Holiday-Themed Games!! Part 1: Halloween

If the pandemic has taught me anything, other than I need to write my to do list/schedule in easily-erasable pencil, its to celebrate in anyway you can.  Without being able to do some of our regular traditions last holiday season we looked for fun new things to try from home.  At Halloween we did spooky gingerbread houses, a bunch of holiday themed puzzle, and we now own fabric napkins for just about every occasion.  But games are a great way to celebrate too!  Here are a few of my Halloween picks in case you’re looking to grow your holiday-themed game collection!  (Part 2 for Christmas-themed games will come early in November)

Quick Halloween Games

Scary themed games for adults are easy to come by as there quite a few out there, especially in the hobby game market, but these are specifically Halloween themed and most are very family friendly.  Did I forget one of your family faves?  Drop it in the comments below or reach out to me @TheGameAisle on Twitter or Instagram.

Something Wild! Nightmare Before Christmas Game with Small Jack Skellington Figure in Box WindowSomething Wild! Disney The Nightmare Before Christmas Jack Skellington Game

Funko Games • Ages 6+ • 2-4 Players • 15 Minutes • $8 on Amazon

I’m on team “Nightmare Before Christmas is a Halloween movie” so this cute little, low priced, card game fits nicely into this post! There are actually MANY Something Wild! games so if this isn’t your jam, maybe one of the others is and they all play the same way.   To win you’ll need to score 3 power cards, and to win a power card you need to make a set (3 of a kind) or a run (3 in a row in the same color). Play the color of the current power card, and collect the super cute Funko Pop! pocket figure of Jack.  He’ll help you on future turns.  Overall it’s a nice easy way to play a rummy-type game with the cuteness dialed up!

Similo Spookies game box with a monster and ghost on the cover

Smilios Spookies

Horrible Guild • Ages 7+ • 2+ Players • ~10 Min • ~$10 on Amazon

Similos Spookies is one of many Similos games, but the Spookies version looks like a creepy parade of trick-or-treaters. With amazing artwork, this cooperative deduction card game plays in ~10 minutes.  One player will play character cards out of their hand saying whether or not it is similar or dis-similar to the secret character.  All other players working together to figure out who the secret character — or in this case secret Spookie is!

Taco Cat Goat Cheese Pizza Halloween Box

Taco Cat Goat Cheese Pizza Halloween Edition

Dolphin Hat Games • Ages 8+ • 3-8 Players • ~10 Min • $10 on Amazon

Taco Cat Goat Cheese Pizza is an easy to learn card game that’s a twist on a classic where players take turns saying the next word in the “Taco – Cat – Goat – Cheese – Pizza” chant while flipping a card.  If you flip a card that matches the item you said, everyone tries to slap the card.  The game already has cute illustrations and now it has a Halloween edition!  The five main “characters” in the game are dressed in costume, but the non- taco, cat, goat, cheese, and pizza cards are fun halloween items too.  For $10 it’s a great little thing to enjoy, although I’d be careful playing against youngsters hopped up on insane amounts of sugar! ha!

Light Strategy Halloween

The games in the list above are very easy to learn where you can pretty much glance at the rules and know how to play.  There are also several light strategy Halloween games that while they’re listed at 8+, they’ll take you a little longer to read the rules. Still sticking with cute verus gory, these are some more advanced Halloween games:

Haunted Mansion Game Box with the three Disney Ghosts on the front cover

Disney’s The Haunted Mansion: Call of the Spirits

Funko Games •  Ages 8+ • 2-6 Players • ~30 Min • ~$20 at Amazon

As expected, the artwork in this game is top notch and the board looks like a top view of the mansion. There is an endless hallway piece in the center of the game board that that spins to place you in different rooms.  Players collect ghost cards to earn points, but you’ll also end up with haunt cards which has you losing points. There are hitchhiking ghosts that may follow you around the board and haunt you when you’re in the same room. Ghosts are collects by type and the player with the most points at the end of the game is going to be the winner.

Hocus Pocus Game Box with the three witches on the front cover

Disney’s Hocus Pocus The Game

Ravensburger •  Ages 8+ • 2-6 Players • ~30 Min • ~$20 at Amazon

This is a cooperative game where you’re working together to stun the witches enough times so that the sun comes up and you win.  The board looks a bit like a cauldron and it had five piles for ingredient cards.  On your turn you can ask a yes or no question about everyone’s cards, but then you have to play an ingredient card on the board matching either the color or the ingredient type of the card you place your card on.  The yes/no question will help you decide which card to play out of your hand. Your goal is to get the 5 piles on the board to either have all of the same color or all of the same type of ingredient.  If you, you’ve stunned the witches once. If you ever run out of ingredient cards you’ll lose.  There are some other fun twists in the game too, and of course the art is really nice.

Patchwork Halloween game box with a pumpkin made of a halloween patchwork graphic

Patchwork Halloween Edition

Lookout Games • Ages 8+ • 2 Players Only • ~30 Min • ~$30 currently still a pre-order – check your local game store

I love the tile laying game Patchwork (if you haven’t played it’s a must!) and they are coming out with a Halloween Edition!  Sadly, it doesn’t look like it’s going to make it in time for this year, but it’s just so delightfully done if this seems like your jam I’d preorder now!  Instead of buttons they’re using eyeballs, the patches are all Halloween patterns, and the cost tags look like little tombstones!  ((squeals with glee!)). PS. The Patchwork Americana Edition is pretty cheap on Amazon right now if you’re looking for an anytime copy.