I decided to keep it pretty low key in February and stay home for date night. The timing just so happened to work out really well that we had some severe weather and wouldn't have wanted to venture out any way.
I need to come up with a catalog of our games because it's gotten to that ridiculous point where no one can buy us a game for fear that we already own it. But for the blog, Bigbad and I decided to collaborate and list our top 10 favorite box games (mostly board games, but some are card sets).
- Apples to Apples: I personally like this game to break the ice. You'll laugh and alternately raise your eyebrows at discovering the person to your left finds Garrison Keillor frightening or parachutes strange. The alternate games of play are just as enjoyable. This one takes no skill and no special talent and can be played with a variety of ages, so it has to take the first spot.
- Settlers of Catan: This one sinks its claws into you. At first you hate it, but after awhile you're hooked. We bought a cheap expansion pack and play with a handful of house rules. Original and travel Settlers are my favorite though I'm trying to learn the Settling of America version. Any game referenced on Big Bang Theory is top of the line awesome dorkiness:
- Fluxx: This game is incredibly fun, so don't let all of the Mensa hype surrounding it make it seem like it's too intelligent for game night. After two plays your mind will be opened up like Neo taking the red pill. You'll marvel at how many different scenarios this game can produce. Sometimes a round is over in four seconds and sometimes it will take hours to finish. The combination of humor, simplicity, and randomness keep this in our top 10.
- Taboo: This game and Catch Phrase and Password are of a similar ilk to get someone on your team to guess a word. I have a fondness for Taboo as there is an element of challenge as well as speed. Plus we don't have the digital version of Catch Phrase and must change out the disk which is mega annoying.
- The Game of Things: Not the game to play with your college cousins and elementary school cousins together. But separately, they might enjoy the game. I love hearing everyone's original answers because the creative element allows for a lot of humor. Balderdash is a close second for this category of game where participants toss in original answers. I like the variation of categories for Balderdash too (their new box design is terrible though because it prevents any stackage of boxes. Everyone we know has destructed the top of the box to fix this error).
- Sequence: Perhaps because we didn't grow up with this game there is still a bit of novelty surrounding it for Bigband and me. It's not complex (it's basically a more grown up version of Connect Four), but depending on how many people are playing, the dynamics of the game shift a bit. I love this for two players. Sometimes it's hard to find good two player games.
- Four Letter Frenzy: This is a verbal spin off the card game Spoons. I like word games, and this one doesn't take require players to think up ridiculous "let me look that up in the dictionary to validate that word being on triple score" kind of words. They only need to know four letter words (quite original name, huh?). We bought this one from a garage sale, and it's gotten lots of play at our house.
- Trivial Pursuit: Old school trivia, but still the best. The countless variations are pretty solid, and this is a fun game to play in teams. We're also digging Split Decision for some of our trivia gaming simply because it is fast paced and wildly random. Isn't that the way all trivia should be. Plus, you have a 50/50 shot at getting the answer correct.
- Phase 10: Our family is an Uno tournament kind of family. Smallgood Pop taught all the grandkids to play Uno while our legs were still too short to touch the ground from the dining chairs, but Phase 10 is like Uno for those grandkids all grown up. It's frustrating at times (like when you overlooked that you were missing a "6" in a run of 8), but it's undeniably great with a group of college kids who want to stay up all night.
- 7 Wonders: My confession of this list is that we don't even own 7 Wonders. We just played it for the first time over the holidays. But it could quickly outstage Settlers as our favorite go-to strategy game. It's just that good folks. It's like Shrek because there are so many layers to it, but they all will get you to think. I love that it's a relatively quick game too. If only it weren't so expensive. Boo.
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