284 – Five Fantastic Family Filler Favorites – The Family Gamers Podcast

Beet card and 2 Artichokes

Fact! in the NFL, it takes 284 games to determine who’s going to play in the Super Bowl. (32 teams play 17 regular season games, so 16*17 = 272, plus 12 playoff games.)

Inspired by a post in our Facebook community, we want to talk about five of our favorite filler games that are great for families – under 30 minutes, very little set up / clean up, and other features that make them very good for families.

What We’ve Been Playing

Starting with the Monthly Report for February. Andrew hasn’t had much time to play games because he’s been busy making maple syrup.

Andrew: 24 plays of 20 games. H-index 2. Most played: Maul Peak, Race to Stupid, Skull King, Skulls of Sedlec.

Anitra: 46 plays of 31 games. H-index 3. Most played: Maul Peak, A Gentle Rain, Kingdomino Origins, Love Letter: Batman, Skulls of Sedlec.

Family 10×10 update: We have played 15 total games for our 10×10 so far.

Cuphead: Fast Rolling Dice Game (more below)
Pandemic Legacy Season 0
Sherlock Holmes: Baker Street Irregulars (review soon)
Potion Explosion (our review from 2017!)
Get the MacGuffin (our review – a favorite restaurant game for our family)
Batman: Love Letter – another great restaurant game
Land vs Sea (our review)
Kids Chronicles: Quest for the Moon Stones (our review) – only one quest left for our son to explore.
Andor: The Family Fantasy Game (review soon)

Welcome new members

Two more new members this week. Come say hello!

Cuphead timer

SNAP Review – Cuphead

We loved this fast rolling dice game – but is it a good fit for your family? Probably only if you love Cuphead or you love speed-rolling. Watch the video or read the transcript on the SNAP review page.


Ken wrote us an email telling us we should have mentioned Raptor in our 2-player battle games episode. “I think it rivals Unmatched.”

Ton of thoughts in the community on 2-player battle games:

Joseph Reininger suggested Dice Masters (or Quarriors, etc)

Courtney White recommends Hogwarts Battle – Defence against the Dark Arts, the 2-player duelling version from The Op.

Rory O’Connor mentioned Prisma Arenaof course! We just don’t usually think of this as a 2-player duel.

Five Fantastic Filler Games

  1. Qwingo (our review) – a single die, almost no setup, and very compact for travel. It can accommodate any size family, and will help build numeracy skills.
  2. Similo (our review) – a cooperative card game that can also accommodate any number of players. And there’s so much flexibility in giving clues!
  3. Bananagrams – this is a classic for a reason! And we’ve found that early-spellers can do okay with some coaching. No worries about them getting wet or messy, too.
  4. Abandon All Artichokes (our review) – a great intro to deck-building and inexpensive. Portable (minus the tin).
  5. 5er Finden (our review) – a great roll and write with a timed component. Find shapes that contain the rolled colors/symbols and try to do it quickly! Can be played “on the go” with just 4 dice and dry erase boards.

All of these games are great choices for families to play when you don’t have a lot of time but you’re ready to use your brain a bit. They’re not empty filler games, they’re ones that will make you think – and make your kids think, too!

All of these games have different aspects and appeal to different folks. What’s your family’s favorite?

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Or, for the most direct method, email us! andrew@thefamilygamers.com and anitra@thefamilygamers.com.

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