10 Engaging Team Building Puzzles

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September 17, 2020

Here is our list of engaging team building puzzles.

Team building puzzles are exercises where your team works together to solve problems. The purpose of these puzzles is to provide opportunities for your team to bond and have a good time together.

These puzzles are a type of team building game.

Specifically, this list includes:

  • puzzles for team building activities
  • team building puzzles for adults
  • team building puzzles for work
  • team building logic puzzles

And even more challenging logic games 🙂

Interested in learning more? Check out our list below!

List of team building puzzles

From riddles to complex challenges, these puzzles for team building activities cover a wide range of the teamwork and know-how necessary for your employees to triumph. Check out our list to find out more.

1. Escape Rooms

Escape rooms are games where players are “trapped” in a room and must solve a series of team building logic puzzles to break out. While there are plenty of awesome escape rooms to try, you can also put together your own with a little ingenuity and resourcefulness. Escape rooms are great team building experiences because the puzzles often cannot be broken, without your whole team working together. For virtual teams, consider Murder in Ancient Egypt, where your team solves puzzles in a video conference meeting room.

2. Scavenger Hunt

At Teambuilding.com, we are big fans of scavenger hunts. This team building puzzle for adults involves your team racing to find items or complete challenges before time runs out. Playable both in person and remotely with some rule changes, scavenger hunts often encourage your team to think outside the box to find the answers. At the end of the game, you can compile the puzzle results into a cool collage or presentation for your team to reminisce over.

3. Rube Goldberg Off

For the ex-Science Olympiad participants in your team, Rube Goldberg Off is a team building puzzle for adults that challenges teams to create the most complex Rube Goldberg contraption. Rube Goldbergs are intricate machines designed to fulfill a simple purpose, like the ones in Back to the Future or Wallace and Gromit. Rube Goldberg Off channels your team’s inventive spirit and brings everyone together to create the most wild apparatus possible.

4. Geography Puzzles

Based on this statistic claiming that only 36% of Americans can point out where North Korea is on a map, Geography Puzzle asks your team to enter the names of countries on a world map as quickly and accurately as possible. Simply print out blank maps for your teams to fill out. Geography Puzzles is a great team building puzzle for work because it takes little time or energy to set up, and requires your team members to pool collective knowledge to succeed.

5. Keep Talking and Nobody Explodes

Keep Talking and Nobody Explodes is a cooperative game where one player can see the “bomb”, while others must talk the player through defusing the bomb. Because of the game’s setup, this team building puzzle activity trains your team’s communication skills, while also building friendships through a nail-bitingly good time. For international teams that may prefer to conduct the game in a different language, the team behind Keep Talking and Nobody Explodes is currently working on translating their game manual into a variety of languages.

Check out Keep Talking and Nobody Explodes.

6. Rebus or Bust

For teams that are fans of riddles, Rebus or Bust focuses on getting your team to compete in solving the aforementioned rebuses. Rebus puzzles use letters, symbols, or illustrations to represent words or phrases. Rebus or Bust’s are excellent team building logic puzzles because they force your team to brainstorm together and think creatively outside the box. When playing, you can either have team members compete individually or you can split your group into teams.

Take a look at these rebus puzzles for inspiration.

7. Name That Anime Opening

If you are a fan of anime, then you know that every anime has a bombastic opening that lays down the basic show’s themes and aesthetic. My personal favorites are the Attack On Titan openings, which make you feel nationalistic about a fictional country. Name That Anime Opening plays on that trope by asking your team to name as many anime openings as quickly and accurately as possible. If your team is not a fan of anime, then feel free to substitute anime with popular TV show openings or movie themes.

8. Improv This

For creative teams, Improv This is a team building game where teams compete to get the most laughs out of an audience. Each round, two teams go on stage to play, while the rest of the group serves as the audience. These audience members provide the competing teams with opening lines, and the people on stage invent funny scenarios and act those scenarios out. Improv This works as a team building puzzle activity because teams need to collaborate and react off each other to elicit responses from the audience. The winning team of each round is the group whose scenario earns the most votes from the audience.

9. Robot Training

Robot Training is a team building puzzle for work, where team members guide each other to complete simple tasks purely through verbal instructions. Some examples of tasks that suit Robot Training include assembling a peanut butter and jelly sandwich, tying your shoes, or making a cup of coffee. Because this game relies so much on spoken directions, Robot Training develops your team’s communication skills and logical reasoning as your group members work together and cooperate to achieve a common goal.

10. Entrapment

Based on the 1999 movie Entrapment, this team building puzzle by the same name is a game where teams cross a room that has been dressed with red yarn “lasers”. Every time one of your team members trips a wire, the whole team needs to go back and try again. Entrapment is a wonderful team building puzzle for work because your team needs to help each other traverse the room safely. Whether it is through finding a way ahead or helping each other balance, this game brings your team together.

More team building puzzles

Looking for more puzzles? Check out our list of team building brain teasers next.

After perusing our team building library, you may be inspired to create your own puzzles for team building. If you come up with a cool idea, then please let us know below!

FAQ: Team building puzzles

Still curious about team building? Here are some commonly asked questions about team building puzzles.

What are team building puzzles for the office?

Team building puzzles for the office are competitive activities that boost your team’s camaraderie. Some examples of team building games are Escape Rooms, Keep Talking and Nobody Explodes, and Entrapment.

What are some team building problem solving activities?

Some team building problem solving activities are:

  • Escape Rooms
  • Scavenger Hunt
  • Rube Goldberg Off
  • Geography Puzzles
  • Keep Talking and Nobody Explodes
  • Rebus or Bust
  • Name That Anime Opening
  • Improv This
  • Robot Training
  • Entrapment

The games on this list require your team to exercise problem solving skills to succeed. Ideally, as your team works together to solve these puzzles, they will begin to bond and learn more about each other.

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Author: Jessica Chen

Team building content expert. Jessica has a double major in English and Asian Studies, and experience working with teams across cultures; including 3+ years in Taiwan.

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