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14 Best Board Games for 12 Year Olds in 2024

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If you’re on the hunt for the best games for 12 year olds we’ve got your covered. Board games are a classic among family and friends and at this age there is certainly no exception. If you get the right game that interests your child then will  have an absolute blast playing in groups with friends or family for hours on end

So we’ve set out to help you choose the best option for your 12 yr old by researching and reviewing what the top options for your child are. All you need to do is have a read below to learn more about them.

There’s also a buying guide section available at the end which provides you with even more information regarding how to choose the best 12 year old games that are not only fun but also educational for your kid.

Our Top Picks

Our List of the Best Games for 12 Year Old Kids


Spontuneous Singing Game


Spontuneous is a super fun among games for 12 year old girls have a blast playing in larger groups, making it an excellent choice for a sleepover. This is because it can be played by between 4 and 10 people.

It works by splitting up everyone into teams. One person says the word that’s given and everyone has to try and think of a song that includes that word. Whenever you think you’ve got the song, you can simply sing or shout it out.


  • Develops teamwork abilities 
  • Fun for parties


  • Can be difficult at times     

What makes this option stand out?

Since this that involves playing in bigger groups, it’s a fantastic option for when your child has friends over. It makes for one of the best options as far as birthday party games for 12 year olds go.


Ravensburger Labyrinth


Labyrinth by Ravensburger is a good option if you’re on the hunt for kids games for 12 and up since it can be enjoy by teen and adults too. It comes with 34 maze cards, a playing board, 24 treasure cards, and 4 playing pieces. There is also a high-quality set of instructions which means you have everything you need to start playing right away. We liked how each match lasts for no more than 30 minutes. This is the perfect duration of time to keep your child’s attention without them getting bored.

It can be played by 2 to 4 players which provides children with a great opportunity to improve on their social skills. We were also impressed with how it encourages children to use their recognition skills and how it teaches them about the concept of cause and effect.


  • Teaches cause & effect
  • Great playing time     


  • It depends on chance more than some were expecting     

What makes this option stand out?

This is a lot of fun and each game lasts a good amount of time to ensure that children are able to focus better before becoming uninterested.


Strategy Game: Spin Master


If you’re searching for cool educational games then look no further. This involves players using their strategic thinking ability in order to try and beat their opponents. We found this to be an excellent feature which helps children to use their strategic thinking. However, it also ensures that their ability to focus for longer is improved too.

You have the freedom to either split everyone up into teams or have everyone play against each other. If you were to do teams, it would be a fantastic way for your children to improve their ability to work in teams.

The aim of it is to reach the top of the blocks which are stacked. You can also use builder pieces to move in a variety of directions.


  • Improves teamwork abilities 
  • Helps develop focus    


  • Some of the pieces don’t stack as well as some were hoping     

What makes this option stand out?

We liked how much this it encourages children to focus longer and better. If you were to play in teams, their ability to work in groups would also be improved.


Azul by Plan B


Azul comes with a range of components which are made out of high-quality materials. Therefore, you can expect it to last your child for years of play. There are various tile placement and drafting features available which helps to teach children something new.

It can be played by 2-4 people, which means children can work on their ability to make friends and play in groups. Each game also last for around 30 minutes. This is a good duration of time to ensure that children are able to remain focused without becoming bored. As a result, their ability to concentrate for longer is improved.


  • Improves focus
  • Teaches new skills 


  • Some of the pieces are a little blurry     

What makes this option stand out?

This is a fun option that children are excited to play in small groups and learn new skills together which makes it an excellent idea as a gift for boys and girls alike.


Dungeons & Dragons Lords of Waterdeeps


This can be played by 2-5 people making it a super cool board game. We liked how it last for around an hour in this case. This is because the Dungeon & Dragons involves a storytelling aspect which is more immersive.

There’s a lot of components available with this which kids age 12 may not have experienced before. Therefore, their ability to concentrate for a longer duration of time is improved.


  • Improves concentration 
  • Inspires creative thinking     


  • Can be complicated at times     

What makes this option stand out?

This is an awesome option which provides children with the opportunity to develop their ability to think creatively.


Harry Potter Game


This is a fantastic option for children who are fans of Harry Potter. It works like the regular game of clue, however, there are a number of twists available. For example, there are wheels available which work to move rooms around and reveal hidden pathways.

Kids have a ton of fun playing this and discovering all the secret rooms. It’s also an awesome game for kids to play in groups with friends and family.

