Games

The best family board games

Family board game nights are a great way to spend an evening with loved ones. But it can be difficult to find games that are deep, yet accessible and fun for both kids and adults. Thankfully, there are plenty of incredibly clever games out there that can be learned in minutes and still have enough meat on their cardboard bones to placate the strategy-hungry among us.

The topic must also be taken into account at family games evenings. Board games for adults can be fun, but it would be inappropriate for younger players to blast zombies in Zombicide, for example. And some of the best board games for kids might test the patience of older kids. However, there are many more vivid and exciting themes such as huge monster battles and high-speed car racing. These are our picks for the best board games for family game night.

Takenoko

Takenoko
  • number of players: 2-4
  • game time: 45 min

Takenoko is a game about taking care of a very hungry panda. Players spend their turns irrigating plots of land to grow bamboo, which the panda then eats. There are many ways to score points, e.g. B. placing land tiles in a specific pattern and feeding the panda bamboo of specific colors. Since there is more than one way to score points, the game doesn’t force players to use any strategy. With bright colors and bamboo towers that tower far above the table, Takenoko is as fun to watch as it is to play.

cascade

cascade
  • number of players: 1-4
  • game time: 30-45 mins

There are few games with such a huge appeal as Cascadia. For starters, it has a sound theme of exploring the ecology of the Pacific Northwest. The mechanics are very simple and involve you choosing one of four pairs of animal markers and tiles to add to your growing map. The goal is to complete a random selection of scoring cards by placing animals in specific patterns, and the difficulty ranges from an easy family version to challenging player-level objectives. There’s even a fun solo campaign where you have to thwart a series of variants and objectives. If ever there was a game for absolutely everyone, this is it.

King of Tokyo

King of Tokyo
  • number of players: 2-6
  • game time: 30 minutes

The best way to describe King of Tokyo is “Yahtzee meets Godzilla”. In this monster mash-up, players control one of the monsters from the greatest hits of sci-fi history. The goal is to take control of Tokyo while fending off the other monsters. Attacks and special abilities are performed by rolling dice, adding some excitement to the huge boxing matches. Of course, controlling Tokyo makes you a target, and no monster can stay in the city for too long without taking a lot of damage. It’s up to you to know when to retreat and when to attack, but beware: other monsters are out there waiting for the perfect moment to strike.

Kingdomino

Kingdomino
  • number of players: 2-4
  • game time: 15-20 mins

Released in 2017, Kingdomino is the newest game on this list. It also won the coveted Spiel des Jahres, German board game of the year, cementing its place as a popular family game for years to come. Players take turns claiming tiles to add to their kingdom, but it’s not as simple as picking a tile and moving on. The tile you choose directly affects the turn order for the next turn, so you must be careful when making your decision lest you leave your opponents with a valuable tile on the table. Your tableau is restricted to a five by five grid, which also adds a spatial awareness element to the game. The short playtime and easy-to-learn rules make Kingdomino an ideal choice for your next family game night.

The Quack Doctors of Quedlinburg

The Quack Doctors of Quedlinburg
  • number of players: 2-5
  • game time: 40 min

You never thought brewing fake potions in medieval Germany would be so much fun. Each game has different effects on a range of ingredients to add to your snake oil, and it’s up to you to sniff out and brew the likely combinations. But there’s a catch: you do this by putting your ingredients in a bag and blind-drawing it, gradually increasing the number of dangerous cherry bombs. Draw one too many and your entire batch will be ruined for the round. An absolute winner for families, this combination of weighty push-your-luck and light strategy brings you both excitement and tactics as you battle for the best moves.

railway ink

railway ink
  • number of players: 1-6
  • game time: 20-30min

In recent years, roll-and-write games have seen something of a renaissance, and Railroad Ink shows why they’re so popular. Roll some dice, place the track pieces shown on your personal dry-erase board, and repeat. Watching your rail network grow is a big part of Railroad Ink, but the real carrot on the stick is the prospect of beating your old high scores. Since everyone uses the same dice rolls, the playing field remains balanced. It’s also fun to watch your opponents develop their own networks. Solo games are just as fun. There are two versions of Railroad Ink to choose from: the red version adds volcanic eruptions and meteors that can destroy your railroads, and the blue version includes lakes and rivers as new scoring features. Whichever version you choose, this fast and fun scroll and write is sure to be a hit with the family.

Tiny Cities

Tiny Cities
  • number of players: 1-6
  • game time: 45-60 mins

In Tiny Towns, players are mayors of newly developing villages and tasked with planning and building the town’s cottages, taverns, factories and more. In a turn, the active player chooses one of the available resources, then all players take a cube of the matching resource and place it in their city. Those cubes stay there, taking up valuable space until you can match the pattern on one of the building cards. You then place the building in your city and gain its effect, usually in the form of endgame points, based on the building’s rating conditions. With everyone at the table taking a resource each turn, there is little to no downtime in Tiny Towns. Keeping players busy while forcing them to meticulously plan their buildings makes this family game a brain burner in the best possible way.

azul

azul
  • number of players: 2-4
  • game time: 30-45 mins

As beautiful as it is fun, Azul is a game and a competition of planning and possibilities. You are a Mason in 15th or 16th Century Portugal and King Manuel I asked you to decorate his palace with brightly colored tiles reminiscent of the Spanish Alhambra. In a round, you select all tiles of a single color from one of the available groups of four, and the rest are sent to a common area that can be stolen later. You must place your chosen tiles in rows on your player board, and completing a row adds a tile to your palace wall. Points are earned for meeting various pattern requirements such as: B. covering all tiles of one color on your wall or completing an entire row or column. Filling up your display is satisfying in a way that few tile games can boast, and playtime is generally short enough that multiple games in one night are not uncommon. It’s not difficult to understand why Azul was named Germany’s game of the year in 2018.

The crew: mission deep sea

The crew: mission deep sea
  • number of players: 3-5
  • game time: 20 minutes

Trick-taking games like whist are well known, but The Crew takes the concept to a new level by using it in a cooperative card game. You will work together in a long series of missions where you have to win tricks that achieve specific goals. One player may need to win a trick with a blue 5, while another may not win any of the first 5 tricks. The catch is that you can only tell your opponents about one card in your hand at a time, the rest must remain secret. This straightforward concept hides a surprising amount of tactical depth as you attempt to trump and discard cards to ensure the right players win the right tricks.

downforce

downforce
  • number of players: 2-6
  • game time: 30-45 mins

In 2017, Restoration Games reproduced Wolfgang Kramer’s 1996 classic Top Race as a downforce. It’s a racing game where the winner isn’t necessarily the one whose car takes first place. Players’ hands are filled with cards representing various combinations of colors and numbers, and playing a card moves the corresponding cars forward that number of squares. During the race you can bet on which cars you think will do best, giving you a sweet bonus on your score. The game is over in about half an hour and offers a surprisingly satisfying mix of luck and strategy, a difficult balancing act for many family games.

The island of cats

The island of cats
  • number of players: 1-4
  • game time: 60-90 mins

Who doesn’t love an adorable cat? Evil Lord Vesh, that’s who, and it’s up to you to get as many twisty cats onto your boat as possible before you get them off him to safety. This is really an apology for this great polyomino arrangement game, with the beautiful artwork for the twisted cats filling the shapes. You must pack your boat as best you can, attempting to cover rats, fill holds, and meet a random selection of scoring conditions. As a bonus, the box contains two game modes: a family mode and a slightly more complex and challenging full game where you have to buy and use traps and tricks to lure the cats in before hiding them safely on your ship.

https://www.ign.com/articles/best-family-board-games The best family board games

Fry Electronics Team

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