The Best Board Games for Large Families
Finding board games that work with large families can be tough. We have a huge age spread in our house (currently 8-17) which makes choosing games complicated. We play them a ton of board games in the winter and around the holidays. This year we’ve been playing more than ever because board games are currently a huge part of my 16-year-old son’s ABA therapy at home.
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As you can imagine, it is not easy to find a game that more than 4-6 people can play, or that can hold the interest of a range of ages. Here are the tried and true board games our family loves. We own every single one of these games, and these are also the games that have survived my ruthlessness in my never-ending quest toward minimalism.
Best Board Games for Large Families
We have been playing this game so often lately and it is one of my personal favorites. I love word games and this one is so much fun. In this game person picks a card which says something such as, “things you shouldn’t do at a funeral” or “things you wish your grandma would say”. Each player writes down an answer. The answers can be serious, funny, totally inappropriate, or silly. There are no “wrong” answers. The reader then reads all the answers out loud and each player has to guess which player wrote which response. This is where it gets really fun. You not only need to write down an answer but make sure no one can guess which answer was yours. This game is guaranteed to bring some laughs.
“Create new animal species for Noah’s Ark, competitively fly paper airplanes, make a commercial for something in the room, bump butts as many times as you can in 30 seconds, and so much more!”
We played this fun game when Jared was here to visit before he and Tilly got married. We had so much fun. We were laughing until our sides hurt. This game is unlike any board game you’ve tried. It has nearly endless possibilities for games and no one will be bored. The pictures above are from one of our games with Jared. This game is great for families because it covers a variety of ages and up to 20 players! If you have younger kids playing, you can play as a team. We played boys against girls when Jared was here.
My kids’ cousins gave Beanboozled to them a few years back and they still can’t stop talking about it (thankfully we can order refills off of Amazon). This simple game comes with a spinner and Jelly Belly jelly beans. The idea is, you spin the spinner and then have to eat a Jelly Belly of that color. The catch?
Each regular flavored jelly bean has a nasty counterpart…will you get Peach? Or Barf? Chocolate Pudding? Or Canned Dog Food? Lime? Or Lawn Clippings?
You won’t know until you taste them.
You can see our family playing this game in the post Beanboozled: The Family Game You Really Must Try!
My boys absolutely love this game! Munchkin is full of a whole lot of nonsense, rules that don’t really make sense, jokes, and just enough competition to keep my boys engaged. This was played a ton over the Thanksgiving holiday and 8-year-old Apollo loves playing it just as much as 21-year-old Judah.
Hezekiah and Enoch love the huge variety of expansion packs you can buy. The best part is, they are all compatible. You can play with the original game and all the expansion packs together.
This is another game that my boys cannot get enough of. The Exploding Kittens is easy to play but hard to explain, so I am just going to use the description from Amazon:
“Exploding kittens is a card game for people who are into kittens and explosions and laser beams and sometimes goats. In this highly-strategic, kitty-powered version of Russian roulette, players draw cards until someone draws an exploding kitten, at which point they explode, they are Dead, and they are out of the game — unless that player has a defuse card, which can defuse the kitten using things like laser pointers, belly rubs, and catnip sandwiches. All of the other cards in the deck are used to move, mitigate, or avoid the exploding kittens. Exploding Kittens is the most-backed crowdfunded project ever, the most-funded game in the history of Kickstarter, and has paved the way for peace and tranquility in the modern world.”
The premise of this game? To choose between to equally horrible (or wonderful) choices. Such as:
Would you rather always have to pick your nose when talking to someone? Or always spit on people when talking to them?
This game is a great icebreaker and conversation starter. We ditched the board part of this game years ago and just use the cards. There are also several books, which we love to use on long car rides. This game will make you laugh, I promise!
Cashflow isn’t exactly designed for younger kids but I have to mention it because it is my older kids’ favorite board game. We were introduced to this game by our good friends Greg and Merriann. My kids and Chuck love it. It’s a long game and pencils, paper, and calculators are involved, but this game is great for learning real-life skills and so fun, my kids beg to play it.
Okay, this isn’t exactly large-family friendly but I have to include it because it is my all-time favorite game. In this game, you have 60 minutes to solve the puzzle and escape.
We hosted an Escape Room game night a couple of years ago and my teens loved it. Escape Room is an interactive game where all 3-5 team members work together to solve the puzzle and escape. Everyone has to share their clues, take careful notes and put their brains together if there is any hope of escaping. This game is for ages sixteen and up.
I love this so much I will be buying an expansion pack for when our kids visit from New Zealand and I am so excited to see they have just released a VR version of the game!
So there you have it. Games we own. Games we love. Games the kids won’t let me get rid of. Without a doubt, these are some of the best board games for large families.
What are your favorite board games?