GAMES, GAMES AND MORE GAMES: A COMPREHENSIVE LIST OF THE BEST GAMES FOR FAMILIES

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We’re always looking for new games at our house, because we love game night. We want all of the best games for families. And so while we love arguing about what games we will play, everyone picks out a different one, and sometimes (usually) there are some tears, we have fun spending time all together even though we are a family of 6 ages 2 to 40 (okay, maybe, ahem, 41).

Here is a list of mom-approved games compiled from various websites, conversations, posts, and childhood memories. If I missed any of your family’s favorites – please be sure to tell us about it in the comments!

Charles C. 3rd grade, Owen M. 3rd grade, Elliot B. 3rd grade and Harper C. 4th grade play Apples to Apples.

Apples to Apples – our older kids especially like this. Charles “Mom – if you were playing I’d have totally given you this one because you’re always talking about it: multitasking.” #truth
Bananagrams – fast paced Scrabble.
Blokus – this is one of my personal favorites because…strategy.
Boom Blast Stix – our older kids 7 and 9-years-old have a lot of fun with this game.
Bounce Off is one of the best games for families.
Brown Bear, Brown Bear – This is the BEST super young kid game…our kids played it as early as 18 months. We end up using it like a matching game with all the Brown Bear Brown Bear and Panda Bear Panda Bear animals and we tie every time. Great for teaching turns, animal names, and sharing (we share the pieces with each other when we draw one we already have). Okay, so maybe it’s the best because we have house rules. Still, a great game!
Busytown games – In my search for a comprehensive list I ran across this one. And, it’s in my Amazon cart right now! I can’t wait to get the Eye Found It! version.
Candy Land #momknowshowtocheatsowealldon’tendupcrying
Castle Panic – collaborative game.
Catan – a recent favorite of many pre-teen boys I know.
Catch Phrase
Checkers

Chess
Clue & Clue Jr.
Codenames – listed on many websites as best team game.
ColorKu – I had to look this one up. Kind of like a color version of Sudoku. It has top top reviews.
Connect 4
Count Your Chickens – we just got this and haven’t played it yet.
Deck of Cards – Rummy and 5 card draw are our favs. Fellow blogger Rachel Gustafson recommends “good ole Kings on the Corner.”
Dominoes
Don’t Break the Ice
Dutch Blitz – another one I had to look up. It’s a card game with great reviews.
Enchanted Forest – This is my favorite game of all time forever and ever. You need to get it especially if you have girls and boys that love castles and fairy tales. Seriously, go buy it now. Then, invite me over to play.

While I hinted this game might be more female themed, you can see here Oliver C. 2nd grade, Owen C. 2nd grade, and Rory B. 1st grade are having fun. Rory really is having fun, I promise!

Exploding Kittens
The Fairy Game by Peaceable Kingdom
Family Feud – we like the Disney Version: which Disney character is likely to make the best housekeeper?
Farkle – our boys ages 4-9 love playing this with their grandparents.
Fluxx – another I had to look up. Described as “the card game with ever-changing rules.”
Go Long! – this is a dice version of football complete with heartbreaking interceptions. My BOYS LOVE IT when they aren’t upset they lost on a hail mary. It’s just the right amount of competetion to make it one of the best games for families.

Our boys playing Go Long!

Googly Eyes – another one I looked up and have in my Amazon cart. It looks like so much fun and seems to l even the playing field for differing ages.
Guess Who
Headbands
Hi Ho Cherry-O – some moms like this one. This mom…does not. The darn cherries end up all over the house.
Hungry Hungry Hippo
 – still a huge favorite in our house. You can buy a marble refill.
Jenga
Jumping Monkeys – one of our favorite of the best games for families!! Catapult monkeys into a tree. Great for multiple ages.

His tongue! I just love it. Jumping Monkeys takes serious concentration.

Left, Right, Center – I toss this simple game in our going-out bag for when we are stuck somewhere or waiting at a restaurant.
Life – We love the new version of this with choices about college and career paths. Someone in our family always ends up with too many kids to fit in the car which we seem to think that is hilarious. Frankly, I think it’s a great example of real life as I try to #carpoolallthekids.

