So I’m guessing you have read my first blog and now you’re here. Wondering what is he going to say next. Well I’m assuming after you have read my first blog you some how, some way made it to a Barnes and Noble or a Target and probably got a game or two. I’m also going to guess you probably got one of these games(Ticket to Ride, King of Tokyo or King of New York, Pandemic, Machi Koro, Dixit, 7 Wonders, Cards Against Humanity, Sushi Go, Dominion and the infamous Catan.) Right now your probably questioning yourself “How did he know that?” Well that’s simple because 8 out of 10 of those games were the first ones I owned as well. At least for most new Board Gamers these are some of the easiest to teach and easiest to learn how to play. And now you have come to the point where you somewhat want some variety within your new group or you may just need something fresh and a bit more challenging. Wellhave I got a list for you! Here is a brief rundown of 10 Board Games you can add to that shelf of yours and impress who ever it is you’re trying to impress.
Number 10: Love Letter
Love Letter is a simple 16 card game of a little bit of guessing and deduction. Set up is easy and play is easy. You just shuffle the 16 cards and put 1 back into the bag with no one knowing what that card is. Next you give every player a card and when its your turn you literally draw a card and play a card. Every card has the explanation on it, and the objective is to have the highest numbered card(1-8) at the end of a round or eliminate all other players.The effects are straight forward as well. For example, one effect is guess an opponent’s card and if correct, they are eliminated, or even the effect of trade hands with another player. Even though it’s only 16 cards, there is some simple, yet challenging, strategy here. I find this game a bit fun and even though you may get eliminated, a round only last a few minutes tops and it,s just a game to fill in the time. Also, one more thing to add. The game is cheap and should be easily found at Comic shops in your neighborhood or even Amazon.
Number 9: Formula D
So your friends or family don’t really want to think while playing a board game huh. They just want to roll and move. Well Formula D is just that. It’s a racing game where you can actually switch gears on your car to go faster or slower. The higher the gear the faster your car can go, but wait there’s more. Obviously you can’t just Paul Walker (RIP) the track and go all Speed Racer and stuff. The board will tell you on certain turns that you have to stop a certain number of times, or else your vehicle will take damage, and, guess what, you’re gonna be the guy not doing anything because you thought that you could take that stupid corner in gear 6! Sorry. I had a flash back for a moment. Anyways the game is fun if you make one house rule and that should be no player should be able to count the spaces before they roll. Most people try and do this so they can figure out if they can get an extra space or not while going into turns. The problem is it completely slows down the game not making it fun for everyone. Other then that Formula D is a great racing game and can be slightly adjusted to make it easier or harder depending on the group of people you’re with. Did I also mention there is multiple expansions out for it that include different tracks to get even more mad at. Overall this game will fit into your game group if you like to push your luck.
Number 8: Spot It!
Have you ever just wanted to sit around a table and yell random objects at each other while trying to take a card from the middle. Well Spot It! is the game for you. In Spot It! there is a deck of circular cards that go in the middle of the table and every player gets a card of their own. Now here is the crazy thing every card has an object that matches with every other card. Now each player quickly finds their object, yells it out as loud as they can and slaps their hand down with force, so no body else tries to get it. The object of the game is to have the most cards at the end and you’re the winner. Of course there are other variants of the game included in the rules but this one seems the easiest and most fun. Even little children and your Grandparents might get a kick out of this one.
Number 7: Mystic Vale
So you’re into deck-building games. But maybe you’re done with the deck-building mechanic. What if I told you there is a game where you can make your own cards and put them into a deck.Yeah your mind has probably exploded right now, huh? In Mystic Vale, you have the same set amount of cards in each players’ deck, but they are special in their own way. The cards are broken up into 3 parts(Top, Middle and Bottom) and on your turn you buy cards from a shared market. After the cards are bought and your turn is over, you may slide that card into another card to make a more powerful effect when drawn again. There is also one other weird mechanic in the game. In regular deck-building games you only get to draw a certain amount of cards, but, in this case, you reveal cards until your cards show a number of red icons on it. The red icons represent Decay in your deck and if you reveal too much decay you have to skip your turn. Yeah, that means those 6 cards that you made super powerful don’t mean jack crap this turn. Other then that, the games refreshed look on this mechanic is quite refreshing. It doesn’t take long to understand the cards and what they do.
Number 6: Colt Express
Imagine trying to rob a train in the wild wild west but with 4 other people trying to rob it as well. Punching, shooting, jumping in between carts, all trying to avoid the Marshall and picking up loot. Colt Express is a programmable game where every round, one by one, you and your opponents pick a card out of their hand and place it in a pile of cards. After a set number of cards is played one player will pick up the deck and play the cards out one by one. This causes some chaotic fun because you find out that your original plan may not have worked because you may have got shot or punched into the next cart, and punched into the next cart, and punched into the next cart, and then you shoot at no one because you’re three carts down now and no one is in sight. As much randomness and chaos happens in this game its quite fun watching the outcome and seeing your opponents plans foil. Also you get to play on a 3-D board game train which makes a great attraction when it’s set up on a table.
