This gift guide includes 60+ gift ideas for board game lovers. There are games for all ages from preschool to adult, including a few party games and cooperative games. If you are a board game fan, check out this list and get a new board game for game lovers that they will for sure enjoy!
Board games are a great way for people to come together. They help create happiness while encouraging players to use strategy and good decision making skills.
There are various board games for all ages, from easy games for preschoolers to more challenging options for adults and something for everyone in between.
Not only are games great fun, but board games can also be educational, making them perfect for families.
Check out the list below for some old favorites and new treasures that any board game-loving family is sure to enjoy.
Hi Ho Cherry-O is a great game is a fun way to work on counting skills. Each player spins the spinner and tries to be the first to fill up their basket with cherries, but be careful because you just may land on a spot that makes you return cherries to the tree. If you land on a tipped basket, you must return all your cherries and start over! Ages 3 and up.
Candy Land – Enter the sweet world of Candy Land in this classic game which is great as a first board game for little ones. Draw the cards consisting of different colors and then move your gingerbread man game piece to the next square of matching color. The winner is the first player to reach King Kandy’s castle. Ages 3 and up.
Sequence for Kids is another board game that does not require reading. Your child plays an animal card from their hand and places a token on a corresponding animal found on the board. The trick is to sequence 4 of your tokens in a row; the first one who does is the winner. Ages 3-6. Look for the regular Sequence game which is intended for ages 7 and up.
In Disney Eye Found It, you search for hidden items as you travel through 12 Disney realms on the 6-foot game board. Help your team reach Aurora’s castle, before evil Queen Maleficent casts her sleepy spell. It's a cooperative game, so no winners or losers. There's a Marvel Eye Found It too, if Disney isn't your thing. Ages 4 and up.
Hungry Hungry Hippos – Feed your hungry hippo by gobbling up marbles. Each player takes a turn releasing a marble and using the lever attached to your hippo, try to be the first to snap it up. Whoever has the most marbles at the end wins. Ages 4 and up.
Left Right Center – My in-laws introduced my girls to this game where you roll dice based on how many chips you have, and you might have to give them to the person on your right, the person on your left, or into the center bowl. This can be used as a gambling game for an all adult crowd, but my kids love it. Even when you are out (meaning that you've lost all your tokens), there's always the chance that someone will have to pass you one or more of their tokens, bringing you back into the game. It is a whole lot of fun when you play with 4 or more players. There's also an LCR Wild Dice game that just came out, but we haven't tried yet. I'm sure it's awesome, too. Ages 5 and up.
Blokus – This is another simple game - you place colored tiles on the board, making sure that each one touches one of the corners of a tile you've already placed. It sounds easy enough, but like all the above games, there is a lot of strategy and planning involved. I'm really looking forward to getting this one. Ages 5 and up.
In the Bluey version of Monopoly Junior, the tokens are characters from the Bluey cartoon and you move around the board that features properties to by that Bluey fans will easily recognize, including Bluey’s school and the hammer barn. Whoever has the most money at the end wins. Ages 5 and up.
Sorry! – Be the first player to get all your colored game pieces to their home base! Be careful though, if another player lands on the game square you occupy, they can send your pawn back to the starting point. Sorry! Ages 6 and up.
Rat-A-Tat-Cat – This is Allie's favorite game right now. It's a simple game; you are dealt 4 cards in a line and try to trade them out for the lowest possible score. The catch is that you only get to look at the outside 2 cards and the inside 2 cards are a secret until you trade them for other cards, which you do get to look at. Many times, I have traded a card only to find out that the one I'm getting rid of is a 0 or a 1. Doh! Allie is amazing at this game. She never seems to get confused as I often do, and she wins almost every time. Ages 6 and up.
Connect 4 is a vertical strategy game where you drop colored chips into the slots to try to connect 4 in a row, while blocking your opponent from doing the same. I always thought of this as a little kid's game, but then an adult friend challenged me, and we played for hours! Ages 6 and up.
In Mouse Trap, you move your mouse around the board, being careful not to get trapped under the mouse-catching contraption. My sister got this game for Christmas when we were really young (like second or third grade maybe?), and we played it all the way through high school. It's a fun one that even little kids can enjoy. Ages 6 and up.
Jenga – If you've never played this stacking game, you are missing out. You stack these little wooden blocks in an alternating pattern and each player takes turns pushing out one block at a time and restacking it at the top of the pile without knocking the pile over. Both of my girls really love Jenga. Ages 6 and up.
