Do ya feel it’s too soon to start thinking about doing some holiday shopping?!? Well, think again! Thanksgiving is less than two weeks away, and you know what that means…Black Friday is exactly two weeks away! Have you made your shopping lists yet? Stumped for what to get your little monsters… Oops, I mean little darlings? Have no fear! Suzi has scared up seven perfectly ghastly gift ideas for kids of all ages.

Age 10 and Up


Leave it to Disney to come up with Villainous, a board game where being the “bad guy” is a good thing! Choose one of six iconic Disney Villains: Maleficent, Captain Hook, Jafar, Ursula, Prince John, or the Queen of Hearts (each with a stunning, sculpted oversized playing piece). 

Villainous is a story-based game that encourages players to strategize as they command their henchmen and enact their evil schemes. With each move, the villains from Disney’s classic films, Sleeping BeautyPeter PanAladdinThe Little MermaidRobin Hood, and Alice in Wonderland, take actions to gain power and ultimately defeat the heroes. But “Fate Cards,” featuring heroes and other objects, can prevent our favorite foes from achieving their triumphant treachery.

Never has being bad ever felt so good!


Horrified is another game that is based on filmdom’s classic iconic monsters: Dracula, Frankenstein’s Monster, the Bride of Frankenstein, The Mummy, the Wolfman, the Invisible Man, and the Creature from the Black Lagoon. Can you imagine that your village is under attack by as many as five of these frightening fiends, and it’s up to you and your team of heroes to stop them in their deadly tracks? 

The fun thing about this cooperative board game is that it has varying levels of difficulty. And because each Monster requires different strategies to defeat it, game players will be pleasantly surprised to find that they will have a new experience every time they play Horrified. The game is for 1-5 players and takes about 60 minutes to play.


If the dinosaurs defeat three human characters, the dinos win–paws down. But don’t count out the humans yet. In this Jurassic Park game, a human defeated by dinosaurs can reanimate as a new character. And if the players controlling the humans can get three characters to escape the island safely, they win.

Jurassic Park takes its players on an adventure of a lifetime as unsuspecting sightseers on Isla Nublar soon become strategic survivalists. One player controls the three dinosaurs prowling through the jungle—the T. rex, Dilophosaurus, and Velociraptor—on the lookout to attack humans. The remaining players team up to fight the player who controls the three dinosaurs.

Age 12 and Up


Dead of Winter is a co-op game for up to five players. What makes it cooperative is that the players must all work together to achieve a goal. In this case, the goal is survival amid a zombie apocalypse during the harshest weather conditions in the “dead of winter.” The game promises to keep things fresh by offering different levels of difficulty. It also allows for the possibility that one of the players in the group is not what he/she appears to be. A zombie spy? It gives me the shivers just thinking about it!

Age 7 and Up


Nightmare Before Christmas Yahtzee comes in a travel-sized edition that includes 5 customized dice and a dice cup in the shape of Jack Skellington’s head. The cup ably stores all the game components. Yahtzee has long been America’s #1 dice game, but this Nightmare Before Christmas version adds some holiday cheer the whole family will love.


Zombie Kids Evolution has a 5-15 minute playtime for 2-4 players. It is a co-op game that has the players team up to defend their school from a zombie invasion. All the grown-ups have abandoned the school in a panic, so it’s up to the kids to eliminate the invading zombies and lock up the school to keep it safe. There are all kinds of cool features like “special missions” and “mystery envelopes” to add to the fun and there are stickers that help mark the kids’ progress.

Age 5 and Up


The first Jumanji film (1995) was based on a picture book of the same name, which was written by Chris Van Allsburg in 1981. The story centers on a supernatural board game that releases one terrifying jungle creature after another upon its players at every turn. 

It was inevitable that a real Jumanji board game would be produced once the film became a huge hit, and it’s been available since 1995. But it’s a fun game that captures the imagination of all who play it. Since the fourth film, Jumanji: The Next Level, will be released before the end of the year, it might be a welcome addition to your board game collection. It’s also suitable for your young game players.

So there you have it! I hope I was able to make your holiday shopping a little less scary or a little scarier in just the right way!