app. Have fun!