We as a family play a lot of games. Card games, board games, role playing games – it is a bunch of fun for the family. And very good for your brain, too, if you pick the right kind of game! I made a list of 10 of my favourite brain games. If your kids are anything like mine, prepare to be annihilated! At most of these, one or both of my older kids can beat me – but not always! The pictures link to Amazon; they are affiliate links. If you click them and buy through Amazon, I will get a tiny bit of money to keep the blog running and to put fresh coffee in my cup 🙂
What makes a board game a great game for a family?
A good family game for me is a game that has enough strategy as to offer different strategies to win the game but enough luck so that the little ones don´t get crushed. I also do not believe in holding back and letting children win. I do not mind getting the outside track to make it harder for me, but it is really important that children learn to lose, to win and to think.
One of my absolute favourite games. Very, very easy to learn the rules, hard to spot the sets you need – and a perfect game for those bright, gifted little minds. Be prepared to lose, though. I’m a good player – my daughter beat me on her third try.
Matching games are truly a classic – and if you can beat a seven year old, you are really, really good. There are several games you can get, I picked Moana because we currently LOVE that movie. But you can get this game pretty much everywhere, with all kind of pictures.
3. Story cubes
And now for something completely different…
This isn’t for the pattern recognizing, logical part of your brain. It’s not even a board game in the classical sense. It’s just a bunch of cubes with pictures on them – and kids with story driven minds like the Ninja will go absolutely bonkers over these. You can use them on long car rides, too – and there is no winner or looser in this game.
4. Galaxy Truckers
Now we’re going into deep, deep geek territory. This is great for older kids, and for kids with interest in Space – and it has a hilarious description! If you can get your hands on them, all the other board games by the same author, Vlaada Chvatil, are gold, too!
5. Ninja vs. Ninja (or Pirate vs. Pirate)
This is a fun one! It’s a very short game of tactics. It only takes about 15 minutes, so it’s not so bad if you lose – just challenge your opponent to another round! Ninja vs. Ninja doesn’t seem to be available at the moment – but Pirates is fun as well!
6. Robot Turtles
Are your kiddos interested in Computer games? The answer to this is probably yes – at least with most of them. This board game is a cool tool for future computer geeks (or IT personnel). It teaches the basics of programming – and its a lot of fun, too!
7. King of Tokyo (or King of New York)
This is just a fun game where you get to play a huge monster and destroy a city. Not as much a brain game as the others, just one of those board games that is hilarious to play for the whole family. Lots of additions for this game – even a Draccus has been made!
This is something very, very different! It is a very creative game, that features beautiful pictures. You have to describe them in Words, movement or song (anything, really) and everyone else has to find a card that fits the description as well. It is one of those board games where it doesn’t matter who wins.
A highly challenging card game! You don’t see your own cards, and everyone else does. And talking about it is highly restricted. This is a game that you play together, not against each other.
10. Kingdom Builder
Back to the classical board game. A game for young strategists that changes every time you play. Best played with 2-3 people.
The base game isn’t available on Amazon, so I linked the big box – this one is playable for up to five people.
Honestly, I could go on and on about board games – we have about 200 at home and love playing as a family. I’ll probably make more lists like this in the future 🙂
What about you? Do you play games with your kids? What are your favourites? Do any of the games in this list sound interesting to you? Let me know in the comments section, please!