While uber-serious strategy board games are all well and good, sometimes you’re in the mood for something lighter. Enter funny board games. They’re the best board games for a party; they’re ideal Christmas board games for a bored family; and often they get even funnier when used as drinking board games. Laughter truly is the best medicine.
But while funny card games are dime-a-dozen, funny board games are often harder to come by. You might be shopping for your next comedy set piece and find nothing but dusty copies of Taboo and slightly rude quiz games. ‘Where are all the fun board games?’, we hear you cry.
It turns out the funniest board games often aren’t marketed as such. Disguised as regular old board games, these funny-bone-ticklers have been entertaining tabletop enthusiasts on the sly for some time. We’ve put together a list of the best funny board games, and we think we’ve got something to suit all tastes. Looking for something more adult? Looking for conversation starters? What about hysterical chaos? We’ve got it all waiting for you here.
These are the best funny board games:
Say Anything claims to be a game about settling debates. It gets you to ask your friends questions like ‘who is the most overrated band of all time’ or ‘what would I like for my next birthday’. Then it gives everyone a whiteboard and erasable pen to write out their answers.
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Everyone picks the best answer to award points to – and while a lot of the questions in Say Anything are fairly mundane, we’ve never played a game where the answers aren’t downright ridiculous. By giving people the power to write their own responses, these answers can be tailored to the group’s unique sense of humour. It also means you’ll never know what to expect. Unlike Cards Against Humanity, you’ll never get bored of hearing the same quippy answers.
Codenames Deep Undercover
Codenames is a party game where teams must choose the correct words on a grid of tiles based on single-word clues from a teammate. It’s a simple concept that’s hugely popular – you can buy Disney Codenames, Marvel Codenames, two-player Codenames, and the list goes on. This also means you can get an adult Codenames. This is highly recommended for groups that get the giggles over words like ‘nipple’.
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Codenames Deep Undercover has the exact same gameplay as regular Codenames, but it offers you ruder, more adult words to guess from. One person is nominated to see where their team’s words are hidden, and then they must give a word and a number as a clue. For example, if you want your teammates to choose the words ‘crabs’, ‘bear’, and ‘pony’, you’d say ‘animals, three’. There are far ruder words in the box, but we didn’t want to say them here.
How good are you at reading minds? Wavelength wants to know. This is a social guessing game that gives you a card with two binary concepts (‘dark’ and ‘light’, or ‘quiet’ and ‘loud’, for example) and a moveable dial. A random location on the dial is hidden behind a screen, and only one player gets to see its location. They must say a single word to hint to their team how far to turn the dial, leaving it up to everyone else to discuss where they’d rate the word on the dial between the two binaries given.
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It might not sound that funny in concept, but just wait ‘til you all have to decide where to put Darth Vader on a scale from ‘ugly man’ to ‘pretty man’. Sure, he has a disfigured face, but maybe that one specific friend is unusually into bad boys in black? Wavelength is a game that gets you all talking, maybe arguing, and maybe even learning something about each other. It’ll also likely get you laughing.
One Night Ultimate Werewolf
Werewolf is a social deduction game that’s so prolific, there are multiple different versions you can buy. If you’re looking for a truly hilarious version of the game, though, One Night Ultimate Werewolf is a clear winner. This is because there’s only one round.
All the players go to sleep, then wake up individually to perform their specific roles – troublemakers move cards around, seers find out who someone is, and werewolves do what they do best (eat people). Then everyone wakes up, and they only have five minutes to figure out who the killers are (or, if they’re a werewolf, trick the whole town into lynching an innocent).
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The time limit on One Night Ultimate Werewolf causes utter chaos. Arguments quickly break out, shaky, shouting accusations are made, and the panic quickly turns into hilarity. Different special ability cards add further confusion – sometimes you won’t even know who you are, so how can you trust the person next to you?
Sometimes, the best way to enjoy the game is not to play at all. You can use an app to tell everyone when to open their eyes and move cards, but large Werewolf games often need a moderator to facilitate the game and move cards around without raising suspicion. When playing as a moderator, you get the chance to add comical narration to the night phase – and then you can sit back and watch as everyone loses their minds.
When I Dream
A game of When I Dream begins with a blindfold. Once the first willing victim has donned their eye mask, they enter a world of dreams. This means a card and phrase are played for the rest of the group to see. A sand timer is turned over, and everyone takes turns sharing a single word with the dreamer, who must guess what the word is based on these clues. Whatever they guess, a new card is revealed, and the process repeats until the sand timer runs out.
The comedy here comes from the fact not everyone at the table is trying to help the dreamer. Some will need to score points by throwing the dreamer off the scent and getting them to accrue wrong answers. Suddenly players are struggling to keep a straight face as, to the non-blindfolded players, they blatantly give a ridiculous clue.
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An absurdly wrong guess from the dreamer often leaves everyone laughing – and them feeling very confused. Deception and dramatic irony are the real crowd-pleasers here.
To add to their confusion, the dreamer is also tasked with reciting every word they guessed at the end of their time in order to score more points. Cue panic babbling, then a shocking reveal as the dreamer realises who their friends really were.