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 skills, 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.
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.
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.
- TILE PLACEMENT GAME: Azul is a tile placement game in which...
- STRATEGY BOARD GAME: Draft tiles from a central market and place...
- COMPETITIVE AND CHALLENGING: Every tile you claim affects what...
#2. Magic Maze
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?
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.
- A cooperative game without the Alpha leader effect
- Simultaneous, real-time play. No waiting for your turn to come...
- 7 tutorial scenarios, 10 more difficult ones to challenge you
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.
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.
- Collect sets of adventurer cards to earn dice
- Roll dice against your foes!
- Choose your strategy carefully, the landscape of Dragonwood is...
#4. Ticket to Ride
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.
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.
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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.
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.
- Storytelling Game: Dixit Is The Classic, Simple, Lighthearted...
- Creative Guessing Game: Each Round, One Player Selects A Card And...
- Engaging Dreamlike Illustrations: Dixit Features 84 Cards With...
#6. Spy Alley
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.
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.
- Winner of 12 National Awards, Including MENSA SELECT, AUSTRALIAN...
- Spy Alley is a classic hidden identity strategy board game for...
- Simple rules can be explained in minutes but takes a lifetime to...
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. 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.
- Strategy Tabletop Board Game: Kingdomino Is One Of The...
- Family Or Adult Strategy Game: This 2 To 4 Players Fantasy Game...
- How To Play: Kingdomino Is A Card Drafting And Tile Placement...
#8. Isle of Skye
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.
Because of the scoring tiles and strategy techniques used, this game has a high value of replay with endless outcome possibilities. Your 9-year-old is sure to have a great time building the strongest kingdom in all the Isle.
- TILE PLACEMENT GAME: Isle of Skye is a multiple award-winning,...
- STRATEGY GAME: Isle of Skye is a classic tile-laying game where...
- CHALLENGING AND COMPETITIVE: Instantly recognizable to anyone...
#9. Latice Hawai’i
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’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.
- LATICE HAWAII combines simple rules with evolving complexity for...
- LOTS OF FUN for your friends and family. LATICE ("Lattice") is an...
- FAST START: Easy to learn rules! Includes a short manual with...
#10. Apples to Apples Junior
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.
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!
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.