The idea of trying to solve the mystery of a student who has disappeared from Hogwarts is exciting. It’s also great for helping them to improve their problem-solving abilities.


  • Improves problem-solving 
  • Great for Harry Potter fans    


  • Not as colorful as some were hoping     

What makes this option stand out?

The Harry Potter theme of this makes is a super fun game for 12 year olds.


5 Sec Rule by PlayMonster


5 Second Rule is a board game comes with a range of 150 cards available, therefore, you can be sure that kids will get a lot of game time from this one. It works by each player taking it in turns to pick a card and read the topic that’s on it.

As soon as they’ve read the topic, the 5 second timer starts and they have to name 3 things within that topic before the time runs out. This is an exciting way to get kids to think quickly and be on their toes. Due to the fast pace nature of this, children are able to improve their cognitive thinking skills.

Moreover, since each player is under a time restraint, some of the answers that they give will be pretty hilarious.


  • Develops cognitive thinking
  • Fun fast pace      


  • Some find it is a little easy at times     

What makes this option stand out?

The fun fast pace feature that this has is a lot of fun and ensures that kids are kept on their toes and able to think quickly under pressure.


Double Ditto Matching & Thinking


The Double Ditto board game is an excellent choice for kids to play with their families. It can be played by 10 or more people, which makes it a fantastic party game which can help kids to improve their ability to be social.

The game works by picking a card and reading it so that everyone can hear. You then write down 2 answers which you believe other people will write down. The aim of this is to see how many other people you’re able to match your answers with. Therefore, you can be sure that everyone will be laughing in no time when you realize who you’ve matched answers with as it may not be the person you were expecting!

There’s an impressive total of 400 category cards available! So, you can feel confident in knowing that this can be played for a long time to come. They also include score sheets, instructions, and a 15-second timer. The timer is used to limit the amount of time you have to write down your answers. This is another fun element that requires kids to think quicker.


  • Improves reading & writing abilities 
  • Fun family game!     


  • Can become a little repetitive over time     

What makes this option stand out?

Since this can be played by 10 or more people, you can be sure that it’s an awesome party game that will have a positive impact on your child’s ability to make friends.


Aggravation Marble Race


Aggravation comes with 30 marbles made out of plastic which are available in different colors, a set of instructions, die, and a game board. Therefore, you have everything you need to start playing right away. It works by each person using their pieces and going around the board using the die. The aim is to try and capture your opponent’s piece which is done by landing on the space that they’re on.

You also have another objective of trying to make it back home with as many of your pieces as possible. There are shortcuts and super shortcuts available which you can use to make your way across the board faster. However, that may not always be the best option depending on where the other players are positioned. So, there’s a great deal of strategic thinking that’s required from kids if they want to win.


  • Develops strategic thinking
  • Fun for small groups!     


  • The marbles are lighter than some were expecting     

What makes this option stand out?

Children have a blast playing this and trying to capture each other’s marble pieces while trying to make their way home.


Dixit Card Game


This one can be played by 3-6 players. It comes with 6 pieces which are available in 6 different colors, and 84 cards. So, you have everything you need to start playing immediately.

It’s involves a lot of storytelling. Therefore, you can expect your child’s creative thinking skills to flourish. It’s also a lot of fun to tell these stories and hear them being told. This will have everyone laughing in no time!

Each game lasts for around 30 minutes, which is ideal. This is because after the 30 minute mark, with options like this, kids may start to get restless. Instead, this  keeps them fully engaged.


  • Great playing time 
  • Encourages creative thinking


  • Some find that the cards fade quicker than expected     

What makes this option stand out?

This is excellent for improving your child’s ability to think creatively by telling stories.


Bingo by Shopkins

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This Bingo version can be played by 2 to 6 people, which is great for encouraging your children to develop their social skills. It works like the classic game of Bingo, therefore, you can be sure that your child’s letter and image recognition skills will be stimulated while playing.

Whenever you find something that matches on your card, you have to place a token over it. Once those tokens line up and you have 5 in a row, you’re the winner! So, it that requires kids to focus more, which is great for keeping them engaged for longer.


  • Develops image & letter recognition 
  • Requires focus     


  • Not as many pictures available as some were hoping for     

What makes this option stand out?

We liked how this it helps children to improve their letter and image recognition skills. It’s also effective at improving their ability to work in groups since it’s a group option.


