8 of the Best Multi-Generational Family Board Games

A great way to spend a multi-generational family night is by playing board games. It’s a great way for both young and old to share some laughs, work cooperatively, or delve into some friendly competition.

But, not all board games are created equal and fun for the entire family to enjoy. They need to be kid-friendly with simple rules as well as captivating for adults to play.

So, below is my list of the 8 best multi-generational board games perfect for family game night.

Gameplay: 15 to 20 minutes
Players: 2 to 5
Ages: 7+
Transportability: Medium
Difficulty to Learn: Low
Setup Time: 2 minutes
Expansions: No
Price: $20 to $25

sequence board game low attention span

Sequence the board game is very similar to Connect 4, except the whole family can play! The rules are simple: play a card, place a chip. That’s it!

However, Sequence relies on cooperation and playing the right card at the right time to win, all without talking…

The objective of the game is to connect 5 cards in a row, represented on the board, to create a “sequence”. Two sequences win the game.

At the beginning of the game, each player is dealt a specific number of cards depending on the number of players. Team mates sit across from one another around the board and work together to create sequences.

During a players turn, they remove a card from their hand and plays it face-up on the discard pile. A marker chip is then placed on the corresponding card on the game board.

Once a card is played, you must take a card from the draw deck. But, if you forget to take a card before the next player finishes their turn, you forfeit your opportunity to gain a card. Now you must play with one less card in your hand.

Playing Sequence is as simple as it gets. The objective of the board game as well as the overall game dynamics are super simple, which makes it great for young kids as well as older adults and seniors. It’s a joy to play with a multi-generational family.

Looking for the complete rules to play Sequence? Check them out here.

Gameplay: 15 to 20 minutes
Players: 3 to 6
Ages: 10+
Transportability: Low
Difficulty to Learn: Low
Setup Time: 1 minutes
Expansions: No
Price: $10 to $15

Coup Board Game

Playable in about 15 minutes, Coup is a card-based board game, and fantastic for families who wants to spice up their next multi-generational get-together.

That’s because deception and deduction are the name of the game. Players must lie, cheat and steal their way to victory, but only if they don’t get caught…

There are 5 characters in the deck, each with 3 copies: The Duke, Assassin, Captain, Ambassador, and Countessa.

Each character has one or more unique abilities. These abilities include stealing coins, blocking stealing attempts, assassinating a character, blocking an assassination attempt, receiving taxes, or swapping a character card with a new one from the deck. The objective of the game is to be the last character playing.

So, have you ever wondered which of your family members is wholesome or full of poop? Well, now you can see whose honest and whose pants are perpetually on fire.

Bluff and befuddle your way to victory. Coup takes your poker game to a whole new level and it’s a riot to play with the family, even if you only have 15 minutes!

Looking for the complete rules to play Coup? Check them out here.

Gameplay: 25 to 30 minutes
Players: 5 to 10
Ages: 12+
Transportability: Medium
Difficulty to Learn: Low
Setup Time: 5 minutes
Expansions: No
Price: $15 to $20

The Resistance Board Game

If your family is filled with some really slimy individuals, why not give them an opportunity to shine… Find out if they can they lie and fib their way to victory at a board game.

And the perfect board game for them to test their “skills” is The Resistance. In this game two teams, the resistance and the spies, are pitted against one another but only the spies know who each other are.

During each round, a limited number of players are selected by the leader to go on a mission. If the mission is approved, the players going on the mission receive a mission success and failure card.

In secret, the mission players submit whether the mission was a success or failure. Resistance members must submit success cards, whereas spies can choose whether it was a success or failure.

Once the cards are submitted, they are shuffled and then reads out. Depending on the mission size, a single fail card is an automatic point for the spies, otherwise the resistance gains one point. First team to three points wins!

The reason this board game is great for multi-generational families is because it incites social deduction from very little information. Family members are constantly watching and challenging how everyone else is playing and talking so it makes great fodder for banter!

Looking for the complete rules to play The Resistance? Check them out here.

Gameplay: 35 to 45 minutes
Players: 2 to 5
Ages: 7+
Transportability: Medium
Difficulty to Learn: Medium
Setup Time: 2 minutes
Expansions: Yes
Price: $35 to $45

carcassonne board game

A competitive yet simple board game, Carcassonne pits players against one another to build and expand castles, farm fields, complete monasteries, and build roads, one tile at a time. Usually only lasting 45 minutes or so, this board game is great for multi-generational families because it doesn’t require too much critical thinking.

Setting up this board game consists of taking out the scoring board, choosing a colour of “followers” and mixing up the game tiles face-down in the box. That’s it!