Battleship – You'll use strategy and the process of elimination to win this navy battle-themed game. Each direct hit is marked with a peg on your board. Once all the pegs in a vessel are filled, that battleship has been sunk! The goal is to be the first to destroy your opponent’s warship inventory. Ages 7 and up.
Labyrinth – Grace asked her grandparents for Labyrinth last year for Christmas, but she didn't get it. I was so into the game that I bought it for the girls in January, and we all love it. This is a strategy game where players place and remove and rotate wall tiles to change the labyrinth in order to thwart their opponents. We even got Old Grandma into playing this the last time we visited her. It's challenging, but simple and fun. Ages 7 and up.
Pass the Pigs – This is one of my all-time favorite games. You have 2 little pigs, and you roll them like dice. Depending on how they land, you score points. You can keep rolling until you get the magic "zero" combination which means you lose all your points for that round or you can stop rolling at any time and keep your points. I think this game is super fun, and I play it with anyone who will play with me. The girls laugh and laugh when we play Pass the Pigs. Ages 7 and up.
Skip-Bo – I love SKIP-BO. We call Allie The Card Shark because she never loses at SKIP-BO. Basically, SKIP-BO is a card game where you have to make piles of numbers from 1-12 (10 in the junior version). You have a big pile of cards, and the first person to get rid of her stack is the winner. It's simple and easy and depends way more on luck than anything else, which makes it perfect for families where one person can't read and spell as well as the others. Ages 7 and up.
Sequence – My girls and I are hopelessly devoted to cats, so we play Sequence Cats (which is no longer available). There's a dog version and of course a bunch of others including Bible Sequence, Number Sequence, and the original Sequence. Not sure what's on the squares in the original version, but I think they might be playing cards. It's a bit like Connect 4 in that you have to make a line of 4 tokens (or is it 5?), but your moves in Sequence depend on what cards you draw. I really like the cat and dog versions because they require some pretty serious attention to detail in order to distinguish between the animals on the board. They use real photos. Ages 7 and up.
UNO – I love Uno. If you've never played it (where have you been all your life?!?), it's a card game where you lay down number cards that either match the color or the number of the card played before you. Very simple, but there are also special cards that can thwart your opponent and mess everything all up. It's another great game where the winner is mostly determined by luck, and it is super fun. I remember playing this with my whole family when I was a kid, and we had such heated battles that we had to make a little arrow on a piece of paper so we'd remember which direction the play was supposed to move. Great times. Ages 7 and up.
Tenzi – Tenzi is a fun, fast-paced dice game when you play the original instructions. Each person gets 10 dice and has to keep rolling them until she gets all 10 to match the number you're playing for. There are dozens of additional games you can play with Tenzi dice, and they are all great fun. If your kids are small like Allie, you will want to invest in a couple of dice cups and a dice tray or two. It can be hard for littles to roll their dice and then keep them in a small space, so these are essential. Ages 7 and up.
Carcassone – Basically, you build a countryside, with roads, streams, and buildings, and you can put your followers on each tile depending on certain rules. You have to strategize which moves will give you the most points based on what the other players are doing and what you have coming up. I had heard rave reviews about Carcassone in the gameschooling groups I belong to, and when I bought it, I was not disappointed. This is a super fun game that the whole family can play together. Love this one. Ages 7 and up.
Say Anything – Grace got Say Anything from a friend for her last birthday, and now she has been giving it to all her other friends for their birthdays. It's really a simple game that's perfect for family play. On your turn, you ask a question from a card. Everyone writes down an answer, and you pick your favorite. Then everyone tries to guess which one you picked. Ages 8 and up.
Rummikub – I love this one. It's another luck game, this time where you use tiles instead of cards and basically play rummy. I played this as a kid with my grandmother (not Old Grandma, my dad's mother), and I still laugh at all the weird things she said while we played on her front porch. There's a good bit of strategy and creativity involved in Rummikub because you can shift around the tiles to suit yourself as long as everything is played at the end of your turn, but you are only making sets of the same number (3-3-3) and runs of adjacent numbers (3-4-5), so it is super easy for little ones to understand. Ages 8 and up.
Farkle – We just recently discovered Farkle. It's a little like Pass the Pigs which I wrote about above. I originally got Pocket Farkle to take on a date. It's the size of an old film canister, and it is fun. Farkle is a dice game where you have to get certain numbers in order to score points, and you can keep rolling as long as you're earning points, but if you get a roll with no points, you lose all of your points from that round. We bent some of the rules to suit ourselves, but we all really liked the game. Note: The scores in this game go up to 10,000, so you may not want littles to keep score for themselves. Ages 8 and up.
