Once a week I make pizza and play games with my spouse and child. I could extol the virtues of how family game night brings you closer together, but I think we have all seen enough Hasbro commercials. Instead I’m giving you a review of our top 5.
#5: Forbidden Island
What it is: This is a cooperative board game. What’s that you ask? Badass, that’s what. This game allows you and up to three others to work together to get your team and artifacts off an island before it sinks into the sea.
Why I love it: It is fun to strategize with my favorite people and it’s a different pace from the usual competing against each other. The board and pieces are durable as is the metal tin it comes in, ensuring years of use.
Games like it: Forbidden Desert, Pandemic.
What it is: A strategic property game where you try to connect city goals through train routes.
Why I love it: The Nordic Countries version has beautiful art. While the maps can be slightly off, it really does help you learn geography. I’ll also admit that I love this one because I’m good at it.
Games like it: Uh, all the turn based strategy games.
What it is: A storytelling card game. You determine who goes first by sharing information about your day. Whoever had it the worst goes first. The object is to kill off your card family while each is at the height of pain and suffering. Game play is enhanced by the storytelling skills of the players.
Why I love it: I love hearing how creative my family gets in telling their miserable tale of woe.
Games like it: Murder of Crows, Once Upon a Time.
What it is: A card version of Russian roulette, excepts instead of guns, it’s KITTENS.
Why I love it: It’s fast, easy to learn, and the card art is amusing.
Games like it: Fluxx, Russian roulette.
What it is: D&D lite. Okay, not really. Okay, a little. You start off human and have the chance to become a half dwarf half elf super cleric fighting a gaggle of vampires. The goal is to kick open doors, steal all the loot you can carry on the way to level 10, tripping anyone who gets close.
Why I love it: Because I’m a half dwarf, half elf super cleric. I like it because it reminds me of Dungeons and Dragons without the painstaking work that goes into the real thing.
Games like it: D&D, Smallworld.
Honorable mention for being pretty light in the brain department yet still enjoyable: Zombie Dice.