Video calls are convenient but can quickly become repetitive. You know the drill - same faces, same rooms, same small talk. But virtual meetups don't have to be monotonous. This article shares simple tips to make your next video chat more engaging, from fun backgrounds to interactive games. Get ready to transform those predictable video calls into something fresh and immersive. Your next virtual hangout will be anything but boring.

Break the Ice with Games

Starting and keeping up a conversation can be awkward, especially when you’re on platforms like LuckyCrush that connect you with random strangers for a video chat. Next time, try an icebreaker game to get the conversation flowing.

  • Two Truths and a Lie is a simple go-to - each person shares two facts and one lie about themselves, while others guess the lie.
  • You can also get creative and play virtual charades by acting out movie titles or book names.
  • The Name Game is another classic, where you say your name with an adjective that starts with the same letter.

Getting everyone engaged in short activities like these helps ease stiff introductions. Before you know it, you'll be conversing comfortably, all thanks to the icebreakers.

Spice Up Your Space

Sick of staring at the same bedroom or home office background during video calls? Mix things up with fun virtual backgrounds to transport yourself to a different place entirely. Get creative with green screens, custom images, or even animated scenes like tropical beaches or outer space.

There are online services that let you snap a photo to auto-remove your real background. Or go the DIY route - a simple sheet makes an easy green screen. Moving blankets also work in a pinch!

Customizing your background is an easy way to spice up video chats and avoid scene fatigue. Your space can be a beach one day and Mars the next with virtual backgrounds.

Get Your Game On

Simply talking on video chats can get old fast. Mix things up by incorporating games and activities!

  • Do a virtual scavenger hunt by giving everyone the same list of items in their homes to find.
  • Host an online paint night and follow along with a Bob Ross video.
  • Play classic games like Bingo or Pictionary by screen sharing boards and taking turns.
  • Try escape room apps that let you solve puzzles as a team.
  • Link up on Psych to play popular games like trivia or Cards Against Humanity.

The options are endless for games to play together from anywhere. Having an activity gives your video chat a purpose beyond just small talk. And makes for a lot more laughs!

Get a New View

Staring at the same headshot view during video calls can get repetitive. Switch things up by changing your camera angle and showing off more of your space!

Set your laptop at different heights and distances for close-ups or wide shots. Use your phone as a second camera for side angles. Walk around and give a room tour. Or attach your phone to a selfie stick for unique overhead or tracking perspectives.

Getting some movement and variety in your video feed keeps things visually interesting. Play with lighting as well to showcase your surroundings. Changing camera angles and views will liven up the look of your video chats.

Dress Up The Fun

Adding some visual humor and flair through props makes video chats lively and entertaining. You can liven up your next video chat by letting your silly side shine with fun props and costumes. Here are some ideas:

  • DIY props: Make homemade signs, speech bubbles, or puppets from cardboard and art supplies. Get creative!
  • Themed accessories: Use holiday motifs or inside jokes as inspiration for picking quirky hats, masks, and other accessories.
  • Stuffed friend cameos: Bring beloved stuffed animals or other toys into the frame to get a giggle.
  • Oversized embellishments: Even just a giant pair of silly glasses or earrings can add humor.

Props and costumes are an easy way to express yourself and get people laughing. So raid your closet, craft supplies, and toy chest to keep those video calls fun. A funky hat or handmade prop may be just what you need to make your video chat experience immersive.

Share A Virtual Meal

Remote dinner parties let you enjoy a shared meal together from the comfort of your home. You can either pick a recipe to make individually or order the same delivery meals to create a sense of unity.

Set up your cameras in the kitchen as you cook and chat to keep the hosting vibes going. Then, share a virtual toast once everyone has their food ready. You can also plan an activity like a trivia game or “would you rather” questions to discuss over dinner.

Additionally, use breakout rooms to connect in smaller groups. Afterward, send recipe swaps or recommendation requests to keep the conversation cooking. Though you may be apart, sharing a meal time online is a fun way to bond and catch up.

Act a Play

Show off your dramatic talents by reading out scenes from a play or movie script. Act out famous movie moments or celebrity impersonations. Perform a virtual poetry slam and take turns sharing clever verses. The sillier, the better! For added laughs, use props, costumes, and accents to get into character.

Planning a short skit or comedy sketch to perform over video chat also brings the funny. It may feel goofy at first, but being willing to get theatrical and let loose helps stifle awkward silences and makes virtual hangouts playful.

Don’t be camera shy - letting your wacky side shine brightens any video call.

What Else Should You Know About Video Chats?

While video chats will never replicate in-person connections, a bit of creativity goes a long way. Injecting activities into video chats can fend off boredom and bring us closer through shared experiences. Follow these tips to liven up your video calls, transforming sterile screens back into lively conversations. Your next video chat can provide genuine moments of joy, laughter, and friendship - even from afar.


Featured image: (C) Ekaterina Bolotsova @bolotsova