Smartphone game to play as a family (adults)?
July 27, 2014 7:55 PM   Subscribe

I am around 50 years old and my kids are around 30. Is there one really cool smartphone game we could play together?

We live miles apart. I've heard about this game Ingress. I was going to ask them about that but I thought I'd ask you folks first. The idea that we could all three fight for the resistance from our respective cities appeals to me. But if a 30 year old would not think Ingress is cool then it is out. What do you think?
posted by cda to Sports, Hobbies, & Recreation (12 answers total) 8 users marked this as a favorite
Ingress is awesome but not really a game that you can play *together* if you're not physically together (i.e., you'll be working towards the same global goal but not co-operating directly unless you're walking around together). (Disclaimer: I've only been playing for a few weeks, since the iOS version came out, so there could be some super-cool remote co-operative mode I don't know about. Also FWIW I'm 30-something, and I think Ingress is plenty cool.)

Games I've enjoyed playing remotely with my 60-something parents include word games like Words With Friends and strategy games like Carcassonne (Android, iOS).
posted by snap, crackle and pop at 9:23 PM on July 27, 2014 [3 favorites]

Seconding Words with Friends.
posted by ainsley at 9:37 PM on July 27, 2014 [1 favorite]

My girlfriend and I both play Ingress and we're in our 30s. A recent informal survey of over a thousand Ingress players found 38% of the players surveyed to fall in the 30-39 age group.

Being in different cities makes it a bit trickier -- Like snap, crackle and pop mentions, if you're not all together when you go out to play Ingress, it's more just playing the same game than playing *together*.

However, there's another option. Ingress has two interfaces: the app that runs on your mobile device, which has a limited viewing range but lets you perform in-game actions, and a webpage that lets you see everywhere on the globe, but you can't interact with anything.

This has led to Ingress players sometimes filling the role referred to as the "Operator" -- a player who stays tied to a desktop or laptop computer, acting like mission control to look up things on the website map, pick targets for the other players, and figure out if two of the game's portals can be linked to each other, or if some other player's link is in the way, blocking it. Whenever something really big and impressive in Ingress happens, like this -- that's the hard work of one or more operators directing players in the field.

You and your children could take turns at being each other's Operators. Often times, operators and field teams will use walkie talkie apps like Zello to communicate, so you could be catching up on all the latest family chat between feeling like a spy on a mission.
posted by radwolf76 at 9:51 PM on July 27, 2014 [1 favorite]

posted by Sebmojo at 11:36 PM on July 27, 2014 [2 favorites]

oh miles apart boo, sorry scratch that :(
posted by Sebmojo at 11:36 PM on July 27, 2014

Clash of Clans might work.
posted by J. Wilson at 6:07 AM on July 28, 2014 [1 favorite]

Any of the "...with Friends" series of games will work. My extended family also plays Dice with Buddies, which is a Yahtzee knockoff (and a "...with Friends" knockoff), but there are some younger kids involved.

I have never heard of Ingress so I can't recommend for or against it.
posted by tckma at 6:33 AM on July 28, 2014

I don't remember the name of it but we had fun with the game where you hold the phone on your forehead and everybody gives you clues while you try to guess what the phone says. It's like a phone variant of Catchphrase.
posted by stupidsexyFlanders at 8:15 AM on July 28, 2014

Words With Friends is a great game if you are all about the same level in Scrabble and don't mind giving sleazy game vendor Zynga all your contact information as well as detailed GPS tracking of your whereabouts. To expand on that first point, there is no handicap mechanism to let people of different skill levels play competitively. So if grandma really knows her two-letter words, she is going to mop the floor with everybody else, every time.

Ingress seems interesting, though there weren't any active players in my area so I couldn't play for real. Also, the tutorial seemed really long, so it's not a pick-up-and-play game like those of the "with Friends" ilk.
posted by wnissen at 8:33 AM on July 28, 2014

Say The Same Thing
posted by MsVader at 11:13 AM on July 28, 2014

Words With Friends
Quiz Up
I am super addicted to Two Dots right now and I am not an iPhone game kind of person.
posted by Brittanie at 5:37 PM on July 28, 2014

Quiz Up! Really fun trivia game- topics to suit everyone.
posted by arcticwoman at 6:38 PM on July 29, 2014

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