Okay, if you've already read any of this site it has probably become abundantly clear that I love Boggle (but I couldn't NOT include it on this list!). I won't dwell on Boggle very long since you can read the rest of the site for more information. I'll just say that Boggle is a wonderful game for families, friends, or any other social gathering for a bit of fun. Click here for more information about Boggle.Taboo
Taboo is an energetic game for young adults and adults. It involves using your creativity to get your team to guess certain words without giving the five most obvious clues (which are "Taboo"), all in a fast-paced timed manner. I have found that Taboo can be a really fun game waged among friends, couples, or women versus men! It's amazing to watch how differently people solve the communication problem and get their team to guess correctly. Click here for more information about Taboo.Settlers of Catan
Settlers of Catan is a unique strategy game in that it only lasts 45 minutes to an hour (unlike traditional strategy games like Risk which can last for hours...or days!). It involves some intelligent decision-making, but there's also an element of luck which I think makes Settlers of Catan less intimidating (and more fun) for people who do not always like strategy games (I'm one of those people!). The premise of Settles of Catan is that you are a colonist trying to build the most successful set of colonies/towns in a new world. You try to amass resources like lumber or wool, trade them among players, and expand your area. Settlers of Catan is highly enjoyable by itself, and there are also several expansion packs available to add new interest. Click here for more information about Settlers of Catan.Scrabble
I believe that Scrabble, while well-established as a traditional word game, is sometimes underrated and overlooked. People say Scrabble in the same breath as brussel sprouts (which I also think are underrated and quite tasty!). It may be a fairly straight-forward word game, if you give Scrabble a chance you may discover that it lets you be creative with word creation, block your opponents from reaching the triple word score, and otherwise show off your wordy talents. While also great for young adults, I find playing Scrabble over a nice glass of wine to be a fabulous way to spend an adult evening. Click here for more information about Scrabble.Cranium
I actually played Cranium for the first time with my in-laws and my then-boyfriend now-husband. It was a fun game and an amazingly effective way to break the ice. What's neat about Cranium is that it plays to a range of different talents and personal strengths. There are word puzzles for the word-minded, charades for the actors, pictionary for the artists, trivia for those people who seem to know everything, and various other creative categories. Like Taboo, Cranium is a timed, fast-paced game which gets the group energy flowing. Click here for more information about Cranium.Arkham Horror
Arkham Horror may sound like a rather dorky game as it is based on Lovecraft's horror stories like Call of Cthulu, but I believe it is a diamond in the rough. First of all, let me say that it is NOT necessary to know or even like Lovecraft to enjoy Arkham Horror. In fact, I read some Lovecraft and didn't particularly like it myself. The thing that makes this game a pleasant surprise is that all the players are working together toward a common goal, save the town of Arkham from the many mind-blowing monsters and other horrors. Working cooperatively, plays of Arkham Horror amass clues, uses spells and weapons to fight the monsters, travel through portals to other worlds and ultimately seal those portals to keep other wordly-horrors from wrecking havoc in Arkham. Arkham Horror is a great game to stem the overly competative urges of any group! Click here for more information about Arkham Horror.