Looking for the Best Pre-Teen Games for boys aged 9-12 years? This guide includes the best 'Tween party games for boys. 'Tween games are notoriously difficult to choose, so we've done our best to make it a wide selection of the top-rated board games for boys.
The key to this age group is fostering healthy competition, as this is the age when children begin to assert their authority over one another. Use 2-4 player games and set up structured leagues or knockout playoffs, with prizes for the winners (maybe they could get to keep the board game as a prize!).
Here's a list of the best 'Tween party games and board games, in no particular order. Any of these choices would make an excellent gift for the correct age group, though choose the topic carefully based on what you know about the child.
This may sound like a surprising choice for our pre-teen games guide. It's been around forever, and surely familiarity will breed contempt? But Monopoly is a classic for a reason. Your kids will love to play it. 9yrs old is about the right time to be learning the lessons the game can teach, and there are Monopoly games for all occasions, themes and seasons, from Batman to the Wizard of Oz, Scooby Doo to Spongebob Squarepants.
With so much to choose from, there's bound to be a perfect game for your son, nephew or grandson. Note that Monopoly is not really a good choice of 'Tween party games, because takes too long to play for most parties.
No boy can resist the urge to become a goblin (some need less help with this than others! Right, Mom?) and Kragmortha is a hilarious game in the right company. It may be a little complex for the younger end of the spectrum of this age group, but you'll find this pre-teen game gets played well into the early teens.
This is a spooky game that's great for a Halloween gaming session, or anytime boys would like to be a little scared! It might be a little too long for a traditional birthday party, but it's great entertainment for three or four boys. Maybe a useful choice of slumber party games (click to see printable sleepover games at Python Printable Games).
The most interesting aspect of this adventure-themed twist on the classic pre-teen game of Parcheesi is the deck of cards. Each card may be slid into a space on the board, and it changes the layout of the board, so your route to the treasure may be blocked. Ruin plays best with four players, but is still okay with two or three.
For kids who have seen the Jumanji movie, the appeal of playing the board game is almost irresistible. We find the Jumanji board game to be only okayish, but that hasn't blunted its appeal, and parents will be pleased to note that no heards of animals or pith-helmeted hunters will rampage through your house when the kids play it.
If you're looking for a game for only two players, look no further than Battleship. This classic two-player games choice can even be played on graph paper with pencils if you're short of a set, but Electronic Battleship is the ultimate, with torpedo and explosion sounds, and more detailed game options.
Another pre-teen game that is better with four players, Blokus is a game of scarcity, putting a premium on the available space left to each player's color on the board. Block your opponents as you seek to use all your tiles. Simple fun, great for strategic planning, and plays within 15 to 20 minutes. The Blokus 3D edition is an extra dimension for math prodigies!
One of the best pre-teen games is Game of Life. There are numerous versions of this, collected in our Game of Life guide. For many, the original is still the best.
This game probably takes too long to play at a birthday party, but it's an evergreen classic that kids will get a lot out of, even into their early teens, with plenty of stealth learning messages embedded into the gameplay (such as the consequences of not going on to higher education).
A surprising game, and a perfect choice of 'Tween party games for boys, T-shirt game sees the players choosing a slogan to go with illustrations on miniature T-shirts. We don't like this for adults, as the shirts and slogans are toned down far too much and the game comes over as a bit too careful for its own good, but this makes it great. A pre-teen party games classic in the making.
Just like Monopoly, there are UNO card games for every season, theme and occasion. Unlike Monopoly, this game doesn't take long to play, so you can safely choose it for 'Tween party games.
Don't see your favorite pre-teen games here? Send us board game reviews!