Gift Ideas: Games for Kids Gift Guide 2023

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Giving games and puzzles as Christmas gifts is a time-honored tradition in our family. This is why I’ve found the best new games that my kids and yours will love to play.

From card games to board games and dice games, you’ll also discover the best new and classic games from years past that you don’t want to miss.

gift ideas the best games for kids

Get ready for some tabletop, card game, and board game family fun!

2023 Holiday Gifts for Kids

The Best Games for Kids and Families, 2023

Melissa and Doug 8-piece Chunky Wooden Puzzle
Puzzles are so good for children’s brains. This one with large, chunky pieces are easy to grasp. The colorful scene will help kids learn about African animals.

My First Math Dice

ages 3+
A first math game that helps kids pair the amount of counter chips to the appropriate number as well as teaches about more and less than and simple addition.

Big City Builders
ages 3+
Develop fine motor skills, color matching, following directions, taking turns, and decision making in this building and delivery game for preschoolers.

Tea Cup Pile-Up!

ages 4+
Flip a challenge card and find the first teacup shown. Race to place it on your saucer and continue, relay-style, until your tower matches the stack on the card. Correctly complete the tower and ring the teapot bell first and you win the game. Be the first to build and complete your tower correctly to win this royal relay race.

My First Castle Panic

ages 4+
For 1 to 4 players, stop the monsters from smashing the castle!

Transformers Matching Game
ages 3+
Get your Transformer fans to practice visual discrimination with this fun matching game.

My Little Pony Matching Game
Ages 3+
If your child loves the darling ponies, they’ll love to play this matching game!

Story Time Chess

ages 5+
Learn to play chess with chess pieces with unique stories and 30 mini-games, all of which teach children the rules of the chess game. (Chess books here.)

Animals Upon Animals

ages 4+
You’ll love this wobbly stacking game where players race to place all their animals on the animal pile first. Roll the die to see how many animals you can stack up– or if you get to add to the base. A fun interactive game (that we love) that fosters hand-eye coordination and fine motor skills.

Hurry Up, Chicken Butt
ages 4+
See how many activities you can complete before the timer goes off. Fast-paced and fun, this game encourages quick thinking, creativity, and physical activity.

Smart Farmer

ages 4+
My kids and I love Smart Games 1 player 3D logic and deduction games and this new choice is no exception. Comes with 60 challenges with horses, pigs, cows, and sheep.

Gathering a Garden

ages 5+
This new eeBoo game develops basic skills like patience, counting, and an understanding of different categories of plants and gardening-related elements.

United States Map Puzzle
ages 6+
Help your kids remember their U.S. geography with this educational puzzle!

Throw Throw Avocado

ages 7+
Easy to learn. This active group game gets you to collect points and matches then battle other players by throwing avocados. For 2 to 6 players. Play on its own or combine with Throw Throw Burrito.

ages 7+
We love this beautifully illustrated card game! It’s a great family game for ages seven and up where players match and steal sets of cards. Even my teenager loves this game!

Anarchy Pancakes
ages 7+
If you’ve played Spot It, the visual matching game, then you’re almost ready for ANARCHY Pancakes, Anarchy emphasized. Because in this wild game of chaos, there are no turns! Players match and grab at will — as quickly as they can. Fun and funny.

Monopoly Dungeons & Dragons Honor Among Thieves
ages 8+
Inspired by the Dungeons and Dragons movie, this Monopoly includes a 20-sided die, monsters, wizards, and rogues.

Monopoly Chance
ages 8+
If you’re like me and you don’t like how long the regular Monopoly game takes, try this new 20-minute game! It’s a card-flipping game of chance. You will get to own properties and build buildings (with colorful buildings) that will feel familiar but also fresh. Hooray for this new, quicker version!

Shifting Stones

ages 7+
We love this fun, engaging strategy game that will develop your visual/spatial skills and long-term planning.

800 Pound Gorilla
ages 8+
In this fast and easy game by the makers of Cat Goat Cheese Pizza win points by being the fastest player to grab a banana or coconut or guess the correct size of the gorilla!

Shark Floor Puzzle

ages 5+
A shark-shaped puzzle made of sturdy pieces with shiny foil accents.

Museum Seek & Find Glow Puzzle 

ages 6+
Put together this 100-piece puzzle, then search for the 40 hidden items. Shine the included blacklight on the puzzle to reveal hidden glow-in-the-dark objects.

Ravensburger Strike

ages 8+
Easy to learn, this is a fun dice game for two to five players.

A Game of Cat & Mouth 

ages 7+, 2 players
Speedy and fun! Flick the tiny paw with a ball and try to get it to hit spots on the cat’s face like the hose or teeth.

