Match.com Introduces Offline Game Nights

Match.com
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The trajectory of online dating has been interesting, to say the least. When online dating services launched, they were the future - a whole new way of meeting people that was conducted entirely over the Internet.

Now that the vast majority of us are comfortable with the idea of online dating, the industry is changing again, and this time it's moving offline. The new trend in online dating is in-person events that forego using the World Wide Web entirely. The latest of these social gatherings is an offline game night hosted by Match.com.

Match is no stranger to online dating innovation. The 18-year-old company introduced Stir, an offline events program, in May 2012 and has since hosted more than 2,850 mixers with more than 225,000 singles in attendance. Around the same time, Match also introduced an online games feature that offered singles a new way to get to know each other.

The games were designed to be a quick (just one to five minutes) and easy way to engage with new people. The initial seven games included Best & Worst, Food Critic, Romance Rip Off, Name That Dance, Gut Reaction, Drawn Together, and If I Could. Match's recent launch combines the playfulness of the online games with the huge success of Stir events, bringing them together into offline Stir Game Nights in partnership with the board game industry.

Match describes its new foray into offline events as "less about strategy and competition and more about laughing and having fun together." Two types of events are planned. At the first, Game Night Mashups, facilitators will lead participating singles through the games. At the second, Game Night Happy Hours, singles will borrow from a library of games to play on their own. Several publishers have partnered with the dating site, including Buffalo Games, Bananagrams, Blue Orange Games, and Wiggity Bang Games.

"Match.com believes that connecting with new people should be fun," said Luke Zaientz, VP of Events at Match.com. "Over the last year, we've seen it happen time and time again at our Stir events -- whether it's during a game of kickball, trivia, Ping-Pong or at our first wildly successful game night. We're excited to help our members connect over some of the best board games around, from well-known titles to the industry's newest hidden gems."

The full list of participating games includes:

  • Bananagrams: Bananagrams, Zip-It
  • Buffalo Games: Last Word, Likewise!, Chronology, Gotcha!
  • Endless Games: Name 5, Oddly Obvious
  • Blue Orange Games: Spot It!
  • Spontuneous Games: Spontuneous
  • Wiggity Bang Games: Open Up
  • Marbles the Brain Store: Touchy Feely, Splickety Lit, Mind Your Marbles

Stir Game Nights will be hosted at bars and restaurants throughout the summer and fall.