Don't Waste Your Money is supported by our readers. When you purchase an item through links on our site, we may earn an affiliate commission.

The Best Games For Adults

Last updated on January 21, 2024
Best Games For Adults

Our Review Process

Don't Waste Your Money is focused on helping you make the best purchasing decision. Our team of experts spends hundreds of hours analyzing, testing, and researching products so you don't have to. Learn more.

Look for the DWYM seal for products that are the best in a category.

Our Picks For The Top Games For Adults

View All Recommendations
Product Overview
Key Takeaway
 Best Overall

Off Topic Group Party Games For Adults

Don't Waste Your Money Seal of Approval

Off Topic

Adult Group Party Game

This game is sure to elicit some laughter. Players draw cards to set topics and roll a dice to pick a letter that all answers must start with. Plus, you get to debate your answers with your friends and family.

Overall Take

Stir Up Hilarious ConversationsWrite down answers for each topic that begin with the letter rolled.

 Runner Up

Exploding Kittens Family-Friendly Adult Card Game

Exploding Kittens

Family-Friendly Adult Card Game

In this game, players draw cards. If they get an exploding kitten, they’re out unless they can diffuse the situation. This game is perfect for kids and adults of all ages.

Overall Take

Ideal for Adults, Teens and KidsLike a strategic Russian roulette, but with kittens.

 Honorable Mention

Catan Studio The Adult Board Game

Catan Studio

The Adult Board Game

In this strategic game, players have to gather resources and trade them in order to build a civilization. Beware of the robber, who can steal your resources and thwart your plans. This game has a playing time of one hour.

Overall Take

Cooperate and Negotiate to Build a Civilization Players compete to build the biggest settlement.

 Also Great

Hasbro Gaming RISK 60th Anniversary Adult Board Game

Hasbro Gaming

RISK 60th Anniversary Adult Board Game

This 60th anniversary edition is the ultimate board game for Risk fans. This classic strategic combat game is filled with betrayal, alliances and surprise attacks.

Overall Take

A Beloved ClassicThis classic strategic combat game is filled with betrayal, alliances and surprise attacks.

Buying Guide

While children get to enjoy lots of different types of games, these days there are also many games specifically made for adults. A structured form of play, a game typically involves a competitive or teamwork element; in some games, you work against the other players to win, while in others you have to work together in order to defeat the game. Many games for adults are played using a board, while other games involve cards. The goal of most adult games is to accumulate the highest number of points in order to win.

There are many different reasons to play games that go far beyond just entertainment and having fun. One of the key advantages is that games help to increase your brain function. Essentially, playing games is like exercise for your mind, so it’s important to do it regularly to stay healthy. Through the rules and strategy of the game, you stimulate memory formation and thought process functions. Essential cognitive skills like problem-solving, communication and decision making are used when playing games, so they are a great way to stay sharp.

As an adult, there are many stressful events in our lives that can take over and cause us to feel down. Playing games is a way to decrease this amount of stress through laughter and companionship. Many games have surprising elements that often elicit a laugh. Plus, games of all kinds encourage creativity, which helps many adults think outside of their regular lives. For a few hours, it’s easy to forget about bills, work and other stresses of being an adult. In fact, games actually trigger a release of endorphins, which help people feel more compassionate, happy and cheerful while they are playing.

Most games require two or more people to play. This is a great way to build relationships and foster friendships. In many games, there is an element of teamwork, which is a good way to strengthen bonds with your friends. Even competitive games foster a sense of camaraderie because you are playing with each other. Games help to bring people together over a shared interest. Plus, they open the gateway for natural conversation to flow, where people can learn more about each other. While playing games, it’s easy to chat about other elements of your life, such as kids, work, family, interests and hobbies.

What to Look For

  • If you’re looking for the perfect game for adults for game night, start by considering what everyone’s interests are. Many games for adults involve complex strategy and require you to think a few moves ahead. If the people you’re playing with love figuring out complex problems, then a strategy game may be a good choice. Other people prefer hilarious conversations and unique topics. Some adult games provide great punchlines that let laughter flow. If your friends and family prefer conversation-based games, then this is a good option.
  • Consider whether your friends prefer competitive or teamwork games. If they love working against each other to show off their skills and get more points than one another, then a competitive game is a great choice. Some people prefer games where everyone has to work together to achieve a single goal. If this is more up your alley, go for a teamwork game.
  • Most games require two to four players, while some can be played individually or with a larger group. Consider how many people you expect to play with most often, and get a game that accommodates those needs. Keep in mind that some games work better with a larger group, even though they can still be played with just two or three people. Conversely, some games are more fun with a tight-knit group of friends rather than a large crowd.
  • The length of time you have to play is something that will affect the type of game you choose. You cannot fit a six-hour game into thirty minutes no matter how fast you play. If you typically have just an hour or two, then it’s best to stay away from complex strategy games which can take several hours. In this case, opt for a game with a short playing time.
  • If you sometimes involve older children and teenagers in your game nights, consider whether the game is appropriate for their age. While many games are based on themes and topics that are friendly for all ages, some games have sensitive or adult topics that may not be suitable for children.
  • For some shoppers, complexity is a buying factor. How difficult is the game to learn and how long will it take you to figure out the rules? If you don’t mind spending an hour or two looking through the rule book, then you’ll be happy with almost any type of game. If you’re not interested in wasting time learning complex rules, stay away from long strategy games or games with multiple components.

More to Explore

Games for adults have a long history. In fact, games are actually pre-historic, which means that they were around even before humans had developed a written language. The first game was actually based on dice. These small playing pieces, which are the foundation of so many games today, were a game all on their own thousands of years ago. In the Başur Höyük burial mound in Turkey, 49 small carved stones were found. These are believed to be the oldest gaming pieces in existence, from 5,000 years ago. Dice in Mesopotamia were made from knucklebones, stones, turtle shells or wood. Sticks could also be used in a similar way to dice. One side of each stick would be painted, and people would throw a group of sticks up in the air. The number of painted sides that were showing would be the number of the “roll.”

From our partners