15 Top-Rated Family Board Games According To Reviews 2018

It's the holidays! Time for the family to bond together! If you're wondering how to break the ice and have a blast, these family board games are the answer!

Holidays are synonymous with family getaways and long nights around the fireplace. Everybody, from the hyperactive kids to the relaxed grandparents, is looking for something to do to have a fun time. This is where family board games come into the picture.

Perfect ice-breakers, board games will teach you a thing or two about every family member, including how competitive they are—some people can be quite scary—and teach you to play in teams.

Here are the funniest, quirkiest, and most bonding family board games with stellar and beaming Amazon reviews! 

15.) Qwirkle

family board games quirkle

Age: 6+

A fun and a pretty straightforward game that reminds us of Scrabble. To play Quirkle, you only need to match the colors and shapes of the tiles, making it an extremely, yet entertaining, game for young kids and adults alike. This is perfect for families who are easing their way into family board games.

The review that sold it for us:

“I have a notoriously picky, highly competitive family when it comes to our holiday board games, and they all love this game! It is easy to learn and great fun, and no two games ever go the same. It’s got the gameplay and strategy elements (and scoring) of Scrabble, with the simplicity of dominoes. My family ranges from kids to seniors, and everyone had to have a turn playing Quirkle this year.

[…] Highly recommended!”

By Jenny N.

$18.46 at Amazon

14.) Days Of Wonder Ticket to Ride

family board games ticket to ride

Age: 8+

An around-the-world trip in under 80 days is outdated. Now is the time to call all the shots and embark on a cross-country train adventure to visit all cities of North America in 7 days.

The review that sold it for us:

“We LOVE this game!

[…] We originally bought the game for [our 9-year-old daughter]. But to be honest, my husband and I have enjoyed playing it so much that I think we’ve played it 4x as much as she has.

It’s a very basic strategy game – Your goal is to have the most points at the end of the game. You gain points by claiming routes and completing destination tickets. We’ve tried playing the game with a couple of different strategies and no two games are ever really the same. It’s a fantastic family game for up to 5 players, great for children and/or adults. Highly recommend it to be added to anyone’s game collection.”

By C. Allen

$44.48 at Amazon

13.) Melissa & Doug Suspend Family Game

family board games melissa & doug suspend

Age: 8+

This game will leave you hanging, literally. This balance game is perfect for the whole family, even the little ones, thanks to its rubber-tipped wire pieces. An absolute must.

The review that sold it for us: 

“Our family enjoys board games and other tabletop and non-electronic games—and we have a soft spot for the quirky. […]

Suspend is just such a quirky but fun game, and we’ve gotten hours of enjoyment out of it. And it’s good for all ages.

Suspend is a game of balance and building, where you have to hang shaped metal bars from a central pole, adding more and keeping the whole mess from touching the table or even crashing down entirely. […] There are three different levels of the game, making it easy to customize depending on the skill level and ages of the players, and the package even suggests tricky moves for hanging pieces… if you dare.

A fun game, with the added benefit of having sturdy pieces that will ensure this game lasts for years. If you like Jenga or Kerplunk, give this game a try.”

By Kenya Starflight

$13.94 at Amazon

12.) Telestrations

family board games telestrations

Age: 8 months+

Remember the good old telephone game? Well, this is basically it, with a twist. You need to draw and write what you see in every passing turn and make sure you get it right, however, that doesn’t happen often!

The review that sold it for us: 

“I bought this game for Christmas and it was a huge hit! No fighting! No winners or losers, just rip-roaring fun! The more players, the more fun!

Our group was made up of 7-8 people ranging from ages 10 – 80 and even the teenagers liked it! The more sarcastic or snarky their guesses, the more fun for everyone! We are not a raucous group, but at times we were crying we were laughing so hard from silly pictures and guesses in this game. If you have a competitive family and often have individuals leave or quit because someone is “cheating” or thinks it’s “not fair” then this is the game for you! […]”

By Libby White

$28.95 at Amazon

11.) Betrayal At House  On The Hill

family board games betrayal at house on the hill

Age: 12+

Horror + strategy = a blast with Betrayal At House On The Hill. This strategic game will send shivers down the spine of the players and will be a treat to any horror fan.

