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online trivia games

Online trivia games to play remotely

Fancy a pub quiz but can't go to the bar? Check out these online trivia games and host a fun virtual throwdown tonight.

By Tim Lowery

One of our favorite routines is meeting up with friends each week for trivia night. It lets you have a few drinks, flex your intellectual prowess and, best of all, make fun of your pals relentlessly. If you (like us) are itching to keep those good times going, check out our guide below to the best online trivia games out there, so you can have an amazing quiz night from the safety of your home. We’ve also rounded up some tried-and-true drinking games to play remotely for a boozy evening, online jigsaw puzzles for a solo session and workout apps for breaking a sweat.      

RECOMMENDED: Online party games to play with friends

Trivia games to play remotely

Earth at night from space
Photograph: Shutterstock

1. Random Trivia Generator

The free-of-charge RTG offers party-gamers six categories—arts, science, general, geography, history and entertainment—and then a virtually endless slew of questions in each. It’s super easy to play: Simply pick your category, then scroll through the questions. To see the answer to a question, click on it. And...that’s about it. As far as the logistics of playing, we suggest having one person host, share their screen with the group and reveal answers. 

Play now

Parks and Recreation
Photograph: Chris Haston/NBC

2. DIY trivia nights on Zoom, Google Hangouts and other platforms

Although it takes a lot more elbow grease, we’ve probably had the most fun concocting our own trivia nights with pals. By nature, the questions are obviously more catered to your group, so you can go highlight interests you all share. (We've had recent rounds on the Chicago Bulls in the ’90s, Parks and Recreation, the late-great John Prine and the chart topping songs of 1978.) So how do you do it? Tweak the following as you see fit, but this has worked wonders for us: 

1. Have a different host each game, who is in charge of devising questions, moving from round to round and keeping track of scores.

2. Have answers submitted via text message to the host after the end of each round.

3. Give the answers to each round once all answers are in.

4. Give a total-score check for each player or team every other round.

5. Have a slideshow for all questions on a shared screen, so hosts don’t have to reread any long ones.  

Jackbox Games
Photograph: Jackbox Games

3. Jackbox Games

The company boasts a few trivia games, in which you can connect on a video conference, then all play via your phones (see the instructions for how to do that below): There’s its namesake, the classic You Don’t Know Jack; there’s Trivia Murder Party, in which you try to avoid “the killing floor” by answering questions correctly; and then there’s Fibbage, in which players must identify missing details in facts. We suggest nabbing one of Jack’s party packs (they sell for between $12 and $21), which each include five games.

Watch a tutorial on how to play Jackbox Games remotely via Zoom:

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Louvre Mona Lisa
Photograph: Heloise Bergman / Time Out

4. QuizUp

Looking for a one-on-one match? In this mobile game, which launched in 2013, you challenge one of your pals to a trivia duel on your phone (duh) and then go at it. In every seven-question round, you each try to be the fastest to answer a question in under 10 seconds. The quicker you are, the more points you’re awarded. If you don’t want to play with an IRL friend (those are found via whatever social-media account you log in through), then you can go up against a stranger. If you choose to take on a peep you know, we suggest doing so over video. It makes the shit-talking all the more fun.   

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Houseparty video chat app logo
Image: Houseparty

5. Trivia on Houseparty

The of-the-moment video-chatting app also offers 18 free trivia games. You may want to kick things off with the general-trivia card deck, but what if you’re aiming for a more fun one to start with? Here’s what Time Out’s Shaye Weaver's recommends in her guide to the best games to play on the app: “The ‘finish the song lyric’ card deck has the added bonus of making all of your friends sing out loud. You'll definitely get some musical gems stuck in your head for the rest of the night.”  

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