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Last updated: May 24, 2021
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Unfortunately, not every game designed for kids is as entertaining or as well made as you`d expect it to be. Adult board games can be too challenging for younger kids, so they need their own games to teach them the skills needed so they can advance to the more complicated ones. That`s why we`ve done the necessary research, choosing the best board games for 7-year-olds for your kids to enjoy.
When picking the eight games for our reviews, there were a few features we focused on. The most important one was fun, which all of these games have to offer. These games are engaging for kids aged 6 to 8, as well as their parents and even some of the older kids in the house. We even picked some aimed at boys, girls, or both, so you can please those with differing tastes. We even chose an assortment of logic, educational, and party games, so you have one for every occasion. For more information on the best board games for 7-year-olds, check out our detailed reviews and buying guide below.
For those who enjoy the classic hidden identity games, Spy Alley may be a good choice. This board game is perfect for kids as young as 7 but is also enjoyable for teenagers and adults in the house.
This game begins with each player choosing a spy card that gives them the name of the spy, a short bio, and the country they are from. You can be Jane from America, Boris from Russia, Nicole from France, Wilhelm from Germany, Ricardo From Spain, or Rosita from Italy.
Once you have your spy, you need to gather all the passwords, disguises, code books, and keys for your spy and get back to your embassy. The challenge is hiding your identity until you get there, so you also need to gather those items for other countries to throw other players off your scent.
The rules are simple to follow, and the gameplay lasts about 30-45 minutes, so even the younger members won’t get bored.
What are its best features? We liked the 6 fun spies to play as. There are simple rules but intense gameplay to keep everyone interested. This game has also won 10 national awards from MENSA, Family Life, and Creative Child Magazine.
What could be improved? There is some strategic planning and bluffing involved with this game, so younger players may need some coaching during the first game or two to learn proper gameplay.
Though the original Exploding Kittens game is entertaining, the Party Pack gets even more people in on the fun. This larger card game includes 2 decks, one for 2-5 players, one for 4-7 players, or you can combine them for up to 10 players.
The fun starts as soon as you open the box, which triggers amusing kitty dance music, starting the party before you even remove the cards. The cards are also quite humorous, with drawings from The Oatmeal depicting the exploding kittens themselves, as well as the defuse, skip, attack, and cat cards that you can use to avoid the exploding kitten and keep the other players from winning at the same time.
Despite allowing up to 10 players in on a game, each round only lasts about 15 minutes, so there are no long rounds that result in bored kids wanting to leave the table. The short games also make it easier to fit in multiple games in one sitting, giving everyone a chance to win a round. The small box size also makes it easy to take this game to a friend or family get-together.
Why are we impressed? We liked that this game comes in a musical box containing hilarious cards. The games are short, even when playing with multiple players.
What negatives must you be aware of? Though most of the rules are simple to follow, there are a few that could use a more detailed explanation to be clearer on how certain cards are played.
Unlike many board games for 7 and 8-year-olds that have players pitted against each other, Cauldron Quest is a cooperative game that has all the players working together to win. Though you take turns rolling the dice, you still need to use a bit of strategy to choose which moves to make, discussing it as a group to accomplish your task.
This game is well-made, with a sturdy board and pieces that can handle regular gameplay. The pieces include 6 each of the potion bottles, ingredient tokens, and wizard tokens, as well as a wizard hat, a spell-breaker token, action dice, and magic dice.
To win the game, you need to find the right ingredients to create a potion to break the spell and defeat the wizard, but he’s working to stop you, blocking the paths along the way. You may not win every game, but it’s a fun way to teach kids cooperation, memory, and strategy skills. Parents can even get in on the fun, helping the kids make decisions along the way to beat the Wizard.
What are its best features? This game is made of quality materials for the board and pieces, with nice artwork that makes the game as aesthetically-pleasing as it is enjoyable. It also teaches both strategic and cooperative gameplay.
What could be improved? Some players have found the instructions a bit confusing at first. There are online videos to help get you started if this is the case.
Those who loved the original Stratego game will love this version with the same rules but some upgraded pieces that speed up the setup time. This includes 40 plastic pawns with the designs right on the plastic, so there are no stickers to attach before you can start your game.
As well as the sturdy plastic pawns, the game board, and even the box are high-quality, so it will last for years, even if you`re taking the game with you to play with friends and family at get-togethers.
This game is for 2 players. Each one sets up their 40 pawns, using some strategic placement to help get them started in the game. Each player then takes turns moving 1 piece at a time. They can land on a free space or try to take over an occupied space by battling the opposing piece. The pawn with the higher number wins the battle while the other piece is removed. Players with the same rank are both removed.
This classic game is great for kids of about 8 years old and up, so the whole family can try it out.
What do we love it for? We liked that this game includes high-quality materials and upgraded pieces that speed up setup times. The strategic gameplay is fun for the whole family.
