The Most Popular Board Games for Adults

If there’s one thing the past year in quarantine has taught us, it’s that board games will never go out of style.

Sure, there are digital play-along games and mobile apps that replace the traditional hard-copy board games. But actual board games aren’t going anywhere. They’re here to stay.

That staying power is, in no small part, related to the experience. You can’t beat playing another person one-on-one right in front of them. And that aspect of board games will be kept alive by the pros. Correct: Board games can be a sport. You’ll find major tournaments crack the discussion and appear in articles at places like Whether it’s chess, checkers or one of the many options sanctioned by the World Board Games Association, board games have a spot in both the sports and overall Vegas lexicon.

You might be asking “But aren’t board games for kids?”

Clearly, the answer is no. They’re for people of all ages. And while you may not be interested in the ones played frequently by pros, there are plenty of leisure, at-home options that appeal to actual adults.

Finding the most popular of these choices isn’t particularly hard. Our list was compiled by scouring the review rankings on Amazon. These are the most popular board games for adults based on those findings.

Cards Against Humanity

This is not a game for people who take themselves too seriously. Or for those who are easily offended.

Often described as the raunchy version of Apples-to-Apples, Cards Against Humanity has players complete fill-in the blank references on playing cards that are typically considered rude or outright politically incorrect.

First released in 2011, this game has become an absolute hit at parties for adults over the past decade. Though the rulebook does not state how you actually win the game, since it’s a just-for-fun proposition, certain groups will keep score.

“Cards Against Humanity” by WIkimedia is licensed under CC BY 3.0


Headbanz technically isn’t a board game. There is no board. There are only cards, bands and, you guessed it, your head.

Think of this as an adults-only blind poker game. You have a card bound to your head and have to ask questions to determine what it says.

Other versions of this game are more straightforward and, shall we say, innocent. But Headbanz is filled with mature language and references that will be placed upon your forehead for the entire room to see.

Catan The Board Game

Anyone familiar with Settlers of Catan can relate to this one. Newcomers might be a little intimidated, though. The rules can seem complicated.

That said, as summated by one Amazon reviewer, the idea is to collect resource cards (sheep, brick, stone, straw, and lumber) in order to build settlements, expand roads, and eventually build cities.”

Throughout the game, you are allowed to trade resources with other players, and you will receive superlatives for certain things you build (such as the longest road). The first person to collect 10 points is then declared the winner.

Really, the rules are simpler than they may seem. The game itself is just a little more involved. It’s not something you can play in an hour, so make sure you have real time on your hands before engaging.

“Catan board game” by Catan Studio  is licensed under CC BY 3.0


Too often Clue, a “Who dunnit?” classic, is considered just for children. Nothing could be further from the truth.

This is one of the true for-all-ages games. Players are tasked with using clues to figure out the details of a murder: who did it, in what room did they do it and what weapon did they use.

Contrary to other options, this one has a clear and distinct ending. The game concludes when someone correctly guesses all three details of the murder.


Looking for longer gameplay options?

Then Risk is absolutely for you.

This is a strategy game that can be played with two to six people. Each player has their own army, and the objective is to capture and claim territories as their own.

As part of this game, alliances between players are neither prohibited nor endorsed. You enter one at your own, ahem, risk—knowing fully well you could be double- or triple-crossed.

Be wary of how much time you have to play before cracking open this board game. You’ll need at least three hours to finish it up.