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30 Totally Free Virtual Party Ideas for 2021 (+ Tools & Downloads Galore!)

30 Totally Free Virtual Party Ideas for 2021 (+ Tools & Downloads Galore!)

Lawrence Haywood 13 Sep 2021 29 min read

If ever a party rulebook existed, it was well and truly thrown out in 2020. The way has been paved for the humble virtual party, and throwing a great one is a skill that’s becoming ever more vital.

But where do you start?

Well, the 30 free virtual party ideas below are perfect for tight purse strings and any kind of online bash. You’ll find unique activities for online parties, events and meetings, all fostering connection through heaps of free online tools.


Your Guide to These 30 Free Virtual Party Ideas

Before you crack on with scrolling through the mega list below, let us quickly explain how it works.

We’ve segmented all 30 virtual party ideas into 5 categories:

We’ve also provided a laziness rating system for each idea. This shows how much effort you or your guests will need to put in to make that idea happen.

  • 👍🏻👍🏻👍🏻👍🏻👍🏻 – Can do it with your eyes closed
  • 👍🏻👍🏻👍🏻👍🏻 – Like a quick stretch before a workout
  • 👍🏻👍🏻👍🏻 – Not the easiest, but certainly not the hardest
  • 👍🏻👍🏻 – A mild pain in the glutes
  • 👍🏻 – Better take a few days off work

Tip: Don’t just use the ones that require no preparation! Guests usually appreciate the extra effort that a host puts into hosting a virtual party, so those higher effort ideas might actually be your biggest hits.

Many of the ideas below were made on AhaSlides, a free piece of software that lets you quiz, poll and present live and online with friends, family and colleagues. You pose a question, your audience responds on their phones, and the results are shown in real-time across everyone’s devices.

Your audience answers your questions on their phones.
Everyone sees the results in real-time.

If, after you’ve checked out the list below, you feel at all inspired for your own virtual party, you can create a free account on AhaSlides by clicking this button:

Note: AhaSlides is free for parties with up to 7 guests. Hosting a party larger than this will require you to upgrade to an affordable paid plan, all of which you can check out on our pricing page.


🧊 Ice Breaker Ideas for a Virtual Party

Don’t stress when it comes to hosting a virtual party – they’re untrodden ground for so many people. They became a lot more popular in 2020, sure, but it’s still likely that you and your guests are going to need easing into the online festivities.

To start, we’ve got 5 icebreaker activities for a virtual party. These are games that get people talking or moving in an unfamiliar setting; ones that loosen them up in preparation for the party ahead.


Idea 1 – Share an Embarrassing Story

Laziness Rating: 👍🏻👍🏻👍🏻👍🏻👍🏻 – Can do it with your eyes closed

An interactive slide of embarassing stories on AhaSlides.

This is one of the best virtual party ice breakers around. Sharing something embarrassing with fellow partygoers makes everyone that little bit more human, and therefore, a lot more approachable. Not only that, but it’s also proven to be a great way to dismantle the mental block that stifles creativity in the workplace.

Guests share a quick embarrassing story to the group, either live over Zoom or, even better, by writing it down and sharing it anonymously. If you opt for the latter of these options, you can get your partygoers to vote on who is the owner of which embarrassing story (as long as they’re not mortified to reveal themselves!)

How to Do It

How to make an embarassing story activity for a virtual party.
  1. Create an open-ended slide on AhaSlides.
  2. Remove the ‘name’ field for participant answers.
  3. Select the option to ‘hide results’.
  4. Select the option to display the results one-by-one.
  5. Invite your guests with the unique URL and give them 5 minutes to write their story.
  6. Read out the stories one-by-one and take a vote on who each story belongs to (you can make a multiple choice slide to gather the votes).

Idea 2 – Match the Baby Picture

Laziness Rating: 👍🏻👍🏻👍🏻👍🏻 – Like a quick stretch before a workout

Old timey baby pictures in a chest.

Continuing along the embarrassment theme, Match the Baby Picture is a virtual party idea that harks back to those innocent, sepia-toned days before a pandemic turned the world upside-down. Ah, remember those?

This one’s simple. Just get each of your guests to send you a photo of them as a baby. On quiz day you reveal each photo (either by showing it to the camera or by scanning it and showing it over screen share) and your guests guess which adult that sweet, pandemic-ignorant child turned into.

How to Do It

How to make a guess the baby picture activity for a virtual party.
  1. Collect old baby pictures from all of your guests.
  2. Create a ‘type answer’ slide with the baby image at the centre.
  3. Write the question and the answer.
  4. Add any other accepted answers.
  5. Invite your guests with the unique URL and allow them to guess who’s grown up!

Idea 3 – Most Likely to…

Laziness Rating: 👍🏻👍🏻👍🏻👍🏻 – Like a quick stretch before a workout

A most likely to do something activity for a virtual party.

Getting things started with Most Likely to… is excellent for removing some of the nervous energy in the air at the start of the virtual party. Reminding your partygoers of each other’s little quirks and habits helps them feel closer and starts the party on a friendly and hilarious note.

Simply come up with a bunch of outlandish scenarios and prompt your guests to tell you who is the most likely person amongst you to enact that scenario. You probably know your guests quite well, but even if you don’t, you can use some generic ‘most likely to’ questions to encourage a wide spread of answers across the board.

