Family Parlor Games

Picture of Family Parlor Games

Family parlor games (or parlour games)
are quiet, indoor games suitable for families that were
originally played around a table for
an evening's entertainment. They are great
after dinner parties or other functions.

Parlor Games are indoor games that can be enjoyed by adults and children of all ages. They were originally known as parlour games because they were played in the parlour room of upper and middle class families during the Victorian and Elizabethan eras. They were also common in palaces of many Far Eastern countries.

Most homes no longer have a parlour room but they can easily be played in a family room or rumpus room. Many games can be played around table, although some games (like "Charades") may need a little more room. They are equally suitable for birthday parties, family reunions or a get-together with friends.

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Some family parlor games which are suitable for adults and children sitting around a table include:

    Fractionary - How well can you create definitions for obscure dictionary words?

    Beetle - The classic parlor game

    Monster - A variation of Beetle

    Chinese Whispers - Also known as Rumors or Broken Telephone

    Likes and Dislikes - Do you think you know everyone at the table? Find out with this game

    Good Day Garry - Quick thinking and Australian accents make this a very fun game

    Twenty Questions - You have only twenty questions to find the answer in this classic word game

    The Great Panjandrum - You'll need to be able to spell to avoid the poison letter

    Lotto - An easy game for adults and children with no skill required

    Bingo - Similar to Lotto but involves a little more strategy to win

    Acrostics - Good spelling and vocabulary skills will be needed to find a series of suitable words

    Memory - Test your powers of observation with this game, also known as Memory Test and Kim's Game

    Boxwords - Complete a grid with random letters to make as many words as you can

    Telegrams - Create a telegram-style message based on a series of letters

    Taps - Great for large groups sitting around a table. How good is your co-ordination?

    Travellers Alphabet - Travel around the world one letter at a time

    Guggenheim - Good general knowledge and spelling skills are an advantage but everyone can play

    Miju - Simple rules but a hard game to win. For teams or individual players

    The Poetry Game - Shakespeare would cringe if he heard some of these poems!

    Pyramids - Create pyramids of words based on one keyword

    I Love My Love - The truth is optional in this love game based on the alphabet

    Taboo - Can you avoid answering the leader with the forbidden word?

    I Packed My Bag - A good memory will be essential if you want to win this game

    Table Story - My family loves playing this easy and entertaining game

Family parlor games which need more room include:

    Pass the Orange - A noisy and fun game for two or more teams

    Winking - An active game that teenagers (and other 'young' people) really enjoy

    Yes No Beans - Avoid saying 'Yes' or 'No' in this ice-breaker game

    Sardines - Children especially love this active and cosy game

    Dumb Crambo - A mime game for teams that is still very noisy

    The Game - Some people believe this game beats all other games for fun and enjoyment

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