Snap has unveiled its gaming platform - complete with live, multiplayer games you can play with friends.

While at the Snap Partner Summit in Los Angeles, Snap confirmed all the speculation and said its gaming platform is now rolling out with six games to start. In other words, the company has officially entered the mobile gaming space after months of rumours. So, whether you want to know what games are available on it or when you can start playing, here’s everything you need to know.

What are Snap Games?

Snapchat's gaming platform is called Snap Games. It's pitched as a "new way to hang out with your friends on Snapchat".

Snap has redesigned the chat feature on Snapchat, adding a "rocket" button you can tap to jump into a new game and play it live with friends. There are six titles at launch, all based on HTML5, including Snapchat's own Bitmoji Party game.

Bitmoji Party

Bitmoji Party comes from Prettygreat, a studio that produced Fruit Ninja and was purchased by Snap. The game reminds us of Mario Party, but with Bitmoji characters in place of the famous plumber and his friends. It features mini games that can be played with up to eight friends at a time, including a zombie game where players try to infect one another. There are five minigames in total.

Which games are on Snapchat?

Aside from Bitmoji Party, Snap announced five other titles:

  • Alphabear Hustle from SpryFox: Think Words with Friends
  • CATS Drift Racing from ZeptoLab: A multiplayer racing game from Zeptolab
  • Snake Squad from Game Closure: A reimagining of the classic game Snake
  • Tiny Royale from Zynga: A type of battle royale game from Zynga
  • Zombie Rescue Squad from PikPok: survive the zombie apocalypse with friends

For a detailed description of all the games, check out Snapchat's FAQ hub.

When can you play the games?

The games are now available to play. However, Snap said it's slowly rolling them out to all users, to make sure its servers don't crash.

How to play games on Snapchat

Games are accessible through a new rocket-shaped icon in the chat menu. It functions similarly to how Facebook’s Instant Games inside its Messenger service. By clicking the rocket icon, your friends in the chat will get a notification about the game and will be allowed to join. The person who starts the game session will be the game master and can control the game.

To launch a game:

  1. Swipe right to the Friends screen.
  2. Tap on a Chat or Group Chat.
  3. Tap the Rocket icon to open the Game Drawer.
  4. Tap on a game to start playing.

When you launch a game, everyone in the chat will get a notification. They’ll also see a message in chat about the game, and they can tap the game icon to start playing it live. If no one’s playing, you can hide the game icon in chat by dragging the game icon and letting it go.

You can also chat with your friends when you’re in a game, by simply tapping the chat bar at the bottom to bring up the keyboard. Tap the microphone once, and when you’re done talking, tap it again to stop sending audio. For more tips and tricks, see Snapchat's FAQ hub.

Why is Snapchat adding games?

Snap is likely hoping that its gaming platform will help keep users on the Snapchat platform, as recent reporting shows its users may not be using the app as much as they once did. Many services, including Instagram, have copied Snapchat's key features, like Stories. So, the onus is on Snapchat to continue to innovate and keep its users coming back to the app.

Want to know more?

Snapchat has details about game data storage, how much each developer makes on its platform, and more, all on its FAQ hub here.