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Best Board Games for 9-Year-Olds

Last Updated on November 8, 2022

Whether you’re rained in or stuck inside due to a scorching summer heatwave, it can be tempting to switch on the TV and get lost for a few hours. But what if there was a way to have fun while also engaging the mind and connecting with friends and family?

We hear you! These games listed below will captivate kids while evoking critical thinking, problem-solving, and creativity. Whether your child wants to create art, work as a spy, or slay dragons, we’ve got something for you!

Check out our best board games for 9-year-olds!

🏆 Our Top Picks for Best Board Games for 9-Year-Olds

In a hurry? Take a quick peek before you go.

01/26/2023 08:00 pm GMT

YOU MAY ALSO ENJOY (BEST GAMES BY AGE GROUP): Toddler & Preschool | Kindergarten | 2-Year-Old | 3-Year-Old | 4-Year-Old | 5-Year-Old | 5-6-Year-Old | 7-Year-Old | 8-Year-Old | 9-Year-Old | 10-Year-Old | 11-12-Year-Old | Teens & Teenagers

Azul 

Azul Family Board Game

Players: 23
Playing time: 30-45 min

Spain’s Alhambra Palace is truly a spectacle for the eyes. In fact, after seeing its beauty, King Manuel I requested his palace in Portugal be adorned in the same Moorish mosaics. Bring this artwork to life and awaken your child’s inner artisan as they craft beautiful stained glass for Portugal’s Royal Palace.

In this puzzle-like game, players will take turns choosing tiles from the factory and strategically place them on their board. Collect full sets of tiles and various arrangements for extra points. Keep in mind, unused tiles will cost you points at the end and further lead your opponents to victory. This game is great for teaching strategy, as each chosen tile will affect the other players’ future moves — for better or worse.  

What we liked

Azul is fun for the entire family and the rules are simple, making it a great game for children. The intricate, vibrant tiles that caught the eye of King Manuel I are sure to inspire the artisan in your kids.

What could be better

It is a simple abstract game and does what it says on the box. You may feel that it is easier to lose points rather than gain them so it could become frustrating.

Azul
$39.99 $31.99

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01/28/2023 03:30 pm GMT

Dragonrealm

Players: 2-4
Playing time: 20-30 min

If a treasure hunt doesn’t pique the interest of curious 9-year-olds, then what does? From the same creator as Dragonwood, this mystical exploration will have you sneaking, searching, and storming through castles and cabins, collecting coins, and completing tasks. 

Dragonrealm is a card-based game that has players deciding on locations they wish to explore while dodging pesky goblins en route. The aim is to reach your destinations and gain Location cards which will be worth Dragon Stones by the end of play.

What we liked

Dragonrealm is a perfect family game. Your 9-year-old will have the opportunity to use and develop decision-making skills, multi-tasking, and enjoy plenty of twists along the way.

What could be better

There are a lot of small components so it can feel a bit fiddly at times for participating adults.

Dragonrealm
$24.99

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01/23/2023 07:56 am GMT

Magic Maze 

Magic Maze Board Game Box and Components

Players: 1-8
Playing time: 15 min

​​A mage, elf, dwarf, and barbarian walk into a mall… Actually, this isn’t a joke — it’s a board game! These characters have lost everything and now they need your help with… thievery.

In this cooperative game, each player will need to steal one thing. All players will share control of all the characters. Everyone will need to utilize their game tiles with instructions to try to reach their intended object. Once the objects are stolen, players need to work together and rush to the exit!

Burglars need to be quiet to pull off this task and so will you. While the timer is counting down, players are not able to communicate with each other. No words, no hand gestures. Will your team make it out before mall security crashes your party?

What we liked

With a 15-minute play time and a variety of scenarios, your child can play over and over again to find out how many times they can successfully pull off the heist.

What could be better

It could be wonderful to have a quiet and peaceful game, however, the concept might be alien to young players so even some degree of communication or hand gestures would make the atmosphere more relaxed.

