As we're all stuck in the house more these days, it might be a good time to find a way to get everyone face-to-face together around the table, off their screens and reconnect. Board games are a perfect for this. We've compiled a list of ten of our families' favorites.
What We Love About It: Dice re-rolling fun, but with special powers, attacking, and Creature Double-Feature-esque monsters!
Pros: Really easy to play, even for the youngest members of the family - who will inevitably LOVE kicking dad's butt.
Cons: Once you've seen all of the special powers, you'll want more! Enter - expansions!
What We Love About It: A somewhat cut-throat take-that game where the kids inevitably gang up on dad, tip his boat over and sick the sharks on his innocent fleeing people...
Pros: The simple rules get out of the way of the fun.
Cons: If siblings gang up on each other...lots of good teachable moments as a result.
What We Love About It: Very familiar 20-Questions-like game play, but cooperative and with a TRAITOR / SABOTEUR to lead people off the scent.
Pros: Really fun social game that gets everyone talking and the mobile app really helps make the game run smoothly.
Cons: Some of the different roles can get a little challenging for younger kids.
What We Love About It: A beautiful-looking area-control game where each player controls several unique sets of troops with special abilities over the course of the game.
Pros: Easy to teach, fast-playing (no more 5 hour sessions of Risk), each player gets to control several different sets of troops during a game with variable powers that change game-to-game.
Cons: Because players are battling over a limited area, some kids may not like being attacked or forced into battle.
Honorable Mention: Las Vegas
What We Love About It: Solving a crime as a group is really fun, and having the freedom to investigate different people, places, and things provides a very fun puzzle.
Pro: Easy to learn, the novel app integration is great and keeps the game moving along.
Cons: Can result in one player driving the action for the group.
What We Love About It: A hotel-building game set in Las Vegas, with negotiation, take-overs (hostile and friendly), and a little gambling!
Pro: Forget the roll-and-move, you decide where and when you want to buy the plot(s) of land that will one day help make you the next casino king-pin.
Cons: Can be a little cut-throat, as Vegas has now and then been known to be.
What We Love About It: Laugh-out-loud fun!
Pros: Almost no rules.
Cons: Does require some creativity by everyone playing to maximize the fun-factor.
Honorable Mention: Just One
What We Love About It: Pulling ingredients out of a bag to maximize your potion's points and money is great fun. However, it usually leads to your potion exploding - at least for those of us who can't stop!
Pros: Very interesting combination of ingredient interactions that changes every game.
Cons: Sometimes the luck of the ingredient pull can run against you.
What We Love About It: Very cool themed cooperative game that gets everyone involved.
Pros: The variety of monsters to fight is great, as is the ability to scale the difficulty from easy to super-hard.
Cons: As with most cooperative games, one player can drive the group's actions if allowed.
What We Love About It: A super quick cooperative card-shedding game against the clock.
Pros: Really easy to learn and kids love the real-time nature of it.
Cons: Can get stressful to play over-and-over in a single sitting.
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What We Love About It: A pirate ship race around the Caribbean with the ability to attack each other.
Pros: Easy to learn, beautiful production, great with higher player counts.
Cons: Some kids may not like being attacked, although its relatively mild.
Honorable Mentions: Formula D
What We Love About It: A game where you roll dice, get money, and build your city round-after-round. The game evolves and physically changes over the course of the ten game campaign - the rules, the cards, etc. At certain points in the game you unlock new components that are "locked" in their own boxes, add them to the game, and as a result permanently change it.
Pros: Probably the easiest legacy-style game for families to get into. At the end of the ten game campaign, each family will have a unique version of the game with which to play going forward.
Cons: The luck of the dice can sometimes get frustrating.
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What games has your family enjoyed playing together?
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