Easy Christmas games for all the family

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  • Christmas games are a great way of avoiding the after-dinner lull, after eating too much turkey. Get the family on their feet and moving before the pudding comes out with these brilliantly original Christmas party games for the whole family (kids included!).

    With the whole family getting together over Christmas this year, it’s the best time to play some games! After present opening, trying to distract kids from their new Christmas toys will be a difficult one but we reckon that these party games will certainly capture their attention.

    From traditional games you’ll all already know how to play, such as Pictionary and Charades, to new and improved ones like rings on the reindeer, there are plenty of Christmas games that are suitable for all ages and whatever day over the 12 days of Christmas you want to play them. So in a year unlike any other, get ready for the festive season with some fun and homemade games.

    Scroll down to see our picks of the best Christmas games that anyone can play. We’re sure they’ll keep you entertained this Christmas…

    Christmas games to play with the whole family

    young toddler in front of a Christmas tree in an elf costume

    Credit: Getty

    The Christmas game: Cluedo

    Number of players: 4 or more
    The objective: Everyone is trying to ‘kill’ another person, simply by handing them a Christmas object without them realising. If that person takes it then they die! The last one standing – empty-handed – is the winner.
    How to play: Each person writes their own name on a piece of paper, plus one Christmas object in the house that could be easily passed to someone (no Christmas trees!). Next, each person then takes a name out of a bag, and an object. You need to pass the person you draw the Christmas item you draw and if they take it without realising, then they die. If a person dies, they have to give the person and object to their killer. The last one standing wins!

    Credit: Getty Images

    The Christmas game: Seasonal Articulate

    Number of players: More than 2
    The objective: Explain as many of the objects, events, people or phrases written on the cards in the Christmas Articulate set as possible in the time limit.
    How to play: Players split into teams and describe words to each other from six different categories including Object, Nature, Random, Person, Action and World (all Christmas themed!) as quickly as they can. The teams then move around the board based on the number of words they guess correctly and a couple of spinner bonuses.

    The Christmas game: Snowman bowling

    Number of players: The whole family!
    The objective: This one is part crafting and part game, so there’s lots of fun to be had! Knock down as many of the homemade snowman bowling pins as possible.
    How to play: Create your own Snowman bowling pins out of 8 large plastic water bottles, paper mache, toilet rolls for the snowman’s nose and some standard crafting paints. Then on Christmas day, line them up in the classic triangle-shaped bowling shape. Each person then stands a couple of metres back and takes turns at rolling a ball towards the bottles. The person who knocks down the most bottles is the winner. You can play best of five round to make the game last longer and if you want to make it harder, simply add some flour to the bottom of each of the plastic bottles before you paper mache to make them heavier.

    The Christmas game: Memory test

    Number of players: As many as you like
    The objective: To remember as many items removed from a tray as you can. The person who successfully remembers the most objects wins the game!
    How to play:  Get 10 to 15 small Christmas items and place them on a tray. Try things like a Christmas stocking, maybe one or more ornaments, Christmas cookies, cookie cutters, wrapping paper, Christmas candle, bow, Christmas movie, mince pies, nutcracker, etc…
    Set the tray down or walk around with the tray and allow people to study it for 1 or 2 minutes. Then take the tray out of the room. Now give everyone a piece of paper and a pencil and have them write down as many of the items as they can remember. The one with the most correct items written down wins.

    children lying on the floor watching a film at Christmas time

    Credit: Getty

    The Christmas game: Film bingo

    Number of players: The whole family!
    The objective: To cross off all the Christmas film bingo boxes on your card. Whoever gets there first, wins!
    How to play: Get as many pieces of card or paper as there are game players, then everyone writes things in a bingo card format they believe are classic lines or events that happen in Christmas films. As you all watch a Christmas film (it has to be one no one has ever seen before!), everyone ticks off things as they come up. Whoever ticks all their boxes first, wins!

    We have recommendations for some Christmas films on Netflix for 2020 to kick things off as well, such as The Grinch, Klaus and Arthur Christmas.

    The Christmas game: Festive charades

    Number of players: At least 4
    The objective: To guess the most amount of festive themes drawn by other players correctly.
    How to play: The rest of the group watch as you draw out a festive theme, whether it’s a film or character, Christmas decoration or festive food! Whoever guesses what it is first gets to go next and whoever makes the most amount of correct guesses is the winner of the game at the end.

    For a unique idea, you could go for something like Kevin the Carrot! Only true Christmas enthusiasts would know about the iconic Aldi festive mascot.

    Credit: Getty Images

    The Christmas game: Reindeer ring toss

    Number of players: 2 or more
    The objective: Land the most rings on Rudolph’s antlers from a distance.
    How to play: Either make your own or pick up a reindeer ring toss set from Amazon. One person in the group wears the reindeer’s antlers and stands still while other players try and land their rings on the antlers. Stand a couple of metres back and keeping moving back with each round. Whoever still manages to hook their ring on reindeer’s antlers at the furthest distance is the winner.

