Christmas Scrabble warning: Majority of family games end in an argument

Happy family playing board game
The majority of families fall out over board games. [Photo: Getty]

Playing Scrabble, Monopoly or cards is a popular way to pass the time over the festive season – but it could all end in tears.

Almost nine in 10 (88%) of us will play games on Christmas Day, for an average of four hours. This is according to research conducted by designer furniture and homeware brand,

This might be a popular board game like Scrabble or Monopoly, a card game like Snap or Chase the Ace, or you may be going more high tech by playing a quiz game with Amazon Alexa.

Yet – all too often it ends in an argument, with two thirds of people saying their family games had ended in an argument, and a small minority of respondents said they had broken up with a romantic partner over a game.

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One of the most common reasons for games to turn bitter is because people cheat. It seems this is more common among men than women – with just over half (51%) of men claiming to have cheated compared to one third of women.

You’re also more likely to cheat if you’re a Londoner – with some 57% of those from the UK capital sneakily breaking the rules in order to help them win.

Games can also bring out Brits’ competitive sides, with one in three people (29%) claiming they were the most competitive member of the family, and 15% of people playing games simply because they “love to win”.

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Despite this, it seems family games are here to stay – with almost a third (32%) of adults saying some of their best childhood memories involve “playing games with their family”.

What more, playing games may hold benefits for all the family – with studies finding board games are useful for helping young children develop their spatial reasoning ability, while the likes of cards and board games can help adults stay sharp in their old age.

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