What were we disappointed with? The pieces are all numbered based on their rank, but the numbers are quite small, making it difficult to tell which one wins each battle.
The Rush Hour Traffic Jam Logic Game is a great game for kids aged about 8 years and up. It includes a plastic game board and a variety of car and truck pieces, plus 40 challenge cards, all of which fit into the soft storage bag for easy packing up and portability. There is also a drawer on the game board to store the challenge cards and instructions, keeping everything neat and organized.
The challenge cards come in 4 difficulty levels, including 10 each of the beginner, intermediate, advanced, and expert cards. This allows the player to start with the easier puzzles and work their way through them to the harder ones. If the player gets stuck on a puzzle, the solution is on the back of the card. When you work through all of the included challenge cards, more can be downloaded for new puzzles to solve.
Though it is meant for just one person to play, a few people can take turns with the puzzles, helping each other out or competing to see who does their puzzle the fastest. It is also a great game for car trips, camping, or waiting rooms.
What makes it special? We liked that this game includes multi-level challenges with all the solutions included. It also includes a handy storage bag for portability.
What cons did we find? The drawer on the game base may be hard to open to remove and replace the cards during games.
You don`t need to spend a fortune to get a challenging, entertaining game for the kids in your home. The Rubik`s Race game proves this, giving your kids a chance to compete in a fun, exciting way.
This game includes a game base that fits 24 colored tiles on each side. These tiles should include equal colors to give the players a fair chance at succeeding. Once you have the colored tiles set up on the game base, one of the players shakes up the scrambler to create a pattern on the 9 colored cubes inside.
The object of the game is to recreate the pattern in the scrambler on your side of the game base. This is done by moving the tiles one at a time until you match the pattern exactly. The first person to create the pattern on their side is the winner.
This game is for 2 players, though you can set up a tournament with multiple players for a greater challenge. It helps kids develop logic and strategy skills as they play.
Why did it make our list? The Rubik`s Race game is easy to set up using the durable game pieces and base, offing challenging gameplay for everyone at a great low price.
What is not ideal about it? This game doesn’t fold easily for storage. Instead, all of the pieces need to be removed after each game. Then, they need to be sorted and replaced for the next game session. A simple track design or some storage bags could improve this.
If you’re looking for a fast-paced game that also gets you moving, Throw Throw Burrito may be one of the best board games for your 7 and 8-year-olds. It is simple to set up, using only a deck of cards, 2 foam burritos, and a few tokens needed to get started with this game.
The rules are relatively simple, requiring the players to draw cards on their turn to try to create a matching set of 3 to collect points. The tricky part is that there are also burrito cards in the deck that can start duels, brawls, or wars between a couple of players or everyone in the game, depending on the card. Those hit with a burrito lose points, so everyone needs to avoid those flying foam delicacies.
Though recommended for kids aged 7 and up, even younger kids will enjoy this game. It can be played with 2 to 6 players, so the whole family can get in on the fun. The games are short enough to keep everyone interested, plus allow for multiple games over a single evening.
What stands out? This game is easy to set up and to play, plus it includes soft, foam burritos that get you up and moving for a more active game.
What cons did we manage to find? The decals on the burritos likely won’t last very long once the throwing starts. Though soft, these pieces could cause injury, so head shots should be avoided.
Stare Junior is a great game that helps develop memory and concentration skills in players of all ages. The gameplay is simple, using only a stack of 160 cards and your skill to get you around the game board to the finish line.
You can play this game individually or set up teams, depending on the skill level of the players and the number of people interested in the game. To play, each person or team is given 30 seconds to study the picture on a card. When the time is up, the card is flipped over and the player is asked a set of questions on the back about specific details in the picture. If all the questions are answered correctly, the player or team gets to advance around the board.
You can adjust the time given to study the card, allowing younger players the full 30 seconds and older players less time, giving them a bit more of a challenge on their turns.
What are its best features? We liked that this game includes fun images and offers different skill levels, plus it can be played with teams or individual players. It also helps all players develop memory skills.
What could be improved? Though fast-paced with 2-3 players, more players means long wait times between turns, which may get boring for younger kids. The cards are a bit flimsy, so need to be treated gently.
Things to Consider
There are dozens of board games for 7 and 8-year-olds, which makes it difficult to choose the right one for your little ones. No matter what type of game you`re looking for or what size of family you have, there is a game for you. If you`re still not sure what to look for in a good game for 7-year-olds, check out our buying guide to help make this decision easier.
Features to consider when choosing a board game for a 7-year-old
Not every game for 7-year-olds is created equal, so you need to consider a few features before picking one for your kids. This will ensure you`re getting a great game that your kid will enjoy for years to come.
