by Mike Jones
The home assistant device known as Alexa packs a wealth of information into a tiny product, making it the perfect way in which to get driving directions, learn a new recipe or even help you make a shopping list based on past buying trends. Alexa can also be paired with a wide variety of appliances, can be programmed to turn lights on and off with a simple command and even guard your home while you are away.
With all Alexa can do, what most people are unaware of is that this cool device is also the perfect game partner, programmed to play dozens of fun games within the home. The ideal complement to your next game night, in this article we will list and briefly describe several games to play with Alexa, including some of the rules and the commands that get them going.
In the popular game known as Magic Door, Alexa walks participants through several stories. The fun abounds as Alexa describes the scene, and the story unfolds based on the choices you and the other participants make. Among the many stories available to play is helping a tiny gnome find a key, and assisting a princess in the search for her crown.
Who doesn't like an entertaining game of Bingo-the timeless classic in which players race to fill their cards before other players in an attempt to win a prize. To play this fun game with your Alexa home assistant, simply say the words, "Alexa, open Bingo," and let the fun ensue. Each number that is called by Alexa is repeated for clarity and is even viewable within the convenient Alexa app. To move on to the next number, merely say "next," or Call the next number." And when there is a winner yell, "Bingo" and the game will conclude. If you plan to play Alexa Bingo at your next game night, be sure to have plenty of Bingo cards and marking implements at the ready.
Feeling bored? How about a game of Tic Tac Toe with Alexa? In this version of the game you can either draw a Tic Tac Toe game board or visualize the board in your head by imagining the position of the Xs and Os. To begin a game of Tic Tac Toe with Alexa, you will need to say the following: "Alexa, ask Tic Tac Toe for a game" or "Alexa, ask Tic Tac Toe to start a new game" by taking the center square. Alexa will then speak her move, and then you will have to speak your move. As an example, you would say something like "top (for the top center square" or "bottom left."
The Wayne Investigation is a Batman-themed choose-your-own-adventure game for Alexa. In the Wayne Investigation, your primary goal is to investigate and solve the death of Bruce Wayne's (Batman's alter ego) parents, Thomas and Martha Wayne. Each of your choices affect your ability to solve the mystery. The Wayne Investigation is probably not the best game for very small children, as it contains some content that may not be suitable for all ages. To start the Wayne Investigation on your home assistant device, merely say, "Alexa, open The Wayne Investigation" and follow the prompts.
Just like the real live version of Escape Room, which is also a popular television program now, the Alexa version of Escape Room has you utilize the home assistant device to search through a virtual room to find clues on how to escape. In this game, there are four primary rooms from which to choose, listed in order here in increasing level of difficulty: a jail cell, an office, a car, and a garage. If you get stuck, a walkthrough can help you get out.
Akinator is a form of the game 20 Questions that you can play with Alexa. Once you enable this skill on the device, simply select a character. Alexa will then ask you a series of Yes or No questions as she tries to guess the character you have chosen. To start a game of Akinator, simply say, "Alexa, open Akinator." The game will immediately come to life with Alexa asking questions. It is crucial that you answer every question with a Yes or No response. A fun game to play among a lot of people, Akinator will leave you awed and amazed at how brilliant your home assistant device truly is.
If you have an Alexa home device and a Twister board you definitely have a party on your hands. With Alexa, there is never a need to spin the awkward wheel for your next move; that's because Alexa does it for you. Just say, "Alexa, start a game of Twister" and the home assistant will give loud and clear instructions, such as "left hand, green" or right foot, yellow." This will continue until you say the command "Stop." For a truly challenging game of Twister, you can speed up the frequency at which Alexa gives commands, often making for a hilarious pile up of bodies and a wide smile on the faces of all the players.
The game of Blackjack via Alexa is actually entitled "Beat the Dealer." To start this game, you will need to say, Alexa, open the dealer" and you can bring this fun Vegas-style game into your home.
In Beat the Dealer, Alexa will deal both you and her a Blackjack hand by speaking both of your cards and one of her cards-the face-up card. It will then ask if you want to "hit" or "stand"-which are the commands you will actually use. Next, decide what you want to do and speak your decision. If you do not bust, and you eventually choose to stand, Alexa will reveal her card and speak what she decided to do, based on the regular Blackjack rules of play. She will then tell you if she busted, tied (pushed) with you, won, or lost. You can continue this game as long as you want-just say "yes" when Alexa asks if you want to play another game. Beat the Dealer is a great way to perfect your Blackjack skills without ever having to pick up a deck of cards.
Similar to the card matching game Concentration you enjoyed playing when you were very young, Memory Match via Alexa takes it up a notch because you can't actually see the cards. Instead, you have to imagine the cards laid out in a four by three grid and use your memory (and a little visualization in your mind) to recall their exact position and eventually match all the pairs. Younger children can play this game while writing down what Alexa says, but that strategy spoils all the fun for older children and adults. To begin a game of Memory Match just utter the words, "Alexa, open Memory Match." And to flip a card, say its position in the grid, such as, "Row three, column two."
There are a lot of popular myths swirling around these says, some of which are true and some of which are not. Do Twinkies actually last on the shelf forever? Is Bigfoot real? Well, in the game of Myth Buster you can get answers to some of these questions and more. In Myth Buster, Alexa delivers a statement and you have to say whether you believe it is true or false. Alexa will also give you details to help you better understand her statements-real or fake details to try and trick you. Be careful, Alexa has been known to be very persuasive, even when telling a fib.
As in the game of Memory Match we described earlier, you will need to use memory and visualization to play the Alexa game known as Hunt the Yeti. For reference, the game is very similar to the game Hunt the Wumpus, although an audio-only interpretation. The goal of Hunt the Yeti is to navigate a hunter around various obstacles as he searched for the mythical creature.
In Hunt the Yeti, the hunter is lost in a cave (which is a five by five grid), where he might run into oversized bats, who will pick him up and move him to a random place in the cave, or fall to his death in a pit. He will smell the Yeti when he gets close and you will have to tell him in which direction to throw his spear. If he hits the yeti, he will kill it. If he misses or walks into the Yeti, the hunter will be killed.
To start this challenging mind game, simply say, "Alexa, open Yeti Hunt Game." And to move the hunter through the cave, say, "Move [north, south, east or west]." To throw the spear, say, "Throw [north, south, east or west]."
Song Quiz is a modern version of the old television game "Name that Tune." In this game, Alexa will choose from thousands of songs in her repertoire, and the object is to guess the correct title of the song and the person who sang it. When starting Song Quiz, players can choose from any decade they wish, beginning with the 1960s and through the current decade.
image: Pexels, CC 2.0
About Mike Jones
As a child of the 80's, my fondest gaming memories are playing Pitfall, Frogger, Kaboom! and Chopper Command on our old Atari 8600. These days I've been rocking the Nintendo Classic and learning some new card and board games with the family."