Introduction to Board Games
There is a reason why games have existed ever since the dawn of civilization. Games provide us with an opportunity to socialize, compete and relax – sometimes at the same time. Every culture in the world has known some or the other type of games; this shows how important games are for humans in general.
While there is an endless array of types and varieties of games, we would like to specifically talk about board games. Why? Because board games promise to provide us with endless amusement by undertaking only minimal efforts. Over the millenniums, board games have changed (or rather, evolved) a lot. Almost each one of us grew up playing them. Board games, in themselves, can encompass a huge number of games with a huge number of themes. Some purely rely on strategy, some simply on luck, while the rest combining a certain amount of both. Apart from the fact that most of them consist of a board are fun, there is the only little similarity between them. There are board games for every age group, from toddlers to elders. Even though most look similar to each other at first glance, it is the difference in rules that make them so varied and interesting.
But the desire that we had for board games got somewhat lost as we grew up. However, in today’s busy lifestyle, board games are finding a new use: not as the familiar means to pass time, but as an event to socialize. And today, it is known as Game Nights.
Game Nights are kind of informal events, where people meet others and play games; mostly board games, but others could be played too. “But adults playing board games would look so childish!” you might complain. We would like to tell you, it would not. Game Nights are socializing events where you get to meet new people, break the ice with them and forget the stressful everyday life.
So, what exactly must happen in a game night? The most important thing is to enjoy. Seriously, what use would it be to organize a game night if your guests are stressed or bored? There are numerous minor elements – like food, music, decoration – which are not compulsory per say, but whose balanced combination goes a long way in ensuring the success of the night. The most important thing is to find the right game. Whichever game you happen to select, it must be done by keeping everyone in mind. It shouldn’t be too lengthy or boring; neither should it be offensive or vulgar (until everyone agrees upon it).
Game Nights can result in a lot of memorable moments, but it is also a huge responsibility upon you as a host. You need to keep everyone busy and occupied, you need to keep them entertained and fulfilled, and you need to get the games going. But in the end, all this would be definitely worth it.
In case you need further help regarding the right snacks to be served at the event, you should read Choosing the Best Game Night Snacks.
Games for Family
Today, the concept of family has changed a lot. The unobstructed meetings are now replaced by informal appointments. Everyone is too busy in their own life. Amidst such a lifestyle, family games have risen as an excellent opportunity for people to spend some quality time with their family. The fun and the excitement can go a long way in bringing families closer. If you are close already, it will give you a chance to be away from the stressful world and with those whom you love the most. But, you will have to be careful in searching the right game for your family, something which is long but not lengthy, and interesting but not stressful.
To help you out, we have found some popular and interesting games for the family:
If your family members love the art of deduction, this would be an excellent game for them. Two “spymasters” of the opposite team knows the secret identities of all 25 agents, while every other member knows only the codenames. Using one-word clues, the objective is to identify all the agents first. In doing so, one has to avoid guessing the names of the opposite team. Also, there is a catch: you have to avoid the assassin. There is a lot of guesswork going on, so lively participation from everyone is guaranteed. Or if you are feeling competitive enough, you can instead aim to set the highest score in the game itself. If you want to unleash your inner Sherlock Holmes, this is a perfect game for your family.
Apples to Apples
Card games are singularly interesting, but what if you get to add your own creativity to them? This is precisely what Apples-to-apples achieves. Consisting of green “adjective” cards and red “noun” cards, the objective to win maximum rounds by explaining why your red card is the best match to the green card chosen by the judges. The most interesting part of the game is that there is no single correct answer. It is upon the judges to decide and upon you to convince that yours is the best match. Ever since 1999, it has been one of the most popular party games. With the endless possibilities, you will almost always have a unique combination. Though some political nouns can be controversial, what is a family without some debate? It is definitely one of the most interesting games for family. Learn how to play!
Ticket To Ride
Everyone loves to travel. But, what is the fastest way to travel the most? Ticket to Ride is the answer to that question in possibly the most fun way. The objective is to travel across the most number of cities in North America. In order to switch across various routes, you need cards (and there are 225 different such cards!). But you would need to hurry, as there are only 7 days to travel. The objective, apart from visiting maximum cities, is also to find the longest routes. This game allows you to have a virtual tour across a continent, and may even ignite in you a desire to actually travel! Check out our review.
Board Games for Children
Children are simple; they eat, sleep and play. While parents pay special attention to what their kids eat and when they sleep, they mostly ignore about what they should play with. Most parents are concerned with how safe a game is, which is a very genuine concern. But they ignore if their kids would actually enjoy playing with them. This is especially true with toddlers, who are not yet old enough to choose their favorites. If you are one of those parents, there is no need to feel guilty anymore. Here are some of the best board games for children:
Chutes and Ladders
This game is one of the oldest and simplest board games in existence. The reason why people still love playing it is the sheer simplicity and excitement of this game. With every roll of the dice, you have to move the piece forward. In case you land on a ladder, you climb up. In case you land on a chute, you drop below. The objective is to be the first one to reach 100. Not just kids, it is even one of the best games for the family. This game can be an excellent means to teach your toddler about the reward of good deeds and the punishment of bad ones. Also, it sure helps to improve the counting abilities of your kids. Overall, if you want your kid to simultaneously learn and enjoy, this is the perfect board game.
Numerous generations have grown playing this game, but it still remains a favorite. Now manufactured by Hasbro, Trouble game is as simple as it gets. The gameplay is very straightforward: You have to be the first person to send four pieces all the way around the board. To decide the move, a die has to be rolled. The pieces of opponents could be sent back to the start by landing on them. The beauty of this game is that even after half a century, it remains the same as the original game. The interesting Pop-o-matic device automatically rolls the dice, ensuring that the dice do not go outside the board, and also so that players could not cheat. If anything, your kids would surely love to press, pound or slap the pop-matic with a satisfying “pop” sound.