Rack-O – This is another super simple game. You have 10 cards, and you have to get them in order from smallest to biggest, except that you can't actually switch them around. You can only change them out for cards you draw from the draw pile, so you have to be clever about where you put those cards in order to win the game. I used to play this with Old Grandma when I was a wee little girl, and I like playing it with my girls just as much. Ages 8 and up.
Go Nuts for Donuts! – I ordered this game when it was on Amazon's Deal of the Day, just on impulse. It's a Gamewright game, so I knew it would be good. It's a card game where you have to outsmart your opponents to collect the most donut cards, but you only ever hold 4 small cards at a time and most of your cards are laid face-up on the table. There is some strategy involved, but it is simple enough even for little ones. Also to note, it isn't as much fun with 2 players as with 4. It gets better the more people are playing. Ages 8 and up.
Yahtzee – I love Yahtzee. I used to play Yahtzee with Old Grandma for hours. We both got really good at it. There's a lot of strategy involved in Yahtzee although it's a very simple game. You roll dice and add up the totals and record them on the score pad. You have to get certain combinations of dice in order to win. It's super fun. We have a lovely Disney Princess Junior Yahtzee game that the girls started with, but it currently costs almost $40. It's great, but not worth $40, so check for that on Ebay if you're interested. I also got Yacht-See which is a handmade Disney Cruise version of Yahtzee. I ordered it from an Etsy seller, and we love it. I keep it in my purse, and we play it every time we go to a restaurant. It doesn't have as many score categories, so it is nice to help the kids learn the game. Ages 8 and up.
Dragonwood: A Game of Dice and Daring – This is Grace's favorite game. It's a card and dice game where you have to battle against and collect foes. But then, you can also collect cards that help you to battle and make it easier to collect the monster cards. It's a little complicated to explain but very fun. All 4 of us enjoy playing this game. In fact, the first time we played it, we were at a picnic at a baseball game. We got so into the game that we totally missed the ball game. Oops. Ages 8 and up.
Prime Climb – This is a new to us game that we totally fell in love with. It's very simple: you roll the dice and either add, subtract, multiply, or divide the numbers on the dice with the numbers your pawns are sitting on. You can jump all around the board, and the first person to get both of her pawns to 101 is the winner. It's a lot easier than it sounds, and it comes with a multiplication table that makes it possible for even my first grader to play successfully. I love this game so much, I play it by myself. Ages 8 and up.
Zeus on the Loose – This game is super fun and your kids won't even care that it's 100% math. Each person lays down a card and adds it to the running total for the game on each turn. There are also special god and goddess cards that do funky things to the total. Every time the running total hits a multiple of 10, the person who laid down that card gets to steal Zeus. The person with Zeus at the end of the game is the winner. Ages 8 and up.
Sleeping Queens – Our entire family absolutely adores this game and plays it whenever we can. It's a card game where you have to wake up the queens by playing certain cards. You can steal other players' queens, put them back to sleep, and defend yourself. The game ends when the last queen has been awakened, and then the player with the most queen points wins. Ages 8 and up.
Super Big Boggle – I also love Boggle. I love it so much that I sometimes play it all by myself. But it's a nice family game because you're looking at the same letters and trying to come up with words. Basically, you shake up all the dice which have letters on them and they settle into spots, and then you have to find words using adjoining dice. Again, I'm a lot better at this than anyone else in my family, so we don't play that often, but I love it when they indulge me and take a stab at it.
Pictionary – This special edition of everyone’s favorite picture guessing game comes with markers and erasable boards to draw on to help your team guess the clue. The room is filled with laughter as the teams try to decipher each other’s funny artwork. Ages 8 and up.
The Game of Life – In this classic board game, you must make big life decisions. Should you get married, have kids? Which career path should you choose? Whoever has the most money at the end of the game is the winner. Ages 8 and up.
Monopoly – In this well-known classic board game, you move your token around the board, buying up real estate and collecting rent when other players land on your properties. Each player is eliminated as they fall to bankruptcy, and whoever has all the money at the end of the game is the winner. Ages 8 and up.
Ticket to Ride – In Ticket to Ride, each player must use strategy to try to connect cities all over the country and try to amass the longest, continuous train route. It's wonderful for learning some basic geography and for strategizing the best route. This is a very popular game in my family and in the gaming families I know. Ages 8 and up.