Tiles are selected at random and players must connect them to other tiles already in play. But, tiles must fit together such that the “border” of the tiles work together. A new tile, when connected to an existing tile, must complete the map without producing a fallacy, such as a road ending abruptly, a field-edged tile connected to a city-edge tile, etc.

The randomness of the tiles, and the ability to wreak havoc on your opponent’s gameplay are quintessential to why Carcassonne is an ideal board game for family board game night. It’s great for players looking for a relatively intense game that’s super fun.

Looking for the complete rules to play Carcassonne? Check them out here.

Gameplay: 35 to 60 minutes
Players: 2 to 5
Ages: 8+
Transportability: Low
Difficulty to Learn: Medium
Setup Time: 10 minutes
Expansions: Yes
Price: $55 to $65

Ticket to Ride Board Game

Truth-be-told, Ticket to Ride is a board game that is near and dear to my family. We always seem to play it during family holidays. Our family is actually obsessed with it!

The name of the game is to be awarded the most points by the end. Players can score points two ways: (1) By purchasing and placing rail cars between cities, and (2) by completing destination cards. At the end of the game, any destination cards that are not completed result in negative points being awards.

Ticket to Ride is such a great board game for families with both young and old individuals because it takes the right amount of luck and strategy to win.

Depending on the number of players, games usually take 45 minutes to finish which makes it perfect for multi-generational families.

It’s very easy to setup and explain, and every game is different so you’ll never get bored!

Looking for the complete rules to play Ticket to Ride? Check them out here.

Gameplay: 45 to 60 minutes
Players: 2 to 4
Ages: 8+
Transportability: Low
Difficulty to Learn: Low
Setup Time: 5 minutes
Expansions: No
Price: $40 – $50

Survive Escape from Atlantis

Probably one of the most captivating board games out there, Survive: Escape from Atlantis is tailor-made for families who aren’t afraid of a little friendly competition.

The name of the game is to get your players off of a volcanic island that’s poised to explode. But, toss in a few sharks, whales, and seas serpents, pepper in some occasional sabotage, and you’ve got a recipe for truly blockbuster board game for all!

Overall, the rules and game dynamics are simple which make it perfect for multi-generational players.

The unpredictability of the game, competing player strategies, and, at times, the pure cut-throat action makes this a thrilling board game everyone in the family will soak up!

Looking for the complete rules to play Survive: Escape from Atlantis? Check them out here.

Gameplay: 45 to 55 minutes
Players: 2 to 5
Ages: 10+
Transportability: Medium
Difficulty to Learn: Medium
Setup Time: 10 minutes
Expansions: No
Price: $30 – $40

Forbidden Desert - Cooperative Board Game

Legend has it, an ancient airship is buried under the ruins of a city, just waiting to be discovered. Sounds interesting, right?

Well, as long as you can find all the airship pieces in time and don’t get buried under a mountain of sand or die of thirst, you’ll be fine… (I’m not joking)

The goal is to recover all the airship pieces by flipping over tiles, deciphering the clues to their location, and bring them to the excavated launch pad tile to escape. Throughout the game, the tiles shift around, sand is piled onto the tiles, and the sun drains your energy level.

I’m not going to lie; Forbidden Desert is not for the faint of heart. After playing your first game, my guess your first words will be “nature is a vengeful b*tch!”

This cooperative family board game is intense and captivating from the very first move. Winning (and most likely losing) relies on working together, utilizing your combined special abilities, and making smart choices.

So, will you work together to survive the elements and find the hidden airship pieces? Or, will you shrivel up and die due to a lack of water and get buried under the sands of time? There’s only one way to find out!

Looking for the complete rules to play Forbidden Desert? Check them out here.

Gameplay: 15 to 20 minutes
Players: 2 to 5
Ages: 8+
Transportability: High
Difficulty to Learn: Low
Setup Time: 1 minute
Expansions: No
Price: $10 – $15

Monopoly Deal Board Game

Regular Monopoly is the classic family night board game everyone has played. But, Monopoly Deal is a card-based board game that is just as competitive as its older brother but at a fraction of the complexity and time commitment.  

Unlike traditional Monopoly, Monopoly Deal takes only 15 to 20 minutes to play! And the rules are a whole lot simpler. The first player who is able to collect three complete sets of properties wins.

The board game consists of cards, that’s it. No dice, scoreboard, or timer. It’s completely uncomplicated and easy enough to explain to kids. And, since it’s just cards, you can play Monopoly Deal virtually anywhere – at the park, in a tent, even airport lobbies!

Multi-generational family board game night playing Monopoly Deal is a no-brainer. The low setup time, simple rules, and high re-playability makes ideal for all levels of players, both young and old.

Looking for the complete rules to play Monopoly Deal? Check them out here.

 

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