For example, who’s most likely to…

  • Eat a jar of mayonnaise with their hands?
  • Start a bar fight?
  • Have spent most of lockdown wearing the same socks?
  • Watch 8 hours of true crime documentaries in a row?

How to Do It

How to make a most likely to do something activity for a virtual party.
  1. Create a ‘multiple choice’ slide with the question ‘Most Likely to…’
  2. Put the rest of the most likely statement in the description.
  3. Add the names of your partygoers as options.
  4. Deselect the box labelled ‘this question has correct answers’.
  5. Invite your guests with the unique URL and let them vote for who’s the most likely to enact each scenario.

Idea 4 – Spin the Wheel

Laziness Rating: 👍🏻👍🏻👍🏻 – Not the easiest, but certainly not the hardest

Want to take the pressure away from hosting for a bit? Setting up a virtual spinner wheel with activities or statements gives you a chance to step back and let luck quite literally take the wheel.

Again, you can do this pretty simply on AhaSlides. You can make a wheel with up to 10,000 entries, which is a lot of opportunity for truth or date. Either that or some other challenges, such as…

  • What activity should we do next?
  • Make this item from stuff around the house.
  • $1 million showdown!
  • Name a restaurant that serves this food.
  • Act out a scene from this character.
  • Cover yourself in the stickiest condiment in your fridge.

How to Do It

  1. Go to the AhaSlides editor.
  2. Create a spinner wheel slide type.
  3. Enter the heading, or question, on the top of the slide.
  4. Fill out the entries on your wheel (or press ‘Participants’ names’ in the right-hand column to get your guests to fill out their names on the wheel)
  5. Share your screen and spin that wheel!

Idea 5 – Scavenger Hunt

Laziness Rating: 👍🏻👍🏻👍🏻👍🏻 – Like a quick stretch before a workout

A scavenger hunt for ingredients on a phone.

Never let it be said that virtual party activities can’t actually be active. Virtual scavenger hunts took off in 2020, as they encourage creative thinking and, most importantly in today’s work-and-play-from-home culture, movement.

Don’t worry, this one doesn’t involve you infiltrating your guests’ homes and leaving clues. It simply involves you giving out a list of objects around the average house that your guests can find as quickly as possible.

To get the best out of a virtual scavenger hunt, you can give out some conceptual clues or riddles so that players have to use their creativity and logical thinking to find something that matches.

How to Do It

A Thanksgiving scavenger hunt list to use during a virtual party.

Note: We made the above scavenger hunt for a virtual Thanksgiving party. You can download it for free below:

  1. Make a list of average household items that could be found around the house with a bit of effort.
  2. During your virtual party, share your list and tell guests to go and find everything.
  3. When everyone is done and back at their computer, get them to reveal their items one-by-one.
  4. Potentially give out prizes for the fastest hunter and the most successful hunter.

🏆 Trivia Ideas for a Virtual Party

Even before we began the mass migration from offline to online parties, trivia games and activities truly ruled the party roost. In the digital age, there’s now a wealth of software that keeps us connected through engaging trivia.

Here are 7 trivia ideas for a virtual party; guaranteed to foster friendly competition and turn your soiree into a roaring success.


Idea 6 – Virtual Quiz

Laziness Rating: 👍🏻👍🏻👍🏻👍🏻 – Like a quick stretch before a workout

The ever-dependable don of virtual party ideas – the online quiz gained some serious traction in 2020. In fact, it’s pretty much unrivalled in its unique way of bringing people together in competition.

Quizzes are usually free to make, host and play, but doing all of that can take time. That’s why we’ve made a mountain of free quizzes for you to download and use on our cloud-based quiz tool. Here’s a few…

General Knowledge Quiz (40 Questions)

Banner heading to the general knowledge quiz on AhaSlides.
Banner heading to the general knowledge quiz on AhaSlides.

Harry Potter Quiz (40 Questions)

Banner heading to the Harry Potter quiz on AhaSlides.
Banner heading to the Harry Potter quiz on AhaSlides.

Best Friend Quiz (40 Questions)

Banner heading to the Best Friend Quiz on AhaSlides.
Banner heading to the Best Friend Quiz on AhaSlides.

You can view and use these full quizzes by clicking the banners above – no registration or payment required! Simply share the unique room code with your friends and start quizzing them live on AhaSlides!

How Does it Work?

AhaSlides is an online quizzing tool that you can use for free. Once you have downloaded a quiz template from above, or created your own quiz from scratch, you can host it via your laptop for quiz players using their phones.

The quiz master view on laptop for a virtual party quiz on AhaSlides.
Quiz master view on laptop
Quiz player view on phone for a virtual party quiz on AhaSlides.
Quiz player view on phone

Need more quizzes? We’ve got a tonne in the AhaSlides template library – all available for free download!


Idea 7 – Heads Up! (+ Free Alternatives)

Laziness Rating: 👍🏻👍🏻👍🏻👍🏻 – Like a quick stretch before a workout

Heads Up game in action.
Image courtesy of Taryn Daly

Heads up is a game where a player has to guess the word on their forehead by clues given by their friends. It’s another one that’s been around for a while but has recently been catapulted into stardom thanks to virtual parties.