The review that sold it for us: 

“My family is pretty much casual gamers- although we enjoy games like Settlers and Pandemic, we just don’t seem to have the time or endurance to learn longer, more complex games.

Being a big horror fan, I’ve been wanting to get this for years but put it off for that reason. This year I broke down and got it, and we’ve been loving it. It’s really not that hard and is a lot of fun. My 11-yr-old daughter can’t get enough of it and takes the betrayal very seriously.

[…] It’s a lot of fun and challenging.”

By Lorieyuhasz

$26.39 at Amazon

10.) Googly Eyes Game

family board games googly eyes

Age: 7+

Put the vision-altering goggles on and try to draw as accurately as you can an item, which the other players will try to guess. This takes drawing games to a whole new level.

The review that sold it for us: 

“Fun game to play with the kids. My kids loved it and didn’t care who won because they were too busy laughing at the ridiculous drawings. Good for a range of ages, my son is 12 and my daughter is 9. Both had a blast playing this.”

By Anonymous Amazon Reviewer

$28.65 at Amazon

READ MORE: Top 5 Kid-Friendly Animal Yoga Poses to Get Your Kids Moving

9.) Smart Ass

family board games smartass

Age: 12+

This is perfect for the messy players and those who can’t wait for their turns! The goal is to become the ultimate ‘Smart Ass’ by leveling up every time you can shout the answers to the Who, What, and Where Am I questions. 

The (tear-jerking) review that sold it for us: 

“I bought this for my husband and me to bond in a family fun way with my 21-year-old stepson and his girlfriend. We played it last night and was I was pleased that the “kids” enjoyed it so much they didn’t want the game to end. It brought back warm memories of playing Monopoly with my Dad and brother for hours growing up.

The game gives everyone a chance to get a few questions right and interact with loved ones in a time-honored tradition of playing a board game at a kitchen counter. In today’s world, that is priceless.”

By Anonymous Amazon Customer

$29.85 at Amazon

8.) PlayMonster Patch 5 Second Rule

family board games 5 second rule

Age: 10+

This is for the people who can think on their feet, the people who wanna learn how to do it, or the people who simply want to have a good laugh seeing everybody thinking their brains out. So basically, 5 Second Rule is for everyone. The game features a series of questions that seem easy to answer, but not-so-much when you’re under the pressure of the 5-second rule.

The review that sold it for us: 

“To play, someone reads a card to the player who is “up” S/he has five seconds to name things that fit that category. The questions are a mixed bag of topics and difficulty. It could be names of football teams, Dr. Seuss books, etc. There is a cute buzzer that makes a funny sound.

Our preschooler kept walking off with the buzzer. We played with a group that ranged from six years old to 83 years old. You can easily make up your own questions, which we sometimes did for the kindergartener to adapt the questions to his level. This is a really fun game that everybody enjoyed playing.”

By Judith

$13.49 at Amazon

7.) Blokus Strategy

family board games blokus

Age: 7+

If looking for strategy games young kids can play, then this is a definite choice. They (and you!) will learn how to smartly place the maximum of colored pieces on the board, protect your territory and block your opponents.

The review that sold it for us: 

“My 8-year-old son came across the Blokus game during a week at math summer camp. His group played this game almost every single day. He could not stop talking about his games and his results of what happened and why it happened. He kept begging us to purchase this game so he could play and challenge us and his friends. […]

We have never heard about this game before and did some research and found such glowing reviews about it. This game is really great and suitable for any young elementary school kid and up. It certainly does promote healthy brain activity and deliver friend competition to keep the mind sharp. […].”

By Amazon Reviewer

$9.99 at Amazon

6.) Sequence

family board games sequence

Age: 7+

The premise is simple: you need to score enough five-card sequences playing the cards in your hand. Easy peasy? Maybe. Lots of fun? Definitely!

Play a card from your hand, and place a chip on a corresponding space on the game board. When you have five in a row, it’s a Sequence.

The review that sold it for us: 

“Our new favorite family game. It takes about 15 minutes to finish a game. So, it is quick enough that everyone enjoys it. We played with my 7-year-old and he loved it and was able to participate without any help. There is enough strategy to keep everyone engaged. But, not so much that it is too difficult!”

