Make it Kid-friendly
If visions of poker tables, billiard tables and wet bars go through your mind when you think about the advantages of a game room, you might want to consider the kids, too. It's true that childhood seems like one big romp -- when you're all grown up, anyway. But the truth is that playing games as a family is a powerful way to touch base with your tweens and teenagers -- and finally start laughing together instead of squabbling about wardrobe, tattoos, piercings, curfews and homework. Electronic games seem to be the order of the day, but old-school board games like Monopoly and Scrabble can be fun, engaging and educational, too. They're also leisurely and tactile, two things that many electronic games lack.
You can have adult games as well as family fare in your game room. Just make sure to keep your décor G-rated, and employ some kid-centric motifs and diversions. If you want an adults-only gaming room, consider having dedicated gaming areas in the kids' bedrooms, too. It's only fair.