Of course, that means that there’s an app for it. The eponymous ‘Heads Up!’ app ($0.99) is the most popular version, but if you’re sticking fast to purely free virtual party ideas, then there are several no-cost alternatives such as Charades!, Deckheads! and Charades – Heads Up Game, all available on your phone’s app store.

How to Do It

Using the Charades! app for free in a virtual party.
Heads up played on the Charades! app, which is free.
  1. All guests download Heads Up! or any of its free alternatives.
  2. Each player takes turns to choose a category and hold the phone to their forehead (or up to their computer screen’s camera if they’re sitting far away).
  3. All other party guests shout out clues about the word or phrase on the player’s phone.
  4. If the player guesses the correct word or phrase from the clues, they tilt the phone down.
  5. If the player wants to pass the word or phrase, they tilt the phone up.
  6. The player has 60, 90 or 120 seconds (selectable in ‘settings’) to guess as many words as possible.

There’s one golden rule when playing this virtual party game on Zoom: players can’t look at their computer screen. If they do, they’ll see their own image with the answer, which is obviously a little against the spirit of the game!


Idea 8 – Scattergories

Laziness Rating: 👍🏻👍🏻👍🏻👍🏻👍🏻 – Can do it with your eyes closed

Scattergories logo
Image courtesy of WCCLS

The classics really are the best when it comes to virtual party games. Scattergories has certainly cemented its reputation as a classic; now it enters the online zone in order to bring fast-paced word action to virtual parties.

If you’re unfamiliar, Scattergories is a game in which you name something in a range of categories that begins with a specific letter. Some category and letter combinations are super tough, and that’s what separates the wheat from the chaff.

Scattergories Online is a great free tool to play….well, Scattergories online. Invite your guests with the link, add robots to flesh out the numbers and create a game in seconds from predetermined categories.

How to Do It

Using Scattergories Online for a virtual party.
  1. Create a room on Scattergories Online.
  2. Choose the categories from the list (you can sign up for free to access more categories).
  3. Choose other settings such as the usable letters, the player count and the time limit.
  4. Invite your guests using the link.
  5. Start playing – answer as many categories as you can.
  6. Vote at the end for whether or not other players’ answers should be accepted.

Idea 9 – Fictionary

Laziness Rating: 👍🏻👍🏻👍🏻👍🏻 – Like a quick stretch before a workout

Playing Fictionary for a virtual party game.

The English language is full of utterly bizarre and totally useless words, and Fictionary flushes them out for your enjoyment!

This virtual party game involves trying to guess the meaning of a word you’ve almost definitely never heard of, then voting for who else’s answer you think sounds the most correct. Points are awarded for guessing the word correctly and for having someone vote for your answer as the correct answer.

To level out the playing field for the ignorant, you can add another potential points-avenue in asking ‘whose answer was the funniest?’. That way, the funniest proposed definitions of a word can rake in the gold.

How to Do It

Changing the other settings when making a Fictionary game on AhaSlides for free.
  1. Create an ‘open-ended’ slide on AhaSlides and write your Fictionary word in the ‘your question’ field.
  2. In ‘additional fields’ make the ‘name’ field mandatory.
  3. In ‘other settings’, turn on ‘hide results’ (to prevent copying) and ‘limit time to answer’ (to add drama).
  4. Choose to present layouts in a grid.
Changing the name options when making a Fictionary game on AhaSlides for free.
  1. Create a ‘multiple choice’ slide afterwards with the title ‘whose answer do you think was right?’
  2. Enter the names of your partygoers in the options.
  3. Uncheck the box that states ‘this question has correct answers.
  4. Repeat this process for another multiple choice slide called ‘whose answer do you think was funniest?’

Idea 10 – Jeopardy

Laziness Rating: 👍🏻👍🏻👍🏻 – Not the easiest, but certainly not the hardest

Alex Trebek Thumbs Up GIF by Jeopardy!

What can be a better way to honour Jeopardy‘s legendary host Alex Trebek than with mass Jeopardy playing across virtual parties this year?

Jeopardy Labs is a fantastic and completely free tool that helps bring Jeopardy boards to life. You fill in the categories and some questions of varying difficulty between 100 and 500 points. When it’s virtual party time, call on guests one-by-one to take a punt at a question of a difficulty they are confident with. If they get it right, they win the number of allocated points; if they get it wrong, they lose that amount from their points total.

Too much effort? Well, Jeopardy Labs has got a seemingly unlimited amount of free templates that you can use straight up or alter slightly in the in-browser editor.

How to Do It

Making a Jeopardy Board for a virtual party using Jeopardy Labs.
  1. Head to Jeopardy Labs and create or copy a Jeopardy board.
  2. Write 5 categories across the top.
  3. Write 5 questions for each category, ranging in difficulty from 100 (easy) to 500 (difficult).
  4. On party day, divide your partygoers into teams and share your screen.
  5. Follow the typical Jeopardy order of play (if you’re not entirely sure, check out this quick explainer for online Jeopardy)

Idea 11 – Pointless

Laziness Rating: 👍🏻👍🏻👍🏻👍🏻 – Like a quick stretch before a workout

Playing Pointless on AhaSlides during a virtual party,

American readers might be familiar with Jeopardy, but British readers will certainly be familiar with Pointless. It’s a primetime game show on the BBC that involves staying as far away from the mainstream as possible.

