games to play over the phone

20 Classic Games to Play Over the Phone for Your Virtual Gathering

Gather round, digital enthusiasts and casual gamers alike! If you’re seeking to turn a simple phone call into an epic entertainment session with friends and family, look no further. This article presents a collection of games to play over the phone, promising to deliver laughter, challenge, and connection straight to your fingertips. Whether you’re miles apart or just preferring the comfort of your home, these games are sure to add zest to your digital hangouts.

Top Games to Play Over the Phone

1. Charades


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No need for a stage; your phone becomes the platform for this engaging game of pantomime and guesswork. Using video calls, players act out a word or phrase without speaking, while the others watch and make guesses. If video isn’t an option, players can use inventive text clues to keep the fun going. This digital twist on a party favorite ensures that distance doesn’t dampen the spirits of a lively game night.

2. 20 Questions

A game of intellect and inquiry, “20 Questions” is beautifully uncomplicated and perfect for phone play. One player thinks of an object, and the rest have 20 opportunities to narrow it down with yes-or-no questions. Whether you’re whispering questions during a late-night call or firing queries on a family group chat, each game is a new adventure in deduction and laughter.

3. Words With Friends

A mobile lexicon battle that combines the joy of creating words with the competitive spirit of beating your friends’ scores. It’s turn-based, which means you can play at your own pace and fit a quick round into your day whenever you have a few minutes to spare. Engage in a friendly match or enter larger tournaments to test your vocabulary against a wider pool of players.

4. QuizUp

Knowledge becomes a playground with QuizUp, where you can challenge friends and family to quick-fire trivia on a seemingly endless variety of topics. With real-time matches, you can experience the thrill of immediate competition. Connect over the phone and play while you chat, turning every call into a dynamic game show.

5. Categories

A broad category is chosen, and players take turns rapidly listing items that fit within it. The catch is to avoid repetition and blanking out. As the game progresses, the difficulty increases since the more obvious items are named first, leaving players to dig deeper into their mental lexicon for less common entries.

6. The Alphabet Game

Players select a category and proceed through the alphabet, with each person coming up with a term from the category that begins with the next sequential letter. It’s a challenge of knowledge and speed, and when you get to the trickier letters like Q, X, and Z, creativity really comes into play. It’s a game that can be unexpectedly educational as players are often introduced to new words and concepts.

7. Pictionary


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Even when you’re miles apart, a game of Pictionary can feel like you’re sitting at the same table. Players can take turns creating doodles on their smartphones or tablets, using drawing apps that allow for real-time sharing. You could also use shared digital whiteboards that the whole group can access. Whether it’s a hastily drawn cat that looks more like a car, or a masterpiece worthy of a museum, Pictionary proves laughter needs no proximity.

8. Draw Something

This digital drawing and guessing game is like Pictionary’s laid-back cousin. Players take turns to draw a given word while their counterpart guesses. No need for artistic skills; in fact, the fun often lies in the interpretation of each other’s creative attempts. With a simple phone call, you can guide your friends through your drawing process, drop hints, and share laughter at the wild guesses that ensue. It’s a game that shows how creativity can bridge the gap between any distance.

9. Wordscapes

Combining elements of crossword puzzles and word search games, Wordscapes is a serene but stimulating way to keep your mind sharp. Playing it while on a call with friends or family can turn into a cooperative or competitive experience, depending on how you want to play it. Share the puzzles and help each other out, or challenge each other to see who can complete the puzzles faster. It’s a game that can fit into any part of your day, turning a quick call into an impromptu brain-training session.

10. Guess the Sound

A player secretly chooses an object and makes a sound with it, such as tapping a glass or shuffling a deck of cards. The sound is then played over the phone without revealing what’s making it. The others use their listening skills to decode the clues and determine the source of the noise. It’s a test of auditory sharpness and often leads to surprising revelations and playful accusations.

11. Two Truths and a Lie

Participants take turns sharing three statements about themselves. The twist is that while two of these anecdotes are true, one is a cleverly constructed falsehood. The challenge for the others is to scrutinize the stories, often with follow-up questions, to deduce which statement is fabricated. This game not only serves as an icebreaker but can also reveal intriguing facts about the players.

12. Word Chain (or Shiritori)

This linguistic game begins with one person saying a word, and the next player must follow up with another word that starts with the last letter of the previous word. This continues in a chain, each word sparking the next. The game requires quick thinking and a wide vocabulary. It’s an excellent way to exercise the brain and often leads to laughter as the chain grows increasingly bizarre.

13. Who Am I?

A classic guessing game where a player assumes the identity of a celebrity or a historical figure, providing yes-or-no answers to the others’ questions. The game often starts with broad inquiries and narrows down to more specific ones as the guessers home in on the identity. It’s not only fun but can also be a window into how much or how little we know about different personalities.

14. Movie Lines

A player recites a memorable line from a movie, and the other players take turns guessing the title of the movie, the character who said it, or the actor who played the character. This game is a cinephile’s delight and often sparks discussions about movies, leading to impromptu reviews and recommendations.

15. The Song Lyrics Game

A player speaks or sings a line from a song without giving away the melody, and the others guess the song and the artist. It’s a test of one’s music knowledge and can lead to discovering shared tastes in music or even introducing others to new genres and artists.

16. Heads Up!

Heads Up

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Perfect for group calls, this charades-like game has one person guessing a word that only their friends can see. By tilting the phone, new words appear, and the hilarity builds as everyone scrambles to describe them without saying the actual words. It’s a race against the clock that gets everyone energized and laughing.

17. Psych! Outwit Your Friends

From the creators of “Heads Up!”, “Psych!” is another fun party game designed to be played in a group setting. Players make up fake answers to real trivia questions, and everyone must guess the true answer among the fakes. Over the phone, the game becomes a hilarious battle of wits and bluffing, as players try to psych each other out and uncover the truth. It’s a game that brings out the creativity and humor in every participant, making for a highly interactive and spirited group call.

18. Word Builder

This game begins with a single letter, and players take turns adding letters to it. However, the objective is to avoid completing a valid word. The player who eventually adds a letter that finishes a word loses that round, so strategy is key. Players must think ahead to corner their opponents or cleverly guide the word-building in a direction that opens up more possibilities for themselves.

19. Abbreviation Game

Someone states an abbreviation, and the others must decipher its full meaning. The abbreviations can range from common ones like ‘NATO’ or ‘laser’ to more obscure ones, offering a broad range of difficulty. This game can be quite enlightening, often leading to interesting tangents on the origins or uses of the abbreviations in question.

20. Infinite Story

Infinite Story is collaborative storytelling over the phone. One starts the tale, and each caller expands it, weaving in creativity and unpredictability. It’s a test of collective imagination, as the group shapes a narrative full of twists and turns, challenges, and characters, building a unique and engaging story that evolves with each person’s contribution, making every call an adventure.


Playing games over the phone is not only a delightful way to pass the time but also a fantastic method to maintain connections with friends and family, regardless of the distance. From classic guessing games like “20 Questions” to creative and engaging activities like “Infinite Story,” these games prove that you don’t need fancy apps or technology to have fun.

They encourage communication, laughter, and camaraderie, turning an ordinary phone call into an extraordinary shared experience. Next time you find yourself on a long call, try one of these games and watch as the minutes fly by, leaving you and your loved ones with cherished memories and anticipation for the next round of playful phone banter.

AboutCorinne Switzer

Corinne is an avid reader and takes a keen interest in conspiracy theories. When not busy with her day job, she likes to indulge the writer in her and pens columns on a wide range of topics that cover everything from entertainment, healthy living to healthcare and more.