A student-operated publication at Santa Rosa Junior College.

The Oak Leaf

A student-operated publication at Santa Rosa Junior College.

The Oak Leaf

A student-operated publication at Santa Rosa Junior College.

The Oak Leaf

Five free online games to play on Zoom with friends

Courtesy Freepic.com
If you’re tired of changing your virtual background over and over, here are a few games to keep your Zoom calls fresh.

Since the shelter-in-place started, most of us are limiting our time outside our homes to hopefully flatten the curve of the COVID-19 virus. 

Whether you’re trying to stay connected with friends and family, going to work meetings or trying to get through your classes online, Zoom is the place to be. 

While most people seem to use the software productively, there are those of us who are just looking to have a good time with friends while cooped up at home. If you’re tired of just changing your virtual background over and over, here are a few games to keep your Zoom calls fresh. 


This browser game has been a staple of internet culture since April 2015. If you’ve ever played Agar.io, you know that it is highly addicting and the burning desire to make it to the leaderboard can be hard to ignore. Invite your friends in the Zoom call by clicking on Party Mode and sending them the link. 

You play as a small colored circle and eat smaller circles until you’re big enough to try to swallow other players to add to your increasing mass. As your circle grows, you move up the leaderboard. If you make it to the top 10, everyone in the server can see you and be jealous of your magnitude. 

Just don’t get eaten by another player before you reach the top.


As Californians begin month No. 2 of sheltering in place, some are starting to go a little stir crazy. What if you and your friends could visit anywhere in the world without leaving your computer screens?

Geoguesser is a browser game that challenges you to guess where you are in the world using landmarks in Street View through Google Earth. Using Zoom’s screen share feature, one person can have the game up and everyone else can help guess. Most of the features are free with ads and there is a fairly inexpensive paid account option if you just can’t stand them.

Cards Against Humanity Online: Pretend you’re Xyzzy

If you’ve never played Cards Against Humanity, a raunchy card game that is not for the faint of heart, now is the time to learn. It’s all about filling in the blanks with things that will make your friends laugh and possibly think less of you. 

This site makes it easy to play online with up to 20 people. You can either join someone else’s game or create your own personal chat room, complete with many of the expansion packs, and send your friends the browser link to join. 

The creator of the site has added extra servers as the original few were unnaturally busy due to the shelter-in-place order. If the main server is full, go back and click the server list on the main page before you enter your nickname.


The mobile release of this easy-to-learn card game is an updated version of the classic. With a few new rules and an option to customize your own game 99 times per day, you and four other friends can take turns yelling “Uno!” at each other. 

The game has a leveling system that allows you to earn coins to buy power-ups and unlock more game modes. It also inexplicably has a story mode that is unlocked after you reach level 6.

Uno! is free and available on the App Store and Google Play.

Make up your own games

If your friends are creative like mine, try making up your own games. Browser flash games are making a comeback and, before Adobe phases out the Flash Player for good, you can create your own challenges. For example, here is a dress up challenge game my friends and I created. It works best with at least four players.

First, collectively come up with four challenge requirements: a color, one article of clothing, a vibe and a time limit. Each person takes a turn being the judge and everyone else has to create an outfit using any dress-up flash game, like the ones on girlsgogames.com, in the time allotted. Have contestants submit their outfits by sending pictures through Zoom. 

The outfit that the judge deems the best, wins. After everyone has judged once, have the two to three highest scorers battle for first place with the challenge requirements written collectively by the losers. Each person not in the final battle vote on their favorite and the highest vote wins.

Bonus: Online Darts Tournament

If you happen to own a real dartboard and a set of darts, you can play with other people online using a webcam on this site. You are able to set up tournaments and invite your friends or battle random people around the world.

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About the Contributor
Alex Fuller
Alex Fuller, Editor-in-Chief
Alex Fuller (she/they) is a communications major in her fifth semester at SRJC and The Oak Leaf, where she is editor-in-chief. After two years attempting a photography degree at Napa Valley College, she switched gears and transferred to SRJC to pursue communications. Alex has been working in PR with her father for most of her life but only discovered her love of journalism when she started at SRJC. In her free time, Alex enjoys long walks on the beach, sushi dates, playing music and streaming video games on her Twitch channel, AlchemicalKitty. She hopes to continue to a 4-year college after graduating from SRJC to work towards a bachelor's degree in communications.

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    BenediktJun 12, 2020 at 8:50 am

    Thanks for the great ideas, Alex! Werewolf/Mafia is quite fun as well. We’re building a Werewolf + video chat platform on http://www.chipstv.co No need for Zoom!