If You Prefer Classic Games, These Updated Versions Are What You’ll Want Instead

Most of us grew up with a clear definition of what a classic game is. Candyland, Monopoly and checkers were pretty common. Our daughters have a completely different idea of classic because their choices were so much broader!

This list is a combination of traditional ones (read: what us old people consider classic) with a hint of pop culture nostalgia and modern classics like our daughters know. We’ve featured a few of these on the site so click through the  SahmReviews logo to learn more about them.

Scattergories Stackagories

Winning Moves Games USA

Retail Box - Scattergories Categories

The great game of Scattergories debuted in 1988 and now there’s a new twist on the game! Each player controls their own set of colored stacking pieces. Lay out the Letter Cards, flip a Category Card and the one-minute timer and the game is on! Players, playing simultaneously, shout out words that fit the category and place one of their stacking pieces on the corresponding letter card. When time’s up, the player who has their colored stacking piece on the top of the stack scores for that card. The more pieces under their piece, the higher the score!


Castle Panic (2nd Edition)

Fireside Games

Retail Box - Castle Panic

The best-selling, award-winning, cooperative tower-defense game is back with a brand new look. In Castle Panic, you’ll work together to play cards and slay advancing Monsters while conditions on the field of battle change. Slay all 49 Monsters and have at least 1 of the 6 towers standing to win.

Castle Panic – Crowns and Quests

Fireside Games

Retail Box - Castle Panie Crowns and Quests

Crowns and Quests is the newest expansion to Castle Panic. It adds 12 playable characters with unique abilities along with 18 different Quests that players must work together to complete while defending the Castle. Quests include searching for evil temples, hunting assassins, destroying magical stones that bring the enemies closer, teleporting the entire Castle to safety, and more.


Griddly Games

Retail Box - Oversight

Exercise your mind and outwit your opponents with a game of Oversight™. An abstract advanced stage game of connecting four of your tokens in a row. Players can place a token on the board or shift an entire row or column of squares by one space. The rules are simple, but the game becomes more complex as players learn from their mistakes. Pay close attention because the colors can be a distraction when you try to predict their opponents’ moves.

CLUE: Grinch

The Op

Retail Box - Clue Grinch

A timeless holiday theft is up to you to solve in this nostalgic version of the classic mystery game! Based on Dr. Seuss’s story about the grouchy green troublemaker that hijacks Whoville’s decorations, CLUE: How the Grinch Stole Christmas lets players wear the shoes of Cindy-Lou, Papa Who, and other residents of Whoville to determine WHO caught “the mean one” in the act, WHAT object The Grinch stuffed up the chimney, and WHERE in the town it was taken from!

Best Chess Set Ever

Best Knight Games

Retail Box - Best Chess Set Ever

A classic reinvented in a modern style. Patented foldable silicone board, high quality and beautifully designed weighted pieces, compact storage and easy travel; It’s spill-proof, stain-resistant and easy to clean, making it a great choice for adults, kids and outdoor use. Comes with the 32-page illustrated Best Strategy Guide Ever to take your skills to the next level. Over 2,700 ratings in Amazon with a 4.8/5 average score.

Barrel of Monkeys

Winning Moves Games USA

Retail Box - Barrel of Monkeys

Remember all the fun with this classic version of Barrel of Monkeys! The 15 monkeys have the look and feel you remember and come in the classic yellow barrel. Steady your hand and try to build the longest chain of monkeys. But, if you drop a monkey, you lose your turn! The player who makes the longest chain wins this classic game!

Jenga: Kool Aid

The Op

Retail Box - Kool Aid Jenga

Thirsty for a new way to enjoy your favorite childhood drink mix? JENGA: Kool-Aid serves up fun and nostalgia in this intense version of the classic block stacking game! Remove and replace Cherry, Lemon, and Grape colored blocks based on the roll of a die to build up extreme heights of flavor—but make way for Kool-Aid Man! The iconic smiling pitcher inches closer to breaking through your rewarding tower with every move. OH YEAH!


20 Questions

University Games

Retail Box - 20 Questions

Play the exciting game where players rack their brains to identify a mystery person, place or thing. Each round features well-known topics from history, entertainment, sports or everyday life. You know all of the topics, but how quickly will you be able to identify them from the clues? The fewer clues you need, the farther you advance!

Monopoly: Hello Kitty

The Op

Retail Box - Monopoly Hello Kitty

“You can never have too many friends!” Live by the words of Sanrio’s universally adored icon and join Hello Kitty in her colorful world with MONOPOLY: Hello Kitty and Friends! Buy, sell, and trade locations where all your favorite characters work and play in this all-new, custom version of the classic game featuring My Melody, Keroppi, Badtz-Maru, Chococat, Cinnamoroll, and many others. Six collectible tokens feature Hello Kitty and Friends as the cutest vehicles, and Celebrations and Adventures are in store as you collect Kuromi’s Candy Shop, DokiDoki’s Burger Shack, and more to be the last player standing to win!

Why go for just the regular versions when you can mix things up a bit with some of our favorite IP licenses?! If you’re looking for additional gift ideas, check out our other gift guides including Family Games, Dice Games, Gifts for Younger Kids, Home & Electronics gift ideas, Games for Teens and Adults and Party Games.

Which of these games is the first you would add to someone’s game shelf?


58 thoughts on “If You Prefer Classic Games, These Updated Versions Are What You’ll Want Instead

  1. I received Scatagories as a birthday present a few weeks back. It’s such a good game that I might get a second copy so I can add more players

  2. My favorite is Jenga:Kool-Aid

    * Like the prior comment I just posted-IDK if your intention is for this same question to be answered day after day or just once. It’s confusing for me-maybe I’m the only one. It’s not like my favorite from this list changes from one day to the next!

  3. Scattergories Stackagories would be on my list first! We love the original Scattergories and play it as a warm up for game night with everyone!

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