After sampling 50 board games for 3 players, here are our top ten 3 player board games for families. These board games are perfect for children and parents.
Every year for Christmas my children receive a gift called “Game of the Month”. This is where they get 12 board games wrapped up with a month attached to each one instead of a name tag. Then on the first of each month, they open a new board game. Throughout that month we play the heck out of that game. We have been doing this for about four years.
The problem I always have is finding good 3 player board games. Most board games are best suited for 4 people. It’s just me and the 2 kids so I spend a considerable amount of time looking for award-winning family games for 3 players.
Here is our list of the best 3 player board games out of about 50 games we have tested over the years. These 10 board games are the ones that we still play month after month. Some games didn’t make it after that first month of opening it, but these 10 below are still on our shelf and still in our rotation!
Top Ten 3 Player Board Games for Families
A note about some of these games. These are not your standard Candy Land or Chutes and Ladders. This means some are harder to find and some (not all) cost more than a couple cups of coffee. I always consider what I’m getting back in return. How many hours are we sitting down as a family? Two or three of us sitting together, no electronics (gasp), for multiple evenings with no drama. Add up all those hours and I guarantee you cannot buy that entertainment (and precious time with your children) anywhere!
2-6 Players / Age 8 and Up (Note: my kids started at age 7 with no issues)
This is my favorite game of the bunch! It’s a little like SkipBo but more action-packed. It’s also more fun the more people you have but I play it all the time with just my 2 kids and myself. We began playing it when my youngest was 7 and he picked it up quickly. Basically, everyone has their pile they are playing from and once that runs out, the round is over. The playing arena is the main playing area and everyone plays from there. There is no taking turns, everyone just plays their cards onto the arena, trying to make as many piles of 1-12 as they can – you play on each other’s cards. Once the round is over, you count to see who has the most cards played and those are the points. You play as many rounds needed until the number of points is reached.
2-4 Players / Age 6 and Up
This is an easy and fun game to play with younger and older kids. Everyone has 3 test tubes that you arrange the balls to look like the picture shown on the cards. You can make it more difficult by not allowing the test tubes to touch the table.
2-6 Players / Age 10 and Up
If your kids like the board game Clue, they (and you) will love this game! Minus the murder mystery aspect and it’s all about strategically figuring out who each person has. It’s more difficult the more players, but I almost always play with just 2 or 3, unless the kids have a friend over. It can be difficult to find this game if Amazon doesn’t have it, then sometimes Target does. But it’s totally worth it!
1-4 Players / Ages 8 and Up
This is a strategic puzzle game that requires you to work with different colored spheres and meet all the requirements of the cards shown within the timeframe given. Each player has their own board game and when the time is up depending on how many spheres you used and how many requirement cards you met depends how many points you accumulate. It’s a super fun game where your children won’t even realize they are learning at the same time!
One of my children is more of a strategic thinker than the other but surprisingly that child doesn’t shine in this game. So my other child just gets the greatest pleasure out of this game. It is wonderful for their self-esteem.
2-4 Players / Ages 6 and Up
This is another family favorite! Everyone gets tiles that you take turns laying down on a master board. They align by color and shape. You get points for laying them down in certain patterns. It’s a great way to let the kids take over in keeping score. Scoring is not complicated but it is a continuous addition. Plus extra points for creativity. Everyone usually has a lot of fun and it’s not a game that you can easily beat your kids.
2-4 Players / Ages 7 and Up (Easily 6-Year Olds can play)
This is a good one primarily for younger kids but I was surprised my 10-year old wanted to play it so many times. There are cards you indicate whether you have them or not and then you guess whether the person is fibbing or not. If you are wrong, you get a nose added to your glasses. If the person is fibbing and they are caught, they get a nose added. It’s funny and it goes by fast. But it is easy to figure out by the cards as an adult.
2-6 Players / Ages 6 and Up
Kids love this wild game where different cards have them do things like put a spoon on their head or repeat a rhyme everytime a 6 is rolled or other silly stunts. My kids pretty much always want to play this game, it just takes some energy out of you to play it.
By the time my kids were 10, I actually let them play the adult version. I don’t know any adults that want to put makeup on with their eyes closed and sit there for the whole game. As long as your kids can read, I would just buy the adult version.
2-4 Players / Ages 7 and Up
This game reminds me of Tetris except physically playing on a board game and each player has their pieces. The twist is that have to connect your pieces together but only touching the corners and try to make them fit on the board before the whole board is filled up. Any pieces left at the end count against you. It’s another good strategic game.
2-4 Players / Ages 10 and Up
This is our current favorite game. It is different from most games because you all play together to “beat” the deck. There are goal cards that everyone works together to match colors or numbers all without telling each other what is in your hand. If you have kids who get upset when someone is always winning, this is a good one to play together.
1-4 Players / Ages 8 and Up
This is a puzzle game that each person has to figure out on their own before the timer goes out. You each get your own board game and pieces and you have to make the pieces fit. Each board is slightly different and they are all challenging. There are more difficult board if you want to have a more challenging board while your child plays the less challenging but I think they are both pretty difficult.
So out of about 50 family board games, we have tried of 3 player board games those made our top 10. Do you have a favorite family board game for 3 players that we missed? Or did we nail it with one of your favorites above?