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5 Types of Board Game Everyone Should Have on Their Shelf


When you first start building a board game collection you might not know which types of game you enjoy and want to add to your growing collection. Some people love card games, others hate them. Maybe you want a shelf heaving with deduction games, but don’t want to own a single dice based game. Whether you’re dipping your toe into the world of board games or want to expand your collection, there are certain types of game that everyone should have on their shelf.

Cooperative Games

A lot of games rely on competitive gameplay, as the name suggests cooperative games take a different approach. Instead of trying to outsmart one another, players are encouraged to work together, usually to achieve a common goal. This usually means players will share information and resources to achieve their objective, often creating a need for group discussion and strategizing. Working together to solve problems creates a unique gameplay experience, there is nothing quite as enjoyable as uniting as a team in either victory or defeat. One of the standout examples in this genre is Pandemic. Players take on the role of disease-fighting specialists, working together to save the world from the spread of deadly infections. Cooperative games, like Pandemic, require a combination of communication and strategy, and often have more than enough replayability to make them a must-have for any game collection.

Strategy Games

Strategy games challenge players to think critically and plan their moves so that they can outwit their opponents. Strategy games come in all shapes and sizes, they can involve straight forward deck building, careful tile placement, or complex engine building. The most popular strategy games rely on a combination of these mechanics. Outsmarting opponents and experiencing the satisfaction of a well-thought-out strategy always makes for an enjoyable gameplay experience, so it is always worth owning at least one strategy game. Catan is a popular classic in this category where players must compete for resources, build settlements and collect victory points. The game requires careful resource management, negotiation and long-term planning, making it an ideal game for testing your tactical thinking skills.

Party Games

When you're looking for a light-hearted and fun experience to share with a group, party games are the way to go. These games usually rely on straightforward mechanics; allowing players of all skill levels to participate and they often feature bizarre or funny themes, making them suitable for a wide range of ages. Whether you’re trying to solve a series of puzzles or communicate a secret message to team mates, party games are a great way to liven up a game night. One Night Ultimate Werewolf is a fantastic game in this category, it has players hunting down secret werewolves in their group while trying to avoid accusing innocent bystanders. This game ticks all the boxes for a party game, easy to learn, fun to play and is guaranteed to lead to some hilarious moments when played in a large group.

Legacy Games

Legacy games are designed to be played over a series of sessions and feature gameplay that evolves overtime. As you play, the rules of the game will change, altering the game board or changing the cards that you play with. The concept of a legacy game can be intimidating to beginners, and there is no denying that legacy games require a greater commitment than a standard board game. These games come with a sense of investment as you create the story as you play. One of the most highly recommended legacy games is Gloomhaven, where players take on the roles of adventurers in the city of Gloomhaven, battling monsters, exploring dungeons, and making decisions that shape the game's storyline. Well known for a combination of strategic gameplay, rich narrative, and vast content, Gloomhaven offers players a challenging dive into the world of legacy games.

Luck-based Games

While strategy and skill are often a key component in board games, luck-based games rely on unpredictability and chance to balance the playing field. The element of luck might rely on dice rolls, card draws, or other chance based mechanisms. You want at least one luck based game in your collection because it is a great way to put all players on an equal footing and creates hilarious moments of triumph or defeat. There is nothing quite like knowing an entire game rests on a single move, only to have victory snatched away by a single roll of the dice. If you’re looking for a luck-based game you can’t go wrong with Camel Up, the dice rolling game that has you racing camels in the desert. Players bet on the outcome of the race, trying to predict which camel will win or place in each leg and the overall race. All the camels move based on the roll of the dice, which are spat out from a pyramid. Like all great luck-based games it is unpredictable and in a single turn you can go from first place to last, or as the game ends have your hopes of victory stolen by chance.

Maybe you're a fan of strategy games that test your wits, or you prefer cooperative games that have you working as a team. You never know what mood you or your fellow players will be in, so these are some of the types of board games that everyone should have on their shelf, so you can be ready for any occasion.