My Account
Your cart is currently empty.
Shop by Age Shop by Players Kids Family Strategy Card Party Puzzles Toys Extras
Pre-Order Games Ashland Store Eugene Store Facebook Facebook
Join Our Newsletter
Family Business
Get Funagain Points by submitting media! Full details, including content license, are available here.
You must be logged in to your account to submit media. Please click here to log in or create a free account.
Store:  Card Games, Family Games
Edition:  Family Business
Theme:  Crime
Genre:  Beer & Pretzels
Format:  Card Games

Family Business

Funagain Games does not stock this edition of this title [], usually because it's out of print.

Notify me if/when this item becomes available:
(you will be asked to log in first)

Ages Play Time Players
8+ 45 minutes 2-6

Publisher(s): Mayfair Games

Please Login to use shopping lists.

Product Description

Be the boss in this fast-paced card game of survival on the mean streets. Family Business pits mobsters against each other -- all working to make sure theirs is the last family standing!

Your gang members get placed on the Hit List. Can your "Family Influence" save them? Will they "Take it on the Lam", seek "Police Protection", or perhaps up the ante with a "Double Contract"?

Family Business is fast, furious, and fun! Your goal is survival! What's in the cards for your game?

Product Information

  • Publisher(s): Mayfair Games

  • Year: 2008

  • Players: 2 - 6

  • Time: 45 minutes

  • Ages: 8 and up

  • Weight: 333 grams


  • 56 action cards
  • 54 mobster cards
  • R.I.P. card tray
  • simple rules

Product Reviews


Average Rating: 3.9 in 23 reviews

Sort reviews by:

by Craig C
Perfect evening entertainment.
December 27, 2016

Family Business is a simple card game that is best played with a group of people who just like to mess with each other.

The point is not so much to win, but to screw over everyone else at the table. Our family and friends love this game--it's a maniacal way to spend an evening: massacring, knocking off and just plain old putting the snuff on other players.

Yes, there's a lot of luck involved in which cards you get dealt and then draw, but that's not the point. It's a whole lot of fun when someone gets close to winning and you get to take them out, or playing an unexpected card to turn the tables on absolutely everyone.

And there is strategy--knowing when to play your best cards or hang onto them...just don't hang onto them too long or you may never get to play them. And sometimes, you just decide someone is going to be your enemy for that game and do as much damage to them as you can before you go to the grave...

I got this game over a decade ago and it never gets old...I think I've only ever won a handful of times, but it's more fun mouthing off and screwing over your family and friends!

Fun Party Game
October 01, 2015

This is one of the first games I got, which in turn, started my collection and my entry to the hobby. It is very fun and light card game. It has a heavy "take-that" feel, you are mobsters trying to kill each other, however the art work gives it a cartoon-ish feel and makes it seem more fun than mean. We have enjoyed this game time and time again and for the price point, it really is a must have. It's just fun, creative, funny and provides so many games for multiple size game groups as well. I believe it plays up to 6 people. Since I've owned it (nearly 3 years) it has had countless plays and still hits the table occasionally. However it has earned a permanent spot on my shelf and it has never NOT had the intense feel it has when my wife and I decide loser cleans the kitchen... Replay value is just as high as the value of the game itself. This one I recommend to any gamer who wants a short filler game that feels like a lot more... Actually it's a little more than a filler, but it plays fast, is easily transported and taught and always just as fun as the last game. Unless you are on a losing streak!

by Driggs
A game you can't refuse
October 27, 2010

Designer: David Bromley
Publisher: Mayfair Games
3 – 6 Players, 30 minutes
Review by: Greg J. Schloesser

NOTE: This review was first published in Knucklebones magazine

“You lookin’ at me?”
“Send him to sleep with the fishes!”
“I’ll make you an offer you can’t refuse!”

