The best games to play with Alexa in 2020

Alexa can do a lot more than play your favorite songs. The virtual assistant has a fun personality and can answer questions or play games with you. Voice interactions make Alexa an ideal option for playing games that rely on storytelling and asking questions.

Playing games with Alexa is a fun and immersive experience. Many of the games involve intricate stories that she narrates. She gives you prompts, riddles, and clues that you solve. Some of the games follow the rules of popular game shows. There are also many games you play on your own or with a group.

Choose-your-own-adventure and story-based games

Magic Door Alexa
Magic Door Alexa

Magic Door

If you’ve never played a choose-your-own-adventure game with your smart speaker, you might want to start here, as it can be hard to go back to Alexa’s somewhat emotionless voice after listening to a game with actual voice actors (which we’ll get to later). In this game, you get a monotone Alexa saying things like, “Oh, my, I’m really scared now,” in the exact same tone she replies that she’s turned your lights off.

Still, it’s a good game for beginners. To start, Alexa will ask if you want to explore the mountains, sea, or forest. Each will send you on a magical quest along a path strewn with magical objects, talking creatures, and occasionally creepy sounds. For some reason, you need to turn on notifications to enable this skill.

Rated: Parental guidance suggested

Magic Door on Amazon


Earplay has more stories you influence with your choices. In the demo, a woman sits at your table in a restaurant and asks you to pretend you know her. Every choice you make, from playing along with her ruse to rummaging through her purse, will have consequences. Earplay’s secret agent story, Codename Cygnus, is a seven-chapter interactive fictional world where you are a secret agent trying to accomplish your mission. Earplay now has five additional stories you can choose from, including Jurassic World Revealed and You and the Beanstalk, perfect for the whole family.

Rated: Mature

Earplay on Amazon

The Dark Citadel

For lovers of Dungeons and Dragons, Warhammer, and Diablo, The Dark Citadel is an episodic, choice-based gaming experience where the player is the last hope for the besieged city of Alderton. Alexa is the humble narrator of your quest, reading off rich and descriptive passages that create a compelling narrative for you to interact with.

At key junctures, Alexa will provide prompts that allow for attacking, conversations with strangers, getting boozed up at the hamlet pub, and a slew of other choices that will influence the outcome of the player’s overall story. Snippets of cinematic Game of Thrones-esque orchestral movements and fantasy sound effects help to pad out this immersive journey.

LC Publishing, the developers of The Dark Citadel, are truly masters of the episodic, or “chapter-based,” gaming subgenre. Once you complete their Citadel adventure, you can even take your full-fledged hero (or villain) into three new stories from the LC team, including Ghost Stories, Last Light in the Dark, and Gumshoe Detective Agency.

Rated: Parental guidance suggested

Dark Citadel on Amazon

RuneScape Quests: One Piercing Note

RuneScape is an online RPG, but you don’t have to know anything about the game’s fantastical medieval world to play One Piercing Note. As an adventurer, you’re tasked with solving the mystery of the abbey. It’s a bit like The Name of the Rose, only it’s dead nuns instead of murdered monks.

Unlike The Wayne Investigation, this quest is Alexa-free, helping to keep you in the atmosphere of the secluded abbey, which may or may not contain a demon. Fair warning: Some of the details are pretty gruesome.

Rated: Parental guidance suggested

Runescape on Amazon

Detective Ivan – Crime Investigation

In this fun little 2034 cyberpunk mystery, you play a detective working alongside a state-of-the-art artificially intelligent crime scene investigator. Each story is told in a case-by-case format, where players interact with Ivan in real time as he collects clues and witness testimony to help players solve crimes. The developers of the game, The Verse, are still in their infancy as a gaming outfit. Based on Ivan’s production quality and plentiful options for story and character advancement, we can expect big things from the team.

Rated: Parental guidance suggested

Detective Ivan on Amazon

Escape the Room

Escape games are all the rage, so it’s not surprising one exists in an Alexa-compatible format. It’s not quite a choose-your-own-adventure game, but more of a verbal hidden object plus puzzle game. A smart speaker may not be the best format for this, so be prepared for some repetition.

