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Board Games on a Budget


Are you a student who loves board games but the loan isn’t cutting it? Maybe you want to save a few pennies for a summer holiday but don't want to miss out on competitive fun. If you’ve realised you can’t spend all your money on board games unless you want to eat plain pasta for a month, then this blog is for you. As a student currently experiencing all of the realisations of the expensive hobby I have got myself into, I love a budget-friendly board game. Here are some of my favourites;


It wouldn’t be a blog by Leah without mentioning this game. Unmatched is a combat game where you play as famous/ significant characters in history, stories and legends. It is on the higher end of my budget list but boxes start from around £20. However, this is your warning. Be very careful if you choose to get one box because there is a great likelihood that you will LOVE this game and want to buy more sets to play as different characters. I would recommend getting the ‘Cobble and Fog’ set first as I find it’s the most simple to jump into for new players and offers a good variety of special abilities for each character, though Sherlock is undoubtedly the strongest. My favourite sets currently are ‘The Battle of Legends sets’ which you get 4 characters who are all so unique. The replayability is endless so I think it’s great value for your money.

Boss Monster

This game is relatively new in my collection, you can grab it for £20.25 from Zatu currently. It’s a dungeon-building game based on video games, you play as the villain to lure heroes in and destroy them. It’s a very simple game that anyone can play and isn’t too heavy. It’s competitive and you can figure out ways to disrupt your opponent to one-up them, which I like (unless it happens to me). I found this game by chance and was drawn in by the retro game design, I was pleasantly surprised by how much I enjoyed this game.

Sky Team

Sky Team is currently on sale for £26.99 which I would snatch up if you can, it’s a steal for a game which quickly became a favourite in my house. Sky Team is a cooperative Two-player game, with one player taking the pilot role and the other the co-pilot. The roles have differentiating responsibilities but levels of importance. During rounds, the players cannot communicate with each other and have to silently place their dice in the corresponding places on their cockpit to ensure the plane lands safely. The layout of the gameboard being your plane controls is such an aesthetically pleasing way to play a board game. You are given many landing locations which provide many hours of gameplay, and if you are feeling crafty you could d.i.y to make your own once you’ve gotten through them all.


Coup is a light hidden role game where you are a futuristic government, a game of bluff you can get ready to get your lie on. This game is currently £13.9 on Zatu which is great. It is a 2-6 player game but I find it is better with at least 3 people so great if you have some friends around for a couple of games. This game is competitive and not too dissimilar to ‘Secret Hitler’ (currently £45.19) so if you are looking for a cheaper alternative for a hidden role game this is a good game to fill the lying-sized hole.


The 2022 edition of Skull is currently down from £18.99 to 15.49. This is another great party game full of deception using skull and flower coasters. It is a game of deduction, with each player trying to score points by guessing the correct amount of floral coasters and trying to con the other players into being unsure whether you have placed a skull or a flower coaster down. It is a light and fun game, great for friends who aren’t as into board games as us.

Here to slay

Here to Slay (£21.65) is a role-playing competitive strategic fantasy card game. You recruit your heroic creatures to help you to slay the terrifying monsters. It is a 2-6 player game which I think works great for two players, but also works well with larger groups as well. At the start of the game you choose your adorable hero and build your deck of creatures each with different abilities, which makes each game slightly different, though you learn which heroes you like best (no one else can choose the unicorn). The race against your opponent to win keeps the game fast-paced, each game taking about 30-60 minutes (though one time I won in 10, I promise). It seems like a great game for people looking to get into board games also, a good taste to dip your toes in a light strategy game.

Love Letter

Only £7.81! In a quick and snappy game, players need to deliver a love letter to Princess Anette whilst getting rid of other letters from their opposing players. It is a race to 6 victory points with lots of room for wild guessing, scheming and trickery. It is a 2-4 player game that is over in about 20 minutes with such an easy set and pack up. I play it with my Partner often and is great for travelling or if you want to squeeze in one more little game before bed. There are other more expensive versions of this game, such as the premium version which is £20.85 and you can play with up to 8 players, So if you are looking for a game for more players then I would look at this version too.

These are some of my favourite games that are on a budget. These all range from £7-35 based on which sets you choose but there are lots more board games that are less in value but not on enjoyment. I would always recommend giving the Sale section of Zatu a little look for a cheeky bargain on a game that you think you would enjoy, it’s a great way to check out new cheaper games that you think look interesting too.