If you’re reading this in the office, then shame on you — why aren’t you working? Shouldn’t you be doing something more productive with your boss’s time? You know, fun activities like spreadsheets, photocopying, and email.
Chances are if you do work in an office environment, your internet wings have been clipped and your access to guaranteed time-wasters like social media is restricted. Is it time to find something else to pass the time when you’re at your least productive?
Well, here we present to you a small collection of games to play in the office that you and your coworkers can enjoy, even without an open internet connection. If you’ve got a little more freedom, you can entertain yourself further with Slack and mobile games.
Get Silly With Little or No Technology
If you have office supplies, you can play a game. It might be goofy, but these games are still fun and require little or no technology at all.
The Invisible String
This one’s really simple. Take two points in your office and “draw” an invisible line across the area. Try to choose a fairly high-traffic spot, preferably near the water dispenser or printer for maximum enjoyment.
It’s then up to you and your closest coworkers to avoid crossing the invisible string. You can duck beneath it, or even jump over it — but your aim is to never touch it. The more people that join in, the better the game.
Should anyone forget, or unknowingly cross your line, then all participating players should let out audible gasps of pain.
Blu Tack Movies
Blu Tack (or any tack used to stick up posters, memos, etc.) can be found in nearly any office in plentiful supply. One of its most creative uses, however, is the Blu Tack movie game.
Grab some tack and mold it into a familiar object, character, or clue to the name of a movie. It’s then up to your coworkers to figure out the movie. Bonus points are awarded for artistic merit.
Just as childish and potentially outrageous as the invisible line game, the idea behind this one is to not touch the office floor at all.
Especially difficult to play, workers must use their wits and work together in order to keep their feet off the floor. Transportation is provided via the comfort of your office wheeled chair, and lunchtime doesn’t count (unless you’re the guy in the picture below).
The fun lies in catching your workmates out, and the penalties you and your coworkers must come up with for anyone caught with their feet firmly on the ground.
Best played with four or more players, Photoshop Tennis can yield some hilarious results. You don’t strictly need Photoshop to play either — any image editing program will do.
One player starts to draw a picture within Photoshop (or equivalent), which subsequent players must add to. The picture makes its way around the office (the more people, the better) before making it back to the originator.
This game tests the creativity of your workmates, and it’s fun trying to figure out who did what. Repeat the process till you’ve run out of room, then print it off and display it as your latest office project. Team building — right?
For anyone who likes a wager, there’s Telegambling. Gather your closest workmates and invite them to roll the dice on a phone call. You’ll need to choose a victim who isn’t in the same room as you, and whose extension you know.
Everyone then must place a bet on whether the victim will pick up the phone. The winners share the pot equally, and the losers are left empty-handed. This is a great way of raising change for the coffee machine, or foolishly gambling away your dinner money.
Challenge Coworkers in Slack
Slack is a super tool for team communication and offers a ton of great features. What you might not know, however, is that Slack has games as well. Take a break and challenge a coworker with an app you already use.
The classic game you remember, along with an expanded version from the TV show The Big Bang Theory, are short and sweet time-wasters for Slack. Challenge your coworker to either Rock-Paper-Scissors or Rock-Paper-Scissors-Lizard-Spock for some fast fun.
After entering the command for the game you want, you and your opponent choose a button for Rock, Paper, or Scissors. Once the answers are in, the winner will be revealed.
If Rock-Paper-Scissors isn’t your cup of tea, but Tic-Tac-Toe is, then you’re in luck. You can play this ancient, strategic game of X’s and O’s with your pal in the next cubicle.
Give the command to start a game on a Slack channel or privately in a direct message. Then, take turns choosing a spot for your X or O and do your best to beat your buddy.
GameMonk is a good option for Slack because you can play three different games. In Categories, you must name as many items within a topic in 60 seconds and earn a point for each correct answer. In Giphy, you must guess the hashtag related to the GIF and category you see.
Finally, in Trivia, you must guess the correct answer from four choices. The first person to answer correctly scores a point. Then, check the final scores to see if you dominate.
Fool the Tattletales
Maybe when the boss is gone, you prefer to play alone. But there are those nosey coworkers who love to be tattletales. These games let you enjoy yourself while you fool those busybodies.
If your desk is in a spot where others can see your computer screen, check out these games from CantYouSeeImBusy. They are made for you to look productive by mimicking business applications. While the site’s leaderboard is outdated, the games still work just fine. Note that they do require Flash, though.
While it looks like you are working on a weekly planning spreadsheet, you are actually playing a puzzle game in Crash Planning. Swap colored blocks to make a combination of three or more in a row or column. This eliminates the blocks and scores points, but you only have limited time, so work fast.
If someone is onto you, hit the space bar to pause the game and pick it up later.
Similar to Crash Planning, Cost Cutter looks like a spreadsheet and requires you to match blocks. But, this time you match two or more blocks of the same color in a bar chart-style puzzle. Matches remove blocks from the sheet, but more keep coming from the left side. Your game is over when the data reaches the end of the chart on the right and falls off.
You can hit the space bar to pause this game as well if someone enters the room.
Alternatively, if your coworkers can see you and not your computer screen, these games are for you. Look like you are hammering away on your keyboard as you actually type your way through a game on TypingZone. While many of these games are intended for children, there are a couple to challenge adults.
Take out the incoming spaceships with keystrokes in Typing Attack. As the ships enter the screen, just type the words they carry to blow them away. The game has easy, normal, and expert levels of difficulty. So, not only will you type to score, but might just get faster at your keyboarding skills too.
Typing Racer is a challenging game where you control your car using the words displayed. To move your racer to another lane, just type the word in that lane. And, you must continue typing words to keep your race car moving whether you switch lanes or not. Don’t crash, try to score, and check your typing speed at the end.
For Serious Slacking, Go Mobile
When the stupid games come to an end and you want some serious battles with your coworkers, go mobile. These fun multiplayer games are asynchronous, so your opponent can take their turn when they have time.
If you enjoy Words with Friends, then check out the upbeat Word Chums. With the same type of Scrabble gameplay, you take turns creating words to score. This game is different from Words with Friends in that it has a lively theme with cute characters called Chums that you can customize.
You can choose an opponent from your Facebook friends, contact list, or by searching with their username or email. Score for longer words or by using letters with a high point count.
Dice with Ellen
For a fun Yahtzee-style game, check out Dice with Ellen. Hosted by Ellen DeGeneres, the game brings enjoyable gameplay and a bit of humor. Take turns rolling for high scores in the ones, twos, and threes as well as the full house and three-of-a-kind categories.
Search for opponents by username or connect and play with Facebook friends. You can also have the game find you a match online or play a local pass-and-play game.
One more game that’s awesome to play at work is office bingo. Cover the bingo card with phrases your boss says or activities happening at work that day. Either way, this one is as entertaining as it is silly.
While there are many variations, this Office Bingo card from ChairOffice gives you options to shuffle the squares. You can play online, but not with multiple people. So, just print the card, make copies, and hand them out to your coworkers. See who gets a bingo first with the activities happening in the office.
Are You Ready to Be Unproductive?
Now you can have fun goofing off with your coworkers when the office become boring. We want to hear from you — have you discovered any office games that you and your coworkers like to play? Maybe you’ve invented some? Perhaps you were caught?
Share your favorite stupid office games and explain yourselves in the comments!