While family game night may or may not be in your regular weekly routine, games are a fantastic way for the entire family to come together and created shared memories and experiences. Playing games teaches kids important skills like taking turns, working together, how to be a good competitor, and strategy. Whether you buy your games or trade with another family, try a game evening in your house, and I’m pretty sure you’ll all be hooked. We personally do game nights with our kids as well as game nights with our neighbors quite a bit. Even breaking out a puzzle (here are the best puzzles for kids in our house) can be a lot of fun around here. It makes sure we are all connected each week with something other than homework and sports. While there are hoards of brand new games out there to choose from, there are also some classic games that stay tried and true. I have curated a list of my very favorite games below that belong in every house. Stock up your closet with a few of these family favorites for some good old fashioned fun!
Ticket to Ride – This historically-based game includes a good balance of strategy and luck in an ever-adapting yet simple-to-learn game the entire family will find fun. 2 – 5 players, Ages 8+.
Ticket To RideTicket To Ride – EuropeTicket to Ride First JourneyTicket To Ride Rails & Sails Board Game
Blokus – Tetris fans will love assembling the various pieces in this fast-paced strategy game that gets more difficult as pieces are placed on the board. We just started playing this in our family as Charlotte got it for Christmas- she has already schooled us. 2 – 4 players, Ages 5+.
Mattel BJV44 Blokus GameDeluxe Blokus GameBlokus Trigon GameBlokus To Go Game
Mastermind – My dad and i used to play this one growing up. There are a variety of choices for mastermind and it takes some logic to complete.
For one-on-one game time, Mastermind is a play on Battleship where one player creates a code and provides subtle hints while their partner attempts to crack the code. 2 players, Ages 8+.
Retro MastermindUltimate MastermindMastermind for Kids — Codebreaking Game Plays onMastermind Game — The Strategy Game of Codemaker
Checkers – A classic that never goes out of style. Easy for little ones get started but developing real skill takes time and practice. My 5 year old cracks up when you “jump” a piece. 2 players, Ages 6+.
Jumbo Checker Rug GameCheckers – Take ‘N’ Play Anywhere GameCardinal Wood Checkers & Tic Tac ToeCheckers Folding Board Game
Chutes and Ladders – The classic you grew up playing. Teaches turn-taking and how to deal with adversity – a slide down doesn’t mean you’ll lose and a ladder doesn’t ensure a win. 2 – 4 players, Ages 4+.
Classic Chutes and Ladders Board GameMarvel Spider-Man Web Warriors Chutes & Ladders GameRetro Series Chutes and LaddersChutes and Ladders Super Hero Squad
Sequence – Using cards in your hand and chips on the board, in this one, players are attempting to line up five chips in a row. Skill, luck, and laughter are guaranteed each time. 2 – 12 players, Ages 7+.
Sequence GameDeluxe SequenceSequence for KidsJax Jumbo Sequence Tube Game
Scrabble – This one helps kids practice spelling and learn cool and unique new words. Draw tiles, spell and connect words, score. 2 – 4 players, Ages 8+.
Winning Moves Tile Lock ScrabbleScrabble Retro Series ExclusiveHasbro Scrabble Crossword GameScrabble Junior Game
Monopoly/Monopoly Jr. – This one is just as you remember it, with new game pieces to keep things interesting. For younger families try Monopoly Jr. which keeps the essence of the original without overwhelming younger kids. 2 – 4 players, Ages 5+ for Monopoly Jr; 8+ Classic Monopoly
Monopoly Board Game The Classic EditionMonopoly Game: Ultimate Banking EditionMonopoly Empire GameMonopoly The Mega Edition
Candy Land – Your childhood favorite with a revamped board that appeals to younger kids. Take turns drawing colored cards and move your way to Candy Land! 2 – 4 players, Ages 3+.
Candy Land The World of Sweets Game (AmazonCandy Land 65th Anniversary GameCandy Land Game: Disney Princess Edition (Amazon Exclusive)Deluxe Candyland
Clue – Visit the various rooms in Mr. Boddy’s house to collect clues and solve the mystery of Mr. Boddy’s death. This game is different each time you play, and it is certain to become the favorite of another generation. 3 – 6 players, Ages 8+.
Clue The Classic EditionClue game -The Classic Mystery GameClue GameClue Harry Potter Board Game
Game of Life – Parents and kids alike still love this classic, Choose Your Own Adventure game, experimenting with creative careers and unique twists and turns. The updated version keeps the game moving along, unlike the original. 2 – 4 players, Ages 8+.
The Game of Life Electronic BankingHasbro The Game of Life GameThe Game of Life Junior GameDespicable Me Minion The Game of Life Game
Secret Door – This lesser known game is a fantastic option if you think your kids would like Clue, but you’d like to keep the murder out of the family game night. In this one, you’ll catch thieves before they make off with the treasure. 1 – 8 players, Ages 5+.
Family Pastimes Secret Door – An Award Winning
Sorry – Move your pawns around the board before your opponents bump you back to start – Sorry! Great for the whole family – try using fewer pawns for games with littler ones. 2 – 4 players, Ages 6+.