There are only a few simple commands to control most of your movement, so if you want to look at objects on a shelf, you have to first be looking at the shelf. If you’re looking at the door and say, “Look at the shelf,” Alexa will tell you there’s no shelf to look at. For some reason, she also had some trouble understanding us in general. We said bucket, not buffet! Despite the difficulties, it’s still a unique game for the platform and will take longer than some of the others on the list.

Rated: Parental guidance suggested

Escape the Room on Amazon

Yes Sire

This isn’t quite a story game, but you are answering questions to determine your fate. You’re a medieval lord just trying to live under the reign of a temperamental king. The monarch isn’t happy if you’re too rich, too poor, too influential, or if you hold no sway. Sometimes you’ll find yourself with too much money and make a move that should empty the coffers a bit, only to find it backfires. Good luck trying to survive with your head intact.

Rated: Mature

Yes Sire on Amazon

Based on a TV game show


When you hear Johnny Gilbert and Alex Trebek greet you upon firing up this skill, you know it’s the real deal. Each day, you’ll get to answer a question from six Jeopardy! categories. Prime subscribers get an extra six from the Double Jeopardy rounds for free; non-Prime members can pay $2 a month for these questions. If you’re having trouble thinking of the correct response, you can stall a bit by not answering in the form of a question, and Alexa will remind you. This is, of course, cheating and wouldn’t fly on the actual game show.

Rated: N/A

Jeopardy on Amazon

Deal or No Deal

This unofficial version of Deal or No Deal is zero stakes. You pick a briefcase to hold onto, then subsequently chose other briefcases to open. Hopefully, you get rid of all the ones containing a cent, $500, $1,000, and so on, without opening the ones holding $1 million or $750,000. You might want to keep a pen and paper handy, or you can open your Alexa app to remind yourself which cases you’ve already chosen. Fun fact: Meghan Markle used to open briefcases on the show.

Rated: N/A

Deal or No Deal on Amazon

Guess the Price

Though Bob Barker isn’t there to ask you questions, and it isn’t quite the Price Is Right, but the Guess the Price skill still makes you feel like you’re on a game show. As with the game show, you will be guessing the prices of items. If you guess the exact price you get bonus points, but close is good, too.

Rated: N/A

Guess the Price on Amazon

Good for a group

Echo Buttons
Echo Buttons

Song Quiz

With Song Quiz, Alexa will play a snippet of a song, and you can guess either the artist or title. Get both correct for bonus points. You can choose a decade between the 1960s to and 2010s and play with friends in the room or solo. If you’re alone, the game will pit you against a stranger. Don’t worry, you don’t actually hear each other’s answers, just whether they got it right or wrong.

Every once in a while, Alexa will let you know just how skilled you are: We were among the 18% that got both the title and artist for Sugar Ray’s “Every Morning.” It helped propel us to victory against Catherine from Georgia. And if you’re going to make fun of us for knowing that Sugar Ray song, shut the door, baby, don’t say a word.

Rated: Parental guidance suggested

Song Quiz on Amazon

Would You Rather Family

This party game makes you choose between two terrible scenarios, then lets you know what percentage of people agree with you. Actually, this is the family edition, so some of the scenarios aren’t too bad. (Would you rather spend the night in an amusement park or a library?) There’s also Harry Potter edition included in this skill, which was unexpectedly entertaining. Would you rather lick Dobby’s freedom sock or share a food bowl with Fang?

Rated: Parental guidance suggested

Would You Rather on Amazon

Truth or Dare – Spin the Bottle

This game is a mix up of two party games: Truth or Dare and Spin the Bottle. Alexa spins an imaginary bottle and will tell you who it lands on. From there, the play must choose truth or dare. There are 220 questions and tasks for Alexa to choose from, depending on the answer, so the games won’t get boring too quickly.