Candy Land is a very appropriate game for children for one simple reason that you never have to form any strategy. There is no reading involved and minimal numbers; one only has to follow the directions. In a card game, the winner is almost always predetermined during the shuffle. But you don’t have to tell your kids that; they will enjoy the game nevertheless. But unlike other card games, the cards in Candy Land are unique and interesting. Even if your kid doesn’t like the game, he is sure to love the cards. Maybe if your kid is into strategy games, he might not like it. But for the rest, it is one hell of an interesting game.
Types of Board Games
Board games have existed for thousands of years now, and they still never cease to amuse us. With variations that range from minor to huge, there are an enormous number of board games available in the market today. Trying to classify board games into categories is no easy task, as many games are created from fusing earlier ones, while others may fall into more than one category. However, the following are the most common categories of board games:
- Abstract Strategy Games
One of the most popular categories, Abstract Strategy games do not depend upon any “chance or fate” and is deterministic, that is, there is always an end. It assumes there is no hidden information and whatever is there, it is present before the eyes. These games rely simply upon pure logic. Most famous examples include Chess and Checkers. Many subcategories, like Chess Variants and Connection games, fall under this category. Read our Strategy Board Games Buying Guide and Reviews for more information.
- Deduction Games
These board games are basically puzzle games and need only logic and deductive capabilities to solve. Some examples are Black Box, 221B Baker Street etc.
- Fantasy Games
These games may follow any sort of rules, but they are primarily based upon some fantasy world and consist of elements exclusive to those worlds. Due to this, they are hugely popular. Some examples are Shadoworld and Warcraft.
- Multiplayer Games
This is a very broad category that include games that have multiple (usually more than 2) players. These games are not entirely meant to be competitive, and are instead used as a source of entertainment for many people deciding to play together. This category includes some of the best games for the family. Examples include Risk and Monopoly.
- Trivia Games
These games rely primarily upon the knowledge of the participants. It requires sharp insights, as the questions are based upon information that is present, but we are bound to miss or ignore. Most famous example is trivial Pursuit. If you love trivia games then you will love the games on our Best Trivia Board Games.
- Word Games
Word Games have served as a primary amalgamation of entertainment and education. Most of these games require a sharp knowledge of vocabulary and grammar, and are one of the most famous types of board games. Apart from the hugely popular Scramble, there are also Anagrams and Boggle.
- Race Games
These games are one of the simplest types of games, where the sole purpose is to reach a pre-decided destination first. The move is usually decided by the roll of dice. Since they require no strategy or knowledge, they serve as the easiest means to pass the time. Many of the oldest games, like Snake and Ladder, fall under this category.
- Role Playing Games
These games follow the standard format of role-playing by enacting a character (fictional of real). This is mostly done through speech, but mannerisms could also be added. The most famous example of this is the classic game Dungeons & Dragons.
Apart from the above mentioned categories, there are a huge number of other minor categories, which would often overlap with multiple major categories. But nevertheless, this does enforce one fact: You will always find a game you would love.
Adult Board Games
Board games for kids are fun as for adults, but they don’t always appeal to us much. While having game nights and board games in it is a must, playing the same game that your 10-year old plays is not much of a thrill. For this purpose, we have adult board games that give us the right amount of guilt-filled pleasure. Adult games are not in the same league as adult movies (in case you were wondering) but are simply those games that are not appropriate for kids.
To know in detail about what exactly are adult games and what can they do to spice up your party, you can read our Best Board Games For Adults Buyers Guide And Reviews.
Among the numerous adult board games out in the market, we have tried to handpick some of the best board games here for you:
Cards Against Humanity
While the name may sound like an evil cult, the card game is simply inappropriate. Maybe “simply inappropriate” is an understatement, as the game is one of the most adult board games around. As far as format is considered, it is basically the same as Apples and Apples, though with things that the latter game never even dreamt about. The descriptions are inappropriate yet hilarious. If you have the right type of people in your party, this game is simply a laughter riot. Also, the game promises a decillion (1 followed by 39 zeroes) possible combination, so no fear of repetitions. If you happen to gather around with a group of close friends, this game is sure to make it memorable. Read our review.
Drunk Stoned or Stupid
The name says it all. This game is so simple that it defies every sensible logic. In the simplest terms, it is nothing but name-calling. Every card consists of an action, and the teammates have to decide which member is most likely to do this. This accusation can be based on his mannerisms, personality, past actions or simply a desire to piss him off. There are numerous such accusations, each one funnier and more offensive than the previous ones. There are no rules or setup, just a judge to decide whose nomination made the most sense. All it requires is a group of close and shameless friends who won’t get offended. This is a perfect game to be played after few rounds of booze.
“Enough said” seems to be in order once you know that the creator of Cyanide and Happiness is behind this awful game. This game has a sole objective: to feel bad about yourself and everyone else. It includes 360-panel cards, using which players have to create grossly inappropriate situations. The Judge first draws a panel followed by a selected card that setups the situation. Everyone else, then submits their own best punch line, and the judge decides which one was the funniest. The best part about the game is that the situations are not pre-decided, but are rather created by the hands of the players. If you feel your party is composed of tough-to-break people, this is a perfect game.
Avalon Hill’s spooky game is only for the brave. Learn more about Betrayal at House on the Hill Board Game in our latest review.
There’s no doubt that Risk Board Game is one of the most popular war games on the planet. And the ultimate goal? Conquering the world.
The ultimate party board game, folks – can you guess? Drink-A-Palooza Board Game. This game will take you back to old college drinking games