Essentially, contestants are given a category and must give the most obscure answers they can. For example, in the category of ‘countries starting with B’, Brazil and Belgium would be low scorers and Brunei and Belize would bring home the points.

This is a game that’s totally replicable using a ‘word cloud’ slide on AhaSlides. This type of slide puts the most common answers to statements in larger text at the centre, while those valuable obscure answers are outlying in smaller text.

You can click the answers at the centre to delete them, which will bring the next most popular answers to the centre. Keep deleting answers until you get the least mentioned answer or answers, for which you can award the points to whoever wrote them.

How to Do It

Changing the other settings when making the Pointless game on AhaSlides.
  1. Create a ‘word cloud’ slide on AhaSlides.
  2. Write the question category in the ‘your question’ field.
  3. Choose the number of entries you will allow each participant.
  4. Choose to hide the results and limit the time to answer.
  5. When all players have answered, delete the most popular answers until you reach the least popular one(s).
  6. Award points to whoever wrote the least popular answer(s) (there is no ‘name’ field on a word cloud slide, so you will have to ask who wrote the winning answer(s) and hope for honesty!)
  7. Keep track of the points with pen and paper.

Note: Click here for more help about setting up a word cloud slide.


Idea 12 – Picture Close-Up

Laziness Rating: 👍🏻👍🏻👍🏻👍🏻 – Like a quick stretch before a workout

Playing Picture Close-Up during a virtual party on AhaSlides.

Another classic bit of trivia is Picture Close-Up. It’s super easy to make for a virtual party and is a great way to challenge those perceptive partygoers in the group.

It involves guessing what a picture is from a close-up section of that picture. You can make this as easy or as hard as you want, as you choose the pictures as well as how zoomed their close-ups are.

How to Do It

Choosing an image to make the picture close-up game for a virtual party using AhaSlides.
  1. Create a ‘type answer slide’ on AhaSlides.
  2. Add the title ‘What’s this?’ in the ‘your question’ box.
  3. Click the ‘add image’ icon and select your image.
  4. When the ‘crop and resize’ box comes up, crop the image down to a small segment and press ‘save’.
  5. In the leaderboard slide that follows, set the background as the full-sized, non-cropped image.

🎧 Audio Activities for a Virtual Party

Want to add a bit of audio stimulation to the proceedings? Whether it’s singing your heart out or taking the mickey out of your mates, we’ve got 3 ideas for audio activities at your next virtual party.


Idea 13 – Impression Soundbite

Laziness Rating: 👍🏻👍🏻👍🏻 – Not the easiest, but certainly not the hardest

Creating an impression soundbite game as a virtual party activity using sound.

It’s times like these that we really miss those little quirks from family, friends and co-workers. Well, Impression Soundbite gives you the chance to alleviate that feeling by poking fun at other people’s hilarious quirks or infuriating habits.

This one involves making and/or collecting audio impressions of other guests, then playing them in a quiz format and seeing who can guess who or what is being parodied.

How to Do It

Changing the name and audio options when making the sound impression activity for a virtual party.
  1. Before the party, make your own audio impressions or gather ones from your party guests.
  2. Create either a ‘pick answer’ quiz slide or a ‘type answer’ quiz slide.
  3. Fill in the title and the correct answer (+ other answers if you chose a ‘pick answer’ slide)
  4. Use the audio tab to embed the audio file.
  5. When presenting on virtual party day, the audio clip will play out of everyone’s phones.

Note: We’ve got heaps more tips on setting up audio quizzes on AhaSlides.


Idea 14 – Karaoke Session

Laziness Rating: 👍🏻👍🏻👍🏻👍🏻👍🏻 – Can do it with your eyes closed

Man speaking into a microphone with a laptop.

Always a hit activity for virtual parties – online karaoke may sound like a logistical online nightmare, but you’ll find plenty of tools online to ensure it comes off smoothly.

One of these tools is Sync Video, which allows you and your guests to watch the same YouTube video at exactly the same time. It’s free to use and doesn’t require sign-up; simply invite guests to your room, queue up the jingles and take it in turns to belt them out!

How to Do It

Using Sync Video to set up a karaoke session for a virtual party.
  • Create a room for free on Sync Video.
  • Invite your guests via the URL link.
  • Let everyone queue up songs to sing along to.

Idea 15 – Alternative Lyrics

  • Laziness Rating: 👍🏻👍🏻👍🏻👍🏻👍🏻 – Can do it with your eyes closed
  • Laziness Rating (if embedding audio): 👍🏻👍🏻👍🏻 – Not the easiest, but certainly not the hardest
Playing the alternative lyrics game in a virtual party on AhaSlides.

Papa don’t preach or poppadom peach? We’ve all accidentally misheard lyrics before, but Alternative Lyrics is a virtual party game that rewards weird substitute lyrics that fit the gap.

This works best for seasonal virtual parties, like Christmas, where there’s a certain setlist of songs that everyone knows. Just write out the first part of the lyric, then invite your guests to fill out the second part with their hilarious alternative.

If you’ve got a bit of extra time, you can use a free online tool like Audio Trimmer to trim an audio clip of the song to cut off after the first part of the lyric. Then, you can embed that clip into your slide so that it plays on everyone’s phones while they’re answering.

