The Best Board Games For Any Party

There are a few things that no party would be complete without: a theme, guests ready to have a good time, a bountiful meal, plenty of beverages, and an activity. While a theme, guest list, food, and drink can fall into place quite naturally, there is one thing even the best host or hostess gets stuck on: what will my guests actually do at this event?

An easy solution to this problem is to break into your board game closet and set up a game. But, of course, not every board game is appropriate for every event. If you're hosting a raging party filled with cocktails and your rowdy friends, you're not going to want to play Trivial Pursuit. On the flip side, playing something like Cards Against Humanity with your grandma during the holidays is not a great idea.

Luckily, no matter what kind of party you're throwing, there's a board game that's just perfect for you.

Adult Birthday Party: Cards Against Humanity
Nothing keeps a party rolling after a few tequila cocktails quite like Cards Against Humanity. This ad-lib card game does contain quite a few situations that could offend, but with the right crowd, no game causes as many gut-bursting laughs as this one.

Double Date Night: Catch Phrase
This old school board game has undergone an electronic reinvention but still maintains its classic elements of fun. As a timer ticks away, one partner need to guess a secret word or phrase as the other partner describes it before the buzzer sounds. This game will test your time management and communication skills, so you'll find out what couple is truly on top.

Girls' Night: What?
Who said what gets a remake for the ladies in a card game that's perfect for bachelorette parties, or a pre-game gathering before a girls' night out. A new spin on the classic party game of "Who said what?" this card game raises questions that will help you to get to know your girlfriends in ways you never imagined.

Intimate Dinner Party: Pictionary
If you're looking to add some very mild merriment to your dinner party, breaking out your box of Pictionary is a smart move. This draw-and-guess game is fun for all ages and is less likely to ruffle any feathers than some of the other games on this list.

Family Game Night: Beat The Parents
Sometimes, kids and adults don't always know the same things. This game asks parents child-friendly question and quizzes kids on the things their parents should know. If you're looking for a fun way to connect, this board game is second-to-none.

Holiday Party: Apples to Apples
Holidays bring family members of different ages together, and few games accomplish the same goal quite like Apples to Apples. This game can help break the ice and get the entire family laughing and talking after a year apart.

Kids' Birthday Party: Bingo
They key to a perfect kids' party game is to make sure its instructions are easy to understand and that there are prizes at the end. The classic Bingo accomplishes both of these things, making it truly timeless.

Outdoor Barbecue: Jenga
Whether you buy a life-size set or decide to make one yourself, getting an outdoor tower set can be a bit of an investment, but it is sure to make your backyard BBQ stand out. Watching your friends and family try and avoid a 5-foot tower as it topples is priceless.

This article was originally published on July 17, 2014 by Lauren Gordon.