Rated: Mature

Truth or Dare on Amazon

True or False for Family

The idea of this game is simple: Answer true or false to a series of questions. Some are straightforward, others are tricky. Even if you guess correctly, you might learn something, since Alexa often follows up with more facts. You may know David Letterman was a weatherman, but did you know he once gave a tropical storm kudos for getting upgraded to a hurricane?

Rated: Parental guidance suggested

True or False on Amazon

Word games

Echo Buttons
Echo Buttons

Word Play

You’re looking for a five-letter word. Alexa will supply the first letter or two, but the rest is up to you. It’s a bit like playing Wheel of Fortune without the light-up letters. Going the “r-s-t-l-n-e” route isn’t a bad idea, because you’ll know when you got a letter in the right spot, when you’ve got the correct letter but it’s in the wrong position, or when a letter isn’t in the word at all.

Let’s say your word starts with “bl.” You could guess “bland,” and Alexa would tell you that “b,” “l,” and “a” were in the right spots, “n” isn’t in the word, and “d” is in the wrong spot. Opting for “blade” next would probably be a good idea.

Rated: N/A

Word Play on Amazon


There aren’t a ton of games that work with the Echo Buttons yet, but this is one of them. In the two-to-four player anagram game, Alexa reads out a category, along with clues, word length, and each letter out of order. Players then buzz in when they think they have the answer. Based on the reviews, this is one of the least buggy Echo Button games.

Rated: N/A

Hanagram on Amazon

Categories Game

Much like in Scattergories, you’ll get a letter, and each word you give must start with that letter. Alexa then reads off the categories, one at a time. The more you play, the more categories the skill will unlock. There isn’t really a competition mode, so you can give the most obvious answer and won’t be penalized. In Scattergories the board game, if you and another player have the same answer, neither of you gets points.

Also, Alexa is comfortable accepting completely wrong answers for questions, as long as they start with the correct letters. Letter: D. Category: Superhero. Answer: Debbie Reynolds is correct. (We actually said Dangermouse, but OK.) Also, we could never get Alexa to accept our (actually correct) answers for the category of the week. We know they’re right, because we Googled “Pokemon characters that start with “r.” Alexa is wrong; we are Raichu.

Rated: N/A

Categories on Amazon

Word of the Day

This game goes beyond just teaching you a new word every day. It also quizzes you on it to help you remember. First, it will have you listen to the Word of the Day flash briefing, then it will ask you questions about what you just learned. It’s a great game for those that want to increase their vocabulary.

Rated: Guidance Suggested

Word of the Day on Amazon

Guess My Name

Though you can play this skill alone, it’s much more fun playing with a group of people. You’ll hear a series of clues in your chosen category. Your job is to guess what you think Alexa is describing before anyone else. For example, if you knew the answer you would yell, “Alexa, you’re Marilyn Monroe!” Categories include countries, animals, historical figures, famous actors, animated characters, and random.

Rated: Parental guidance suggested

Guess My Name on Amazon

Heads Up!

From the beloved app and created by Ellen DeGeneres Heads Up is the perfect game for a group of people. You’ll choose a category and Alexa will provide three fun facts and clues for each card. See how many you can get in 90 seconds, and the person that gets the most wins. The categories you can choose from include superstars, blockbuster moves, animals gone wild, just for families, and more.

Rated: Parental guidance suggested

Heads Up on Amazon

Drinking games

Editor’s note: Always drink responsibly!

Smoked beer: An introduction
Peter Kim / Shutterstock

Who Drinks

Whether you call it Kings, King’s Cup, or Jug Oval (what?), there’s a fair chance you played some version of this college drinking game. For Who Drinks, Alexa takes over the role of the playing cards. Instead of assigning an action to a particular value — like guys drink when a five is flipped over — simply ask Alexa “Who drinks?” She’ll respond with something like “drink left,” meaning the player to the left of the person who asked has to take a sip. She may also come up with categories, like nap time (last one to put their head on the table drinks), or T. Rex arms (you have to tuck your elbows into your sides when holding your cup). It’s not a bad substitute if you can’t play a card drinking game.