How to Do It

Making an alternative lyric actvitity for a virtual party.
  1. Create an ‘open-ended’ slide on AhaSlides.
  2. Write the first part of the lyric in the title.
  3. Add the required information fields for a submission.
  4. Limit the time to answer.
  5. Choose to present the results in a grid format so that all are viewable at the same time.

If you want to embed an audio file…

Adding audio to a slide on AhaSlides.
  1. Download the song that you’re using.
  2. Use Audio Trimmer to cut out the part of the song that you want to use.
  3. Embed the audio clip into the slide using the ‘add audio track’ in the audio tab.

🖌️ Creative Ideas for a Virtual Party

The scope of virtual party activities is pretty immense – far more so than that of a regular party. You and your guests have got heaps of free tools at your disposal to create, compare and compete in virtual party games focussed on creativity.

We’re all for creativity at AhaSlides. Here are 7 ideas for creative activities at your next virtual party.


Idea 16 – Presentation Party

Laziness Rating: 👍🏻👍🏻 – A mild pain in the glutes

Create your own presentation for a presentation party.

If you’re thinking that the words ‘presentation’ and ‘party’ don’t go together, then you clearly haven’t heard of one of the biggest innovations in virtual party activities. A presentation party is a brilliantly creative outlet for guests and a much-needed breather for hosts.

The crux of it is that, before the party, each guest will create a hilarious, informative or shocking presentation on any topic they want. Once the party kicks off and everyone has acquired a suitable amount of Dutch courage, they present their presentation to their fellow partygoers.

To keep engagement high and so as not to annoy your guests with a mountain of pre-party homework, you should limit presentations to a certain number of slides or a certain time limit. Your guests can also cast their votes on the best presentations in certain categories to keep it competitive.

How to Do It

Using Google Slides to create your own presentation for use in a virtual party.
  1. Before your party, instruct your guests to create a short presentation on a topic of their choice.
  2. When it’s party time, let each person share their screen and present their presentation.
  3. Award points at the end for best in each category (most hilarious, most informative, best use of sound, etc.)

Note: Google Slides is one of the best free tools for making presentations. If you want to make a Google Slides presentation interactive with all of the free features of AhaSlides, you can do that in 3 simple steps.


Idea 17 – Design Competition

Laziness Rating: 👍🏻👍🏻 – A mild pain in the glutes

A design competition as an idea for a virtual party.

Got an audience full of budding artists? Throwing an image design competition based around a certain theme can really light the fire under your virtual party.

Even guests with absolutely no design experience can have fun in a design competition. All they need is a couple of free-to-use tools to create the best image they can:

  1. Canva – A free tool to create images from a large library of templates, backgrounds and elements.
  2. PhotoScissors – A free tool that cuts images out of pictures for use on Canva.

We made the above image for our virtual Christmas party invitation competition, but you could use any theme for your own virtual party.

How to Do It

Using Canva for a design competition - a great idea for a virtual party.
  1. Think of a theme for your design competition to be based on.
  2. Before your virtual party begins, get everyone to create a design, following your theme, using Canva and PhotoScissors.
  3. Get each person to reveal their design at the party.
  4. Take a vote on which is the best.

Idea 18 – Draw a Monster

Laziness Rating: 👍🏻👍🏻👍🏻👍🏻👍🏻 – Can do it with your eyes closed

Using virtual whiteboard software to play Draw a Monster online.

Here’s one of the best virtual party ideas for kids – drawing a monster with the help of free online tools! In this case, we’re using one called Draw Chat, which is a virtual whiteboard that you can share with your party guests.

Draw a Monster involves using your desktop or phone to draw a creature with a number of limbs dependent on the roll of a dice. You can use Draw Chat to roll the dice, assign numbers to limbs and challenge your guests to draw the monster in the most creative way possible.

How to Do It

How to set up the Draw a Monster game for a virtual party.
  1. Head to Draw.Chat and create a virtual whiteboard for free.
  2. Invite your guests using the personal whiteboard link.
  3. Create a new page for each guest in the bottom left corner.
  4. In the bottom-right chatbox, type /roll to roll the virtual dice.
  5. Assign each dice roll to a different limb.
  6. Everyone draws their version of the monster on their page.
  7. Take a vote on the best monster at the end.

Idea 19 – Pictionary

  • Laziness Rating (if using Draw Chat) : 👍🏻👍🏻👍🏻👍🏻 – Like a quick stretch before a workout
  • Laziness Rating (if using Drawful 2) : 👍🏻👍🏻👍🏻👍🏻👍🏻 – Can do it with your eyes closed
Simpsons season 8 pictionary GIF

You may have guessed already after the previous virtual party idea, but Draw Chat is also a great tool for Pictionary.

Pictionary doesn’t really need an introduction at this point. We’re sure you’ve been playing it non-stop since the start of lockdown, and even for the years that it’s been a hyper popular parlour game.

Still, Pictionary entered the online world like many other games in 2020. Draw Chat is a great tool to play it online for free, but there’s also the super cheap Drawful 2, which gives guests a huge range of crazy concepts to draw with their phones.

How to Do It

If you’re using Draw.Chat:

Playing Pictionary on a virtual whiteboard as part of a virtual party.
  1. Create a Pictionary list of words for drawing (topical ones for the holidays are great).
  2. Send a few words from your list to each of your guests.
  3. Create a room on Draw Chat.
  4. Invite your guests using the personal whiteboard link.
  5. Give each guest a time limit to progress through their set word list.
  6. Keep count of how many correct guesses their drawings evoked in the time limit.

