How to initiate a multiplayer game through Game Center on iPhone and iPad

How to initiate a multiplayer game through Game Center on iPhone and iPad

The whole point of Game Center is to play online with friends and compete for leaderboard rankings. While you can start multiplayer games and challenge friends from within some games, you can also initiate multiplayer games from within Game Center itself.

Here's how:

  1. Launch the Game Center app from the Home screen of your iPhone or iPad.
  2. Tap on the Friends tab and find the friend that you'd like to challenge. Tap on their name.
  3. Under the Games in Common section, tap on the game that you'd like to play with your friend.
  4. Now in the upper right hand corner you'll see a Play button, tap on it. This will auto-create a match for that game with the friend you have chosen.

It's worth noting that you can challenge friends to other games that you don't have in common but they'll be prompted to install or purchase the game if they don't already have it.

Have something to say about this story? Leave a comment! Need help with something else? Ask in our forums!

Allyson Kazmucha

Senior editor for iMore. I can take apart an iPhone in less than 6 minutes. I also like coffee and Harry Potter more than anyone really should.

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Reader comments

How to initiate a multiplayer game through Game Center on iPhone and iPad


Agreed. While i haven't been using idevices for that long i did find out the other day that you can switch apps without going to the home screen ever time. Good stuff.

Thanks for writing an article about Game Center. I've never bothered to open Game Center up to see what it is, and I've been with iOS since the 2nd gen iPodTouch

Wow so simple but so difficult at the same time. Honestly Allyson I never thought about doing that. I have opened the GameCenter one time and I have had iPhones since the 3G came out. Yes I realize GameCenter wasn't available back then...haha. Now I just need to get in there and add some friends so I can whip some butts. Thanks for the info.

I logged into Game Center once in all the time it has been out. Never really understood what it was for. None of my "friends" seem to use it. I'm guessing they have to use it too for it to be useful.

This is so simple yet I never knew how to use Game Center. Thanks Allyson! When I see the screenshots, however, the app looks outdated and not very clean. The interface could use an update.

I actually find this useful. Other how-to's seems boring and not really needed; however, I actually do enjoy this tutorial. The best part is you can tell what games you have and common and can direct them to the itunes store to download/purchase the game you want to play. I think that's one of best parts of Game Center.

This is great! I want to challenge my nephews in a game and didn't know how to do this. Let the games begin..... Thanks for the tip!

I didn't know you can do that from the game center. Wow everyday you learn something really new from your iDevices, thanks iMore!!

How do I disable GameCenter so it never prompts me to login to it EVER again?

Every once in awhile it will come up, and I will hit the disable button, and then a couple weeks later it will prompt again & I'll have to disable the stupid thing again. Better yet, how do I delete the stupid thing? I just want to play my games & not be bothered by this thing.

Maybe when the skeuomorphism goes away in iOS 7, I'll use Game Center. I always thought of the app to be an afterthought. I play games and log in with Game Center, but challenging people or even bother to checking the scoreboards hasn't thrilled me to use that part of it yet.