Using Technology to Stay Connected with Friends

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3 friends playing computer games

Katherine Morris, FCRH ’22, is double majoring in digital technologies and emerging media, and mathematics. She is the current communications intern for Fordham IT.

Friday game night was one of my favorite parts of campus life at Fordham. After the Covid-19 pandemic forced us to leave campus and scatter across many states, we turned to virtual technologies to continue this tradition. Now, every Friday at 9:00 p.m., my friends and I join a Zoom call to play online games together. Many of the board games we played have online versions. Here are my favorites:

Have you ever played Pictionary? Skribbl.io is similar. One player creates a game room, selects the length of time for drawing and the number of rounds, and then sends the link to participants. When it’s your turn, you draw an image on a virtual canvas. Players share guesses of what you’re drawing by submitting them into a group chat box. Just as it is in the offline version, the incorrect guesses can be quite funny. 

Do you like to chat while you play? Try Houseparty, a video chatting app for up to 8 people available on iOS, Android, macOS, and Chrome. Unlike other video chatting apps, Houseparty features four in-app games, which are sure to keep you entertained: Heads Up!, Trivia, Chips and Guac, and Quick Draw. My favorite is Heads Up!, a word association game in which other players give you verbal clues to help you guess a word or phrase.

Remote Insensitivity is a free digital version of the popular Cards Against Humanity. Much like the offline version, players complete witty or risque fill-in-the-blank statements. The player with the highest number of funny responses wins the game. This game is guaranteed to bring laughs and test your creativity. 

JackBox is an online game company with more than two dozen fun games that range from trivia to drawing to creative fill-in-the blanks. The player that owns the JackBox game launches it and shares their screen on Zoom. Players use their own device as a controller via Jackbox.TV. I particularly like the games Fibbage and Quiplash because they reward creativity and wit. JackBox games cost money, but I think they are well worth the price. (They are also having a huge sale at the moment!) I have Pack 5 and Pack 3 and always have fun, no matter who I play with. 

Like a lot of online experiences, these games have glitches. But we still laugh just as much as when we were all together in my dorm room. As a Fordham student away from roommates, friends, and clubs, these game nights help me feel connected to a community that I love.

 

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