The Best Tabletop Games for Princess Fans

Too much screen time can lead to eye strain and cause headaches, so I've been researching some fun  princess board game options to save my eyes. I was pleasantly surprised to learn that many of the games I played as a child are still around. If you're throwing a princess party and need some fun activities to do with your friends, here are a few of my favorites. Unfortunately, not all of these games are available right now, so I'll start this list with the ones that are.

Pretty Pretty Princess

This game was a staple of my childhood. I was amazed to see that they still make it as I perused the game aisles of a book store. It looks a little different from the mint green box I remember as a kid, but it's still very much the same game. Each player must collect every piece of jewelry available in her preferred color and top it off with the bedazzled crown to win. Not only is the classic game still available with some minor updates to the crown, but there is also a Disney Princess Edition that allows players to become Tiana, Belle, Jasmine, or Aurora, and a Unicorn Edition, which won me over in the end with its extra sparkly playing pieces, glistening horn crown, and unicorn-themed charms on the jewelry. Pretty Pretty Princess is the quintessential board game for princess fans of all ages.

Once Upon a Time Card Game

Once Upon a Time playing cards

You might recognize this one from my recent Story Saturday posts. Once Upon a Time by Atlas Games is a wonderful tool for lovers of fantasy to get together and weave their own fairy tales. It's one of my favorite tabletop games of all time. The stories can be drastically different depending on the age group of the players. Each player gets a number of story cards that determine various aspects of the fairy tale along with one secret ending card. The goal is to drive the story in the direction of your ending. You win if you successfully play all of the cards in your hand and then use your ending card to complete the story. "Interrupt" cards allow other players to take over and attempt to drive the story toward their endings. Another way to take over the story is if the current storyteller inadvertently mentions something on a card in another player's hand. The game can get competitive at times, but the main goal is to tell a compelling fairy tale.

Disney Princess Editions of Classic Games

Ever since Hasbro took over the Disney Princess toy line, they've been recreating loads of classic '90s games with Disney Princesses. If you search for Disney Princess board games on Amazon, you'll find loads of familiar titles such as Pretty Pretty Princess, Yahtzee, Chutes and Ladders, Candy Land, Guess Who?, Trouble, and Monopoly. For the most part, these are the same games we grew up with, but the boards and playing pieces are covered in princess imagery, which makes them even better. If you had a favorite board game as kid, there's likely a Disney Princess version of it available somewhere. Keep in mind that many of these are "junior" versions of the original games, which might may be less fun for grown-ups, so make sure you read all of the fine print before making a purchase. Since most of the Disney Princess Monopoly games are Junior editions, I ended up ordering the Disney Parks Theme Park Edition Monopoly Game from Shop Disney, which has a giant pop-up castle in the middle!

Finding Anastasia

Finding Anastasia board game

Before you get too excited about the rumor in St. Petersburg, you should be aware that this game is not currently available to the public. Finding Anastasia from Good Knight Games is an indie project I backed on Kickstarter many moons ago that is supposed to ship early next year. If you are interested in this gorgeous-looking game, they are still taking late pledges, so you might be able to get a copy of your own once it ships. I have literally been waiting years for this game. I was drawn in by the gorgeous artwork as well as the idea of acting out the amazing 1997 animated film in real life. This is a social deduction game in which players are given a random invitation to a party being thrown by the Dowager Empress to find her lost granddaughter, Anastasia. The invitations contain a secret persona that determines how each player will behave at the party as they pretend to be Anastasia. Certain players will win if the real Anastasia is revealed while others must try to sabotage her.

While I am still waiting for the hard copy of this game, I have watched a digital playthrough on YouTube and tried out the Print and Play version, which was sent to me already as a backer reward. The gameplay is similar to Clue only instead of trying to guess a killer, weapon, and crime scene, the players must determine how Anastasia escaped the revolutionaries, where she escaped to, and what she brought with her. Though the game has a solitary version that can be played with one to three players, I feel that it can only truly be enjoyed with five players or more because that allows each player to assume a character with one person taking on the role of the Empress and asking all of the questions. The version for one to three player is quite different and involves a lot of card flipping with none of the players taking on a character role because Anastasia's identity would be too obvious with such few people.

Enchanted Palace

Enchanted Palace board game

This last one is not being produced anymore as far as I can tell, but it was my absolute favorite game as a kid, so I had to include it. In Enchanted Palace, you play as one of four princesses on a quest to rescue the Good Queen who was locked in a tower by the Evil Witch. The game includes glittery princess playing pieces, a magic wand that lights up, and an AI battery-powered hostess that tracks each princess's location based on which room you press the wand into on the 3D castle board. The AI tells you whether you find something helpful or harmful in each room, and you win when you collect all of the magic objects you need to defeat the witch and rescue the queen. The princess playing pieces had little removable bows on their heads that could be interchanged with plastic crowns once the winner of the game was determined. I was amazed by the level of detail as well as the technology. It seemed so magical to me as a kid, but it must be considered outdated since it's no longer available today. I suppose someone who wants to have a similar experience in modern times would need to visit a fantasy-themed escape room.

I hope I included enough games in this list that are still available that you weren't too disappointed by the ones that aren't. With any luck, we'll all be receiving copies of Finding Anastasia next year and hosting fun parties to recover the long-lost princess. Have you played any of the games in this list? Which one is your favorite? Let me know in the comments! Please also tell me if you have any princess board game recommendations that I might not know about. Happy gaming!


Anonymous said…
I don’t know if you craft, but GreenFrogCrochet has adorable princess crochet patterns. You can either make them yourself or purchase them from other sellers. LoopsbyLindsey on Etsy made amazing Encanto crochet dolls based of GreenFrogCrochet’s patterns. I just discovered these patterns and a super excited to try them out.
Lisa Dawn said…
These are very cute! Thank you for sharing. :)
Lady Culturina said…
Most of those games look cool...But, in Europe, none but the Disney princesses themed ones are available as far as I know. It's a shame as "Pretty pretty princess" look the best to me.
Sugar said…
I never played any of these games! my friends liked to play with legos more... it's funny that apparently I was the most sporty of the group but also my tastes were the most feminine. I would play happily now lol.
BTW from the same person who mentioned Lost in Averell, I found Jenni James's collection of fairy tales recently. Have you read it?
Lisa Dawn said…
Lady Culturina - Some of the reviews for Hasbro's "Disney Princess Editions" of classic games say that they are poor quality, so you might be better off with the original ones anyway. I actually decided to get Amazon's "Unicorn Edition" of Pretty Pretty Princess because the jewelry looked nicer than the Disney one.

Sugar - Lego has been releasing tons of Disney Princess sets for the Ultimate Princess celebration! Have you seen any of them? The details on some of the castles and environments is very impressive!

I'm not familiar with Jenni James. Let me know if you pick a favorite!
Sugar said…
She has a retelling of the little mermaid that I will read soon, Jenni has retellings of almost all the classics.
Lisa Dawn said…
It seems like there are so many authors doing this now that it's impossible to read them all.

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