By Judith Elenore

$10 at Amazon

5.) The Resistance (The Dystopian Universe)

family board games the resistance

Age: 13+

There are some people who can lie quite well. Generally, that’s not something to be proud of, but in this game, you will want to be the best liar there is! You are amongst a small group of resistance fighters who want to take down a corrupt government. Unfortunately, spies have infiltrated their team and it’s your job to unveil their identities.

The review that sold it for us: 

” […] It’s so easy to get passionate about convincing everyone that you’re right while playing, and for us, there’s one infamous round that went down in history as the one that almost ended friendships two years ago. I must have played this game hundreds of times, and just a few things that have happened while playing: we’ve been yelled at to quiet down by RAs, I now always take Advil pre-emptively because I always end up with a headache from screaming at other players to convince them of one thing or another, and can you really say that you’ve played until at least one person is standing on top of a chair, pointing fingers, and proclaiming their innocence?

[…] Buy this game. It never gets old, and I honestly don’t think I’ve met anyone who’s played and not enjoyed it. Very worth the money and, trust me, it’ll become a staple of your get-togethers quite quickly, too.”

By Kaila

$13.93 at Amazon

READ MORE: Top 10 Best Phone Apps for Kids

4.) Trouble Game: Retro Series 1986 Edition

family board games trouble

Age: 5+

Missing the nostalgia of the old Trouble? Then this game will bring out your memories with the famous Pop-O-Matic die roller and the classic game board. Expect bonding times and surprised waves of laughter!

The review that sold it for us: 

Brings back old time memories. My older sister and I had a walk down memory lane as I played this with her grandsons..who actually enjoyed this game a lot. They couldn’t get enough of it. Couldn’t take them away from it. The game itself was very sturdy, it’s the closest to the original. Glad I decided to purchase this for my own grandchildren to get them out of the video game playing and back to family game playing.

By Malisha+12

$24.94 at Amazon

3.) CodeNames

family board games codenames

Age: 14+

Played in two opposing teams with a spymaster each, they need to work through the clues to figure out the agents that belong to their teams. Perfect game for families with teenagers.

The review that sold it for us: 

“My family wasn’t too sure about this game when I showed it to them but they quickly changed their mind. Soon they were recruiting players in from other rooms! The last thing said at Thanksgiving is that everyone is playing on Christmas! Very fun.

Even the little ones can play and I believe they would learn some good thinking skills while they do. And with all the options, I can’t imagine you’d ever play the same game twice.”

By Lindsey

$14.88 at Amazon

2.) Exploding Kittens (Kitten Edition)

family board games exploding kittens

Age: 7+

Discover the most-backed project in the history of Kickstarter! This is the version of kitten-powered Russian roulette with laser beams, explosions, and goats. It’s that intense and amazingly entertaining.

The review that sold it for us: 

“I got this for my teenage daughter, and it was both well-received and well-played! This is a quirky, funny and flexible game […]. This little card game provides actual interaction in a light and funny way, plus allows – indeed encourages- a high amount of silly randomness in the way its played. […]

Don’t worry: no actual kittens were harmed in the making of this game. Several did barf rainbows, however.”

By K. Jensen

$19.99 at Amazon

1.) Pandemic

family board games pandemic

Age: 13+

You’re a member of an elite control team to discover the cure for diseases that are threatening the world. Travel around the globe as a team and treat infections while collecting the necessary cards.

The review that sold it for us: 

“I purchased this as a Christmas gift for my fiancée’s family, who enjoy playing board games together. So we played for the first time yesterday.

[…] Once you get past the concept of winners and losers, you have a game where everyone works together, there are no secrets between players or cards you have to keep hidden from everyone else; you save the world together, or die trying.

Pandemic’s instructions are excellent. They provide clear step-by-step instructions for setup. […] Everyone works together, makes decisions together, learns from their mistakes as they go. For a family, it’s a great bonding game, and for anyone else, it’s an excellent team-building game.”

By Brett D. Donjon

$23.99 at Amazon

What do you think of these family board games? Got any we need to add to the list? Let us know in the comments! And if you want to make a kid’s day this season, we have the perfect gift guide for you in our next article!