Fun Family Board Games

By Addison Dempsey October 1, 2020

My family loves playing games, vacations, reunions, anytime we are all together we’re going to play a game. I personally am more of a fan of card games but my brother loves board games so in honor of him, I compiled the 5 best board games to play with a variety of ages. 

  1. Clue

Clue is a creative game of mystery and murder. The objective is to figure out who killed the victim with what, in which room. You go around the board asking questions of your fellow players. What I enjoy about the game is the unique notetaking portion that you don’t find in many other mainstream games. Clue is a close relative to the hidden role genera of games which I love. Clue is a great game to play with the whole family but a younger child might find the note taking difficult and the nature of the game (investigating a murder) might be too intense for younger children. There are versions of the game made for younger children which is a nice way to introduce them to the world without overwhelming them. 

  1. The Game of Life

The Game of Life has a simpler game play than that of clue but it can be a longer game. It teaches lessons about life (Should you get a degree and get a higher paying job with debt or should you go directly into the workforce and let a lower paying job but have no debt?) Life could have a few concepts that would be more difficult for younger children to grasp but it is a good way to teach your children about different experiences. It can be a way to introduce them to the world through a simple game but allow them to make choices based on what they value (What type of car would you buy?). The game combines just the right amount of player controlled choices and a whole lot of luck, which is reflective of a lot of real life. 

  1. Monopoly

Monopoly is a game for 8 and above that can help children improve their money management skills. It is all about purchasing property and building up your wealth. One of the ways that this game can be educational is to have a younger child be the banker. This keeps them in charge of the money that gets distributed in the game. This helps their math skills as they would be required to make change for other players and gives them more responsibility. This can help them stay engaged in the game and build their money management and fast math skills. 

  1. Suspicion

Suspicion is a game similar to Clue that I really enjoy. It is a hidden role game that is less complex than the majority of other hidden role games. You play as a secret character and you play different characters around the board, attempting to figure out who your opponents are playing as before they figure out who you are. While you are trying to uncover the identities of your opponents, you are also trying to collect gems. The game ends when one of the piles of gems runs out. This game is a lot of fun with lots of laughs and suspicious accusations. I enjoy the simplicity of the rules of this game. The mechanics of the game remain simple but it never gets boring. 

  1. Forbidden Island

Forbidden island is a cooperative game. When my family discovered cooperative games we fell in love with them. While some of us can be highly competitive, we generally don’t like games that have rules that we think are mean. Cooperative games involve all of the characters working together to reach a goal. Forbidden island is about a team of adventurers who are trying to collect four treasures before the island goes underwater. This game is lots of fun to play with the whole family because of its cooperative nature. It allows for younger children to help the mission. Be warned, this game is not easy. We have not escaped the island more times than I can count, but that’s okay! You just set it back up and try again. 

The most important thing to consider when you are choosing a game to play, is to make sure that everyone who wants to play can. It’s not any fun if people feel excluded. Have a good time!