For a good few years now, “Board Game Twitter” has been a thing. All sorts of gamers, enthusiasts, publishers, designers and content makers are out there chatting about games on the platform – we’re on there! So, it was only a matter of time until folks started to think about how they could play games on Twitter with each other. There have been some really fun instances of this – and not just translations of board games – so I figured it could be fun to share for something a little different in games. I know it’s not apps or online play, but if you spend any time on Twitter it might be of interest!
The most “formal” sorts of games I’ve seen have been in the form of bots that will run a single round of a game. Sadly, two of them are now defunct, but they were great translations of the games into text format — one was the Boggle bot, the other was a Codenames bot! Interestingly, the person who was running the Codenames bot now has some wordy puzzles on the go here. And speaking of words… Gil Hova’s fantastic word game Wordsy lends itself fantastically to the Twitter format. Wordsy Bot provides a grid of letters, like the card grid in the physical game, and allows players to submit words by replying to the tweet. You’ll get a score back and then after a certain period the Wordsy Bot announces the winner of the round, plus the best word it could find. (And if you’re hankering for more digital Wordsy, the app will be out soon!) Something more recent and on the party/social spectrum of games is the Wavelength Daily bot which runs a round of the game Wavelength each day (you can learn about the game here). It’s really fun to see the creative responses everyone submits for that – and likes to responses will determine the round’s winners!
Twitter is a rich mine of emoji communications at times, and games on Twitter have tapped into that. Joe Sondow has a couple of really neat emoji bots that aren’t board-game related but I have to mention them (they’re awesome, along with his non-game emoji bots): Emoji Tetra and Emoji Snake Game. A favourite of late has been the guess the emoji game by Michelle Ridge – she’s just come back with her “What Did Bunny Play” series, in which furry little ASCII Bunny pal set up in a variety of ways with emoji in order to get us all to guess the game. Here’s a couple of great examples, see if you can guess this one, or this! All of them are here if you’d like a challenge. Michelle has even put together a scoring table in the past, you can really get competitive with it. While it’s not a recurring thing, I did really enjoy the thread from Emma Larkins where she asked for game pitches using only emoji, and she’d then interpret them. Now I’m sitting here wondering if there’s been an emoji charades game developed for the party game market!
Physical games to Twitter
While all of the games above have made use of digital formats really well, there’s been a good few instances of people sharing images of physical games in order to play via Twitter. Pep MacDonald has in the past posted games for his followers to join in on. These are very specific types of games that work well for the format of presenting clues for guessing – great examples of this are Dixit and Just One. While there was for a little while an account for an emoji version of Concept, it seems like it’s been popular for folks to set up the board and share that. If you scan through the hashtag #TwitterConcept, you’ll see some great examples – but I think the popularity of Concept has unfortunately waned enough that it’s not popping up as often. I think it’s ripe for revival!
A Game about Games
Now, this gets a little meta – playing games about board games on Twitter using images of board game covers. The account “Bad Covers of Board Game Covers” posts pixelated (“bad”) versions of the covers of games for players to guess. For example, this post about Wits & Wagers. Every so often there will be a little series of tweets collecting games from a particular publisher or designer, which makes it quite fun. I haven’t seen anything else similar to this, and I would love to see how folks can take more meta ideas like this for fun on Twitter.
Of course, I’m likely to have missed some types of games that are out there – I’d love to know if there are more! While there’s plenty of ways to play games via apps or even on online platforms, these have been a fun and fresh way to enjoy board games. And if you have an idea for something that hasn’t been tried, give it a go and make sure to tag us in on Twitter!