Whether you are planning a date night at home or a family game night, it’s fun to have some new options! My family loves to play board games, so I’ve compiled a list of the 14 best board games that we have in our game closet!
These are tried and true games that we actually own and play! For the technical sort, some of these games may be considered table top games vs a board game, but all are perfect for game nights! I’m going to separate these games into 2 categories. Games that can be played with 2 players and games that require 4 or more people.
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2 (or more) Player Games
1) Forbidden Island
Forbidden Island is a cooperative play game, meaning that you work together WITH the other players to beat the game itself. You are on an island and you have to collect 4 treasures with your teammates. Meanwhile, the island is becoming flooded and you have to keep fixing it, while collecting treasure before the whole thing sinks. The game really accelerates at the end, which is a fun twist because you never know if you will make it in time. Another fun element is that you can choose your level of difficulty, making the game different each time you play.
If you love word games, Bananagrams is a great one. You use letter tiles to create your own crossword puzzle. As soon as one player uses up all of their tiles, they say “peel” and everyone has to take another tile from the pile, to add into their puzzle. You are constantly adjusting and making changes to your crossword to add in the new letter tiles. The game moves quickly and ends when all the tiles are gone and a player finally finishes their puzzle. This is one of those games you want to play again and again!
3) Ticket to Ride Europe
Ticket to Ride Europe is a great game for both 2 players or a big group. Players take turns playing cards to build train routes between cities. There’s a lot of different strategies involved and it’s a great deal of fun to try to connect all of your cities and use up all of your trains before your opponent can finish their routes. It’s often surprising who wins the game as there are both elements of luck and strategy at play! This is a great game for adults to play with their tweens and teens.
Blokus is a game of strategy that will remind you a bit of Tetris. Players take turns placing their pieces on the board in a strategic manner. The pieces must touch another piece of the same color, but only touch at the corners. The player who has the least number of squares left at the end wins.
5) Lost Cities
Lost Cities is a great 2 player game. It’s a card game of strategy and risk taking, with fairly simple rules. I love that you can play a full game in about 20 minutes, but it’s so fun you’ll want to play more than once!
Carcassonne is one of the best board games that I’ve played. There is a lot of strategy involved but the rules are simple enough to learn quickly. Players take turns placing tiles of land to build cities, farms, and roads. You place figures on the tiles to collect points. It’s a game of chance and strategy and you really can’t tell who has won until the end.
Boggle is a fast moving word game. You shake letter dice and form a grid of 4×4. Then you write down as many words as you can find within the puzzle before the timer runs out. The person with the most words wins!
Quiddler is fun word game in which you create words using the cards you are dealt. Each round, you either pull a new card or one from the discard pile to make words. After each round, the number of cards increases and bonus points are given for longest word and the most words created. The player with the most points at the end of 10 rounds wins.
Upwords is an awesome word game in which you place tiles on a board to create words, much like Scrabble. The big difference though, is that you can build on top of other word tiles, which means the words on the board are always changing. You can collect points for changing those words and in addition, you can get points from creating new words.
Sequence is a great game that can be played with 2 people or in teams with a whole table full of people! The object of the game is to get 5 in a row before your opponent. There’s both strategy and luck involved so it’s a fun game for both kids and adults.
Games for 4 or More Players
11) Settlers of Catan
Settlers of Catan is one of my favorite games to play with a group. It includes trading with other players, building a roads and cities, blocking opponents, and trying to reach 10 points before the other players. It is full of strategy but also involves some luck as well.
Masterpiece is a vintage game I played as a child. You may have luck finding it on Etsy in a vintage shop. The basic premise of the game is to buy art pieces for a profit. Each art piece comes with a price (which changes each time you play the game) so you never know until you get the card whether you bought it for too much or made money. To add to the fun, some art pieces are “forgery” which means they are worth nothing. Players put on their game faces to try to sell their art to other players. It’s quite fun, and a very unique game. I have great memories of playing this with my cousins growing up and I bought my own vintage copy of the game as an adult.
13) Apples to Apples
Apples to Apples is a classic game that is easy to learn and is lots of fun with large groups. To play, everyone is dealt seven cards from which they pick the closest comparison to the judge’s description card. If judge likes your comparison the most, you get to keep the description card. The player with the most cards wins. There are many different versions of this game available including kid versions, Disney, Bible, and more. I have linked to the original.
14) Pun Intended
Pun Intended is a great game for people who love puns. You need at least 4 people to play. Teams have 1 minute to guess the 6 puns which start with the same letter on their card to score points. The first team to get 30 points wins. It’s a fast moving game that is guaranteed to make you laugh.
I hope you enjoyed this list of my family’s 14 best board games. Try one of these for your next game night and you are sure to have a great time!
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