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Have an upcoming reunion and want to include party board games on your list of activities?
Or are you simply browsing for a game to save for future use?
If so, you’ve landed on the right page! In this article, we’re going to share with you a list of the best party board games that you and your family or friends can enjoy the next time you get together.
We picked these board games based on the high ratings and positive feedback that customers gave them on online sites. We also drew information from game bloggers’ expert reviews.
Before we proceed, if you don't have time to read the entire review, here's a quick look at the best party board games:
- Best Word and Mystery Party Board Game: Codenames
- Best Part Board Game for Laughs: Telestrations
- Classic Family Party Board Game: Catan: Family Edition
- Best Travel and Adventure Party Board Game: Ticket to Ride
- Best Strategic Thinking Party Board Game: Sushi Go!
- Best Party Board Game for Long Parties: Monopoly
- Best Party Board Game for Focus and Attention: Hive
- Best Deception Party Board Game: Dixit
- Best Political Party Board Game: The Resistance
1. Best Word and Mystery Party Board Game: Codenames
Codenames is a great party game to test people’s mastery of words and mysteries.
The goal is to reveal the identity of all 25 agents through the one-word clues given by the two spymasters. Only the spymasters know who the agents are, and the teams have to communicate with these spymasters to win.
The rules seem easy and simple on the surface, but the game itself can be quite challenging. Players only know the “codenames” of the agents, and the only way to discover who they are is through hints from the spymasters. Likewise, players have to be careful not to encounter the assassin.
We recommend Codenames for groups of friends or workmates who like solving mysteries using words. It is also a great choice for those who don’t want to experience major downtime while each player is required to think.
The game comes in different themes, like Marvel and Harry Potter, and is the recipient of several awards, including the 2016 Spiel de Jahres Board Game of the Year.
2. Best Part Board Game for Laughs: Telestrations
Telestrations is an award-winning party game for everyone, regardless of age, gender, or skill. The main goal is simple: to laugh your heart out. This game will keep everyone hilariously entertained all night.
According to the manufacturer, Telestrations is the “visual version of the classic telephone game where you draw what you see then guess what you see.”
The game starts once the die is rolled and each player’s secret word is determined. The timer starts and the players are given a minute to draw their secret words. The players then pass their books to the people on their left.
The game continues as all the players draw their guesses on the books that are passed to them. They keep drawing their guesses until the books are eventually returned to their original owners.
After the books have been returned, everyone reveals their secret word and shows the other players’ drawings in their books.
What makes this game rather interesting are the hilarious drawings of the participants. You’ll laugh and laugh when you discover the comical miscommunications that happened while playing the game. You don’t need to be skilled in drawing to participate, you just need to have a good sense of humor.
3. Classic Family Party Board Game: Catan: Family Edition
Catan is a classic favorite, especially for expert board gamers and game enthusiasts.
Although the rules are simple and easy to understand, the game is still challenging enough to test anyone’s planning and strategic skills. It’s not just a simple civilization-building game. Rather, it is a game that tests your decision-making and problem-solving abilities.
This board game comes in different versions and expansions, but we recommend the Family Edition for parties and gatherings. The game has around 60 to 90 minutes of gameplay, so it is most fun during scheduled game nights or sleepovers. The game is not designed as an icebreaker, so do not expect to finish it in just a few minutes.
The Family Edition is suitable for everyone, including children. You don’t have to worry that it might become too boring for kids, or too easy for adults. It has the right elements to make family parties and events exciting, fun, and entertaining.
4. Best Travel and Adventure Party Board Game: Ticket to Ride
Ticket to Ride nearly always makes “best board games” due to its fun gameplay and ease of use. It’s not only for people who love traveling and adventures; it’s also for those who have a knack for memorizing geographical locations, particularly those in North America.
In this game, the goal is simple—collect all the routes connecting the cities of North America. You have to complete missions successfully in order to claim your routes. You also get points for every objective you accomplish. At the end of the game, the player with the most points and completed routes wins.
