play board family games
*Updated for Accuracy 2019

It’s that time of year when families and groups of friends gather together on vacation. It’s much more fun to play board games together after dinner or on a rainy day than watch TV or let everyone isolate with their iPads.  Here are games that we love and some that have been highly recommended by reader Lindsay E. who is an avid games player.

Wits & Wagers: 

How many can play? 3 – 7 players

What ages can play? It is for ages 10 and up

What’s it all about??  It is a trivia game so knowledge is helpful, but the real skill comes in knowing how to bet correctly.  It gets great reviews for being easy to learn, great to play with kids and totally enthralling. $34.00.

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Ticket To Ride:

How many can play?  2 – 5 players

What ages can play?  It is for ages 8 and up

What’s it all about?  The objective is to see the most cities in North America in just 7 days.  It is a cross-country adventure game set in 1900. There is now a Ticket To Ride Europe version.  It is a very creative game and one of the most popular games in recent history.  It gets rave reviews. $41.99.

board games

Dixit:

How many can play?  3 – 6 players

What ages can play?  It is for ages 8 and up

What’s it all about?   It is a beautifully illustrated award-winning game.  Players have large cards with images and the object is to bluff your opponents, guess which image matches the story and convince your opponents that it’s your card that tells the story. It takes an average of 30 minutes to play.  $24.00.

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Apples to Apples:

How many can play?  4 – 10 players

What ages can play?  It’s for 12 and up

What’s it all about?  This is a game of comparisons.  Players are dealt red cards with a noun printed on them.  The judge (a different player each turn) draws a green card that has an adjective printed on it and places it where all the players can see it.  Each player then chooses one of their red cards that they think best describes the adjective on the green card.  The judge then decides which card wins. Winning combinations, chosen by the judge might be as whacky as ‘scintillating’ and ‘CIA’ or ‘scary’ and ‘waterfalls’.  It is a “Mensa Select” award winner by Mensa International. $18.00.

Apples to Apples Board Game

Forbidden Desert:

How many can play?  2 – 5 players

What ages can play?  It’s for ages 10 and up

What’s it all about?  Find the legendary flying machine and escape before you all become permanent residents of the Forbidden Desert.  This is a sequel to the very popular 2010 Forbidden Island game.  It takes 45 minutes to play.  $19.50.

Board games

Spy Alley

 How many can play?  2 – 6 players

What ages can play?  It’s for ages 8 and up

What’s it all about?  Players become a spy for their assigned country and try to uncover their opponents’ identities while keeping their own identity a secret.  One review said “Deceptively simple and surprisingly intense”.  $34.90.

Spy Alley Board Game

Spot It: 

How many can play?  2 – 8 players

What ages can play?  It’s for ages 7 and up

What’s it all about?  This is an addictive and feverish matching game for all ages.  It is easy to learn and plays quickly but is harder than it looks!  There is Spot It for Junior Animals, MLB, On the Road and Alphabet.  $7.99.

Spot It Board Game

Hedbanz (kids version):

How many can play?  2 – 6 players

What ages can play?  It’s for ages 8 and up

What’s it all about?  This is a “Who am I?” guessing game.  Everyone knows who you are except you.  You can ask only yes and no questions.  This is a game that allows for slightly younger players to understand and be able to play. $10.60.

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Hedbanz (adult version):

How many can play? 2 – 6-players

What ages can play?  It’s for ages 14 and up

What’s it all about?  Same basic premise as Hedbanz for kids only with more sophisticated characters.  Very funny and great for house parties! $56.46.

Adult board games Headbanz

Settlers of Catan: 

How many can play?  3 – 4 players

What ages can play?  It’s for ages 10 and up

What’s it all about?  This game can last up to 90 minutes!  It’s a strategy game where players collect resources and use them to build roads, settlements and cities in order to win.  This board game is very popular with the 30 year-old set.   They love it and have dinner parties oriented around playing the game.  $142.00.

Fun board games to play

Do you like to win games? Here are some how-to win tips at 5 of the classics!

Need a few more ideas? We’ve got them for you,

What are you doing after dinner?