Board games are not just for kids anymore. Europe has seen an explosion in the design of engaging strategy board games in recent decades. So much so that, at least in America, you can hear them referred to as "German-style board games" and "Eurogames." But these games are deeper than they seem. Board game designers in Europe take this art form seriously, and have the serious credibility to make them seriously fun…for instance, some are mathematicians and software engineers. Those Germans might just be on to something…fun!
Here’s a list of four very cool and very different games:
Settlers of Catan (3-4 players): Equal parts luck and skill, Settlers of Catan is often cited as the best board game ever created. You play a settler, trying to tame an uninhabited island. It is a random board, meaning that it’s guaranteed to be different every time you play, and, if you really love it, there are expansions and scenarios that allow you to build on the core game.
Agricola (1-5 players): All skill, no luck. That’s right…no dice in this game! You and your fellow players build a farm..think of it as a Farmville on your table, except it’s actually fun. A little more complicated than other games but totally worth it once you learn the rules.
Pandemic (2-4 players): Not very competitive? This is the game for you…gather your friends and work together to defeat a global pandemic. Using cubes to represent viruses, you work against the clock to eradicate the diseases and save humanity.
Ticket to Ride (2-5 players): In this train game, you and the other players match cards to build trains from one destination to another. The longer the train, the more points.