Number 5: Kingsburg with Expansion(Kingsburg: To Forge a Realm)
Kingsburg is just a simple dice chucking and dice allocating game. In Kingsburg you compete to get the most victory points by building up personal board structures. In order for you to do that you have to use the three dice you have rolled to gather resources.Each set of resources can be grabbed by using the dice equal to the number of the space.The numbers go from 1-18. But you can never place dice on the same spot as an opposing player. So if you have a number 2 left on your dice and an opposing player decides to put his dice there before you on his turn…You’re out of luck. Now I say get the expansion because it adds a ton to the base game. The base game is nice and all but runs out of steam very quickly. The expansion will add different modules to the game to keep it fresh and won’t get played out as fast. They are also easy to learn as well.
Number 4: Ashes: Rise of the Phoenixborn
Now let’s say you’re just coming over from being a CCG(Collectible Card Game) Player and you want the same feeling but don’t want to open and dump your wallet into a bunch of booster packs with cards that will never get played. But you want to build new decks with strategies. Well, Ashes just might be for you. Ashes uses the same concept as other CCGs but adds a twist to them. You must use a Phoenixborn or a Character as the person who will control the deck. Once this Character has lost all of its life points, the other player is declared the winner. The standard box comes with 6 pre-made decks that can be interchanged with each other. Oh, did I also mention that you roll dice before you get into your main phase of summoning monsters and casting spells. Well, yeah, you do that, and what you roll is basically the resources you can use to do those actions. Once you get a hold of all the cards’ word meanings, Ashes turns into a game that you just want to play over and over again. Last thing, did I mention the phenomenal art as well. I mean just look at it. If you can’t tell, I’m high up on this game.
Number 3: The Resistance
We all have had that moment where we thought we wanted to lie to a close group of friends, cause a little bit of chaos and then just watch everything unfold. Mwahahahahahahahah… Wait was that just me. Oops….. Anyways The Resistance is a really fun game when you have a bigger group to play with. Basically everyone who is playing gets a card with a person and a color (Red or Blue) on it and nobody else knows what anybody else has gotten. Then everybody closes their eyes and after a few moments the bad guys (Red) opens their eyes to find out who their other teammates are and then closes them again. After that everyone opens their eyes and you begin play…. Yes the good guys (Blue) have no idea who is on there team. The game play is simple. Everybody will take turns becoming squad leader and choosing a specific number of people to go out on a mission. This will get voted on as a group to accept the chosen people or reject. If accepted, the people on the mission choose to succeed the mission or fail it. Obviously the good guys want to succeed the mission and the bad guy want to fail them. You do this until one group has reached 3 total wins. This game is Amazing. I don’t know how many times now people have played this and I have got a great response to it. The simple fact that they trust you and put you in on a mission and you fail it is amazing. By the way, all the voting or choosing whether to fail or succeed a mission is all done anonymously. That’s has people can feel like they have got the right people and think twice about. One small warning DO NOT PLAY THIS WITH YOUR SIGNIFICANT OTHER. There may or may not be consequences. Unless you’re into that sort of thing.
Now you may have people who just play video games, go around carelessly and just start shooting people. Well I have a game for that. Adrenaline does exactly that and cleverly disguises it as a Euro game. You have a player that goes around to certain areas to pick guns, swords, rocket launchers and even a chainsaw. Once you use them on your opponents the weapon is considered unloaded and can only be used again when loaded with ammo. Ammo is represented by 3 different colored cubes that are randomly distributed throughout the map. Many weapons also have specific powers for example: shooting through walls or hitting multiple targets in sight. Some you can only shoot at an opponent if you can’t see them and they can’t see you. And if you don’t like to play these types of games due to the fact people only target you, there is a balancing mechanic where the more times you die, the less you are worth in victory points. Overall this should help move that player from the couch to the game table…. I’m not quite sure if that’s better.
Number One: Blood Rage
We are finally here at Number One and yes I am suggesting Blood Rage. Listen most likely in your time of board gaming you probably have some kind of war game like Risk or Axis and Allies. Blood Rage should scratch the same itch with a bit more strategy and, if you’re good at it, mitigated luck. In Blood Rage, you have amazing miniatures that represent your clan and you place them on the board. You can pillage the area for resources or battle other opponents to take control of the area. Also before every round you draft cards to help reinforce your army, upgrade your army and gain the powers from other monsters to help win in battle. The game takes three rounds, and, if you have done everything, you should have built a powerful army. Did I also mention battle is done with cards instead of dice? Yeah, it adds a bit more of strategy than luck in that aspect. Overall, Blood Rage is a well balanced game that will have you yelling Viking references across the table with each other.
Now if you think I am wrong or maybe need to adjust my list, leave a comment below or contact me on my FB page BoardGameBulldog.
and until next time…..IF YOU’RE BORED…..GAME!!!