Rated: Mature

Who Drinks on Amazon

Party Game

If you do have a deck of cards but want to switch things up, Party Game offers some twists on a similar Kings theme. Players deal out the entire deck and look at their hand to see if they need to do what Alexa commands them to. The person holding the seven of clubs might have to give all their aces to another player, give the person holding the three of diamonds a back massage, or choose between doing a 15-second squat or drinking. One flaw is that if you don’t ask for the next prompt fairly quickly, the game exits. That might be fine if you’re just swapping cards, but asking everyone to touch the ground could take a little longer.

Rated: Mature

Party Game on Amazon

Country Drinking Game with Cale Dodds

Think you know everything there is to know about country music? This drinking game will make you prove your skills. The host, Cale Dodds, will ask you a question about country music trivia. If you get the answer right, you get and point and if you get it wrong, you have to drink. Five points wins the round. You can play with up to eight people.

Rated: Mature

Country Drinking on Amazon

Kid games

Keep in mind with kids’ skills, you’ll need to opt into a lot of permissions. These might include recording your child’s voice, so take a look at the terms before agreeing.

amazon echo show family
amazon echo show family

Silly Things

Designed to get kids moving, Silly Things has Alexa prompting them to perform different actions, from posing for selfies to pretending they’re in an invisible box. You do have to ask for something else to try each time, presumably because kids will likely want to spend more time pretending to ride a broom or acting like a zombie who’s scared of humans than doing an upside down smile.

Rated: N/A

Silly Things on Amazon

Queen’s Mathematician

This skill is a combination of choose-your-own-adventure and math game. You are tasked with rescuing the queen after she’s been kidnapped by tricky, arithmetic-loving elves. To save her, players must solve problems (fewer than 99) involving addition, subtraction, or saying which number is higher or lower. To launch the skill, you’ll want to say “open” or “start” plus the name of the game, because saying “Play Queen’s Mathematician” prompts Alexa to look for music. To be fair, it does sound like the name of a prog-rock band*.

*We’ve been informed that Brian May is Queen’s mathematician because he has a Ph.D. in astrophysics.

Rated: N/A

Queen’s Math on Amazon

Animal Game

This 20-questions-but-just-for-animals game is a bit eerie. You think of an animal, and Alexa asks questions to try and figure it out. Some are yes-or-no (Does it roar? Is it extinct?) while others require an answer: What color is it? How many legs does it have? We tried to stump her with a platypus, but Alexa figured it out after 17 questions.

Rated: N/A

Animal Game on Amazon

Animal Workout

Another get-up-and-move game, this skill asks kids to do as the animals do. The movements, or, if you’re acting like a cow, moo-vements, range from sticking your tongue out like a giraffe to flapping your “wings” like a butterfly or swinging your arms like an ape. Music plays for about 15 seconds per animal. You might want to move the furniture for this one.

Rated: N/A

Animal Workout on Amazon

Sesame Street

If your kid’s favorite show is already Sesame Street, then this Alexa-compatible game is a no-brainer—they’ll get to play hide-and-seek with Elmo. To clue your kiddo into where he’s hiding, Elmo will make silly sounds as clues. As an educational perk, Elmo will also teach your kid the “word of the day,” to expand vocabulary comprehension.

Rated: N/A

Sesame Street on Amazon

Freeze Dancers

This game is sort of like musical chairs mixed with Simon Says. Alexa plays a tune, you dance until the music stops, and then you freeze in place. The first kid to lose balance is the first one out. Alexa will suggest funny ways to dance and you can even have a space dance-off by saying, “Alexa, dance in space,” while the skill is in use.

Rated: N/A

Freeze Dance on Amazon

Hide and Seek

If your kids don’t want to play Hide and Seek with Elmo, they can always partner up with Alexa. The concept of the game is simple: kids hide in the same room as Alexa, and the AI will try to guess where they’re at.

Rated: N/A

Hide and Seek on Amazon

Looking to buy another smart speaker? Check out some of the best Amazon Echo deals we’ve found for Black Friday 2020.

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