Sorry Classic Edition Board GameSorry! 2013 Edition GameSorry Game (Amazon Exclusive)Sorry! Star Wars Edition Family Board Game 2014
Battleship – Players take turns finding the ships their opponent secretly placed on the ocean. Teaches spatial awareness and how to use coordinates to even young kids. 2 players, Ages 7+.
Battleship GameElectronic Battleship GameBattleship: Star Wars Edition GameBattleship Grab and Go Game
Burger Mania – This is one of two games on this list that are not classics- mainly because we bought them and loved playing. See the kids thoughts and a video of them playing Burger Mania here. Using cards as guides you’ll assemble burgers for the conveyor belt to hopefully send them off to the dinner plate. Think I-Love-Lucy-Chocolate-Shop. Tons of giggles for everyone. 2 players, Ages 6+.
Risk – Based on luck and skill, this epic has stood the test of time for a reason. Gather your armies and set out to conquer all. Be prepared to come back to this one or settle in for an afternoon game session. I own the Walking Dead RISK version. If you are a fan of the show, it turns you into a walker if you are not careful. 2 – 6 players, Ages 10+.
Risk GameRisk Game: Global DominationRisk: Game of Thrones Board GameRisk: Star Wars Edition Game
UNO – This classic variation on Crazy 8’s is a must-have for your game cabinet. Lay cards from your hand to match one from the discard pile until they’re gone. Don’t forget to shout, “UNO!”. 2 – 10 players, Ages 7+.
Uno Card GameUno Attack GameUNO Batman vs Superman Edition Card GameUNO Wild Jackpot Game
Hungry Hungry Hippos – This classic Hippo-marble munching game is still a blast for kids of all ages. Now comes in a much easier to store design which makes parents happy. 2 – 4 players, Ages 4+.
Hungry Hungry Hippos Grab and Go GameHungry Hungry Hippos Toy | Marble Swallowing HipposHungry Hungry HipposMulticolor Elefun & Friends Hungry Hungry Hippos Game
Jenga – Build a tower, then remove pieces strategically to make it even higher. Young and old alike will live shouting, “Jenga!” as it inevitably topples. Kids love using the pieces for building too. 1 or more players, Ages 6+.
Hasbro Game – JengaJenga Classic GameLarge Wood Tower Game 48 piecesJenga Throw-N-Go The Toppling Tower with a
Yahtzee – Roll your set of dice to strategically score points based on poker hands. Get five of a kind, and you get a Yahtzee! 2 or more players, Ages 8+.
Winning Moves Games Yahtzee Classic An Exciting GameYahtzee Classic Board GameYahtzee to Go Travel Game 2014 by HasbroYahtzee Handheld Digital Game
Apples to Apples Jr. – While older teens and adults will love the original version, even younger kids can get in on the hilarious matching fun in this game. Match a card in your hand with a word card chosen by an opponent – will they pick your match? 4 – 8 players, Ages 9+.
Apples to Apples Party in a Box GameApples to Apples Junior – The Game ofMattel: Apples to Apples: Party Box – DeluxeApples to Apples 15th Appleversary Edition
Catan – Fans rave about this game. Build a settlement on the isle of Catan with smart trading and thoughtful strategy – every game will be unique. My husband and I used to play this in college to pass the time. 3 – 4 players, Ages 10+.
Catan 5th EditionCatan: Cities & Knights ExpansionThe Settlers of CatanCatan: Junior
Spot It – Be the first to find the matching symbol between two cards – they guarantee there’s at least one match between any two cards. A fast-paced game the whole family can enjoy. 2 – 8 players, Ages 7+.
Spot ItSpot It Junior AnimalsSpot it! Hip Card GameSpot It! Sports
Spitting Camel – This is the second non-classic game we have on the list. We bought this one and the kids get a giggle out of it. See us playing Spitting Camel here. From the name alone kids will find this one irresistible. Watch the “hidden pea” and correctly identify which “cup” it’s under or the camel will spit on you! Be sure to play this one on a surface that can take a bit of water. 1 – 4 players, Ages 5+.
Hoot Hoot Owl – In this cooperative game, players work together to get the owls home to their nests before the sun comes up. A great first game you’ll play again and again. 2 – 4 players, Ages 4+.
Peaceable Kingdom Hoot Owl Hoot! Cooperative Board Game
Roll and Play – Not many games are designed for the 3 and under set, but this one is fun for kids of a wide range of ages. Roll the big soft dice, draw a card and do the related action or activity. 1 or more players, Ages 2+.
Thinkfun Roll and Play Board Game
Connect 4 – You’ll remember the jingle, even if you never played as a kid. Take turns inserting checkers into the board to Connect Four. Once kids understand Tic Tac Toe, they’re ready for this one. 2 players, Ages 6+.
Hasbro Connect 4 GameConnect 4 Grab and Go GameECR4Kids Jumbo 4-To-Score Oversized Game, PrimaryAMGlobal Connect Four, Connect 4 Game, Four in
Pictionary – One of the best party games ever, Pictionary deserves a place on your game shelf too. Working in teams, players take turns drawing pictures for their teammates to guess. We have played a version of this, Telestrations, that goes between writing and drawing..its pretty hilarious too. Plus, there is an adult version that is just as funny. 3 or more players, Ages 12+.
Pictionary GamePictionary Card GameUSAopoly Telestrations 8 Player – The OriginalMattel Pictionary Junior 2015 Edition