If you’re using Drawful 2 (not free):

Playing Drawful 2 at a virtual party.
  1. Download Drawful 2 for $9.99 (only the host has to download it)
  2. Start a game and invite your guests with the room code.
  3. Choose a name and draw your avatar.
  4. Draw the concept that you’re given.
  5. Enter your best guess for each other player’s drawing.
  6. Take a vote on the correct answer and the most hilarious answer for each drawing.

Idea 20 – Charades

Laziness Rating: 👍🏻👍🏻👍🏻👍🏻 – Like a quick stretch before a workout

Man waving at Zoom meeting on screen.
Image courtesy of Urban Matter

Another parlour game that’s found popularity in the age of COVID is Charades. It’s another one that works as well online as it does in Victorian-era parlours.

You can start by making up (or finding online) a list of activities and situations for your guests to act out. If you’re hosting a virtual party for the holidays, it’s great to have a list of seasonal prompts that fit well with the time of year.

How to Do It

A Thanksgiving charades list

Note: We made the above charades list for a virtual Thanksgiving party. You can download it for free below:

  1. Create a list of activities and situations.
  2. Give out a few of these to each guest to act out when it’s their turn.
  3. Get them to act out their list over video.
  4. The person with the most activities guessed in a time limit wins.

Idea 21 – Sheet Hot Masterpiece

👍🏻 – Better take a few days off work

Create beautiful pieces of pixel art using Excel or Google Sheets.
Image courtesy of michellesaurr

Ever made a colour-coded spreadsheet that ended up looking like a classical artistic masterpiece? No? Us neither, we just wanted to show off.

Well, Sheet Hot Masterpiece is a great virtual party idea for creatives, as it lets anyone turn a regularly dull spreadsheet into a magnificent work of art through use of colourful conditional formatting.

Beware, this one is not easy to make; it requires a bit of Excel/Sheets knowledge and some time to map out the colour-coded pixels. And yet, it may just be one of the best ways to spice up your virtual party.

Thanks to teambuilding.com for this idea!

How to Do it

How to set up the Sheet Hot Masterpiece game for a virtual party.
  1. Create a Google Sheet.
  2. Press CTRL + A to select all cells.
  3. Drag the lines of the cells to make them all square.
  4. Click on Format and then Conditional Formatting (with all cells still selected).
  5. Under ‘Format rules’ select ‘Text is exactly’ and input the value of 1.
  6. Under ‘Formatting style’ choose the ‘fill colour’ and the ‘text colour’ as a colour from the artwork being recreated.
  7. Repeat this process with all the other colours of the artwork (entering 2, 3, 4, etc. as the value for each new colour).
  8. Add a colour key on the left so that participants know what number values evoke what colours.
  9. Repeat the entire process for a few different artworks (make sure the artworks are simple so that this doesn’t take forever).
  10. Insert an image of each artwork into each sheet that you’re making, so that your participants have a reference to draw from.
  11. Make a simple multiple choice slide on AhaSlides so that everyone can vote for their favourite 3 recreations.

Idea 22 – Household Movie

Laziness Rating: 👍🏻👍🏻👍🏻 – Not the easiest, but certainly not the hardest

Low Cost Cosplay using carrots to resemble Davey Jones from Pirates of the Caribbean.
Image courtesy of Low Cost Cosplay

Being stuck in the house for the majority of 2020 might have given you a fresh perspective on your possessions. Maybe not: “I’ve got too much stuff”, but almost definitely: “if I stack up all those used coffee pods, it might look like a collapsed Thing from Fantastic Four”.

Well that’s definitely one way to play Household Movie, a virtual party game where guests recreate movie scenes using household items. This can either be movie characters or entire scenes from films made out of anything available from around the house.

How to Do It

Voting on the best movie recreation using AhaSlides polling software.
  1. Ask guests to come up with a movie scene they want to recreate.
  2. Give them a generous time limit to create the scene with whatever they can find.
  3. Either get them to reveal the scene over Zoom, or take a picture of the scene and send it to the group chat.
  4. Take a vote on which is the best/most loyal/most hilarious movie recreation.

⬇️🔑 Low-Key Ideas for a Virtual Party

Don’t feel like your virtual party has to be all action all the time. Sometimes it’s nice to step away from the competition, the extroversion and the commotion to simply chill out in a relaxed online space.

Here are 8 low-key virtual party ideas, perfect for keeping things ticking or rounding off the party with the mellowest of bangs.


Idea 23 – Virtual Beer/Wine Tasting

Laziness Rating: 👍🏻👍🏻👍🏻👍🏻 – Like a quick stretch before a workout

Man taking part in a virtual beer tasting over Zoom

There’s not a chance that a pandemic is going to change our affinity for drinking during the holidays. The proof is in the Christmas pudding: virtual beer and wine tasting sessions have soared in popularity.

Now, you can manifest this virtual party idea as casually or as seriously as you want. If you’re looking for some faux-sophistication to a virtual boozing session, then that’s totally fine. While if you’re looking for something a bit more nuanced and classy, then we’ve got the perfect template for you…

Downloading this free virtual beer tasting template lets you and your fellow drinkers progress through a set list of beers (purchased yourselves) and gather and compare opinions through polls, word clouds and open-ended questions. No problem if you’re throwing a wine tasting party, as you can change the wording and background images within a few minutes.

