Top 25 Family Board Games

We love board games!

We have closets and shelves of games.  I'm constantly seeing people asking for good family game ideas and thought I'd compile a list of some of the games that my boys ask to play over and over and over again.

Some games are only for two players (so we'll often have multiple games going on at the same time and then swap players around as games end), some are more suited for my older boys, some may not be technically considered board games but these are all games we love to play.

I honestly believe that every game is educational and love exposing the kids to a variety of games.

We're game to try just about anything (see what I did there?)...  In no particular order here are some of our favorite family games:

1. Life-- We love to change it up by deciding to go to college sometimes and other times not.  My boys have pretty much realized that if you can get the doctor, vet, or superstar card than you'll make a lot of money and probably win the game.  They take turns being the banker and have learned how to make change and add up large sums of money.

2. Monopoly-- Regular and Pokemon version; Monopoly becomes an every man for himself kind of battle in this house.  Trades and alliances are made, we've actually had games where we've run out of houses and hotels.  It's lots of fun and requires the boys to use a lot of math skills.  

3. Scrambled States of America-- I bought this to help my kids learn about the 50 states and I had no idea that we were going to play it so much that we've practically memorized most of the clues!  It's such a fun game for the whole family.

4. Beat the Parents-- We've just started playing this fun trivia game that puts all the kids on one team and mom and dad on another.  Mom and dad's questions are mostly about pop stars, cartoon characters and things that the kids think are easy.  The kids questions are about science, life, and the world around us so it's pretty challenging for both sides.

5. Scene it? Disney or the Harry Potter version-- This game that we play along with on our DVD player has been getting a lot of use lately.  We just bought the Harry Potter version (used) and played it 4 times in one week!  We're huge Harry Potter fans and found the game challenging enough and tons of fun.  If Harry Potter or Disney are not your "thing" there are many versions.

6. Sorry Sliders-- This is one game that's great to play with younger kids.  There is no reading involved and the only math is a bit of counting.  Using pawns that look like those in the traditional Sorry! game you slide your pawns individually down a track and try to get them to land on the game board in such a way to give you the point score totals you need to win.  Each player can knock the other players off their spots and it's really a lot of fun.  

SORRY! Sliders
7. Sorry!-- My kids enjoy the traditional version of Sorry! too.  It's pretty challenging to get all your pawns into your safety zone without getting knocked back to start.

8. Twister-- Great exercise and great fun we love trying to tie each other up in knots.  We take turns playing and calling out the moves and have learned that those who are more flexible are at a definite advantage!  It's always a night that leads to so much laughing.

9. Mario Chess-- really they would play any version of chess but somehow the Mario characters turned chess into an obsession!  It's been fun learning how to play altogether as a family.  Alec was the one intrigued with chess and taught himself to play.  He often has to coach Evan, Ian or I when playing since we're all just learning.

10. Checkers-- Another classic!  I guess the classic games are classics for a reason though.  It's a lot of fun to strategically get your pieces across the game board without loosing too many.

11. Playing Cards-- (while not technically a board game they all mentioned at least one card game and Ian insisted that since you play it when you are bored it's a board game)-- Our favorites are War, Pitch, and cribbage but we've been known to play a mean game of go fish or old maid too.  

12. Trouble-- I think at one point we had four different versions of Trouble; we had Star Wars, Skylanders, Classic & one other too.  It's a simple enough game and lots of fun.  We love watching the dice pop and trying to beat one another around the board.  

Trouble Game (Amazon Exclusive)

13. Jenga-- skill and steady hands are needed to keep this game going.  It's fun for most ages and many or just a few players.

14. Clue-- This was always a personal favorite of mine so I was thrilled when my boys were finally old enough to play! Take your pawn around the board and try to guess who did it, with what weapon, & in what room.

15. Memory-- with so many versions it's easy to find one that appeals to most kids.  The concept is simple enough; flip over two cards at a time, remember where they are and make matches.  However it's not always that easy.  
Memory Game - Spider-Man & Friends Edition
16. Mastermind-- for only two players but still a lot of fun (and we've even had teams playing against the one making pattern).  The object of the game is to pick the pattern of pegs that the code maker put together using reasoning and small clues.  

17. Topple- A fun game for the whole family.  Try to balance your piece on the spot you rolled without toppling the game board. 

18. Spot it! Party-- The box says ages 10 and up but all three of my boys loved all the different versions of Spot It! found inside this box.  The object is to the be the first to spot a set of matching objects between cards so even kids who can't read can easily play.

19 Qwirkle-- Another game that kids can easily play since it only requires matching colors & shapes.  We played the first few times with all the tiles showing and the boys caught on quickly.  They take turns keeping score and again it can get quite competitive! 

20. American Trivia! I actually thought this trivia game was quite difficult but the boys love to play and often win.  It's been a fun way to learn so many facts about the United States and it's history.  

21. Battleship-- though only a two player game we have great fun trying to stump one another and guess where the other person is hiding their fleet of boats.  

22. Guess Who?-- another two player game that my younger two boys enjoy most.  They have to ask a question to help them eliminate a group of possible candidates to guess who the other person has picked.  

23. Scrabble-- My older boys enjoy this classic spelling game.  We take turns being scorekeeper and they enjoy the challenge of finding words and calculating the score to see if it's a "good word" to use or not.

24. Rummikub-- A rummy tile game that's equally fun and challenging for kids and adults.  

25. Zeus on the Loose--  2-5 players can play so it's a great game for families.  We stumbled upon this during the boys' Greek God obsession and loved this simple yet challenging math game.  The object is to be the first person to get to 100; adding up all the cards played along the way.  But be careful the Gods have powers and can subtract from the pile, turn it around, and turn the tides of the whole game.  
Zeus on the Loose


    1. These are awesome. Along with the well known or mainstream games there are some new ones, such as:
      Creature Quest:
      which can teach kids the concept of positive & negative numbers

      1. I've never heard of that one; sounds interesting!


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