Ahhh … the wonderful clichés one can use when playing Family Business, quite likely the godfather of mobster-themed games. After a period of being out-of-print, Mayfair Games has re-released this gem of gunning-down rival gangs in your attempts to rule the underworld.

A caveat: this game is brutal, and not for the feint-of-heart. The object is brutally simple: kill everyone else. The game spares the gory details regarding how the actual slayings occur, but you are free to embellish the scene as you see fit!

Each player represents a gang of mobsters intent on seizing control of the underworld. The Capone Mob, New York Mob, Moran Gang – all are represented. The new edition even depicts actual mobsters on the cards, including such notorious figures as “Scarface Al” Capone, “Pretty Boy” Floyd, “Desperate Dan” Dillinger, “Baby Face” Nelson and more. It would have been even nicer if they had included brief biographical data on each personality.

Each player’s gang consists of nine mobsters, all of whom are set face-up on the table. Players each receive a starting hand of five cards, and the carnage is ready to begin.

Game play is quite simple: Draw a card and play a card. Normally, you will play a card (“Contract” or “Double Contract”) that attempts to add an opponent’s gangster to the “Hit List”, a line of gangsters who have been targeted for extermination. A “Hit” card, however, can cause a mobster to be gunned-down immediately and instantly removed from the game. Various cards can be played in response to one of these dastardly attempts, with the aim being to foil your opponent’s planned assault.

Mobsters on the Hit List are arranged in a line on the table. Once six or more mobsters are in a line, a “Mob War” ensues. From that point, the first mobster in line is exterminated at the beginning of EACH player’s turn. The carnage continues until all mobsters in the line are slain, or until a card is played to stop the carnage. Further, some cards can cause a “Mob War” to begin even before there are six gangsters on the Hit List. Mobsters are an unscrupulous bunch!

There is an assortment of other cards which can cause various effects, ranging from rescuing mobsters from the Hit List, to the dreaded St. Valentine’s Day Massacre, which immediately slays all mobsters currently on the Hit List. Brutal. Many cards can be countered, which has the additional effect of switching the start player to the person playing the counter card. This often causes some players’ turns to be skipped, which is a source of contention amongst some. In a fast, free-wheeling game such as this, however, I don’t mind it.

If a player loses all of his mobsters, he is eliminated. The wait for the termination of the game won’t be long, though, as mobsters die at a frighteningly high rate. Once there are only six mobsters left standing, an automatic Mob War ensues and continues until the end of the game. The player with the last mob standing is victorious and rises to the position of “crime lord”. At that point, however, there won’t be many mobsters left to “lord” over!

While I am happy to see Family Business back in print, and am pleased with the images of actual gangsters on the mob family cards, I am appalled that Mayfair has inexplicably chosen to remove the brief power descriptions from the action cards. Without those descriptions, players must constantly flip through the rulebook to discover how a particular card can be used or countered. This bogs down what is intended to be a fast-paced, fun game, and is totally inexcusable. The person responsible for this oversight should be thrown onto the “Hit List”. Well, maybe not shot, but at least suitably chastised!

Once one becomes familiar with how the cards can be used – which would take NO time had the descriptions remained on the cards – the game plays quickly, often at a frantic pace. Mobsters are tossed onto the Hit List, escape, and are thrown back on again. Mob Wars start with great frequency, and the death toll mounts precipitously. Don’t take offense when you are targeted, as at any moment, players will inevitably target the player who has the most mobsters remaining. Thus, the game is usually quite balanced.

Also, don’t enter the game expecting a great strategic struggle, or much control. You are hostage to your hand of cards, and the only path to pursue is to kill or be killed – probably both. Still, the game is fun, and offers the chance to slip into the role of a mobster, but without the actual bloodshed! In true mobster fashion, Mayfair has served up a “game we can’t refuse!”

Show all 23 reviews >

Other Resources for Family Business:

Board Game Geek is an incredible compilation of information about board and card games with many descriptions, photographs, reviews, session reports, and other commentary.