Magic Maze
$42.49 $29.99

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01/27/2023 02:26 am GMT

When I Dream

When I Dream Board Game Box and Components

Players: 4-10
Playing time: 20-40 min

Dreams are brilliant for memory consolidation and are connected to developing better cognitive function so this game is perfect for young growing minds. When I Dream is a fun party game that concentrates on imagination and guessing, but don’t fret, you’re not actually required to fall asleep. 

For each round, one player wears a blindfold and imagines they are drifting off into dreamworld. The opponents are required to play different roles, basically a Goodie, a Baddie and a Trickster, without the blindfolded player comprehending who is who.

The opponents attempt to lead the dreamer player in different directions according to their roles and the dreamer must tell a story from the words they guessed. Rounds last for 2 minutes so it’s pretty quick-fire and points are gained due to correct guesses.

What we liked

A cool and alternative concept, When I Dream allows players to focus on communication and wordplay.

What could be better

You might find that scoring does not always seem balanced and replayability may not be possible after a lot of games.

When I Dream
$39.99

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01/23/2023 07:50 am GMT

Dragonwood

Dragonwood Family Board Game

Players: 24
Playing time: 20 min

Grab your sword and prepare to ride shield-first into the magical land of Dragonwood! Your neck of the woods now consists of grumpy trolls, hungry bears, and of course, dragons!

In this game, play your cards wisely and use them to earn dice. Each turn, players will choose to draw cards or attempt to capture a creature by rolling the dice. Depending on which cards you play and which dice you earn, you will stomp, scream, or strike to catch these mythical creatures. 

Beware, as one creature is captured, another will appear in Dragonwood.  Enhancement cards will ensure you’re more likely to capture creatures throughout the game. The game ends when players have successfully defeated both dragons or the adventure deck has been played through twice.

What we liked

If your child likes fantasy games, they are sure to love Dragonwood! This game is great for 9-year-olds because there are options in the rulebook to make the game easier or harder and quicker or longer-lasting.

What could be better

A lot of luck is involved as it is based on card turning and dice rolls so there are not huge elements of strategy or interaction between players.

Dragonwood: A Game of Dice & Daring Board Game
$22.50 $20.64

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01/26/2023 08:00 pm GMT

Ticket to Ride

Ticket to Ride Board Game

Players: 25
Playing time: 30-60 min

All aboard! Choo-choo! In Ticket to Ride, players will construct railways and travel across North America. This strategic, route-building game is great for stirring up a little friendly family competition.  

The object of this game is to earn points by building railways to connect cities. Choose routes wisely as points are dependent on how long the railway is; additionally, points are lost for routes left incomplete at the end of the game. Whoever constructs the longest consecutive railway will earn a bonus. Watch the board fill with colorful, plastic trains as players fulfill routes throughout the continent.

What we liked

Because of the simplicity of the game, it is perfect to introduce your child to and kindle their love of board games. Plus, with simple, easy-to-understand rules, this game can easily be played at the drop of a conductor’s hat.

What could be better

The components are simple; Ticket to Ride doesn’t promote itself to be a flashy or bright, and colorful game. There is potential to be more attention-grabbing.

Ticket to Ride
$54.99 $47.44

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01/27/2023 08:30 am GMT

You may also enjoy:

Dixit 

Dixit Board Game Box and Components

Players: 3-6
Playing time: 30 min

Your child’s imagination is free to run wild in the storytelling game of Dixit. With picture cards that resemble a dreamy wonderland, the possibilities for uniquely creative tales are endless.

Players will take turns using their cards to create a sentence for the others. The “audience” will then choose one of their own cards that they feel best matches the story. Players will secretly vote and decide a winner.

What we liked

Dixit is an excellent game for children to create fantastical tales and allow their imaginations to run free. The fact that their opponents must vote, means it adds enough competitiveness to avoid it becoming tedious.

