Wednesday, January 11, 2012

Boxed Up Fun

I can't believe how wrong I've been about board games!  I usually thought of them as bored games and had mental images of never-ending Monopoly games running through my head.  My only exceptions have been chess and some card games played with a standard 52 card deck.

Fortunately for me, I have friends who were determined to show me the error of my ways.  They brought in a selection of games to work and asked me to play during lunch.  Usually we play SC2 or Call of Duty on our lunch breaks and gaming with them is a blast, but they wanted to change it up and try something new.  I think that secretly they're trying to indoctrinate me into their world of board games.

I've been extremely surprised to find that I'm having fun!  Four of us have regularly been sitting down at a table and playing games face-to-face.  We're in the midst of week 2 of board games and so far they've gotten me hooked on Citadels and Ascension.  I think they're both gateway games, because they aren't really played on a board, they're mostly played with cards.  But I have a feeling the true board games are just around the corner.

Citadels is a straight up card game and Ascension is a deck building game played on a mat.  They've also been talking about a game called Small World and now I'm intrigued by the prospect of playing that too.

Something about physically touching the game pieces and interacting with real world objects adds an extra level of satisfaction to the game.  It's a different feeling than what I get from playing video games and I think I like it.

Luckily for me, these friends have a board game site that rocks.  They launched Boxed up Fun a few months ago and have been working the kinks out.  I think most of the bugs are squashed and it's shaping up to be an awesome platform for sharing, reviewing, and discovering board games.  You should support them by visiting Boxed Up Fun.  If you're a board game fan, feel free to friend me on the site and send some board game suggestions my way.  Or leave a comment below.


  1. Older "family" board games (Monopoly, Risk, etc) are mostly crap - but I have always loved more complex games. Axis and Allies was probably what got me into it back in my high school days, but I play games quite frequently now. A few recent favorites:

    Pandemic (co-op game!)
    Race for the Galaxy (card-based)
    Memoir 44 (military board/card game)
    Carcassonne (build the board as you go)

  2. I haven't tried a co-op board game yet. I love co-op in video games so I should probably check that out. If pandemic is anything like the flash version of that game I would probably like it.

  3. Pandemic is good, the co-op Lord of the Rings is also good. I'm a fan of Blokus, Ticket to Ride (I like the German/EU boxes best), Carcassonne, Settlers of Catan, Ricochet Robots... just off the top of my head.

    I'm also *making* a tabletop wargame, so I definitely have strong leanings in that direction sometimes.

  4. What kind of tabletop wargame are you making?

  5. It's largely described in the series of articles I have over on my blog. I call it Zomblobs!... I mentally peg it as a mix of FFT, BattleTech, the WoW minis game and WarMachine/Hordes. No squads/blocks of infantry, just a small team of independent units doing their tactical thing to the other guys, with a few quirks here and there.

    It's ultimately a smaller part of a digital game I want to make, while simultaneously a way to try out gameplay concepts for a bigger tabletop wargame I want to do. Ambitious, maybe, but big dreams tend to be more fun. ;)

    I was angling to have the beta for it done by now, but life kinda bolloxed up that idea. I'm still trying to have it done by Valentine's day, circumstances willing. There's more rule writing than I anticipated, just to make sure someone can pick it up and play without having a wargaming background.