Wednesday, December 11, 2019

Four Games For Holiday Family Gaming

Christmas time is coming... and I will inevitably be asked by friends who are a little less obsessed with board/card games than I am what new (or new-ish) games I would recommend to them for holiday times with family.

You, gentle reader, now get to benefit from my need to answer that question. I present for your consideration four games that could be the key to a lovely evening with friends and family this Christmas season.

Just One

The winner of the Spiel des Jahres (Game of the Year) in Germany, this is a simple cooperative game of clue-giving (think Password)... except you do it as a group. And, most importantly, no clue can match. 

The game plays 4-7 folks... but it's probably best with 6 or 7. My play with a mixed age group (young teens & adults) actually went pretty well.

Team Play

A partnership game for 4 or 6 people... it's a rummy variant with card drafting and passing cards to your partner that plays in about 30 minutes. I find it completely addictive. 

I think it's best with 4 - less downtime - but it works just fine with six players.

Rhino Hero Super Battle

Yes, it's a kids dexterity game from a company best known for creating beautiful kid games... but it has been a hit with every group of adults I've played it with. Imagine combining building castles out of card (only easier) combined with whimsical art and a competition to be the hero highest up in the great building you participate in creating.

It maxes out at four players... but always attracts a crowd of folks who want to play (or just want to watch the silliness).

Cartographers: A Roll Player Tale

A roll'n'write game that can be played by 1-8 players. In roll & write games (well, technically, this is a flip & write game) you roll dice or flip cards to determine what each player is going to write on their play sheet. In the case of Cartographers, you are mapping a fantasy kingdom - trying to satisfy certain points goals by building the right kind of kingdom. 

There is some interaction with the monster cards (that let you write on the paper of the person next to you)... but it's a relatively gentle game that's a delight to play - especially when you use colored pencils to make your map extra special. 

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