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Top 5 Games for Pre-teen Boys

By Crystal Arcand on February 19th, 2009

The years between 7 and 11 are a time of confusion for boys. Many still want to enjoy the parental attention of the younger years, but yearn for the excitement of the older kids. That explains why it’s so incredibly hard to buy games for these guys. Stick with strategy or money, and maybe throw in a little irreverence and you’ll be good to go! Surprisingly, the classics are classics because they’re still the best. Don’t rule them out if your son’s never played one of these before.


  1. Battleship – With military strategic planning and the thought of sinking an entire aircraft carrier (imaginarily, anyway), how could you go wrong? The grids offer almost incalculable varieties of moves, so no two games are ever the same.
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  3. Chess – Let’s face it: boys love battle. Throw in the opportunity to think several moves in advance of how they can capture a king, and you’ve got him positively giddy. The “I can play chess” card is also a big plus among friends and (gasp!) the girls they’re beginning to be interested in impressing.
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  5. Clue – Solving a mystery – and a murder, to boot – is right up there with battle for boys. This classic serves it up right with plenty of opportunity for fun and exercising deductive reasoning skills. Just don’t tell them about the learning part.
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  7. Monopoly – What boy doesn’t love manhandling money? With the numerous themed versions of this classic, you’re sure to find one that will thrill your son’s heart. Just be warned – these guys can be ruthless landlords!
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  9. Fact or Crap – While this version is a new one, it’s really just a fun and irreverent take on a classic – Trivial Pursuit. Instead of coming up with answers, though, your boys will have a blast declaring the statements to be fact or… well, crap.

(Photos courtesy of brooklyn, Katrzyna, Miss Karen and Harsh Light.

  • Sponge

    Right. Because girls don’t like strategy, or money, or games that make you think.

  • Crystal Arcand (3Stairs)

    Quite the contrary – many girls do indeed like strategy, money, and games that make you think. This post simply focused on boys aged 7-11, as noted in the title.

    Thanks for reading and discussing with us!

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