Match Madness
ages 7+
Match the pattern on the card with blocks in this fast-pace, award-winning game.

Beat That! 

ages 9+
Perfect for multiple ages of children, teens, and grown-ups, this is a party game for up to 8 players with fun challenges and battles of coordination, motor skills, dexterity, and teamwork.

13 Dead End Drive
ages 8+
If you like CLUE, you’ll love 13 Dead End Drive. Channel your inner murderous tendencies, knock off the other players, and inherit good old Aunt Agatha’s fortune.

Mythology Trivia

ages 8+
We love this game with multiple-choice questions covering worldwide myths and folklore–from gods and heroes to magical beasts and monsters.

ages 10+
Put your kittens on the bed (boop), and it pushes the other kittens one space away. The object of this logical herding cats game is to line up three kittens in a row to become a CAT! Get three cats in a row to win.

ages 8+
Build your Arkopolis city with houses, temples, markets, and more. Use the titles to build up and increase the value of your districts and win the game.

Escape Puzzle

ages 9+
Put together the puzzle, read the instructions, and guess before you open the sealed envelope with the solution.

Clue Escape
ages 10+
If you like escape rooms, and my daughter does, you’ll want to try this at-home escape room for up to 6 players.

Without Fail
ages 10+
If you’re looking for a party game, this is a great option with challenges that will crack you up. We loved it so much that my daughter took it to college with her!

ages 14+
This game is SO cool — little eggs, beautiful bird cards, food tokens, and more. We bought this for my bird-loving daughter, but so far, we have always been to tired to learn the rules. It’s a bit more involved than a simple card game. Soon, though! It gets high ratings from reviewers.

Literary Charades

ages 13+
I thought this would be too hard because my husband isn’t a big reader and my daughter isn’t old enough to know all the books. But, we picked books we knew from the Children’s Book titles (Elephant and Piggie!) or book titles that we could pantomime and were more guessable. And it was HILARIOUS FUN! We loved it and laughed a lot!  The directions are to play in teams, but we only had three, so we just played individually.

More Essential Games for Kids to Give as Gifts

Sneaky, Snacky Squirrel Game!
ages 3+
Preschoolers love to play this award-winning game. Parents and teachers love it because it builds color recognition and counting practice as well as fine motor practice. Use the squirrel Squeezers to put the colored acorns into their logs. The first person to fill up their log wins. (Full review here.) A best game for kids under five.

Heads Talk Tails Walk
ThinkFun Heads Talk Tails Walk
ages 3+
Can you walk like a chicken while meowing like a cat? Match bodies with heads! But if you make a mismatch, everyone makes the mismatched animal’s sounds and motions! Hilarious! This is one of the best games I’ve seen for preschoolers.

Peaceable Kingdom Fire Truck Pups Floor Puzzle

Ages 3+
Preschoolers love fitting together these sturdy, large shapes into a large floor puzzle.

Monkey Around

ages 2+
From Peaceable Kingdom, this game is a fun game for gross motor skills, hand-eye coordination, imitation, vocabulary, and social-emotional skills through play! Toddlers will do the prompts that include movements like hugs to high fives to simple gross motor skills like balancing, hopping, and marching.

Outdoor Scavenger Hunt

ages 4 – 8
A fun scavenger hunt game for kids to get outside, read, and search! Use the 160 cards to find items indoors and outdoors.

Guess Who? 
ages 6+
Two players, deductive reasoning, communication, and fun! Try to guess your opponent’s mystery player. This game will be a favorite choice for YEARS to come.

Yeti in My Spaghetti

ages 4+
What a blast! Start out with the noodles across the top of the bowl with the Yeti on top. Players take turns removing the noodles one-by-one without letting Yeti fall. If it falls, you’re out.


ages 6+
Another game from the makers of Tenzi! This game asks players to study the picture on the card and build it. LOVE it!
The 30 Best Games for Kids (Give as Gifts for Christmas 2019) Avocado Smash
Avocado Smash! 

ages 6+
A fun avocado twist on the game of Snap for kids! It’s simple to learn and quick to play. Switch and smash quickly to win this fun game.

Tenzi Game

ages 7+
Tenzi is a SUPER FUN yet simple dice game that works for almost all ages (except the ages 0 – 3) which is why it’s one of our top recommendations (aka. the BEST) family night game. Be the first player to get all ten of your dice to show the same number. Full review here.

Sleeping Queens

ages 8+
Help the Sleeping Queens wake up by waking them up with the Kings and be the first player to reach 50 points. We ADORE this game and play it all the time. (My 14-year-old has loved this game since she was little!) It’s easy to play, fun, and great for family game night.

