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You want to host a game night, but it’s hard to find fun and unique games!
We’ve all been there: you excitedly open up a new board game and start playing, only to become bored or get confused by the intense rules.
You feel terrible because your guests or family members aren’t having fun at game night, and you feel like next time you’ll just watch a movie.
That’s why we created this list of fun family and friend games that will help make your game night more enjoyable for everyone! We’ve played tons of board and card games, so we know which ones are worth your time.
Whether it’s rainy day activity, an evening at home after school, or you’ll looking for holiday gift ideas, these are the best friend and family game night ideas.
Family Game Night Ideas
You may not think of Legos when you think of kids’ games, but let me tell you, you can make anything into a fun competition!
Each player (or team) could design a different lego creation, and the most ingenious one wins.
Or, do a lego stacking competition. Increase the difficulty of this by placing a popsicle stick in your mouth and stacking the legos on top of that. Whoever’s stack gets highest without dropping on the floor wins!
You can even turn Legos into a funny version of Pictionary! The possibilities are endless with this classic kids toy!
2. Ticket To Ride
This board game is loads of fun for family game night, and our cousins were the big fans who brought it to our attention.
Ticket To Ride is a board game where you build up railways across the country to collect the most points.
It has both point cards and short-term objectives which get totally addictive to complete. This fun game can get pretty competitive because you can block other players when they try to achieve the same objectives as you.
3. Family Feud/Trivia Night
One of the classic game night games is trivia, either by looking up trivia online or using a classic game of Trivial Pursuit.
Each member of your family could create tricky trivia cards for game night, changing it up every time you play!
Or switch it up and play Family Feud instead, where you have to guess the most common answers to survey questions.
Settlers of Catan is a board game that will be fun with kids ten and older. It’s a simple strategy game where players compete to establish colonies.
Each turn, you roll dice and collect and trade different resources with other players. Try to get enough resources to grow your colony and earn enough points to win!
Are you tired of board games? Uno is a classic card game that’s one of the easiest family game night ideas. It is simple to learn and can be played with kids of all ages.
The goal of the game is to get rid of all of your cards before your opponents. You can do this by playing cards that match the color or number of the card that is currently on top of the deck.
Pictionary is one of the best classic party games! Make teams and get your art skills ready!
Two teams take turns and try to guess what someone is drawing. The artist has to draw a random word and try to get their team to guess the word.
You can either use a whiteboard to draw on or paper with pencils. Pictionary is an excellent activity for a family game night because it’s simple to learn and fun for kids.
Another classic party game that is perfect for family game night is charades.
You split into two teams and have a player on your team choose a word to act out, with no speaking! You can create your own topics for the night or snag a Charades pack to have ready whenever the mood to play strikes you.
Kids love playing charades because it involves acting, and parents like that it teaches kids to work as a team. It’s simple to play and fun for just about any age level, and you can do as many or as few rounds as you like.
Hedbanz is another play-off of charades, but the hints are anything about the topic without using the word or phrase!
The way this game works is one person puts a headband around their forehead, while another person writes one word on a piece of paper to place in the headband facing out.
The rest of the players give the headband-wearing player hints so they can try to guess the word stuck to their forehead.
The guesses can be pretty hilarious! Hedbanz is an excellent game for a fun game night.
9. Minute To Win It
If you’re looking for a game that is interesting and challenging, Minute To Win It is perfect! The show was based on completing various challenges in 60 seconds or less, and there are SO many games you can do!
You can each pick your favorite- or whichever ones seem the funniest!- and get ready to compete.
This is a great game for kids of all ages and can be adapted to any skill level. At the end of the game, whoever is fastest to complete all the tasks wins!
10. Pie In The Face
One of the funniest family game night ideas that mixes food and fun is Pie In The Face!
You spin a spinner to see how many times you have to turn the crank on the game device placed on the table.
You spray whipped cream on the little hand, place your chin on a chin rest right, and then turn the crank however many times you spun.
You get points if you don’t get pied in the face, but throughout the rounds, you’ll likely get hit by the whipped cream at some point.
11. Balloon Tennis
If you’re looking for birthday party ideas, this one is perfect for kids!
To play balloon tennis, you will need a balloon and a tennis racket or fly swatter per person. Players hit the balloon back and forth without letting it touch the ground.
This is one of those games that gets more fun if you’re playing with more people. You can do a simplified version in a group where you try to keep the balloon afloat using your hands or feet.
This would be a fun thing to do at night– you could put glowsticks in the balloons (and on you!) and put fairy lights on your smackin’ utensils!
Clue is a classic board game that requires critical thinking and deduction and is perfect for game night. It’s challenging enough to keep adults entertained and simple enough for kids to get the hang of and enjoy.
Players must try to solve a murder mystery on a playing board themed like a house with different rooms. This is one of my favorite games that has really withstood the test of time!
13. Pass The Pig
Pass The Pig is one of those unexpected fun family games!
Each round, you roll two plastic pigs onto a table as if they were dice. Depending on the position they land in, you will get (or lose) a certain number of points.
You’ll want to keep track of your scores on a piece of paper. If you’re running out of game night ideas, mix it up by playing pass the pig.
14. Apples To Apples
Oh man, and old-time blast from our past!
Apples to Apples is perfect for parties and family game night because it’s simple and fun.
The “judge” of the round will pick a green apple card and read the word or words on it aloud. The other players choose the best matching red apple card from their hand to describe the green apple card.
This leads to hilarious comparisons of places, people, and things.
15. Indoor Bowling
Or you can get a bowling set if you like, but bowling of any kind could be so much fun!
