Christmas Board game buying guide

boardgames for christmas

This post may seem a bit early, but it really is only around 6 weeks until Christmas, so when you factor in buying time, postage and all of the other stress around Christmas it is probably timely! The purpose of this post is to look at a few of the reasons why you might be looking for a board game for some one and what to buy.

For Family Fun

The family are all together only a few times a year and you want to make the most of it, so you are looking for a game that will play well for the family in the quiet times. The day is hot and you have eaten a big meal (or meals) and people are looking for a way to interact that isn’t too intense.

Love Letter – This is one of our favourite small card games that are easy to play and pick up with anyone. Love Letter is a take-that card game where each player is aiming to have the highest scoring card left at the end of the round. Lots of fun and interaction between players is what makes this game great. You can often pick it up for less than $15 on letter australia

My Little Scythe – This one is great if you are looking for a bit more strategy in your games and can play up to 6 players. Each player controls 2 chibi-style characters to build their friendship points. Now this may look child focused, however the game has a great deal of strategy involved and will allow both children and adults to have a great amount of fun at the table. 

Codenames – If you are looking for something that might get a little bit more raucous, Codenames is a great game to check out. Basically, each team has a number of cards that they need to identify, the ‘Spymaster’ will give one word clues to their teammates. The trick is that these one word clues can indicate more than one clue card, meaning that both the Spymaster and the players must be trying to look for connections, often vague, between clue cards. Codenames comes in several types – Pictures, Words, Marvel, Disney and Harry Potter, all of which can be combined for endless hours of fun. You can pick up the range of Codenames pretty much anywhere for less than $30, including Amazon

azul australiaAzul – This is the winner of the Game of the Year and rightly so. It plays up to 4 players and is a pretty relaxed approach to gaming. Each player is aiming to get the highest score from the tiles that they lay on the board. Very simply, each player takes a turn taking tiles from the centre of the board ‘factory’ and then adds them to their wall. The catch is – when you take a tile you must take all of it’s colour from it’s location, unfortunately you may not have this much space and will have to take a hit in points. Play continues until one player has completed a horizontal line of 5 tiles. You can pick it up from Amazon for around $60 – worth it for the component quality. 

Pandemic – This is one of the all time classics and if you ask any board gamer you will probably find that this was one of their initial experiences that got them into the hobby. This game is a little different that the others on the list as it is a purely cooperative game, that is, all players are aiming for the same end goal. A pandemic illness has broken out and it is your job to stop it. Across the world and with varying roles you must work together to ensure that you keep the contagion at bay and seek out a cure. You can often find Pandemic for around $50 from most game shops including OzGameShop and Amazon 

Raiders of the North Sea – This is a game by a New Zealand designer and it is a great one for those who are looking for a little more strategy in their games with the family. You play as a Viking raiding party and build up your crew so that you may go pillaging. This is a great worker placement game and is a good introduction to the genre (as well as being a great game in general for seasoned players). Some games in the ‘serious’ category have a tendency to be a bit mean to other players, but I have never found that with Raiders. You can often find it for around $60 on games sites like Gameology and Games Empire

What do you think of this list, is there anything that you will be getting out on the table at Christmas with your family this year? 

Cameron B Author

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