Blue Orange Maki Stack
ages 7+
Aren’t these wooden sushi pieces the best? Pick a card and race to build a matching stack using the sushi, soy sauce, and mat. My daughter and I often play this before bedtime and love it. We like that it takes about 10 – 15 minutes and makes us laugh. A great gift option for 2019. (Full review here.)

Taco Cat Goat Cheese Pizza
ages 10+
We love this game — it’s great for all ages, including kids, teenagers, and adults. You’ll place cards down with various images, but you MUST say the next word in order of the phrase “taco, cat, goat, cheese, pizza.” It’s fun and funny.

RushHour Traffic Jam Logic Game
ages 8+
Not only does this game provide hours of strategy and problem solving but it’s FUN to accomplish these tricky puzzles. We are big fans.

Blobby’s Pizza Math Card Game
ages 9+
(Our favorite thing about this game is the ordering pad because it’s so cute!) But really, it’s also a fun and engaging game where you’re trying to earn the highest bill by building and eating whole pizzas. Play from your plate and the table and use the monsters to steal pizzas from other players. While you’re at it, you’ll be practicing addition, fractions, decimals, and percentages!

Mystic Market

ages 10+
Hone your strategy and math skills and learn basic economics, all in a fun card game for 2 to 4 players. You’ll buy and sell magical potion-making ingredients to make sets then make the potions and trade them to earn points! Plus, aren’t the potion vials fantastic?

Magic The Gathering Forgotten Realms
Magic: The Gathering Adventures in The Forgotten Realm
ages 9+
A team-up between Dungeons & Dragons and Magic: The Gathering, creating the ultimate fantasy card game.

ages 7+
This is my personal favorite family strategy game — mostly because occasionally I can beat my kids. They love this game, too — and let me win sometimes. Isn’t that nice?

ages 10+
We laugh so much during this game as we totally butcher words trying to figure them out. In fact, my daughter has started writing down the funny words we invent on accident.) To win a card, you correctly read the word around one of the colored circles. The player with the most cards wins.

Foosball Table

A reasonably priced competition-sized foosball table brings fun to any setting, perfect for home game rooms.

ages 8+
Match the colored blocks to the lights using memory and speed! Great for individual play or multiple-player fun.

Gnomes at Night
ages 6+
Work as a team in this fun cooperative search and find maze game. Move the magnetic gnomes around the maze as you chance a thief who is running around the maze leaving clues.

Gifts for 11-Year Old Boys
The Settlers of Catan
ages 14+
Players must roll and trade for resources to build roads, settlements, and cities for points. The first to ten points wins. It’s easy to learn but the strategy requires some practice –it’s a very popular game for families and friend groups!

ages 14+
Word clues, spies, an assassin, and some deductive reasoning, this game is the total package — and one of the best games to play with a larger group of people.

Dune Gale Force Nine
ages 14+
Along with the (incredible) updated Dune movie, here’s an updated board game based on the Frank Herbert sci-fi novel! Become the leader of one of the factions then fight to gain control of the spice and the planet Dune.

gift ideas for kids: games

Want more awesome gift ideas?

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The Best Logic & Strategy Games for Kids

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Gift Guides by Age

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Best Gifts for 3 Year Olds

Best Gifts for 4 Year Old Boys
Best Gifts for 4 Year Old Girls

Best Gifts for 5 Year Old Boys
Best Gifts for 5 Year Old Girls

Best Gifts for 6 Year Old Boys
Best Gifts for 6 Year Old Girls

Best Gifts for 7 Year Old Boys
Best Gifts for 7 Year Old Girls

Best Gifts for 8 Year Old Boys
Best Gifts for 8 Year Old Girls

Best Gifts for 9 Year Old Boys
Best Gifts for 9 Year Old Girls

Best Gifts for 10 Year Old Boys
Best Gifts for 10 Year Old Girls

Best Gifts for 11 Year Old Boys
Best Gifts for 11 Year Old Girls

Best Gifts for 12 Year Old Boys
Best Gifts for 12 Year Old Girls

Best Gifts for 13 Year Old Girls

Best Gifts for Teen Boys
Best Gifts for Teen Girls

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  1. I was wondering if you had any suggestions for games for special needs male about 14 years old. Very unsociable and sits by himself at lunch time. Hoping a cool game might attract others to join him.

    1. Ray,
      Magic the Gathering is a big hit with many boys. Other longer games that might be of interest are Catan and Ticket to Ride. If those aren’t up his alley, you could go with something like Battleship, Apples to Apples, Blokus, or Five Crowns.
      I also wonder about Minecraft servers online — my kids like the Harry Potter server — and for my oldest daughter who struggled with making friends in real life, her online friends gave her confidence.