Facebook Gaming, a division of Meta, has announced that you can now play games during video calls on Messenger. At launch, there are 14 free-to-play games available in Messenger video calls on iOS, Android and the web. The games include popular titles like Words With Friends, Card Wars, Exploding Kittens and Mini Gold FRVR.
To access the games, you need to start a video call on Messenger and tap the group mode button in the center, then tap on the “Play” icon. From there, you can browse through the games library. The company notes that there must be two or more people in your call to play games.
“Facebook Gaming is excited to announce that you can now play your favorite games during video calls on Messenger,” the company wrote in a blog post. “This new, shared experience in Messenger makes it easy to play games with friends and family while in a video call, allowing you to deepen connections with friends and family by engaging in conversations and gameplay at the same time.”
The company says it’s working to bring more free games to the platform this year. Facebook Gaming is inviting developers who are interested in integrating this feature into their games to reach out to the company.
The news comes as Facebook shut down the standalone Facebook Gaming app last October. The app had launched in April 2020 toward the start of the pandemic as a way for users to watch their favorite streamers, play instant games and take part in gaming groups. Facebook noted at the time that users will still be able to find their games, streamers and groups when visiting Gaming in the Facebook app.
Although Facebook has been experimenting with Messenger games over the past few years, the idea of playing games while on video chat in a quick and easy way could be a welcome addition for some users.
The launch comes as Facebook recently announced that it’s testing the ability for users to access their Messenger inbox within the Facebook app. Back in 2016, Facebook removed messaging capabilities from its mobile web application to push people to the Messenger app, in a move that angered many users. Now, the company is testing a reversal of this decision.