You can either use a ball or a rolled-up sock, whichever you have on hand, and have your family knock down some pins. If there are more than two players, keep score to see who is the indoor bowling champion.
Game Night Plans With The Crew
1. Jackbox Games
Jackbox Games are a series of fun games that can be played by up to 8 players at a time, plus you can play remotely!
There’s several series, but there are games like:
- Trivia Murder Party
- Fakin’ It
- Blather ‘Round
They are perfect for game nights because they don’t require any controllers since players use their smartphones, computers, or tablets as “controllers.”
2. Exploding Kittens
A popular new card game is Exploding Kittens, a family favorite around here!
This is a cat-themed card game where you try not to pick the card with the exploding kitten on it.
When a person is “exploded” by picking up the exploding kitten card, they lose. The winner is the last player standing. All other cards decrease your chances of getting exploded.
3. Kiss, Marry, Kill
You’ve probably heard the game of Kiss, Marry, Kill before.
You name a group of three people, such as celebrities, and the players have to choose which to kiss (to show affection), marry (to show commitment), and kill (to get rid of someone).
This is super fun to play at game nights with friends but may not be as appropriate for families.
4. Cards Against Humanity
The next game you might want to play is Cards Against Humanity.
This is an adult version of Apples to Apples that is definitely not appropriate for kids but is super fun to play with your friends.
The answers are often hilarious because there are no rules about how inappropriate they can be, making this one of the funniest games around.
Plus there are a ton of different versions you could grab, find ones that fit your friend group humor!
If you’re hosting a game night, Taboo is a perfect game to play with friends and family.
Players are dealt cards with words on them, and they must give clues to their teammates without using any of the taboo words on the card.
For example, if a player has the word “animal” on their card, they can’t say the taboo words listed below, such as “pet” or “fur.”
It comes out as a bunch of jargon, and it’s so fun!
6. King Of Tokyo
Want to play one of the board games your friends might not have heard of? King of Tokyo will pleasantly surprise the guests at the game night you’re hosting.
The game’s premise is that you are a Godzilla-like monster trying to become the King of Tokyo. You have to roll dice on the table and then take actions based on what you’ve rolled. You can gain victory points by taking action, and the person who gets 20 victory points first wins.
7. Telephone (Pass It On)
Telephone is one of those simple but super fun game ideas to play with friends or families.
A player starts by whispering a phrase to the person next to them, who then whispers it to the next person, and so on.
The last person then has to say the phrase out loud. The game is hilarious because usually the phrase has been completely changed by the time it reaches the end.
8. Hunt A Killer
Hunt A Killer is a subscription box game that runs in seasons. If you’re interested in playing games that are new and unique, this would be a great fit for you. Plus, you can act like the next Sherlock Holmes!
It is a murder mystery game that you try to solve over the course of six episodes. Each episode is a different box containing clues like autopsy reports and statements from witnesses printed on paper as if you were a real detective!
Invite your buddies to come to your house to solve the mystery together.
9. Sushi Go Party
In the game of Sushi Go Party, you have to create a “menu” for a sushi restaurant by collecting sets of sushi cards from a deck. You choose one card to keep and then pass your hand to someone else.
This is a fun card game for 2 to 8 players that’s perfect for any age group and even fun for families on game night. The cards are cute, and there’s a little bit of strategy to get more points than your friends.
10. SHOUT IT!
SHOUT IT! is a game you can play with or without cards. This is a great game for family game night because it’s fun and easy to learn.
With cards, you will have pictures of items, and the first person to shout out a word that starts with the same letter as the item on the card wins.
The game works the same way without cards, except instead of images on cards, one player points at an item in the room and the other players compete to bet the first to come up with a word starting with the same letter.
11. Junk In The Trunk
It’s time to shake things up on game night with some Junk in the Trunk! This is one of the most fun games that you can play with just an empty tissue box and some ping pong balls.
Thread a belt through a tissue box and fill it with eight ping pong balls. Attach the box to one of the players and set a timer. The player who gets all of the balls out of the box fastest by wiggling the junk in their trunk wins!
Bananagrams is a word game that becomes more difficult the longer you play. The object of the game is to build words by drawing letter tiles, kind of like Scrabble.
However, when one player finishes using all of their letters, they shout “peel,” and every player has to grab a new letter to incorporate. Once the last tile is picked up, whoever uses all of their letters first wins.
13. That’s What She Said
That’s What She Said is a super fun card game to play with friends on game night, but it’s not appropriate for families given the racy subject matter.
There are red setup cards and white phrase cards to make up funny scenarios!
The judge for the round picks a setup card, and the other players contribute their funniest phrase card. The judge picks their favorite and awards the red setup card to the winner. The first person to get five red setup cards wins!
For a throwback game night party, why not play one of the most iconic board games of all? Twister is a fun game to play with a group of friends who don’t mind getting down on the floor and being a little silly.
Someone spins a dial that indicates which hand or foot the players must place on which color. For example, right hand on red. Then the players twist themselves into whatever possible configuration to put their hand or foot on the right color without falling down.
Sometimes it can be hard to find fun things to do nearby or you get tired of the same old games you have when it’s game night.
If you want to change up your family fun night, there are the best options we’ve played!
You can gather your friends, family, or even coworkers and have a game night. You could go for something classic like Twister, where you can get down on the floor and be silly with your loved ones.
Or if that’s not what comes to mind when you think of fun times, there are plenty of other options in this article, from card games to word games.
Hosting a game night can be even more fun if you prepare some game night food and drinks for your guests or family to snack on.