How to Do It

  1. Click the button above to see the template in the AhaSlides editor.
  2. Change anything you want about the slides to fit your drinks and their drinkers.
  3. Duplicate the slides in the template for each beer or wine you’ll be drinking.
  4. Share the unique room code with your drinkers and get discussing and tasting!

Note: Need more advice? We’ve got a whole article on how to host the perfect virtual beer tasting session for free.


Idea 24 – Watch a Movie

Laziness Rating: 👍🏻👍🏻👍🏻👍🏻👍🏻 – Can do it with your eyes closed

Panda Movie Night GIF

Watching a movie is the quintessential virtual party idea for low-key celebrations. It lets you take a step back from the action and chill out to whatever movie your partygoers settle on.

Watch2Gether is a free tool that lets you watch videos with your guests online at the same time – without the threat of lag. It differs from Sync Video (which we mentioned earlier) in that it allows the syncing of videos on platforms other than YouTube, such as Vimeo, Dailymotion and Twitch.

This is a great idea for a virtual holiday, as there’s no shortage of free Christmas films online. But really, any virtual party, no matter when you hold it, can benefit from a wind-down like this.

How to Do It

Using Watch2Gether to sync a movie with guests at a virtual party.
  1. Create a free video sharing room on Watch2Gether.
  2. Upload a video of your choosing (or by consensus vote) to the box at the top.
  3. Play the video, sit back and relax!
  • Tip #1: After the movie, you could hold a quiz on what happened to see who was paying attention!
  • Tip #2: If everyone at the party has a Netflix account, you can sync any Netflix show using the Teleparty browser extension (formally called ‘Netflix Party’).

Idea 25 – Virtual Cookie-Off

Laziness Rating: 👍🏻👍🏻👍🏻 – Not the easiest, but certainly not the hardest

Baking emoji cookies as part of a low-key activity for a virtual party.
Image courtesy of Brit + Co

We don’t know about you, but one of the biggest things we missed in 2020 was sharing food. The holidays, especially, are all about huge spreads of food and as many guests as possible; how can it be possible to recreate that experience?

Well, having a virtual cookie-off is a pretty good start. We’ve found a great recipe from Brit + Co for gingerbread cookies, which are super simple and use basic ingredients found in every household.

This recipe encourages a hint of competition, as guests can use the cookies to recreate emoji icons in icing. Voting on the best recreation afterwards adds a fitting bit of spice to the activity.

How to Do It

Voting on the best cookies made at a virtual party bake-off.
  1. Make sure everyone has the basic ingredients for the cookie-off before party day.
  2. On party day, get everyone to move their laptops into the kitchen.
  3. Follow the emoji cookie recipe together.
  4. While the cookies are baking, decide on who will recreate which emojis.
  5. Decorate the cookies in icing.
  6. Make a ‘multiple choice’ slide to vote for the best recreation.

Idea 26 – Zoom Origami

Laziness Rating: 👍🏻👍🏻👍🏻👍🏻 – Like a quick stretch before a workout

Zoom logo made out of origami.
Image courtesy of POE Origami

Group origami is the very definition of low-key. As long as it’s easy enough, that is.

Luckily, there’s a serious wealth of easy origami tutorials out there for you and your guests to follow along at the same time. All that’s needed is a sheet of coloured (or even white) paper per guest and a little bit of patience.

Again, you can share a video like the one below on Sync Video or Watch2Gether, which gives you the option to pause the video if anyone gets stuck.

Here are a few more simple origami videos

How to Do It

  1. Choose a simple origami video from the list above, or find one yourself.
  2. Instruct your guests to gather a bit paper (and possibly a pair of scissors, depending on the video).
  3. Create a room on Sync Video or Watch2Gether and send the room link out to your guests.
  4. Go through the video together. Pause and rewind if anyone gets stuck.

Idea 27 – Virtual Book Club

Laziness Rating: 👍🏻👍🏻👍🏻👍🏻 – Like a quick stretch before a workout

Books and laptop on a table.

A virtual party idea for introverts? Say no more. The rising popularity of virtual book clubs is providing the quietest among us with more and more outlets for artistic expression.

Under the restrictions of lockdown, book clubs are still able to thrive online. It’s super simple to arrange your own group of book lovers to read through some set material, then, over the internet, discuss it in detail.

Like our virtual beer tasting idea, you can incorporate free software into your book club to collect and compare opinions across your group. We’ve made another free template for you, including a mixture of open-ended questions, opinion polls, slides and word clouds that give your guests loads of ways to have their say on the material.

How to Do It

  1. Click the button above to check the full template.
  2. Change anything you want about the presentation, including questions, backgrounds and slide types.
  3. Share the materials with your guests and give them plenty of pre-party time to read them.
  4. When it’s virtual party day, invite your guests to the presentation using the unique room code at the top.
  5. Let them fill out each slide with their opinions on the books.

Protip 👊 The above presentation is just a template – you can change any part of it without any registration. Consider adding more questions and using more slide types to get the full range of responses from your fellow readers.

  • Tip #1: Add a few quiz slides at the end of each book you’re reviewing to test everyone’s memory of it!
  • Tip #2: Let your audience progress through the presentation at their own pace by selecting ‘audience take the lead’ in the ‘settings’ tab.

