What Are Your Favourite Board Games?

Yesterday I wrote about some of the great new board games that will be available soon. However one of my favourite things about the hobby is that good games stay relevant for years. So what board games do you love and keep going back to?

I'll pretty much never turn down a chance to play 7 Wonders, Antoine Bauza's brilliant civilisation building drafting game. There's something about drafting cards that speaks to me. Making decisions about what's best for you now, what's possibly going to pay off in the future and what the next player may do with the cards you pass them.

I'm a sucker for interesting decision making and 7 Wonders has it in spades.

Then there's Village, the quaint mid-weight worker-placement game. Another game with a strong focus on making interesting decisions, Village has you working your family members to death while you earn prestige around the village. One of the expansions lets you send family members off to the pub and drink themselves to death.

Some games let story naturally develop as you play them. Village's stories lean heavily towards black comedy.

What about you? What board games do you love to bring to the table?


    My 3 staples are Carcassonne, Settlers of Cataan & Ticket to Ride.

    Machi Koro with the expansions is always popular.
    Ticket to Ride Europe is my personal favourite.
    Airlines is under rated.
    Forbidden Desert when we want to stay friends after the game is over.

    Carcassonne, but must be with the first few expansions mixed in and using the original scoring method (2 points for 1 and 2-tile castles, 2 points per tile for 3+ tile castles, otherwise it encourages building tiny castles and fighting over the fields instead) and starting out with a randomized River (start out with River & River 2 tiles in the bag, but with the fork and the end point in there too so that the river can be different lengths - stop building the river when the end tile is brought out).

    I really enjoy Heart of Crown for Dominion-style card drafting games. Have had a lot of fun with Secret Hitler, when played with the right group. Used to very much enjoy Race for the Galaxy but it's been a long time since I played it.

    I would like to try a co-op game where are group of 2-4 players are all joined up trying to beat a story or some common foe - working together, not against each other.
    Any suggestions that aren't super duper expensive and have good replay value?

      Forbidden Desert is really cheap. We always bring it out. A bit like Pandemic lite as it's less complex and complicated but great fun in my opinion.

      Pandemic (the game pictured in this article, actually) is a great place to start.

      If you want to dip your toes into board games there are digital versions of many of them. It's not quite the same, but they're cheap, there's no set up time, they make it easier to learn the rules, and your toddlers can't roll all the pieces under your fridge.

      That last one may not be a general problem...

      Pandemic, Forbidden Island and Forbidden Desert are the go-to recommendations for co-op board gaming. They're all designed by the same person and have similar mechanics.

      I'd personally go for Pandemic out of those three because I'm fond of the expansions and you can move on to Pandemic Legacy (very much not cheap) afterwards if you're really into it.

      Other than that, Escape: Curse of the Temple is pretty rad. You run around a cursed temple trying to find your way out. It's a race against the clock and the soundtrack gives you specific moments you have to sprint to safety.

      There's also games with traitors like Dead of Winter. You can play variants that take the betrayal aspect out of the game but those variants aren't as good as the normal game. Also, this is things start to get more expensive.

      Flash Point: Fire Rescue is a really good co-op game.
      Basically you're all firefighters trying to save civilians before a burning building collapses.
      Each turn you have 4 action points to spend moving, putting out fires, carrying people, etc., and then you roll a d6 and d8 to get a board coordinate where the fire gets worse. Games run for about 45 minutes.

      I prefer it over Pandemic for newer players as each player feels like they have more autonomy and more direct consequences for the actions/inactions.

      Zombicide (original or Black Plague) could be an idea

      If superheroes are your thing, try Legendary. It's a Dominion-esque deck builder, which is competitive co-op against the super-villain of the day.

      If you prefer fantasy tropes, try Thunderstone (but dig up the Tom Vasel variant online).

      Or, if you like tower defence, Castle Panic. My 8-year-old loves the game.

