We all want a workplace that feels almost like home. Considering the year we’ve had, for most of us those lines are...a little blurred - to say the least! What once seemed like a fun vacation away from normal life has turned into a very stressful and extremely discouraging year. Below is a list I’ve compiled of 12 of the MOST unique team-building games I could find.
Physical Team Building Games
Bubble Soccer is the smash hit team-building exercise health nerds can NOT stop talking about. Using the basic rules of soccer and it’s challenging exercise of team coordination and communication, and combining them with huge bubbles that you wear as a backpack creates an unforgettable and amazingly fun team-building exercise. Sometimes, all it takes is taking the classic games we all know and love and giving them that “IT” factor. With the pandemic still looming over our heads, Bubble Soccer also provides a safe, social distance friendly activity to spruce up your next team-building outing.
Settle co-worker rivalries with a Bubble SLAM!
Remember those fun cosmic bowling parties we used to have as kids. Well the same premise applies here. Awesome music, laser lights, black lights, and glowing dodgeballs. Now that’s memorable. That’s the wow factor that takes this from a good team-building exercise to a great one. Your team will be so caught up in the excitement they’re experiencing that they won’t even realize just how much more skillful and productive they’re becoming. Play Glow Dodgeball in Baltimore today!
What may, on the surface, seem like a brutish exercise in throwing sharp objects, has actually become one of the fastest-growing team-building exercises around. There’s something to be said about the shared experience of learning a new skill; especially one that’s totally new to all parties attending. This is certainly the case with ax throwing. Your team will grow together in learning how to perfect their throwing form and make the best throws they can muster. As a good show of leadership, take careful note of which members of your team step into assisting others in improving and perfecting their form. Analyze how well they do in communicating with other team members who need a helping hand and how well they articulate their assistance. Are the strongest throwers among your team also the best communicators?
Adult Nerf Wars
Competition has evolved! So have those nerf dart guns we used to play with back in the day. Today, there are full facilities dedicated to an adult-themed and extra challenging round of Nerf Wars. Your employees can team up and strategize to take down their opponents in a safe, yet exciting, way.
These specialized facilities feature themed obstacles and fields that use barricades and unique cover. Teams get to channel their inner Call of Duty, Fortnite, and everything in-between as they engage in good old fashioned corporate combat. Hey, sometimes you have to let out a little steam. Adult themed Nerf Wars provides the perfect outlet.
Hamster Ball Relay Races
Two words: relay race. Another classic team-building staple encouraging strategy, team-work, and healthy competition. How could you possibly improve upon this classic experience? Hamsterballs (and boom goes the dynamite!).
Hamsterballs, or “Zorb balls” are giant, durable, plastic bubbles that your entire body fits inside. As the name suggests, you move the ball around like a hamster while being bounced around inside. Now imagine the fun and excitement of a relay race except you’re encased within a giant bubble moving up and down an oversized inflatable obstacle course! Need I say more?
Take dodgeball and add arrows. Enough said right? Okay, I’ll say more. Arrow Tag, much like Nerf Wars and Cosmic Dodgeball, allows your employees to team up with one another and strategize to take out the opposing team. Take the classic rules of dodgeball, but replace the balls with arrows and add cover and barricades for a more intense challenge. Which members of your team will rise to the top and take the charge to coach their other teammates? Which members will be hiding behind the barriers the entire time?
Arrow Tag provides another great way for you, as an employer, to analyze your team in their problem solving and strategic decisions, allowing you to move forward with a better understanding of your team, their biggest faults, and their greatest strengths.
Never underestimate the power of a good old fashioned field day. For years the team-building field has been a major staple of the corporate world. They usually feature games we’ve all played like Egg Tosses, 3-Legged Races, Trust Falls, and suspiciously overly competitive games of volleyball. As I like to say, you get out what you put in. So here’s how to take the classic Field Day and kick it into fifth gear.
Enhance the games and upgrade the field! There are a number of successful and engaging team-building exercises that can be integrated into your next outing. Some of these are common activities most of us never think of like company cook-offs or games of “Telephone” with an HR “company drama twist”, or something a little more..zen, like a Pour Painting picnic.
Team Building Games for Communication
There is a huge market for games with amazingly challenging concepts and puzzles that require a good use of team-building tactics. Many of these games use VR to add new and exciting dimensions to these challenges. For example, Steel Crate Games’ title “Keep Talking and Nobody Explodes” is a game where one member of your team attempts to detonate a virtual bomb with the help from surrounding teammates who are unable to see the bomb but are armed with a manual of information on how to disarm it. Through nothing but sheer trust and communication the player must diffuse the bomb. As the title suggests, communication is key in this challenge.
This title and many more offer challenging experiences like these designed to bring your team closer together. Another title to check out is “Richie’s Plank Experience”. Forget trust falls, can you make it to the other side? Not only are these titles available on VR consoles that you can buy for your office, but there are a ton of awesome VR gaming lounges where you can rent out space for your next corproate outing.
Among Us gives your team the chance to engage in a real-time strategic challenge that exercises their ability to remain alert, manage and delegate a number of tasks, communicate effectively, and use deductive reasoning to make sound decisions. The game can be purchased on the Steam gaming store and can be played on any desktop computer, as well as any iOs or Android mobile device, making it very easy to get everyone on board.
A very unique and interesting game that turns your team into the surviving crew of a spaceship. The team must work together, strategize and communicate while completing a number of tasks to repair the ship and continue on the journey home. But beware, among the crew are two imposters who have their own private set of tasks designed to hinder and sabotage the group. Among Us sports a unique feature called the Emergency Meeting button. When a player suspects another of being one of the imposters they can bring forth their case and engage in discussion with the rest of the group, voting on whether or not to vote out and quite literally “eject” that player from the game - at which point the game itself will inform the players if they were correct in their decision.
Leadership Games for Team Building
Table-Top Role Playing Games
Dungeons and Dragons. Yes, you heard me. Dungeons and Dragons. The table-top role-playing game from 1974 where you create characters within certain classes and personalities and pit them against certain challenges they must overcome has evolved. Now it's more popular than ever, heavily referenced in popular culture with shows such as “Community”, and “Stranger Things” highlighting the surprising amount of fun and adventure these games can provide. Along with its growing popularity in media, the game’s user base has grown exponentially as well. Gary Gigax, the creator of Dungeons and Dragons has some company.
These quick one-off’s give your team a valuable chance to engage in a new form of communication and teamwork. As their characters build their spell slots, your team builds a new kinship with each other. You’ll be amazed how easy it will be for them to immerse themselves in a new fantasy world of challenges for them to overcome as a team.
By now I’m sure you’ve heard of Escape Rooms. The interactive experience where a team is placed in a themed room they must escape from. Using clues from the room and the story prompt they are given they must find a way to work together to solve the mystery and save their lives (figuratively speaking) before time runs out. What once was a very niche activity has blossomed into an experience that can be found easily in almost every major city of the country. Designed from a team-building standpoint, solving these mysteries and uncovering clues requires tactful and level-headed communication from the involved teams. With a myriad of different themes like horror and sci-fi, Escape Rooms make for an exciting and new experience for your team. Certainly one they will never forget.