Best games for families
Looping Louie – this quick paced game requires flicking an airplane into the air so it doesn’t hit your chicken coins. A favorite of all ages!
Mancala
Mexican Trains – dominoes and trains, so, of course, one of the best?! Requires a bit more strategy but younger kids still have fun.
Monopoly – the game I hate the most, literally. I get mad just thinking about it. However, these versions below work for our family. They are fairly quick and no one is so invested that they feel their soul is crushed at the end of the game. 
Cars Monopoly
Monopoly Deal – this is a great more complex game to take on trips.
Monopoly Jr. – Kari Hanson recommends Monopoly Jr as “fun and easy.”
Monopoly Empire
Mouse Trap – We got this for Christmas. The Jury is still out for me on how I feel about this one…
Operation
Othello
Pandemic –Too soon? Maybe it hits a little too close to home but this is still one of the best games for families.
Pass the Pig – a game where the dice are pigs and players get points depending on how the pigs land. It’s surprisingly fun…also very easily transported.
Perfection – our kids love this game…and secretly, it’s one of my favorites still. I love lowering the allotted time and trying to beat the buzzer!
Pictionary and Pictionary Jr.
Pop Up Pirate – this is one of those children’s games I really like making it one of the best games for families
Robot Turtles – an elementary coding game…as in, your 4 year old can play!
Rummikube – this is kind of a card game, kind of a tile game, kind of rummy. I used to play it with my grandma. Maybe that’s why I like it so much.
Scrabble and Scrabble for kids
Sequence – consistently voted one of the best games. I agree: One of the best! Also try the other versions.
Sequence for Kids
States & Capitals Sequence
Skip Bo
Sleeping Queens – Sarah Morehart and her four kids recommend “the anniversary edition because it has more Kings and Queens.”
Sneaky Snacky Squirrel – a less equally annoying version of Hi Ho Cherry-O with bigger pieces and a color element added in…My kids like both games, however…
Sorry!
Speak out
Spot it – a newer game with LOTS of high recommendations makes this one of THE best games for families
Sushi Go Party – Jennifer Ritz says:”Trash panda uses dice and cards with a goal to get the best trash in your can/hand. Sushi Go Party is an extended version of the original card game: the goal being to build winning sushi combinations. Fun and fast.” She has a 5th grader and a 7th grader.
Suspend – by Melissa & Doug
Taboo
Telestrations – I don’t really know this one but it’s somehow like that old version of Telephone and shows up on a lot of top game lists.
Tenzi – recommended by multiple moms.
Ticket to Ride – a game about taxi routes. At first it seems complicated, but once you catch on, it’s really fun.
ThinkFun Roll and Play – a great game for littles! Our 2 and 4-year-olds have a lot of fun with this one. You roll a huge cloth die with colors on each side, each color has a theme (like animal sounds or emotions or counting). Then pick a card from that color pile and do what it says such as spin around 2 times (counting), find something blue (colors), roar like a lion (animal sounds). 
Trash Pandas
Trivia Pursuit
Trouble – great for multiple ages.
Twister – always a fun time in our family.
the best game for families twister with kids
Ultra DASH – I’ve ordered this one. There’s a thing and you have these other things and you have to run and find the things and tap them. You might need to order more than one set of things. Anyway…it’s some kind of fun indoor running thing…so likely our boys will love it.
Uno and Uno Attack
Upwords
Wahoo – this is one of our boys’ favorite games to play with Grandpa.
Zingo
5 Second Rule Jr.

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A committed member of the boymom club, Meghan has five active, adventurous, crazy sweet men in her life she often calls her “favorite boys”. Charles is 10, Oliver is 8, Bennett is 5, Simon is 3 and her husband, Luke is a fun, patient, loving father to all these crazy characters. For 18 years, Meghan worked in higher education at a private college in recruitment, marketing, and social media. Now, working from home, she balances four boys, a great husband, freelance writing and social media consulting. Meghan grew up in St. Charles, IL (a western Chicago suburb), attended Augustana College, and is a true Quad City transplant - she loves living in this area! She likes to read, sing, plan adventures, travel and just be with her favorite boys.

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