Transitioning from high school to college is a significant change that can be challenging and overwhelming. With increased responsibilities and expectations, it’s natural to feel pressure. However, college is also a time of excitement and opportunity. Despite the demands, it’s an exciting phase of life that offers the chance to live a more fulfilling and satisfying life. Part of the college experience is attending events and parties, including game nights.

Speaking of game nights, Monopoly, Life, and Candyland are often the first to come to mind. However, these classics can become dull and repetitive as you get older. Luckily, there are plenty of other tabletop games available. To help you get started, we’ve compiled a list of some games for college students. Whether you try one or all, you may discover a new favorite hobby or even ignite a lifelong passion. Remember, there’s no need to resort to blowing up kittens or ruining friendships to have a good time! So go ahead and have some fun!

Czech Games Codenames

Czech Games Codenames” is a popular word-based party game designed for groups of players. It’s recommended for players aged 14 and older due to the complexity of word association and deduction required to play the game. Players are divided into two teams, each with a “spymaster” and field operatives. The spymasters aim to provide one-word clues and a number to guide their team members in identifying the team’s “agents” from a grid of seemingly unrelated words. The catch is that some words on the grid are neutral, while others belong to the opposing team, and one word is the “assassin” word that must be avoided at all costs. The challenge lies in connecting the spymaster’s clue to the correct words on the grid while avoiding the opponent’s agents and the assassin.”Codenames” requires clever wordplay, deductive reasoning, and a touch of luck.


Originally known as “The Settlers of Catan,” this game is designed for 3 to 4 players (though expansions allow for more players). In “Catan,” players find themselves on the fictional island of Catan, where they take on the roles of settlers aiming to establish thriving communities. The game board consists of hexagonal tiles representing different terrains, including fields, forests, mountains, hills, and pastures. Each terrain produces specific resources: brick, wood, ore, grain, and wool. The objective is accumulating resources, trading with other players, and strategically building the island’s roads, settlements, and cities. Players can earn points by achieving various goals, such as having the longest road or the largest army. The game balances competition and cooperation, as players must negotiate trades and navigate the ever-evolving board.

Outer Rim

This is a tabletop board game set in the Star Wars universe. In this game, players take on the roles of iconic characters from the Star Wars galaxy as they navigate the Outer Rim, completing missions, earning credits, and avoiding or engaging with various factions and adversaries.


Carcassonne is a highly regarded tile-laying board game that transports players to the medieval French town of Carcassonne. It’s designed for 2 to 5 players and revolves around the simple yet engaging concept of drawing and placing tiles to construct a dynamic landscape. Players strategically deploy their follower pieces, known as “meeples,” to roads, cities, and fields to maximize their scoring opportunities. Whether new to board gaming or a seasoned player, Carcassonne blends accessibility and strategic richness to keep players returning for more.

Never Have I Ever

This one is a beloved party game renowned for its ability to infuse laughter and camaraderie into social gatherings. It is designed for groups and offers a simple yet entertaining premise: players take turns making statements that begin with “Never have I ever…” followed by something they’ve never done or experienced. For example, a player might confess, “Never have I bungee-jumped.” Those who have taken the plunge would then reveal their experiences, often with humorous or unexpected anecdotes. This game serves as an excellent icebreaker, allowing participants to share personal stories, connect, and learn more about each other in a light-hearted way.

best games for college students


Scythe Stands is all about storytelling and intricate strategy. Set against an alternate history of Eastern Europe in the 1920s, players become faction leaders vying for supremacy and prosperity. Each faction possesses distinct abilities and attributes, adding complexity to the game. The primary objective is to navigate a path to victory by expanding your territory, recruiting workers, constructing formidable mechs, and amassing valuable resources. All of this takes place on a beautifully designed game board featuring a hexagonal map that captures the essence of this alternate world. The tension remains palpable throughout the gameplay as players compete for limited resources and territories. “Scythe” offers diverse approaches to victory, ensuring each session delivers a fresh and intellectually stimulating challenge.

University Games Smart Ass

University Games Smart Ass is a spirited and uproarious trivia board game with an energetic twist to quizzing. It revolves around players eagerly vying to answer questions quickly. It’s perfect for gatherings, parties, and those fun game nights where laughter and excitement reign supreme. Participants take turns reading clues that begin vague and progressively more specific, challenging players to deduce the correct answer. What sets this game apart is the element of speed and wit—players can enthusiastically shout out their answers before the clues fully reveal the solution. It’s a race against time and a test of trivia prowess. The game even features a “Who Am I?” category, where players must guess the identity of a famous person based on clues.

Mattel Games Apples to Apples

Mattel Games Apples to Apples is a beloved party card game that thrives on word association and the contagious laughter it generates. It’s designed for groups of 4 to 10 players or more and revolves around prompt cards with adjectives or descriptions, and each player holds a hand of noun cards that they believe best matches the prompt. The judge for the round collects the noun cards, shuffles them anonymously, and reveals the responses. The judge’s task is to decide which response is the most humorous, fitting, or simply their favorite. The player whose noun card is selected earns a point, and the role of judge passes to someone else for the next round. What sets Apples to Apples apart is the sheer unpredictability and creativity of the responses, often resulting in uproarious combinations that leave players laughing.

Forbidden Island

Forbidden Island offers a captivating and adrenaline-pumping cooperative board gaming experience for 2 to 4 players. In this high-stakes adventure, players become intrepid explorers tasked with retrieving four priceless treasures from an island on the brink of submersion. The island is a dynamic and ever-changing playing board, where flooding tiles and rising water levels add an element of urgency to the mission.

Each player assumes a unique role with special abilities, and the team must work together to efficiently collect the treasures and escape via the helicopter landing pad. To achieve this, players employ action cards, strategize their movements, and tackle challenges posed by the sinking island. It’ts a collaborative game where effective communication and shared decision-making are pivotal to success.

Exploding Kittens

Exploding Kittens is a wildly popular card game designed for 2 to 5 players, known for its quirky humor and fast-paced gameplay. The game revolves around a deck of cards, including Exploding Kittens, hazards you want to avoid. Players take turns drawing cards and playing action cards to manipulate the game. The objective is to be the last player standing, meaning you’ve avoided drawing an Exploding Kitten card.

The game’s humor shines through action cards like “See the Future” and “Attack,” which allow you to peek at upcoming cards or target other players. “Defuse” cards provide a lifeline if you draw an Exploding Kitten, allowing you to disarm it with items like laser pointers and catnip sandwiches.

Bottom Line

If you’re a college student seeking new ways to decompress and have fun with friends during the stresses of academia, we hope our list has been useful. If you have played any of these games before or have other recommendations for our beloved college students to try, please share your thoughts and suggestions with us in the comments below. We would love to hear from you.