Great apps for family game night

These nine apps make playing games an entertaining and educational experience for the whole family

Great apps for family game night

Photo credit: Getty Images

With new restrictive measures kicking in on Dec. 25, families will be looking for fun ways to pass the time with kids. Here’s a list of some great family game night apps that’ll keep you entertained for hours at a time. The best thing is that they’re all completely free, so download an app – or three!

Great apps for family game nightCramble
(Available at: Apple App Store; Google Play)

This quiz game uses wacky comparisons between different objects to create intriguing questions. For example, “to match the height of 1 Hubble Telescope how many coconuts would you need to stack up?” Or, “how many chickens would you have to pile up to be as tall as 1 Great Pyramid?”

Glow HockeyGreat apps for family game night
(Available at: Apple App Store; Google Play)

If your head is spinning from all the crazy questions in Cramble and you need a break, download Glow Hockey. This easy-to-use hockey app has colorful glow graphics (hence the name) and great sound effects. You can customize the sticks and pucks, and the phone vibrates every time someone scores a goal. You can also practice your skills by playing against the app before you challenge one of your family members to a game.

Great apps for family game nightScrabble GO
(Available at: Apple App Store; Google Play)

If you’re itching to play a game of Scrabble but don’t have the board game version lying around, no problem, download the app. You can play with your family members or, if your spelling skills are a little rusty, you can practice a bit beforehand against the app.

Great apps for family game nightSpaceteam
(Available at: Apple App Store; Google Play)

This game requires you to work together rather than to compete. Players are members of a team who have to maneuver a spaceship. Each person has a control panel with buttons, dials, knobs, and switches, and receives commands that must be executed to save the spaceship from crashing. Some of the commands require instruments that are on the other players’ control panels, so you end up shouting commands at each other. No need to explain how much fun that can be!

Truth Or Dare Kids
(Available at: Apple App Store; Google Play)

The kids’ version of the classic game has hundreds of fun questions that’ll make you look at each other in a completely new way, like “what music are you embarrassed to admit you listen to when you’re alone” or “what’s the weirdest thing you’ve ever eaten?” Fun dares include “attempt to break dance for 30 seconds” and “wrap a player of your choice in toilet paper.”

What Am I? Riddles with Answers
(Available at: Apple App Store; Google Play)

Who doesn’t like a good riddle? This app has lots of them, such as “soft, hairy, from door to door. I’m the pet that always stays on the floor. What am I”? You can ask for hints if you get stuck and need a gentle push (answer: a carpet).

What Would You Choose?
(Available at: Apple App Store; Google Play)

This game will inspire lots of interesting conversations. Players are introduced to thought-provoking scenarios like “would you rather 1) be able to fly anywhere you want, or 2) stop time whenever you want for 10 seconds.” You vote for your favorite option and get to see statistics on how most other people vote. No Wi-Fi is required once the app is downloaded, so you can play the game even when Wi-Fi is unavailable.

Yes Or No?
(Available at: Apple App Store; Google Play)

Similar to What Would You Choose? this game will inspire conversations and great stories. It has lots of questions, including “have you ever been lost in the woods? “have you ever tried to cut your own hair?” and “have you ever eaten toothpaste”? This app also tells you see how other people vote, so you can decide for yourself whether your family really is as crazy as you think.

4 Pics 1 Word
(Available at: Apple App Store; Google Play)

Millions of people are playing this addictive brain teaser game. Four pictures appear on the screen and you have to guess which word describes all four of them. Sounds easy? Not so fast! The first levels are simple and straightforward, but the game gets increasingly harder and more fun as you progress. The letters that you need to form the correct answer are scrambled with other letters, so the game also has elements of Word Search.

Tanni Haas, Ph.D. is a Professor in the Department of Communication Arts, Sciences and Disorders at the City University of New York – Brooklyn College.