Power Grid by Rio Grande Games 


This board games involves a lot of strategy for children who are 12 which is great for improving their ability to focus for longer. It can be played by 2-6 people. The game works by each player bidding against each other in order to try and purchase power plants.

As the game goes on, the power plants become more efficient, which gives children a choice to either purchase better equipment to help it run better. So, there’s a lot going on which requires children to focus while playing this.


  • Helps develop attention span
  • Helps with focus     


  • Instructions could be better 

What makes this option stand out?

This is a pretty unique option which enables kids to use their critical thinking in order to try and beat their opponents.


Shut the Box Dice Game


Shut the Box is a math type game for 2 to 4 players. This game combines strategy, luck and speedy reactions. The game comes with a nice wooden board, 10 number tiles that flip, and 8 dice. The game is fast paced, which preteens like.

  • This games helps kids improve their math skills while having fun
  • Fast paced so it holds interest
  • The game is as well built as some consumers hoped
What makes this stand out?

One of the best things about this game is that it allows kids to improve their math skills while playing a fun game.


Fast Sling Puck


Fast sling puck is a fun and rapid paced game for 2 players and the perfect action packed game for any 12 year old. The object of the game is to shoot all the pucks through the small gate to the other side. The person who clears all of the pucks wins, but keep in mind pucks will be flying back and forth.

  • An Intense and fast paced game
  • Simple games with simple rules
  • Wood on board is very thin
What makes this stand out?

This is a great board game for kids who enjoy fast paced free for all types of games. It does take concentration and good hand/eye coordination making the game require more skill than most people would think.

Our Top Picks

Buying Guide to Good Games for 12 Year Olds

Now that you have a better idea of what some of the most popular twelve years old games are, you may be wondering how to go about picking out the one that your child will like the most.

Well, this is quite an individualistic thing to try and determine, which is what can make it a little tricky. However, that’s why we’ve created this buying guide section. There’s additional information throughout this section which will help you to feel more confident about narrowing down your options.

Board Games by Gender 

When it comes to finding good games for your child, one of the most important things to consider is their gender. This is because girls will prefer playing certain games compared to boys, and boys will like other ones more than girls.

Having said that, girls and boys will be pretty happy to play these together. But if you were looking for something that’s aimed at a specific gender, take a look below.


Finding popular board games options as a gift for twelve yr old boys from this review is pretty easy as there are many options available which they’d love. For example, Dungeons & Dragons is something that boys may prefer more to girls.

This is because it involves a fantasy story and design with warriors, spells, and creatures.


We’ve included a number of fun games for twelve yr old girls in this review since they can be an incredible gift which they’ll have a blast playing with. The Shopkins bingo game, in particular, is one that girls may like more than boys.

This is because it has been created with a bright pink design which girls typically like more but please remember not to stick to these gender stereotypes if you’re daughter has other stuff she likes more.

Popular Types of 12 Year Old Games

After reading through our review of fun board games for kids age 12, you will have noticed that there are a range of different kinds available. To help you distinguish the differences between these various options and how to pick out the one that your child will like the most, take a look below.

Party Games

The Spontaneous game, for example, is a fantastic one that you can play in larger groups. As a result, it’s an awesome game for parties that both kids and adults can get play. It involves everyone singing or shouting, which is super exciting for parties. 

Strategic Game

You will have seen that there are a number of options in this review which require kids to focus and use their problem solving skills. These types are fantastic for helping your children prepare for future situations in life where focus and attention are required.

Group Games

The games options in this review which involve people working together in teams are fantastic for improving your child’s social skills. However, they are also remarkably effective at helping children to develop their teamwork abilities. This is a skill that will prove to be very useful later on in their lives.

Final Thoughts on the Top Rated Games for a 12 Year Old

So, that wraps up our review cool games for boys and girls 12 and up. You can be sure to find a game in this review that your child will adore playing with, time and time again.

Our buying guide section, just above, includes some fantastic additional information to ensure that you can pick out the one that’s best for your child. Everything you need to find that perfect board game for your child can be found, right here!

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About Sheryl Jackson

Sheryl is a wife, mother and grandmother who has 3 adult children, many grandchildren and a large family with many nieces and nephews. Over the decades Sheryl has purchased countless toys and gifts for her children, grandchildren, foster children, nieces and nephews. Sheryl has an M.A. in communications and creative writing and loves using her experience as a parent and grandparent to share her picks of the best toys and gift ideas for children, teenagers and young adults.