The recommended age is the first place to start when choosing a game since some games are better for specific age groups than others. This is because kids can learn different skills at different ages, so expecting a 5-year-old to use deductive skills in a game like Spy Alley may not be something they`re ready to try out on their own, especially since they need to be able to strategize their moves and bluff their way through the game.
Other games, like Stare Junior, are a bit easier for younger kids, which is why this game has a recommended age of 6 and up. A child of 6 years can try out their memory skills and improve them in a game like this, especially since the rules are quite simple and don`t require a lot of planning and organizing for pieces and gameplay. Kids of this age can also play on a team, helping out as they improve their memory without feeling like they`ve failed if they don`t remember all the details on a specific card.
Another reason to look at the recommended age is to avoid buying a game that is too simple for an older child. A game that is designed for 6-year-olds may not be as entertaining for kids 12 and up, while a game like Stratego Original with a recommended age of 8 and up may still offer a challenge for the older kids in the family. This helps you pick out family games as well as games for specific children.
Number of players
The number of players is also an important feature to look into to be sure that the game is going to accommodate the number of kids you have of that age group in your home. If you have three children that are close in age, a game like Rubik’s Race allows two of them to play a game while one of them is left out. If you have an only child, this can also create a dilemma since they won`t have anyone of their own age to play these games with. Though many of the games can be entertaining for parents, grown-ups don`t always have time to play, so the child won`t be able to play until their parent is free to play with them.
Luckily, we`ve included a wide variety of games with varying numbers of players allowed. The Rush Hour Traffic Jam Logic Game is for only one player, so your kid can try it out on their own, work with a sibling to figure out each challenge, or pass the game back and forth for each puzzle. We also included a few games for two players and some for a whole group to join in on, like the Exploding Kittens game that can handle up to ten players. You can even keep a few games on hand to accommodate varying numbers of players for more playing options.
Though adults can sit and play a game that lasts an hour or more, kids tend to have shorter attention spans. These little ones need a game that is entertaining but doesn`t keep them trapped at a table waiting for their turn for what feels like an eternity. That`s why all of the games in our reviews have shorter playing times, the longest of which is 45 minutes, which still may be a bit long for some kids, depending on their skill level in the game and how simple the rules are. For the kids who aren`t ready for the longer games, we also included a few that are only 15-20 minutes for the playing time, helping them develop their skills until they are ready to try out the longer board games.
The genre of the game you pick will depend on what interests your child. There is a wide variety to choose from, including strategical army games like Stratego Original, memory games like Stare Junior, or wizardry games like Cauldron Quest. There are also challenging games where they compete against each other or cooperative ones that have them working together to win.
If you`re unsure which one is best for your child, let them in on the decision, telling them about the game and how it is played, and let them choose a few for themselves.
If it will be fun for adults as well
Though teenagers may prefer to be on their own or with their friends, little kids love to play with mom and dad, so they will want you to join in on the fun. They may also need some help getting started, especially if the game involves some rules that are a bit too complicated for them at first. Luckily, the games in our reviews can be as entertaining for the adults in the house as it is for the kids, so you won`t feel like it is a chore every time they pull one of these games out of the cupboard.
The best one for traveling is Rush Hour Traffic Jam Logic Game since it includes a storage drawer for the challenge cards and a storage bag for the game base, car, and truck pieces. This game can even be played on long car trips since the pieces fit into tracks on the game base, staying in place even during bumpy rides. It can be passed back and forth between kids as well, with 40 puzzles to keep everyone entertained.
Both Stratego Original and Spy Alley require some strategic gameplay that helps develop critical thinking. In Stratego, you need to choose your moves carefully to defend your army while removing your opponent`s pieces from the board. Spy Alley needs some deception and careful planning to maintain your character`s secrecy and win the game.
The games that take very little time to learn include Rush Hour Traffic Jam Logic Game, Rubik’s Race, and Stare Junior. All three of these games have very simple rules to get started, so even the youngest members of the family can play them with little instruction or assistance needed.
Wrapping It Up
There are dozens of games for 7-year-olds on the market, which makes it tricky to find a really good one to keep your kids entertained. Though all eight of our selections are great options, we have a few favorites.
Our top choice is Spy Alley. This game is for 2-6 players, with each player choosing one of 6 spy cards, collecting their passwords, code books, disguises, and keys, while trying to keep the other players from learning their identity. This hidden identity strategy game has simple rules, with games that last 30-45 minutes each.
Exploding Kittens is a silly, hilarious game that can be played with 2-10 players, all of whom draw cards to help defend against other players while avoiding the exploding kitten cards. Each game lasts only 15 minutes, plus the box plays kitty dance music when you open it.
Cauldron Quest is a cooperative game for 2-4 players that has everyone working together to collect ingredients to create a potion and defeat an evil wizard. It is well-made with nice artwork and only lasts 20 minutes per game.