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Student Life

Five Classic Games to Play with Family, Friends

Find out what game fits you best based upon interests and/or college major.

Shawna Newman

November 23, 2020

Students are turning their idle time at home into happier, more productive moments with these five classic, family games. EXTRA: Five New Games you’ve got to try.
Five Classic Games to Play with Family, Friends
As Spring 2020 had us scrambling to find ways to turn idle time at home into happier, more productive moments, fall 2020 looks to be similar. While COVID-19 has the U.S. back in our living rooms thanks to travel warnings issued by the CDC for the Thanksgiving season, students are again eager to erase the gloom. High school and college students agree. While technology is necessary, a jaunt back into the classic era of laughter and entertainment via board games or cards may be the self-care break our minds and souls need.

Students Are Leading a Gaming Renaissance

U.S. students are cleverly adapting to the pandemic by means of cardboard and card entertainment. The year 2020 is the beginning of a classic game renaissance. According to Inside Hook, Hasbro (a classic board game company) reported a 21 percent increase in sales just this year!

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Whether you prefer card games or board games, we are reintroducing the classics and throwing in a few fun games you may have not heard of—some of the best board games and card games! Here are 5 classic and fun family games that are not part of an Xbox series or system:
  1. Clue

  2. Intense fun, this mysterious role-playing game has you guessing if your mom (aka Miss Scarlet) took out grandpa (aka Professor Plum) with a candlestick. The game sets the plot with a victim, a room where the crime occurred, and a weapon.

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    Clue Board Game
    You solve the murder of a dinner party gone bad. Queue the laughter and your investigative skills. First produced in the late 1940s, depending on the game edition, you can play with 2-6 players. If you’re a student that’s interested in or majoring in criminology, bioinformatics, sociology or forensic science--you'd enjoy Clue!

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    Fun Fact: Prior to its American introduction, the game was originally called Cluedo.
  3. Uno

  4. Your goal is to be the last player holding ONE card. But you MUST shout “UNO” before you’re called out.
    Uno Board Game
    You can sabotage your friends by playing cards like “Skip” “Draw Two” and “Reverse.” Or, you can work to get rid of your cards in hand by matching numbers and colors. Uno is super easy and fast paced! Students interested in or majoring in business, law, or rapid-fire strategic thinkers would like Uno. Fun Fact: Uno has theme packs like Pokémon, Pinkalicious, Hot Wheels, Nintendo, Superman, University of Georgia, The Simpsons and more. Some are considered collectors' items!
  5. Monopoly

  6. Plan on spending some...quality time...playing this game. The goal is to roll the dice and move your way around the board. You’ll buy and trade property via the help of the game “banker” and some play money. But avoid going to jail and try to keep friends for after the game.
    Monopoly Board Game
    Many families have succumbed to flipped board games via sore losers or younger sibling rivalries enhanced by the game. A 2-8 player game, you’ll discover the family member that really means business in the play world of economic gains (or failures). If you love economics and real estate or are a student majoring in economic growth and development, Monopoly is your game. Fun Fact: This game was female invented 15 years prior to the 1918 Spanish Flu outbreak.
  7. Scrabble

  8. This board game is for those “walking-dictionaries” within your house. The object is to use the letter tiles you’ve been dealt to construct words on the board. Each letter (or tile) has points. Where you place your tiles can also enhance your score with multipliers like “Triple Word”, or “Double Letter.”
    Scrabble Board Game
    As the board fills up with tiles, you can play from existing words too. If you’re daring to off someone else's word, beware. You may get a few eye rolls. The best scrabble revenge is turning another player's singular word, into a plural. It’s amazing the point value increase of turning a singular word into a plural, ON a triple word via the board. If you love to write, read or plan on majoring in English, Scrabble is just the game for you! Fun Fact: OXYPHENBUTAZONE may be the best word play for Scrabble.
  9. Battleship

Equipped with two “tablets” you and one other player carefully plot out your battleship fleet—but never share with one another. The goal is to use the top plot-tracking portion (grid) of your tablet to track all of your successful hits and misses on your opponent's fleet. You’ll use the bottom plot-tracking portion (grid) of your tablet to track the hits and misses on your own fleet; letting your opponent know if they’ve successfully sank any of your ships.
Battleship Board Game
Use your hits and misses to sink an array of your rival’s ships (some requiring more hits than others). Hide your own fleet carefully and keep a poker-face as to not give away any proximity clues. You want to capsize the rival fleet before your navy meets the ocean floor. A strategic...guessing game, you’ll only need two players to get this grid-play game battle sailing. If you’re interested in history, like to code, or plan on majoring in cyber security, you’re likely to enjoy an old-fashioned game of Battleship. Fun Fact: This game originated as a paper and pencil pastime play for various soldiers and countries during WWI.

Grateful, Together

If 2020 has taught us one thing, it is how important family time and life's simple experiences are. These heartfelt moments have what it takes to empower us through more challenging times. If you have family or friends that live outside of your home, consider playing virtually with them. Try using apps and websites like HouseParty or Tabletopia.

Other Games To Play

All newer games than the classics listed above, these five adventures are uncommonly strategic or just wacky multiplayer games that are also worth your time. Wingspan Azul Trekking: National Parks Exploding Kittens Pandemic the Board Game What are some of your favorite board or party games? Do you believe family game nights are back? Please share by commenting on the story below.

Love Board Games, But Prefer Real Money?

If you love board games and need money to help you pay for college, or experience in the field as an intern, we’ve found cool opportunities like these below:

Cards Against Humanity – Science Ambassador Scholarship

Mattel, Inc. Undergraduate Internship

Sony Pictures Television Film Research Internship

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