Top 12 Indoor Strategy Games

Chess board

We need physical exercise, but also fun outlets to give our minds a mental workout. The best way to do this: practice critical thinking with strategic games that keep players engaged, thinking and problem solving. Besides strengthening your cognitive skills, strategic games strengthen your social skills — best of all, many can be played in the comfort of your home.

Keep reading to learn more about how these top 12 indoor strategy games can strengthen your brain.


  1. CHESS: In the game of chess, players must gain the mental advantage over their opponent by using all their pieces to control the board. The ultimate goal: checkmate your opponent’s king or call a draw.
    Players: 2
  2. DARKRIDGE REUNION: This murder mystery game lets players slip into the roles of geeks, jocks, and rebels — all with special powers granted from artifacts. Each player must carry out goals and missions without running into the slasher. At the end, teams wager their points to guess the slasher. The team with the most points wins!
    Players: 6-12
  3. CATAN: On this fictional island, players use different strategies to place their settlements where they can gather prime resources: sheep, wood, brick, ore and wheat. Get 10 points first and you win Catan!
    Players: 3-4 or 5-6 with an expansion set
  4. BATTLESHIP: It takes strategy to sink your opponent’s ships and win Battleship. Players try to outwit their opponents by placing their battleships horizontally and vertically on their board. If the other player calls out the right coordinates, the battleship sinks and it’s game over!
    Players: 2
  5. CHECKERS: Checkers is a game of many strategies: forced moves, advancing en masse, and blocking. Players pick a color (red or black) and then advance across the checkerboard to capture as many pieces as possible from their opponent.
    Players: 2
  6. CONNECT FOUR: If you can anticipate your opponent’s next move, you can win Connect Four. Be the first to get four of the same-colored pieces in a row (horizontally, vertically, or diagonally) and you win.
    Players: 2
  7. DOMINOES: Players try to score the most points in Dominoes by strategically placing their dominoes to match those placed on the table. The first player to use all their dominoes wins, or the person with the least dominoes.
    Players: 2-4
  8. JENGA: It takes more than luck to know which Jenga blocks to push or leave until the end. Players must anticipate their opponent’s move with each placement and hope the tower doesn’t topple. The winner places the last block on the top without knocking it over.
    Players: 2-6
  9. MONOPOLY: Your objective: Build and buy as much as you can in this real-estate game, but make sure that you can pay your rent or you might go bankrupt. The player with the most money at the end of Monopoly, or the one player who doesn’t go bankrupt, wins!
    Players: 2-8
  10. RISK: Eliminate your opponents and conquer the world in the game of Risk. The game features a map of six continents with 42 territories. When players have no more territories, they must quit. The winning player claims world domination when they defeat all other players.
    Players: 3-6
  11. SCRABBLE: Scrabble is more than just a wordplay game that strengthens your vocabulary — it takes tactical skill to win. Players must interpret their opponent’s next move while using as many letter tiles as possible to earn the most points.
    Players: 2-4
  12. SCYTHE: The game of Scythe takes place in an alternate history of the 1930s known as “The Factory.” Players try to outsmart their opponents and lead their factions to become the richest and most powerful. The objective: be the player with the most coins in the end.
    Players: 1-5

Choose any of these strategy games to keep your mind active and sharpen your critical thinking skills. Then, use strategy to plan your next move, outwit your opponents and win the game. Give your mind a workout while you have fun with friends and family with this list of top 12 indoor strategy games.


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