It’s time to ditch the Monopoly set. If you’re likely to be spending a lot of time with the family this holiday season, then why not make it enjoyable for everyone? Our family game night holiday gift guide 2023 will help you pick out video games and products that’ll stop everyone checking their phones and get you all laughing together instead.
Family game night holiday gift guide 2023
This might be a gift guide, but that doesn’t mean you need to wait until Christmas! Give the gaming gear and party games below as a gift to your group at the start of the holiday season and we guarantee you’ll have more fun than yet another round of Clue can offer.
Great games for family game nights
We’ve picked out several new games from 2023 below based on their ability to get players into the action quickly, support large groups, and – most important of all – make everyone howl with laughter.
Jackbox Party Pack 10
Available on: PC, Switch, PlayStation, Xbox
The Jackbox Party Packs are bundles of social minigames made precisely for big groups or family gatherings. So long as everyone can see the screen, all they’ll need to join in is mobile device – you don’t even need to download an app! Some games test trivia knowledge, others will challenge your ability to deceive those around you! Jackbox Party Pack 10 has five games including Tee K.O. 2, a drawing-based competition which is great for younger players, and Timejinx, a trivia game in which you guess which year various unusual events occured in. It’s also well worth checking out previous editions like Party Pack 9 or 8 for other great games like Job Job and classics like Fibbage.
A quick note: Some of the games in each Jackbox edition may be too complex for younger players, so make sure to give them a try before playing as a group. You can also enable a family friendly option in the game’s settings to cut out any jokes targeted toward an adult audience.
WarioWare: Move It!
Available on: Nintendo Switch.
Feel like you’re missing the active aspect of games like charades? Say hello to Wario Ware: Move it! – a game that’ll have you sweating with stress and exertion! Its rapid microgames require you to take up various poses using Joy-Con controllers before performing an action. It could be as simple as turning your hand to check your watch, or as outrageous as punching upwards to block a gigantic nostril.
The main story lets two players work together in co-op, but the four-player competitive party mode is ideal for family game nights. The microgames get faster and faster as the round progresses, forcing everyone to hop up and down off the sofa in double time as they get into place and rapidly parse what they need to do. Just make sure you’ve got wrist straps on so no-one throws the controller through the TV during a frantic transition.
Super Crazy Rhythm Castle
Available on: PC, Switch, PlayStation, Xbox.
If your family is musically inclined (or if they aren’t but are willing to laugh through their mistakes), then Super Crazy Rhythm Castle is a fantastic chance to put their tempo timings to the test. Up to four players can work together in co-op to take on a mad king’s musical minigames. Players will need to know the inputs on a standard controller, so this one is best saved for families or siblings already into gaming.
The core of the game sees you tapping inputs as Guitar Hero-style notes move down a track. But each unabashedly silly task presents new challenges to go alongside that. Taking down a DJ eggplant, conducting a satanic weedkiller ritual, and crafting magical bagpipes are just the start. There’s plenty of humor in the writing and the music bounds between genres gleefully, so there’s likely to be something for all tastes.
Available on: PC, Xbox
In Party Animals, you play as a group of cutesy humanoid creatures with a single goal: to beat the stuffing out of each other. Throw paws and swing a variety of weapons on the wings of a plane, in a dangerous factory, on top of a nuclear submarine, or in a subway station – all that matters if that you’re the last one standing.
Party Animals supports up to four players in local play, and the imprecise, physics driven nature of the game helps to close the game between experienced gamers and novices. That and teaming up to bully the member of the family who’s currently winning. Like Super Crazy Rhythm Castle, players will need to be familiar with general game controls, so this might not be the best game to whip out if you were hoping gran could join in too. But for deciding sibling disagreements? There are few better arenas in which to settle your disputes.
Gaming gear for family game nights
Running a successful family game night takes work, but the gaming gear below can help ease the burden of setting things up significantly.
HyperX ChargePlay Quad 2 or ChargePlay Duo
Great for: Keeping controllers ready for action.
Ensure everyone has a controller powered up and ready for action with the ChargePlay Quad for Nintendo Switch and ChargePlay Duo for PS5 or Xbox. The ChargePlay Quad 2 can refill the batteries of up to four Joy-Cons at the same time. And thanks to LED indicators, you’ll know when they’re ready for use.
For PS5 or Xbox owners, the ChargePlay Duo will store two official controllers at once, keeping them topped up and ready for game time. The Xbox version also comes with rechargeable battery packs to save you from hunting down that box of AAs that your mom is certain you’ve got stashed somewhere in the house.
HyperX DuoCast microphone
Great for: Helping distant family members feel closer than ever.
Life is busy enough that it’s not always possible for everyone to be with their family over the holiday period. But if one or two members are missing out due to distance, good mic can help them feel like they’re sharing the same room and offer a chance to join in the game night fun. The HyperX DuoCast’s omnidirectional polar pattern is built to handle sound from all sides, meaning you can plonk it in the middle of a large group gathering and it’ll capture everyone’s voices crisply and cleanly.
So when you’re about to load up a game like the Jackbox Party Pack, the DuoCast can help a distant family member hear the whole group over Discord and laugh along with you. And when you need to use it for a solo session, swap back to the cardioid polar pattern and you’re good to go. A gift for the family and yourself in one, neat! Plus no one will be able to resist commenting on how good the RGB light ring looks when they first see it.
Find loads more gift ideas for the gamers in your life by heading to our holiday gift guide hub! We have lists to help pick the perfect headset, guides for what to buy a beginner gamer, and much more!