Great Board Games to Play With the Whole Family

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Smart phones and tablets are everywhere these days, meaning that videogames are more popular than ever. But don’t be so quick to forget board games, which have been making their own steady comeback over the past few years. Settling in for a night of board games is the perfect family-friendly bonding activity, and there are certainly tons of options out there. Here are some of the best options that will get your family off their devices and playing together in real life.

Pass Go and Collect $200 in Monopoly

C’mon – it’s Monopoly! Perhaps the pinnacle of family-oriented board games, Monopoly has long reigned as game night champ. Of course, this game has a long history, and its millions of variants mean you and your family can pick out the game that interests you most. Nearly every big franchise–from The Simpsons to The Lord of the Rings–has a tie-in Monopoly game, and there are many variants that add new elements that change the way you play the game. You could literally fill up a closet full of different Monopoly games, each with its own twists in gameplay.

Build Settlements and Trade Resources in Catan

There might be no recent board game that’s achieved as much success as Catan. This German game revolves around gaining resources and trading among players, who earn points for building settlements, cities, and roads. It’s a simple game to play but open to a surprising depth of strategy. And, with a board that is randomly generated for every game, Catan has a great deal of replayability. Games usually last about half an hour to an hour, but don’t be surprised if you’re challenged to a rematch or two. Do note that the base model of the game is limited to three to four players, but expansions allow for additional players and new gameplay elements.

Channel Your Inner Wordsmith in Scrabble

Scrabble, another board game classic, has few rules and easy gameplay, making it quick to pick up. Like a reverse crossword puzzle, Scrabble forces you to create the most impressive words out of the letters you’re given. While Scrabble has a slight chance element to it, much of your success depends on how well you know your words. As the game rewards those with the best vocabulary, there’s an educational element to the game, too. That’s surely something that parents can get behind. You might find yourself studying the dictionary in your free time!

Get Traditional With Chess

It’s one of the oldest and most respected games in the world, and that’s not for no reason. Perhaps the greatest embodiment of “easy to learn, difficult to master,” chess is a game with endless replayability, and it’s just as enjoyable for newbies as it is for chess masters. Although the game is limited to two players, there are a few ways your family could get around this. You could compete against each other in teams, take turns between partners, or even hold mini tournaments to crown the night’s best player.

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