What could be better

The cards are quite small and they could introduce more variety in the original.

In an age of smartphones and gadgets, it’s nice to take a break from the digital world and have fun simply with imagination and creativity. This game is straightforward and can easily be replayed, allowing for boundless opportunities to get those creative juices flowing.

Dixit

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Spy Alley

Players: 2-6
Playing time: 45 min

In Spy Alley, you are tasked to go undercover with a secret identity for your country.  

Your mission, should you choose to accept it, is to collect passwords, disguises, and more, all without being found out. Spies will attempt to uncover their opponents’ identities while throwing curveballs to hide their own. Deceive your friends by intentionally misleading them to think you are a spy for another country.

Satisfied with your snooping? Ready to guess which country a foe is from? You better be sure — a wrong guess will put an end to your career as a spy. Likewise, if your identity is revealed, your days as a spy are over and you forfeit everything you’ve worked so hard for.

What we liked

Kids will be on the edge of their seats trying to sniff out who has been bluffing. This game will have your kids using logic and problem-solving to expose other spies and creep closer towards victory. In the end, there can be only one World’s Best Spy.

What could be better

Spy Alley, for obvious reasons, is not the best game for 2 players, so “the more the merrier” it is!

Spy Alley
$50.00 $39.99

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01/23/2023 08:07 am GMT

Kingdomino 

Kingdomino Board Game

Players: 2-3
Playing time: 15 min

What 9-year-old doesn’t want to be a lord or lady? Well, here’s your chance! In this feudal tile placement game, you will build and expand your empire using — you guessed it — dominos.

Players will take turns strategically choosing and placing land tiles around their castle. Matching land tiles — such as forest, wasteland, water — must be adjacent to each other, so you will need to plan accordingly. Aim to collect tiles with a crown emblem, as only connected terrain groups with a crown will be awarded points.

Kingdomino puts a medieval twist on classic dominoes. This award-winning game is great for kids because it’s easy and quick to play.

What we liked

Parents can appreciate that their kids are learning valuable problem-solving skills. It is a great game to have on hand for a rainy day.

What could be better

Kingdomino is a super gateway game but the rules can potentially feel too simple depending on the maturity of some children. More complex twists could work nicely.

Kingdomino
$19.99

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01/25/2023 06:45 am GMT

Isle of Skye

Isle of Skye Board Game Box and Logo Header

Players: 2-5
Playing time: 30-40 min

Although parents may know this country for its kilts and peaty scotch, the Isle of Skye in Scotland is an extraordinary destination with mythical fairies, long-haired highland cows, and dramatic and stunning scenery. Serve up some Haggis and enjoy this adventure.

In this competitive territory-building game, players will act as leaders of clans to build up their respective areas in the Isle of Skye. Earn points by attaining objectives on the gameboard, which change with each game. Buy and set tiles deliberately to score the most points and reign over opposing clans.

What we liked

Because of the scoring tiles and strategy techniques used, this game has a high replay value with endless outcome possibilities. Your 9-year-old is sure to have a great time building the strongest kingdom in all the Isle.

What could be better

A fair amount of luck is involved and there may be moments where this could seem unbalanced but overall, there is plenty to appreciate.

Isle of Skye: From Chieftain to King
$44.99

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01/23/2023 08:01 am GMT

Just One

Just One Board Game Box and Components

Players: 3-7
Playing time: 20 min

Newly adapted and originally named We Are The Word, the challenges in Just One are more team-friendly than its rival guessing games. Gameplay revolves around helping your opponents to guess a specific word by offering one-word written clues. The clever twist in these rules is that your clue must be unique and not repeated by another player. 

Just One is a 13-card game and your target is to get as close to scoring 13 points as possible. It is an amicable game for young and adult players, requiring some imaginative force and strategy but after a few plays, you’re sure to become a strong contender.