    The Christmas game: Pin the nose on the Rudolph

    Number of players: 4 or more
    The objective: To place the red nose on the right spot on Rudolph’s body. This is a fun festive twist on the classic Pin the Tail on the Donkey!
    How to play: One person is blindfolded and spun round to disorientate them. Once released, point them in the right direction and place the red nose in their hand, with something sticky on the back. Let them guess where Rudolph’s face is and attempt to stick the red nose where it should go. The whole group each take turns in doing this and whoever got closest wins a prize!

    The Christmas game: Ho ho ho blindman’s bluff

    Credit: Getty Images

    Number of players: 4 or more
    The objective: The ‘blind’ person wins by identifying the people in the room by touch and then hearing them say ‘ho ho ho’. The other people have to avoid being caught and identified but they can’t hide or run away but they can move about to make it harder.
    How to play: One person is blindfolded and spun round. The person with the blindfold has to move around the room and identify each person by touch alone. The other people in the room need to move around a bit so it’s hard for the person wearing the blindfold to find people. If the blind person finds you, they can ask you to say ‘ho ho ho’ in whatever voice you choose! Whoever the ‘blind’ person correctly identifies, they swap places and wear the blindfold.

    The Christmas game: Mystery stocking

    Christmas stocking

    Credit: Getty

    Number of players: 2 or more
    The objective: To guess what the mystery item hidden in the sock is correctly.
    How to play: Take a Christmas stocking and fill it with random, small prizes. Let each child hold the stocking and without putting their hands inside, feel the shape of the prize and guess what it is. If they guess a prize they get to keep it!

    The Christmas game: Festive charades

    charades

    Credit: Getty

    Number of players: 4 or more

    The objective: The rest of the group have to watch your mime and guess what the title is that you’re acting out. The person that guesses correctly then takes their turn to act out a charade. The only catch is – the subject you choose has to be Christmas-themed!

    How to play: One person stands in front of the rest of the family or friends and mimes the title of a Christmas song, play, film, book or TV programme. The person doing the miming uses hand signals to show whether it’s a film, book, pop song, etc, and then they either act out each individual word, one at a time, or mime the full title in one go. The people watching have to guess the name of whatever the person is miming. Whoever gets it right swaps places and do their own mime to the group.

    The Christmas game: Festive alphabet

    Number of players: 2 or more
    The objective: To pick a Christmas related word for every letter of the alphabet
    How to play: Take some paper and write down every letter of the alphabet vertically down the length of the page. Put the players into small teams and let them think of a Christmas related word for each letter. The first team to finish all the letters wins.

    Christmas decorations

    Credit: Getty

    The Christmas game: Human Christmas tree

    Number of players: 6 or more
    The objective: The team that finish first and have the best ‘decorated’ tree are the winners and win a prize.
    How to play: Separate into teams with one person in each team playing the Christmas tree. The team then have to turn their chosen person into a Christmas tree, using wrapping paper, tape and decorations – but they have under a minute to do it! When the minute is up the winner is the team that have the best decorated tree.

    The Christmas game: Santa style

    Number of players: 6 or more
    The objective: To create a Santa outfit first. This is a race against time, so you and your team members will need to be quick!
    How to play: Separate into teams of three or four and give each team a bag filled with materials to make a Santa outfit from. The best materials to use are red, white and black streamers and tissue paper, cotton wool balls and any fun extras like fur or glitter.

    Give the teams 5 minutes to create a Santa outfit, making it as good as they possibly can. When the time runs out, both teams take it in turns to do a catwalk of their creation and the parents can judge which one is best.

    present

    Credit: Getty

    The Christmas game: The ‘gimme’ game

    Number of players:  More than 5 is best, so this game is great for bigger family gatherings
    The objective: To get as many gifts as you can… even though you don’t know what they are!
    How to play: Depending on how many people are playing, you have two less presents than there are people. Keep them jokey, cheap gifts. It’s a good idea to wrap the presents really well and try to disguise the contents and shapes. The presents are then put together in the middle of the room. Everyone takes it in turn to throw two dice. Whoever gets a double six is allowed to take a present – but not open it. Everyone gets a go and if you get a double six, you can ‘steal’ a gift that your friend has chosen for themselves – shouting GIMME! as you do, although they may take it back if they get a double six!

    Often people take a gift that they think is going to be a really good present – this is where wrapping well can outwit other players. When everyone’s had a couple of turns and everyone has a few presents each, you’re allowed to open the presents and keep them if you wish.

    The Christmas game: Mr & Mrs

    Credit: Getty Images

    Number of players: 6 or more. This game works best with at least three couples, but doesn’t necessarily have to be couples, this also works for friends, brothers and sisters and colleagues. It helps if you know the person well of course…
    The objective: To correctly answer questions about your spouse, partner, sibling, whoever you’re playing with!
    How to play: Get into pairs and send one half of the couple out of the room while you ask their partner questions about them. Make the questions as interesting as you can, from ‘what’s her favourite perfume?’ to ‘how old was he when he had his first kiss?’. Bring the partner back into the room to answer the questions, giving one point for every correct answer. The couple with the most points wins!

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