The Family Game Night Experience

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Exchanging fake money, gambling with dice, the sounds of defeat or victory, and the ability to hold your win over the heads of family and friends for weeks to come; are all aspects of the activity known as family game night.

Family game night can be a night to anticipate- or dread- depending on how well your family and friends take to losing. It’s a time where your family’s competitive natures reach a whole new level, as seen in popular game shows that make a spectacle of the event.

Game nights where everyone gets together can be a way to pick a fight or settle arguments. If two siblings are caught bumping heads at every turn, putting them together on a team can help sort out their differences. If they win, then they’re winning together which creates comradery. Nothing settles a fight quite like crushing the rest of your family in a game.

According to a recent survey from Hasbro Games, 91% of families who make the time to play games together report that game playing sessions give their family mood a positive boost.”

My family enjoys game nights like nothing else. We laugh, joke, curse, and yell at the top of our lungs when we destroy everyone else- lovingly, of course. Though it may seem to outsiders like we can’t stand each other during game night, it works to strengthen our family’s dynamic and brings us closer together.

It’s a time to get to know the people closest to you on an even deeper level. Sophomore Langston Ball agreed, saying that although his family had game nights only once a year, it definitely strengthened those bonds.

“It kind of helps with getting to know your family,” Ball said. “My siblings and I are a lot closer after.”

While this made sense to me, as I also noticed the same thing after our own game night, sophomore Nicholai Shrek said that it didn’t affect the relationships in his family in a significant way.

“I mean, I already know them,” Shrek explained. “They’re my family so it’s not like I’m learning anything new.”

He did, however, agree that while the game night is fun, there’s one game he wholeheartedly refuses to play.

On the internet there are tales of flipped tables, break-ups, and even stabbings after someone doesn’t follow the rules or steals money from the bank.”

— Lindsay Dodgson, buisnessinsider.com

“Monopoly tears families apart,” Shrek jokingly mentioned. “There’s no way I’d play it with my family.”

I agree completely with his opinion. My parents hide the Monopoly board every time we play until someone finds it months later. After we play, it goes right back into a hiding spot. I do think it’s safer to pick friendlier games like Catan since according to an article, nothing gets blood boiling quite like a game of Monopoly. In fact, the company Hasbro has even introduced a helpline number to any feuding families. Experts are on call with the official rulebook to settle any arguments that may occur.

Is it really any wonder no one can ever finish a game of Monopoly?

While this game may be forbidden in many households, game night as a whole is an important time for the family, especially with outside obligations like school, sports, work, etc. As long as Monopoly isn’t on the list of games for the night, getting together for even just one night a month can be beneficial for any family, no matter how long you’ve known each other.