While we never had an established “game night” in our house, we enjoy sitting around the table playing cards. I watched my parents enjoy time with friends for years at the dining room table, shuffling, dealing, and laughing. Their game of choice for years was Rook before switching to double euchre. Growing up, Uno was one of my favorite card games. My family has discovered a number of other card games that can provide wholesome entertainment for the family. Here are a few that we love playing.
- Fluxx comes in a variety of themed decks, including Wizard of Oz, Batman, Monty Python, and Adventure Time (Wizard of Oz is the only one of these we have played so far, but I have no doubt the others are great)
- Exploding Kittens and the expansion Imploding Kittens (you have to have the original to use the expansion)
- Monopoly Deal
- Pictionary Card Game
- If you simply can’t decide, go with the classic Bicycle Playing Cards and a copy of The Book of Card Games
The best thing about card games is that they can be played immediately after opening, and still repackaged easily so they won’t take a ton of space in the car for the trip home.
As an aside, I do not support gambling in any form. These games are for fun; don’t ruin them by involving foolish decisions about your money.
Sharing is caring:
Spot It! MLB Edition
by Blue Orange Games
Spot It! is a card game requiring both concentration and quick reflexes. Each circular 55-card set comes in a tin making it easy to transport. There are several ways to play the game, but all require you to find a matching object on at least two cards before you can advance. There is always only one object that matches between any two cards. For instance, on the MLB Edition, two cards may have the Cincinnati Reds logo, but there will be no other matching items on those two cards. The instructions give five different sets of rules. In some games, such as “The Tower,” the object is to have the most cards at the end of the game; in others, such as “The Poisoned Gift,” the object is to end with the fewest cards.
The MLB Edition features the logos for all thirty teams, including the Miami Marlins’ brand new logo, as well as a few mascots and other baseball icons (bat, ball, glove, etc.). I played several rounds with my nine-year old, and his young mind was able to spot the matches much quicker than I could. He won most of the games, and I know he will be asking to play a lot. The rules of the game are simple enough for a youngster to grasp the concept (age recommendation is 7 years and up), but developing and refining the ability to concentrate is invaluable. This is more than just a game; it is a training tool for the mind.
If there are no baseball fans in the house, don’t fret. Spot It! comes in other varieties, including the original game, an NHL Edition, and a Junior Edition for even younger players.
Sharing is caring:
by TDC Games
Dubbed “The World’s Cleanest ‘Dirty’ Game,” Dirty Minds is bound to produce laughs and perhaps a few blushing faces among players. This is a new version of the classic board game played only with cards, and while the clues point toward naughty answers, they are all perfectly innocent. There are fifty-five clue cards and fifty-five scoring cards, which are won by guessing the correct answers. The object of the game is to spell the word “dirty” with the scoring cards.
Recommended for mature adults over the age of 17, the Dirty Minds card game would be a good ice-breaker for small groups. However, the owner (or previous players) of the game are at a marked advantage; with only fifty-five cards, we made it through the entire deck in three games. Besides the relatively small deck, it is a fun game and is sure to provide plenty of smiles.
Sharing is caring:
by Looney Labs, 2012
One of the most enduring stories in American history is now a card game! Looney Labs released “Oz Fluxx” in March, a Wizard Of Oz-themed version of the imaginative Fluxx playing cards. The rules and goals of the game can potentially change with every card played, so players really have to pay attention…the game can end at any time!
There are several different types of cards in the 100-card deck: keepers, creepers, new rules, goals, actions, and surprises. The goal determines the winner; whoever has the cards named on the goal, wins! Unless…they have a creeper on the table, or another player plays a surprise card to prevent the win. The game starts off with one main rule: draw one card, play one card. As new rules are added, the old rules are superseded whenever there is a conflict. Confused yet? It may sound a little difficult, but it’s really easy once the game starts.
I have played the game several times, and always have fun playing. Oz Fluxx is recommended for ages eight and up, two to six players. The box says a game can last 10-40 minutes, but it can be much shorter or longer depending on how the cards fall. The first night we opened it, after the kids got sent to bed, my wife and I continued to play over and over for two more hours! As soon as a winner was declared, the cards were gathered up, shuffled, and dealt again.
If you are looking for a fun family-friendly game to play with your kids, or even just with your significant other, Oz Fluxx is a first-rate option. And if you are not into The Wizard of Oz, there are several other versions of the Fluxx game available.
Sharing is caring:
Rock ‘n Roll Playing Cards
by Hero Decks
Hero Decks are a great way to show off your fandom of various sports teams or other pop culture icons. I recently received a deck of “Rock ‘n Roll” playing cards, featuring caricatures of some of the biggest names in the history of rock: Ozzy Osbourne, Axl Rose, Gene Simmons (in full makeup and costume), Bruce Springsteen and more. The artist Mike Graessle does a great job of capturing each rocker’s likeness and even attitude and mannerisms in his work.
This deck is certainly a playable, standard-sized poker set with 54 cards (including two Jokers). On the other hand, it can be displayed as a collectible keepsake, each card featuring a different musical icon. I know of some who have used the sports-themed cards for autographs and keep them in a binder in nine-pocket pages. While not all of the subjects are still living, for those that are, Hero Deck cards are wonderful alternative to standard sports cards for signatures.
Whether you are looking for a new deck of cards with which you can play Go Fish or Gin Rummy, or just want a new collectible that is unique, check out Hero Decks. There are a number of MLB, NFL, NHL, and NCAA teams available, as well as non-sport issues for the Marines, Black America, Hooray for Hollywood, and more.