Fantasy Board Games 101

Fantasy board games are some of the most popular because they give you a chance to live in another world. From being a dragon or a mage to battling fantastic creatures, fantasy board games transport you. And, they’ve been around for a long time too, with such classics like Dungeons & Dragons. There are a lot of different kinds of fantasy board games for you to play and buy. From simple board game strategies to complex role playing games, and even dice games, you’ll find a lot of variety to choose from. But, how do you know which ones are the best and which ones are best left to your imagination? We’ll share with you some tips on choosing the best fantasy board games along with our top picks for best games to play.

Choosing the Perfect Fantasy Board Games

Now that you’re ready to explore new worlds and take on new roles, it’s time to think about choosing a fantasy board game. With so many options, different themes, and types of fantasy board games, it can be hard to choose the ones that you’ll like best. Not sure where to start? Here are some questions to help you choose the perfect fantasy board game.

Fantasy Board Games

Photo Copyright François Philipp / Wikimedia Commons

What kind of game do you want to play?

Most fantasy board games have a common theme. The players choose a role or character to complete a task. They are typically cooperative, which means you’ll work together with other players as a team to achieve certain tasks or goals. Sometimes, you may those games and goals up as you go along. But, beyond this fantasy board games can vary. You’ll want to think about what kinds of role playing games (RPGs) that you like best and what the outcomes or end results of each game will be. Plus, there are lots of different themes. So, you’ll want to think about that too!

How many people are playing?

Generally, fantasy board games involve several players. So, if you have at least 4 players, or more, you’ll have a lot of variety to choose from, and you may enjoy the game-play more. That’s because fantasy board games really do work well with lots of players. But, if you have a few players or even solo players, don’t worry. You can still play and enjoy fantasy board games too. Some games actually include solo player stories, like Dungeons & Dragons: Castle Ravenloft.

How old are the players?

A lot of fantasy board games are geared towards slightly older children. So, definitely consider the ages of the players in your game. But, there are tons of great fantasy board games perfect for kids. Small World is a fun fantasy board game that is good for kids ages 8 and up and fun for the whole family. If you’re playing fantasy board games with a group of adults, you’ll have a lot of games to choose from too.

How long or quick do you want the gameplay to be?

Fantasy board games can last a long time, especially if you have a campaign or story that can continue for as long as you’d like it to. If you prefer shorter game play, consider games that have a shorter or more limited game play. Many fantasy board games will list standard playing times that can help you decide if you want to play them or not.

Best Selling Fantasy Board Games

Now that you have an idea of the types of fantasy board games you’re interested in, let’s take a look at some of the most popular ones that you can play. While we love Dungeons & Dragons, you won’t find it on this short list. That’s because we want to share with you some other great fantasy board games that are the perfect compliment to playing D&D.

Here are some of our favorites.

Fantasy Board Games

Descent: Journeys in the Dark

This cooperative game created by Fantasy of Flight is where overlords and heroes meet. Made for 2-5 players, it’s the perfect fantasy board game for a smaller group. It’s a bit complex though and is made for ages 14 and up, but includes a 1 to 2 hour game play, which means it won’t take you a ton of time to play. This makes it perfect for an afternoon or evening gaming night. Like other fantasy games, Descent: Journeys in the Dark is highly cooperative, which means you’ll work together as a team, while using unique hero and skill combinations.

Castle Panic

Looking for a family friendly and fun game that’s short? Look no further than Castle Panic. This cooperative game is for 1-6 players and ages 10 and up. You’ll work together to defend your castle from monsters. And, you’ll have a lot of fun along the way, trading cards and planning your strategies as a team. There is a clear winner, or master slayer, at the end of the game. So, be sure to make sure you get the most points!


If you’re looking for a more card based fantasy game, Citadels is the game for you. Build your own city and compete with others to become a master builder. Made for 2-8 players, this card based fantasy game is full of strategy, but is easy to learn and play. You’re sure to love the characters, the roles, and the cities you can create in this game.

Honorable Mentions

We know it’s hard to narrow down the choices, with so many great fantasy games available. Here are a few more examples of games that you’ll want to check out.

Beyond Your Imagination: Fantasy Board Games

Fantasy board games are the perfect way to use your imagination to explore new worlds, create complex characters, work cooperatively, and, of course, have fun. Once you’ve found your perfect fantasy board game, why not take a look at some of other game genres? Check out our article on the Best Board Games You Can Play in 2016 to help you out. And, you’ll even find a few fantasy board games on the list too!

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