What we liked

Just one is super easy to learn, but remember that originality is the key to this one. It also requires you to grab good old-fashioned pens and paper!

What could be better

After several plays, it might seem a bit too easy for adults, but excellent for 9-year-olds developing their vocabulary.

Just One
$24.99 $20.49

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01/23/2023 07:45 am GMT

Latice Hawai’i

Players: 2-8
Playing time: 20 min

Latice Hawai’i is built differently. It was created by a family, in their living room — not a corporation — and you can feel the love that went into making it for you and your family. So, step away from the day-to-day monotony and spend some quality time playing in this tropical paradise.

The object of the game is to be the first person to use all their tiles. This can be done by placing matching color or animal tiles adjacent to already laid tiles. Strategically placing pieces on the board will earn you extra points and usher in your win quicker! 

Be careful! A swift gust of wind could rearrange the board, undoing all your Sudoku-like skill work! This game will keep the kids on their toes as they fight to be the greatest in Hawai’i.

What we liked

What’s particularly great about this game is all the different ways to play — from kiddie mode to timed mode, to a version for more than four players — so this game can grow with your children, and you can play for years to come.

What could be better

Latice Hawai’i somehow makes it quite easy to gain points and you may feel that you could win without too much effort. Still, a great confidence builder for 9-year-olds.

Latice Hawai'i
$39.99

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01/23/2023 08:01 am GMT

Go Nuts for Donuts

Players: 2-6
Playing time: 20 min

If you’re a fan of Sushi Go then Go Nuts for Donuts will not disappoint. Play is mostly based on bidding and bluffing, and most likely some stomach rumbling too!

Players each have numbered cards. Donut cards are dealt in the center to equal the number of players plus one. Maybe you’re interested in taking a jelly-filled, sprinkled, or Boston cream donut. Either way, you must put a number card face down and you and your opponents will simultaneously reveal the numbers together, and the Donuts and points will be yours.

Seems simple! However, the catch is that if two or more players choose the same number, those bidders gain nothing.

What we liked

There is certainly an element of strategy in Go Nuts for Donuts so it is perfect for developing critical-thinking skills and learning how to recognize poker faces.

What could be better

The chances of you not collecting any points is much higher if you have a high number of players meaning that realistically 3 is probably the ideal number of participants.

Go Nuts for Donuts
$17.31

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01/23/2023 07:56 am GMT

Apples to Apples Junior

Apples to Apples Junior Board Game Box and Cards

Players: 410
Playing time: 30 min

Apples to Apples is a classic party game, and this version has been adapted for a younger crowd.

With 576 cards to play with, kids will have a blast choosing cards to make silly connections, while boosting their vocabulary and logic. Simple setup and instructions mean the game can begin quickly and be replayed over and over again.

First, the judge will show a red card. Then, the other players will pick one of their own cards which they believe best fits. It’s up to the judge to decide which card wins. This game is fast-paced and because of the wide variety of cards, every round brings its own humor.

What we liked

This is a great game for family gatherings, birthday parties, sleepovers, you name it! And we love that it has been tailored for a younger age group. Everyone is sure to enjoy this staple game!

What could be better

As the game is slightly dated now, some of the characters on the cards may be unrecognizable for 9-year-olds today. However, learning some old Disney characters from the noughties isn’t so bad!

Apples to Apples Junior
$24.19

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01/25/2023 01:30 pm GMT

Wrap-Up

We hope you enjoyed our list of the best board games for 9-year-olds. Playing these games as a family is sure to become a lifelong tradition as well as help improve your children’s cognitive and critical thinking skills.

Have you tried any of the games on this list? Drop a comment below! We’d love to hear from you.

Looking for educational games? Find the best in our video here:

SHARING IS CARING

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Azul
$39.99 $31.99

Buy on Amazon Buy at Noble Knight
We earn a commission if you make a purchase, at no additional cost to you.
01/28/2023 03:30 pm GMT