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Family Games

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As part of a school assinment I have been asked to produce a family board game. If you would like to could you please answer the following questions :)

What are your favourite family boardgames?


What would your ideal family boardgame consist of?

Thanks to all who answer. All info for a good course 8)

Joined: 12/31/1969
Family Games

Do you define "family board game" as "a board game that is especialyy well suited for playing with the family"? Does this sound obvious? You'll be surprised about how many different definitions there are of "family board game"...

Anyway, if that is your definition of "family board game", then my favorites are: Scotland Yard, Carcasonne, Royal Turf and TransAmerica.

In my opinion a good family game:
- has rules that are easy to understand and can be taught in ten minutes or less
- has a quick set-up time
- has an average playing time of around 75 minutes or less
- has a good mix of luck, tactics and strategy
- keeps everyone in the game until the end
- has turns that go by quickly, so that there isn't lots of downtime between a player's turn
- has interaction between players, where a co-operative kind of interaction is preferred over a destructive kind interaction, although being able to do a "nasty" move every now and then would be OK
- preferably plays with 2 to 6 players and at least with 3 to 5
- has good, durable components and is nice to look at

Good luck with your assignment.

- René Wiersma

Joined: 12/31/1969
Family Games

I guess you have to start by defining family. (And I don't mean that as a political statement!) If the family has preliterate children, that narrows the list of games that can be discussed. Conversely, if the family is all grown up and we're talking about a game that can be played at grandma's on Thanksgiving with adult siblings, in-laws and parents, then perhaps we're discussing games that don't get too raunchy or controversial. Or there's the family that I currently have, with a 12-year-old and a 14-year-old. That's what I'll base my comments on.

The best family games allow adults and children to compete on a more or less even basis and have elements that appeal to both. If we play a word game, I can pound my kids into submission. We have to modify the scoring to accommodate our different abilities. Neither of my kids is particularly good at longterm strategic thinking. When we play those games, it's to develop their abilities so they'll one day be able to compete.

Things that work at our house right now, in no particular order, are Clue, TransAmerica, Sequence, Uno, Blokus, Yahtzee. The biggest hit right now is a party game called Like It or Lump It. It's a game where it helps to know the people you're playing with. You usually know your family. You have to make assumptions about what they would like most. We always have a good time when we play it. There are no right or wrong answers, therefore anyone can play.

I think a family game needs a bit of luck, not a lot of fussy rules, not a lot of reading required (as in reading out long cards), some whimsy. Nice theming helps.

Good luck with your project. I hope this helps.


Dralius's picture
Joined: 07/26/2008
Family Games

I don't have children of my own but we do at times have our nephew over. He likes all sorts of games from light strategy to party games. Some of the ones we have had the best time playing are Kahuna, Basarri, Fluxx (whoops that’s a card game) and classics like Othello, Chess and Backgammon.

I consider 95% of my board game collection to be family oriented. It contains no Drug or Alcohol themed games, nothing sexy and the violence in most of them is not graphic.

What I would and would not put in a game if my target audience was the average American family.

1. Large helpings of humor both in the text and graphics.
2. Theme that is not gender oriented (No beauty contests unless it is spoofed)
3. Small down time (Quick turns) so that you don’t get board waiting to play.
4. A little luck to even out the intelligence levels.
5. Short easy to learn rules and a play time of an hour or less

That’s all I can come up with off the cuff. Good luck, hecks forget that luck is for dice games. Start working from what you know a go from there, I think the question is not what our favorite games are but what your favorite family game is.

Family Games

Thanks alot guys, you've all be a GREAT help! :)

(sorry for not discribing the family)

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