Pandemic is a cooperative game where the players work together to save humanity by finding the cures to eradicate four infectious diseases that plague different regions of the world. It's also great for geography as you play in cities all over the world. Ages 8 and up. (For more cooperative games, check out this list of 50+.)
Scrabble – Scrabble is hands down one of the best board games of all time. I love it, but I'm also really, really good at it which makes it not so much fun for my family. I'm a word nerd, and they are so much, so we don't play very often. But it's still worth mentioning because it's super fun. I linked to the tile lock edition eliminates the annoying problem of the tiles sliding around on the board. Ages 8 and up.
Catan is a multi-player strategy board game where you compete to collect resources to build your settlement on the Island of Catan. You score victory points with the completion of certain tasks. Whoever is the first to receive 10 victory points is the winner. Ages 10 and up.
5 Second Rule – In this one, you get a category and then have 5 seconds to list 3 things from that category. It's fast-paced and funny because the players often get tongue-tied trying to spit out an answer in time. In such a short time period, all kinds of wrong answers will pop out. You'll be amazed at how much you know but can't think of in time! It's especially funny with kids who make all kinds of crazy combinations of words. Ages 10 and up.
Clue Master Detective – In this who-done-it game, players race to figure out who the killer is, in which room of the mansion it took place, and what weapon they used to commit the crime. Clue cards help give extra information to solve the mystery. When we were in Salem, Massachusetts, we saw the actual house that this game is based on, and it's beautiful! (Note: Clue Master Detective is like the deluxe version of the original board game, with extra rooms, characters, and weapons.) Ages 10 and up.
In Risk, you work to conquer the world. Build a strong army of troops to lead, and take over the lands of your opponents by beating them on the battlefield. This long-lasting game can be played out over days, giving you endless hours of entertainment. Ages 10 and up.
Mystic Market – This is one of our new favorite games, beloved as much by my 9-year-old and teen as by me. It's only been on the market for a year, but it was an instant classic for us. It sounds a lot more complicated than it is, but here goes: you collect potion ingredients. When you have a full set of ingredients, you can sell them to the bank at a price that is constantly changing. You can also use bits and pieces of your ingredients to make actual potions that can change your luck or the luck of someone else in the game. Get this one. You won't regret it. Ages 10 and up.
Forbidden Island – This is a cooperative card game where players work together to find treasure on an island before the island falls into the ocean. You aren't competing with your team members but rather helping each other to succeed. More players mean that the game is more difficult, but there are more resources to use. I like to play this one with my boyfriend, but the kids love it too. Ages 10 and up. (For more cooperative games, check out this list of 50+.)
Harry Potter Hogwarts Battle – This is another cooperative card game. I got it when we started reading the books together as a family. Basically, you have to work together, as one or more of the four main characters of the series, to defeat a villain from one of the books. There are 7 individual games, one for each book, and they get progressively harder as you play. I actually bought this game, opened it, and then lost half of the pieces before ever playing, so I bought it again. The trouble is that it takes a full table space to play, and our table is always covered with assorted detritus and not available for playing. But we have played it twice, and we loved it both times. Ages 11 and up. (For more cooperative games, check out this list of 50+.)
Apples to Apples – Apples to Apples is one of our favorite fun party games. We really love it, but you need 4 or more players who can read well, and we don't get to play very often because there are only 3 of us. It's a lot like Say Anything, but instead of writing an answer to the question, you have to choose a card from your hand, and then the person who's "it" chooses the one she likes best for the category. We always laugh a lot with this game because it just begs for silliness. Ages 12 and up.
Scattergories – This is a classic game where everyone works with the same list of categories and the same letter of the alphabet, and you all try to think of words that no one else will think of. For instance, if the category is animal and the letter is C, you probably don't want to write cat because there's a good chance someone else will. You want to write something less obvious like chimpanzee or canary hoping that no one else will write it and you'll get the point. Or, go ahead and write the obvious one because maybe no one else will. It's really fun. Ages 13 and up.
Taboo – This is a 4+ player game where you try to get your partner to guess a word without saying any of the taboo words. Instead of playing the intended way, we take turns giving the clues and guessing. It's fun that way, and it removes the winner and loser aspect. We work as a team and see how many of the answers we can get. Ages 13 and up.
You Laugh You're Out is a party game that's great for when you have the whole family over. Great for large groups, the object of this game is not to laugh. If you do, you’re out. It is not an easy task when your opponents are acting silly, following the instructions on the 125 cards to try to make you giggle. Ages 14 and up.