We have a wide range in the age of our kids, from toddlers to teenagers, and all love playing games together. The older ones are getting bored playing the same games every week so I started researching family-friendly games that are fun and can keep everyone entertained.
The best games for family game night are simple enough to engage the younger players but challenging enough that older ones can also have fun. Some great options include UNO, Twister, and Jenga. Ring Toss and cornhole are two excellent outdoor games the family can play together.
Do you want to jazz up your family game night or simply occupy your children with something other than video games? Then the best games for the family night are exactly what you need.
In this guide, you are in for a treat. You are going to discover great games that your entire family will enjoy. I included card games, board games, indoor and outdoor games. There are games for kids, parents, and all ages in-between.
Some games are great for 2 players while others can be enjoyed by larger groups. Let us dive right into it.
Best Games for Families to Play Together
Playing games together is a great way to spend time with your family. It can also be a great way to have fun while learning and developing social skills.
I find that when our kids spend time together in fun activities they learn how to treat each other better and develop an appreciation for the uniqueness of their siblings. There are many different types of games that the whole family can enjoy, from board games to card games.
When I began looking for games I started by dismissing games with complicated rules because I didn’t want the younger kids overwhelmed or frustrated while they’re trying their best- which could lead them away from participating.
5 Best Indoor Card Games for Family Game Night
There are hundreds of card games that people of all ages can enjoy. Some card games encourage strategic thinking and keep the mind active and sharp.
Here are some of the most popular family card games for indoor fun:
UNO is one of the most popular card games for kids aged 5 and over. It is fast-paced and you also get many variations in it. I don’t think there is anyone who does not know how to play UNO.
For the uninitiated, the objective of the game is to finish off all the cards that are dealt at the beginning of the game. The one to finish all the cards first wins. The player has to yell “UNO!” when they have only one card left.
This is one of the games we play often and even take with us on vacation for rainy days. My youngest can’t seem to remember when she gets down to her last card that she is supposed to say UNO. To help remind her I give a little nudge now and then. Everyone has fun playing this game, if you don’t own it I strongly urge you to buy it.
- Easy to learn
- Great for all ages
This version of UNO is waterproof – great to take to the beach or playing near a pool.
#2. Exploding Kittens
Exploding Kittens is an award-winning party game for 7-year-olds and above. You place all the cards on the table and players draw them one by one. The one to draw an exploding kitten card dies unless they play a defense card.
- For up to 10 players.
- All cards feature artwork from The Oatmeal (an award-winning webcomic by Matt Inman)
- The box plays kitty dance music each time you open it!
#3. Not Parent Approved
I am sure this game will liven up all your get-togethers, parties, and camping trips. It is deemed the original party game and is ideal for kids aged 8 and above. Not Parent Approved has won more than 10 industry awards. The objective of the game is to fill in the funniest blanks. I dare you not to laugh!
- Easy to learn
- Great for gifting
#4. Do You Really Know Your Family?
I always feel that games can bring families together. The ‘Do you Really Know Your Family’ game is especially great for bonding with your teens, tweens, and in-betweens. The game consists of cards with silly challenges and amusing trivia that will make you smile.
- For kids aged 8 and above
- Great for taking along on family trips
#5. Apples to Apples
Apples to Apples is one of the wildest card games for large parties/families. Its adult version is also great – it is called Cards Against Humanity. You also have a Kids Against Maturity version! Open the box, deal the cards and start playing. Your aim is to pick the closest apples-to-apples comparison.
- Easy to learn, fun to play
- 1000s of cards – you’ll never have the same game twice!
Some more family-favorite card games
- JAX – JAX is a board game+card game. It is fun, challenging, quick, and easy to learn.
- Beat That – This is a fantastic party game for kids and adults. Players win by betting on the ability to successfully complete a series of dexterity-based challenges.
- Unstable Unicorns – This game has won 2019’s Award for the Toy of the Year. It is a strategic game for kids and adults. The objective is to build a unicorn army, stop other players with ‘neigh’ cards, and use your magic.
- Jenga – This classic game is simple to play but difficult to win. It’s is a great game for all ages. Each players pulls a block until the tower falls.
- Hot Seat – This is a fantastic game for getting to know your friends/family. All players have to ‘pretend’ to be the person in the hot seat and answer questions as if they were that person.
Other trending card games for the family game night include:
- Crazy 8
- Go Fish.
5 Best Family Board Games of All Times
This one goes on for a long time, so make sure you have the time for it. Alternatively, you can pre-set a winning amount or ending time.
Monopoly Classic teaches kids the concepts of buying, selling, and trading. Its objective is to buy as many properties as you can and make more money than the other players.
We play this game with the older kids, and it’s turned serious on more than one occasion. It can become a very competitive game
- Great game for kids aged 8 and above
- Easy to learn
- Great for gifting
#2. Ticket To Ride
Ticket To Ride entails building railway routes across a board to the destination on your card. The longer the route, the greater your points.
- Family game for 2 to 5 players
- Average game playtime 30-60 minutes.
- Alexa compatibility
- Easy to learn
You’re never too old or too young to enjoy Twister. It’s a classic family game that will have you in knots! It has been around since the 1960s and is fun for kids, families, and all sorts of gatherings.
You follow the commands on the spinner and twist and turn your body to place your hand/leg on the colored circles on the mat.