This game is a must-try for friends and families looking for a party board game. It only takes around an hour to finish, and is really fast-paced. Although it is designed for up to five players, you can always create teams to include more people.
5. Best Strategic Thinking Party Board Game: Sushi Go!
Sushi Go! is a game that “reinforces probability, visual discrimination, and strategic thinking.” Your goal in this fast-paced game is to produce the best combination of sushi dishes and gather the most number of points to become the sushi master.
You can score points by producing and combining various moves, like creating the most number of maki rolls or collecting a full set of sashimi. You may also dip a nigiri in wasabi to triple the value of your score. And make sure to leave room for dessert or you’ll lose all your points!
The original Sushi Go! version is for two to five players, but the expanded version is perfect for parties, as it can have as many as eight players—the Sushi Go Party!
The same rules apply and you still earn points by creating different sushi combos. The only difference is that in the party version you are allowed to customize each game by choosing a menu from a list of 20 yummy dishes.
6. Best Party Board Game for Long Parties: Monopoly
We recommend Monopoly for long parties such as sleepovers, reunions, and get-togethers because the length of play can vary widely.
It usually takes hours to finish the game, but other times it may go much more quickly. The gameplay depends on how the players know and master their cards and properties.
The rules of the game are simple. At the end of the game, the person who owns everything wins. That’s why this classic game is called “Monopoly!”
7. Best Party Board Game for Focus and Attention: Hive
Hive is different from your typical board game in that there is no actual board to begin with. Instead, you create the board while you play! You have to place your pieces strategically in order to surround your opponent’s queen bee and win.
The game has around 30 minutes of playtime and may be played by only two players. But that doesn’t mean it can’t be a party game! You can always create two teams with as many members as you want, and have everyone help decide on the moves.
We specifically recommend Hive for parties and reunions for elderly people. Most users agree that it can help maintain and develop cognitive abilities such as focus and attention.
Additionally, it can prevent the early onset of age-related mental diseases such as dementia and Alzheimer’s.
8. Best Deception Party Board Game: Dixit
Dixit isn’t a simple guessing game where you have to analyze clues in order to get the right answer. Instead, it is a deception game where you have to bluff wisely and carefully so that your opponents don’t guess your cards.
There are three types of players in this game: the active player, the guesser, and the other players. The active player secretly selects one of his cards and provides a very brief description of it. The other players then guess what that card is by secretly selecting from their cards, which they are trying to match to the description.
Once the cards have all been selected, they are shuffled and revealed. All players then vote on which card was chosen by the active player.
If the guesser for that particular round gives a correct answer, then that guesser and the active player gain points. Otherwise, the player who submitted the guessed card gains points for every incorrect answer.
If all the answers are correct (or if none of them are), then the active player gets no points while all the other players get points. The game finishes when the deck is empty, and the player with the most points wins.
9. Best Political Party Board Game: The Resistance
Resistance is a game of social deduction and skillful deception. As the manufacturer says, “your ability to lie to your friends and know when they are lying to you is critical to winning.”
As in political governance, this game tests your decision-making and problem-solving skills, testing whether you know who to trust or not.
In this game, you act as the leader of a resistance group that wishes to bring down a corrupt government. You need to complete bold and daring missions while being careful not to get caught.
Likewise, you need to watch for the spies that could infiltrate your group and sabotage your plans.
Customers report that this game is “not for the faint of heart or slow of mind.” You need to be quick-witted, alert, and always on guard in order to win.
Inspired by Mafia and Werewolf, the game’s mechanics are unique and distinctive, and you’ll never be bored playing it. In fact, it is highly replayable because there are tons of strategies to use.
Final Thoughts on the Best Party Board Games
Parties and gatherings are always fun and entertaining, but why not make them more exciting by adding these board games?
Although some are not suitable as ice breakers, you can still include them in your list of activities if you want something “new” and “unique” for your next party!
And if you're looking for more board games, be sure to check out these blog posts:
- 9 Best Board Games for College Students (Fun Party Games)
- 9 Best Horror Board Games for a Scary Game Night
- 19 Best 6-Player Board Games