Idea 28 – Virtual Card Games

Laziness Rating: 👍🏻👍🏻👍🏻👍🏻👍🏻 – Can do it with your eyes closed

Ace of Spades card held up.

There are few better background games for a virtual party than card games. Card games keep the conversation ticking while introducing a friendly competitive element that keeps guests enthralled.

CardzMania is a free online tool that lets you play over 30 different card games with your guests. Simply select your game, alter the rules and invite your players with the room code.

How to Do It

Playing Rummy online using Cardzmania - a great idea for a virtual party.
  1. Head to CardzMania and find the card game you want to play.
  2. Select ‘multiplayer mode’ and then ‘host table’.
  3. Change the rules to suit.
  4. Share the URL join code with your guests.
  5. Start playing!

Idea 29 – Virtual Board Games

Laziness Rating: 👍🏻👍🏻👍🏻👍🏻👍🏻 – Can do it with your eyes closed

Virtual board games played for free on Tabletopia.

The resurgence of board games predates social distancing. Even before we became confined to our houses, board games established themselves as a unique way to stay connected and have since been a great addition to the arsenal of virtual party ideas.

That’s when services like Tabletopia turned up. Tabletopia lets you play 1000+ board games for free, all with full licensing by the real heavyweights and plucky newcomers of the board game world.

Once you create a free account on the site, you’ll have access to most of its games and will be able to invite your friends (who don’t have to sign up) to join.

How to Do It

Playing a board game online for free as part of a virtual party activity.
  1. Head to Tabletopia and create a free account.
  2. Browse the free games on offer and select one to play.
  3. Click ‘play online’ and add one seat for each player.
  4. Share the room code with your guests.
  5. Start playing!

Idea 30 – Virtual Jigsaw

Laziness Rating: 👍🏻👍🏻👍🏻👍🏻👍🏻 – Can do it with your eyes closed

A pile of purple and pink jigsaw pieces.

The digitising of the communal jigsaw in 2020 was a celebratory event for retired dads everywhere (and many, many other demographics!)

Now it’s the definition of a chill virtual party idea – grabbing a drink, joining a virtual jigsaw and idly chatting while tackling the puzzle together.

The best free, multiplayer jigsaw tool we’ve used online is epuzzle.info. It lets you choose from a huge library of puzzles, or even create your own, then invite your friends via the join code.

How to Do It

Playing a virtual communal jigsaw on epuzzle.
  1. Head to epuzzle.info and find a puzzle (or create your own from an image).
  2. Select the table as ‘private’ and set the maximum number of players.
  3. Press ‘create a table’ and share the URL link with your party guests.
  4. Get everyone to press ‘join table’ and start assembling!
  5. Use the settings in the top-right corner to see each player’s contribution to the puzzle and to see the box image.

Tip: Split your partygoers into teams and tackle the same puzzle at the same time. Times and moves are recorded, so you could easily turn this low-key virtual party idea into a team competition!


More Ideas for Virtual Parties, Events and Meetings

Planning something big this year? You’ll find even more virtual party ideas across our other articles. We’ve also got ideas for events that you can hold online as well as ones for teams of remote workers.

  1. Virtual Company Party
  2. Virtual Thanksgiving Party
  3. Virtual Christmas Party
  4. Virtual Team Meeting Games
  5. Virtual Ice Breakers
  6. Virtual Beer Tasting

List of Free Tools for a Virtual Party

A laptop, phone and table full of tools.
Image courtesy of Jeff Bullas

Here’s a list of the tools we mentioned in the virtual party ideas above. Each of these are free to use, though some may require registration:

  • AhaSlides – Presentation, polling and quizzing software that’s fully interactive and cloud-based. Participate and play from anywhere in the world.
  • Wheel Decide – A virtual wheel you can spin to assign tasks or figure out the next activity at your virtual party.
  • Charades! – A free (and better rated) alternative to Heads Up!
  • Scattergories Online – A tool for creating and playing a game of Scattergories.
  • Jeopardy Labs – A tool for creating Jeopardy boards with tonnes of free templates.
  • Sync Video – An online tool to sync YouTube videos for watching at the same time as your guests.
  • Watch2Gether – Another video syncing tool, but one that allows use of videos outside of YouTube (albeit with more ads).
  • Audio Trimmer – A simple in-browser tool for cropping audio clips.
  • PhotoScissors – A simple in-browser tool for cutting sections out of images.
  • Canva – Online software that helps you design graphics and other images with heaps of templates and elements.
  • Draw Chat – Online whiteboard software that lets users draw on the same canvas at the same time.
  • Cardzmania – A tool to play over 30 varieties of card games with your guests.
  • Tabletopia – A library of over 1000 fully licensed board games that you can play online.
  • Epuzzle – A tool for assembling virtual jigsaws with friends, either casually or competitively.

Please note that we have no affiliation with these websites; we simply believe them to be great online tools for your virtual party.


The All-in-One Free Tool for a Virtual Party

AhaSlides is a versatile tool that can bring so many virtual party ideas to life. The core of the software is connection, which is surely something we could all do with more of in these times.

AhaSlides works for free with up to 7 guests. If you’re throwing a larger virtual party, you can find the full range of pricing on our pricing page. We have a commitment to providing the most affordable interactive presentation software around!


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