14 Best Virtual Ice Breakers for Remote Teams

July 10, 2021

Virtual ice breakers are a fun way to bring your team together even when there’s a computer screen between you. No matter if your team has been working together for a while or you have a new coworker, virtual ice breakers add some spice into an otherwise average meeting or virtual event. Share some embarrassing pictures, test your knowledge in a game of trivia, guess who is a former prom king or queen— there’s a virtual ice breaker for you and your team that will guarantee smiles. Choose one from our list of the best and then come back for more!

1. Guess Who

There’s a few different ways you can play this virtual ice breaker, but the premise is simply to get everyone to share something with the team. For example, ask everyone to share their favorite unique food combination. Put the answers in a quick presentation with pictures and have folks guess who said what. Another option is to have everyone share a picture from a past Halloween and guess who’s hiding in that Power Ranger costume. The great thing about this virtual ice breaker is that there are multiple ways of playing it so it will feel new every time.

2. Emoji Emotions

Not all virtual ice breakers have to be long games— sometimes a quick one is all you need. Simply ask everyone to share an emoji that describes how they are feeling and a brief explanation of why they chose that one. Everyone loves a good emoji to say what they need to say in one easy picture. If your team is big emoji users, you could even give emoji trivia a try one day.

3. Rose, Thorn, Bud

F0r a virtual ice breaker that relates to work, try “Rose, Thorn, Bud.” This is a mindful activity that asks your colleagues to reflect on work without making it all about accomplishments. To play, define the conditions for your rose, thorn, and bud. Usually the “rose” is something positive that happened, the thorn is a challenge, and the bud is something to look forward to. Give your team a chance to think, and then go around the room. This also helps build stronger bonds amongst your team as you’ll have the chance to hear where people are succeeding and where they need help.

4.  Virtual Background Themes

This is another one of our virtual ice breakers that falls into the “quick and easy” category. Choose a meeting or a day where everyone has a virtual background related to a specific theme. Each person gets a chance to show off some of their unique flair and share something they like. You can wait until the end of the day for everyone to explain their backgrounds and then give some prizes. Definitely give bonus points if it’s a picture they took!

5. Find someone who

In this activity, the objective is to find someone who shares common interests or traits. This is a great opportunity to utilize breakout rooms and put your team into smaller groups so they have some time to chat in a more intimate setting. There are lots of templates you can use with prompts like “find someone who likes the same Netflix shows as you” or “find someone who is also a middle child.” We have more in common than we think!

6. The Quirky Game

This is an Avital Tours favorite and one we like to encourage other people to try. We’re big fans of quirkiness— it’s what makes life fun and works perfectly for virtual ice breakers. Have everyone submit one anonymous quirky thing about themselves. Think quirky facts like, “I always have to tie my left shoe first” or “I named my dog Nemo after the fish.” Share them in a presentation and have everyone guess. Everyone’s got something a little unique about themselves, and it’s time to share it! No shame in being quirky.

7. Would You Rather

It’s a classic for a reason, and likely the queen of all virtual ice breakers. “Would You Rather” is so easy to play and put together that you could keep it in your back pocket in a pinch. It’s also one of those games that inspires lively and friendly debate, so it’s a good energy booster as well for any meeting. Don’t underestimate the power of this game— you’d be surprised about how passionate people can get about choosing pancakes or waffles.

8. Flavor Tripping

For virtual ice breakers that combine a unique activity with discussion, give Flavor Tripping a try. It’s a mind bending flavor experience that transforms your perception of flavor as it takes your senses on a journey. While the event centers around your tastebuds, you’ll get the chance to know your teammates better as you bond over turning anything sour into something deliciously sweet with the help of a miracle berry native to West Africa. A host will walk you and your team through this interactive experience as you bond over flavor. It can’t be denied that food brings you together, especially when it’s unique and quirky.

9. Six Word Memoir

Have your colleagues write down a six word memoir, an exercise that’s inspired some sentences from profound to hilarious. The limit of six words is challenging, but leads to thoughtfulness and creativity. Plus, you’ll get to know everyone a little better. You can start with the classic version of writing about your life, but in the future you can add in themes like travel, Halloween, pets, and more.

10. Never Have I Ever

You know how it goes— have everyone hold up a few fingers, go around and say something they haven’t done, and play until someone is the winner. Since you’re not in person, it’s important that virtual ice breakers get everyone talking, and it can’t be denied Never Have I Ever brings up lots of good conversation. Of course, keep it safe for work, but don’t hold back on the laughs. This game sparks both curiosity and bonding.

11. Best Movie Pitch

Ever dreamed of making a movie? Even if you haven’t, the Best Movie Pitch virtual ice breaker is a whole lot of fun. Dream up the plot, cast, and location, then pitch your movie to your team. What makes this one of the best virtual ice breakers isn’t just that it’s fun to play Hollywood producer for the day, but that it’ll also improve your team’s ability to pitch and sell. Make sure to get Brad Pitt on the line!

12. Riddle Fest

If your team likes trivia or solving problems (or even if you want a fun problem solving activity), have a Riddle Fest! Pull together some of the best riddles and have your team solve them. You can put them in breakout rooms to solve as a team, or have everyone solve by themselves and go head-to-head in a competition. What’s a great way to get closer to your team and build skills? A Riddle Fest!

13. Alliteration Game

This virtual ice breaker works really well for virtual happy hours. Choose a letter and a theme, and have everyone go around and say something that begins with that letter. It gets harder as you go around the room because there’s no repetition allowed and you don’t want to allow too much hesitation, either. Add this to your virtual happy hour agenda and it’s bound to get silly.

14. National Days & Holidays

Every day is a holiday— no, seriously! There’s a National Day or Holiday for everything and these work great for virtual ice breakers. For National Waffle Day, talk about waffles. On Puppy Day, talk about puppies. 365 days equals 365 virtual ice breakers. Meeting opener, done.

Virtual ice breakers may come across as cheesy, but don’t let that reputation fool you. Connecting with your team is always worth it, and even better when there’s a game involved.