Fun Family Games for Game Night or Any Occasion

Last Updated: Sep 13, 2018

Every game night needs a great selection of fun family games. Whether it’s a 250 piece puzzle, half a dozen minute-to-win rounds, or a good old fashioned game of hide and go seek, it’s important to find something the whole family loves. If you’re looking for inspiration, check out our fun family game ideas below.

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Fun Games To Play With Family

There’s plenty of fun family games that can be incorporated into larger scale events, such as family reunions or birthday parties for kids. Check out the following ideas for the next time you have a larger group of people to share in the fun.

Categories

Categories makes an easy, educational, and fun game that’s perfect for any size group. The name of the game says it all: one person comes up with a category, and every person after has to say something that fits in that category without taking too long. This game works best when played in a circle and to a specific beat. For example, if the category is “animals” then everyone has to name an animal such as “zebra” or “lion” within the allotted time, or else they’re out for the following rounds.

Duck, Duck, Goose

This classic has stuck around over the years for a reason. The game is simple and active: perfect for groups with children. The person chosen as “it” has to go around the circle and tap each person saying “duck.” When they tap someone and say “goose” that person then has to chase the “it” around the circle and try to tag them. If “it” isn’t tagged and they make it into the spot left open by the tagged person, then the new person becomes “it.”

Musical Chairs

Another classic, the only materials you need for this game are chairs and a speaker with music. Provide enough chairs for everyone in each round minus one, play the music, and have everyone walk around the circle of chairs to the beat. When the music stops, everyone has to sit down in a chair. Whoever doesn’t get a chair is out of the following rounds.

Fun Family Outdoor Games

outdoor fun family games with kids

Tag

This classic outdoors game is a perfect way to enjoy the space of the outdoors. And to add a fun twist: consider giving “it” a customized cape to wear to make them feel extra fast.

Hide and Seek

Hide and seek can be played indoors or outdoors, but playing outdoors helps the whole family get some fresh air. Just make sure to establish some boundaries before the game starts.

Head & Balloon Bounce

This game seems simple, but can be pretty difficult to keep up! Fill a balloon with air (not helium) so that it easily sinks to the ground. Then have every player try and keep it in the air by only headbutting it.

Easy and Fun Family Reunion Games

Sharks and Minnows

Sharks and minnows starts off easy, with just one “shark” trying to tag the “minnows” as they run across the designated playing area. If a minnow is tagged, they also become a shark. The game ends when only one minnow is left.

Telephone

Telephone proves just how easy miscommunication can happen. Have the whole group sit in a circle, and ask one person to whisper a sentence into someone’s ear. That message then gets passed along with whispers, and is revealed when it reaches the person who started it. These games usually end with some seriously silly sentences.

Who Am I?

Who Am I? makes for a great ice breaker for any event, but it’s especially fun when played with family. Place sticky notes with a character or person onto each player’s forehead, and have each player try to guess who they are just by asking questions about their different characteristics.

Two Truths and a Lie

Another ice breaker, turned party game: two truths and a lie makes for the ultimate test of the group’s best storytellers. All you have to do is name two truths and one lie, and have everyone else try and guess what the lie is.

Fun Family Games To Play At Home

Whether the weather is bad or you’re looking for some fun Christmas games during the winter months, sometimes staying indoors makes for a perfect game venue. Check out the following ideas for fun family games at home:

Pictionary

A classic game for good and bad artists alike, this game only requires a whiteboard or paper easel, markers, a timer, and imagination.  

Charades

For those who would rather act out scenes instead of draw, charades makes for a fun and interactive family activity. Draw the people, places, or things out of a hat and keep time for the team who’s guessing.

Minute to Win It

There are plenty of fun and competitive minute to win it games available, and these fast paced games are perfect for a night of competition.

Classic Fun Family Board Games

Funny kid playing with puzzles

Puzzle

Puzzles are perfect games for a quiet night in. They also help to teach kids problem solving skills and teamwork. To make your puzzle night even more special, consider customized puzzle sets.

Monopoly

This classic board game brings out the competitive nature in the whole family. Just make sure everyone’s prepared for the game to last hours before someone wins.

Candy Land

Candy land is sweet, fun, and appropriate for any age. Utilizing simple game pieces and and instructions, it usually doesn’t last long, and then you’ll have plenty of time for dessert.

Scrabble

Scrabble has not only stood the test of time (Words with Friends, anyone?) but still makes for a relevant and educational game for the whole family. It can help teach kids new words or reinforce more difficult ones, and rewards those with large vocabularies or a lot of creativity.

Fun Family Card Games

Spoons

All you need for a game of spoons is enough spoons for the players (minus one) and a deck of cards. Give all players four cards to start and then have one player start pulling up unused cards from the deck and passing around any cards they don’t choose to keep in their hand of four. The goal is to get four cards of a kind before anyone else, and then discreetly pick up a spoon without anyone noticing. Once the first spoon is gone, everyone can grab a spoon. The last one without a spoon is out.

african american family having a card night

War

This card game is perfect for groups of four or less. The purpose is to get the whole deck in order to win the game by playing the highest card and winning each turn. The game can either go quickly or last hours depending on the luck of the draw.

Apples to Apples

Apples to apples had gained popularity over the years as a game that brings the creativity out of the whole family. The goal is to match funny phrases to appropriate topic cards and win each round as the best match up.

Memory Games

If you’re looking for educational games for your next game night in with the family, consider getting a memory card game.These are perfect for families with small children and help turn learning activities into fun family games.

Family Game Night Ideas

Are you looking for more ways to make your family game nights extra fun for everyone? Check out these additional fun family game night ideas:

  • Include snacks. Foods like ants on a log, fruit slices, or homemade popcorn make for both tasty and healthy snacks for the whole family. This will make sure that everyone has plenty of energy for the game night ahead.
  • Have a pajama party. Encourage the whole family to get comfy in their pajamas for the game night. This is a great idea for any family, plus it’ll help streamline the bedtime transition.
  • Rotate game choices. Each game night, have a different family member pick the game choice. This helps make the game choices fair.
  • Limit phone use. This will help everyone stay focused on what’s in front of them and make the most of family time – though it never hurts to take a couple photos here and there.
  • Focus on family time. Sometimes the drive of competition can put stress on family game night. Try to steer the intention of the games towards spending time together, rather than beating each other.

Close up of a happy family enjoying time playing games on the beach

With all of the above ideas, you’re sure to have plenty of material to work with in upcoming game nights. However if you’re still looking for additional ideas for fun family ideas, you might like our other resources. These include entertaining party games, New Year’s game ideas, and Halloween games.