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During enforced isolation we're seeking social activities: what board games work well with others over webcam (ie in video chat; Skype, Jitsi, Zoom, etc.)?

If you've played over webcam, was it better with one board, or multiple? Did everyone need to own the game in order for it to work?

Feel free to precis house rules that make any game work well this way. Thanks.

  • This is far too broad to actually answer, if you have a particular game in mind go and head and ask about that, but there's no way to really create general house rules for something like this (and some games don't need such rules anyways, people have already played chess by mail for instance) – Andrew Apr 7 at 20:41
  • @Andrew, have you a suggestion where I could get this question answered? – pbhj Apr 11 at 13:38
  • narrow the question. Ask about a specific game. No one could really answer this question broad as it is well. – Andrew Apr 11 at 15:51
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We played Monopoly with a single board.

It was useful to have dice, money, and property cards for the remote player at their location. Locally we ghost played them - they rolled remote dice, we trusted their reported roll and moved their counter on our local board. We also did their money for them so local players could see it, but they duplicated that at their end. When doing transactions, they picked out the money from their remote stash and showed it to the camera (the bank acted as interchange).

Money and property names differed in the versions we had so we went through before hand to check the money was "normalised" (used an exchange rate of 1000). Properties were named by colour Brown1 being the first space after, and Purple2 being the last space before Go. Mention of a property at the local end was followed always by its list price.

Worked well, 2 local and 1 remote player using meet.jit.si for a 4hr game (including setup).

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    I have heard of DND groups having an extra camera for there dice roll. – Styxsksu Apr 6 at 17:42
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(prerequisite: for games with hidden info, you'll probably want to use the rear-facing camera on a phone, or otherwise ensure that you can't see the picture that you're broadcasting)

For The Mind, we showed the remote player their hand, and added one card at a time, ordering them low-to-high as instructed. Then we just put their cards in a face down pile. Flip over their top card when instructed!

Of course, this changes the dynamic of the game somewhat, but we rather enjoyed it.

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During this time I'm seeing lots of different ways this is being handled:-

I'm arranging online games with friends through the many different sites and using any of the various chat apps to do this. I won't name specifics as this isn't a recommendations site but there are many options available for both. I'm finding for my own design work that finding people to help with play testing has been much easier right now. This is probably a better solution for playing board games online rather than using a webcam as these digital platforms are designed specifically for gaming.

As for webcam specific you will find lots of different vloggers are live streaming games played over webcam so you will probably see ideas there. But my answer to you question is that there are many better solutions for online games available than a webcam.

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  • We considered Table-Top Simulator first, but the kids wanted to "play a board game" and not a computer game. It worked well and seemed a far more human interaction and an experience they want to repeat soon - ergo the question. I guess it's like Cinema vs Stream-at-home .. you see the same movie but the experience is quite different. – pbhj Apr 6 at 21:53

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