        And if you don't like super heroes, there are alternatives in the Legendary games such as a very thematic Legendary Encounters: Alien and Predator.

      Ghost Stories is good, not too expensive, and has good replay value (each player board has two sides, each with their own special ability, and the game board is randomly made up each game). One thing tho - it is damn hard, and can be unforgiving.

    Race for the galaxy, Cosmic Encounter, Civilization the Board Game and Battlestar Galactica are all pretty awesome in my opinion.
    A couple of new games that I think could definitely be in that category are Sagrada and Barenpark

      BSG is up there in my top 10 all time. I just don't often have the 3-4 hours for a full game any more :(

        I was given BSG for a birthday present 3 years ago and I've never played it because I've never had the people or free time available.

        Not to worry. Only about 10 years to go before the kids can play it with me.

        Tried Dark Moon? I hear its the same sort of thing, but better play time

          Y'know that definition of insanity?

          I feel like I've had almost the exact same conversation about ten times, and I still haven't gotten around to playing Dark Moon.

          Good call though.

        I think we get it to the table 1 -2 times a year. it invariably ends at 3am which is tough

    Risk: Legacy was all time favourite but it's finished now.
    Twilight Imperium once or twice a year is fantastic.
    Battlestar Galactica is always pretty fun.
    Talisman if I want something random.
    Flashpoint: Fire Rescue if I want a co-op game as an opener.

    Thunderbirds, which makes use of Matt Leacock's Pandemic system combined with some very pretty designs from the show, brought together by Modipheus.

    Just recently had the chance to play Mansions of Madness Second Edition and it took every bit of promise of the first edition and left the onerous task of setup and running the game to an app. Hoping like heck Imperial Assault gets its similar proposed app.

    Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles - Out of the Shadows has great cooperative mechanics and a lot of player-based options.

    Burgle Bros is very nearly my new Pandemic in terms of challenge.

    Last edited 29/11/17 12:32 pm

    Talisman - been playing it since 1986 (onto 4th edition) and Arkham Horror, just for the sheer complexity.

    I must say I am really enjoying Near and Far. Above and Below still has its charms, and of course Ticket to Ride Europe.

    Last edited 29/11/17 1:03 pm

    Scythe is quickly becoming a favourite at my game nights, along with Tokaido. Betrayal at House on the Hill is a solid staple and Exploding Kittens & Bears vs. Babies are typical go-to games to get in the mood of things.

    My go-to games are:

    Betrayal at House on the Hill (and Baldur's Gate)
    Lords of Waterdeep
    King of Tokyo

    Scythe is far and away the most comprehensive strategy game I've played this year. Other greats include 7 Wonders, Castles of Mad King Ludwig, Evolution, and Ginkgopolis.

    Carl Chudyk's 'Innovation' for something smaller with massive replayability.

    Dark Souls. First kickstarter i backed and so worth it. An amazing game!

    Caracassone. Acquire. Dominion. Power Grid. El Grande. Glory to Rome. Innovation.

    I do like 7 Wonders, but Between Two Cities has replaced it in my collection as the simultaneous, multi-player game.

    Talisman - I've been playing it since I was a kid, and it's probably my gateway game into geekdom.

    Forbidden Island, Dixit, Takenoko and Concept. Concept is great for when you have a lot of friends over and don't have a copy of Resistance with you and are sick of Cards Against Humanity.

    Arkham Horror LCG

    My current go-to games are:
    Settlers of Catan
    Forbidden Island
    Bang: The Dice Game
    Walk the Plank

    Others I love to play but don't own:
    7 Wonders
    Ultimate Werewolf: One Night

    7 Wonders is a great game - I dont get to play it much anymore because a friend doesnt like it (booooo). Used to be our go to game at the weekly group, we'd teach any newcomers.

    So many good games out there, but my favourites overall are Ginkgopolis, Ra, and Ghost Stories


      Spartacus is actually a surprisingly good game!

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