- Easy to set up and takedown
- Mat size is 5 x 7 ft
- Great game for a rainy day for all ages.
2, 3, or 4 players can play Trouble. It is a great kids’ game for kids aged 5 and up. Players have to race to get all their pegs in the Finish area.
- Includes classic or the option to ‘Power’ up the play
- The pop-o-matic bubble is fun to press to roll the die. Prevents the die from getting misplaced.
#5. Beat The Parents
Get this game on your next family night and up the excitement. You can have a nice action-packed showdown of kids versus parents with trivia and challenges. Beat The Parents is a fun game for family game nights, vacations, travel, etc.
- Great for enhancing general knowledge
- For 2-6 players aged 6 and above.
Other Trending Board Games for Family Game Night
- Brain Freeze
Best Games to Play With Family Without Anything
#1. 20 Questions
This classic game does not need any boards, cards, etc. One person thinks of a place/person/thing. The other players ask him/her questions to guess what they are thinking.
This game involves acting out a phrase or a movie name and others guessing it. Players may be divided into two teams for more excitement.
#3. Hot potato
This classic game needs a small pillow or any object like a smooth stone or a book (hot potato). Players sit in a circle and pass the object around while one non-player individual plays music or claps their hands. When the music stops, the person holding the hot potato has to take up a challenge or is out of the game. The last person remaining is the winner.
#4. Hand games
Try your hand at hand wrestling and rock-paper-scissors on a rainy afternoon or when you have nothing else to do.
#5. Simon Says
This is a great game for younger kids. One person is designated “Simon”. Others have to obey all his/their commands except the ones that begin without the phrase “Simon Says”. If a player obeys a command that is without “Simon Says”, s/he is out.
Other games that do not need equipment
- I Spy – Great game to play in the car.
- Truth or Dare – Everyone from kids to adults will enjoy this one!
- Mother May, I – Toddlers, parents, grandparents, or teens – everyone will love this one. The individual playing mother can grant permission or suggest an alternative to the player who askes ‘Mother May I do…?’
- Memory dance – One player performs a dance routine and the others have to mimic the same moves.
5 Best Outdoor Games for the Entire Family
It is important to spend time outdoors and get the children moving. There are many outdoorsy games you can play with your kids depending on their ages. Here are my top picks:
#1. Bottle Bash (also called Poleish or Polish Horses/Flimsee/Beersbee)
The object of this game is to throw discs at the opponents’ bottles or poles and score points.
- For ages 8 and above
- Play anywhere: beach, backyard, etc.
- Enhances eye-hand coordination
Check price here.
Cornhole is a family-favorite game. We play it all the time and it never gets old. You can check out my guide on the best cornhole boards. The object of the game is to toss bean bags into boards having cutout holes in them.
- You can play this game indoors and outdoors.
- For 2-4 players
Check out the best cornhole sets here.
Ringtoss is another brilliant indoor/outdoor game. It is similar to Cornhole above and there are a bunch of ways to play it. You also get hook and ring toss games to play on the desktop or on the wall. The object of the game is to toss rope rings around pegs – each peg having a different score.
- Easy to set up
- Fun for all ages
- Portable and great for taking to the beach, camping, etc.
Check out the price of the best ringtoss game here.
Say the word Slammo and your kids will jump with excitement! This is a great game to play at the beach, cookouts, camping, etc. The objective of Slammo is to bounce or spike the ball to the net. It is a 2-on-2 volleyball-style game that will get you sweating in no time.
- Great for all ages
- Excellent workout.
GoSports Slammo set is our favorite.
#5. Rollors Backyard Game
I first played this game at a friend’s birthday party and boy was it fun! I soon got this home and it has become my family’s favorite too. Rollors is a yard game that combines bocce, horseshoes, and bowling all in one. Its objective is to get the ‘rollor’ close to the goal.
- Game for all occasions: parties, backyard BBQ, cookouts, picnics, camping, etc.
- For men, women, and kids of all ages
- Combines learning, dexterity, coordination, and precision.
Check out this Rollor’s game which has won the Men’s Journal’s Gear of the Year Award.
Here are 4 more great outdoor family games
- JENGA Giant game – This involves stacking blocks as high as 5-feet. Great game to play at the beach.
- Backyard Bocce – This is an ultimate leisure game that the entire family can play on the lawn, at the beach, or on the go.
- KanJam – another great disc throwing game for backyard parties, tailgate, etc. It is easy to learn for all ages and great to play anywhere.
- Spikeball – This is a 4-player game for the backyard, beach, or family room. It is great for improving hand-eye coordination.
FAQs on Best Games for Family Game Night
What is a good family game for all ages?
There are hundreds of games that can be labeled as the best family games for all ages. You can choose from hand games, paper-pencil games, board games, card games, role-playing games, or dice games.
What are the best games to keep a family together at home?
Games like Beat The Parents, Labyrinth, Do You Really Know Your Family, and Kids Against Maturity are excellent family games to bond over.
Why should you play games? There are lots of reasons: Games are a great way to interact with each other. They can alleviate boredom and are great for the mind and body. Games can help kids get off their phones and minimize their screen time.
When kids play games, they become better at problem-solving in adulthood. Children who play games from a young age are more likely to be creative and tend to have better ideas later in life.
I hope the above guide helps you come up with great game ideas for your family game night.