Top 5 Board Games to Play!

Today’s topic is the top 5 board games! Board games have certainly advanced with age. I remember playing Sorry with my father and he would make the same jokes every damn time. Now I play much more advanced board games, but the concepts are still the same. An activity with friends or family that provides healthy competition as well as a ton of fun.

Today’s guest lister is Adam Boucher. He is a friend of mine that went to UW-Oshkosh but I never met him until I moved out to California. He is a fellow gamer. While we don’t play card based games, the two of us tend to battle in board games. I consider him a most worthy adversary and he has opened my eyes to new games and new strategies. I love playing against him. Adam also has his own web page, you can visit it here:

Here is Adam’s top 5 list of his favorite board games:

5. Last Night on Earth – It has scenarios, encourages co-operative play and creative thinking, and expansions. Despite some people saying the rules are broken, my fellow players and I have always had fun with it.

Last Night on Earth

4. Bootleggers –  Head- to-head play with collusion and deal making encouraged, historical setting, easy to set up and play. Simple rules and simple execution.


3. Battlestar Galactica – Playing includes team strategy and deductive reasoning, plus a lot of accusing and finger pointing. Also, I like the setting.

Battlestar Galactica

2. Arkham Horror – I like AH for a lot of the same reasons as  LNoE. Just a different flavor. The biggest difference between the two is that all players are on the same side.

1. Heroscape – This game is pretty open ended. You can play teams, or head-to-head. You can draft an army or prebuild one. It has built in scenarios or you can make your own. You can make your own maps. It’s out of print, but with the right amount of cash or creativity, new adventures are always right around the corner. Plus, I have sentimental reasons for this one. I can’t look at the the blue container it’s stored in and not think of my good friend, Tom, who I don’t get to see often enough, and I miss him all the time.


Here are my top 5 Board games (since Adam did his in descending order, I will do mine that way as well):

5. StarCraft – You might be thinking, “Why play a board game that is based off a computer game and you could just play the computer game easier?”…Well, the answer is simple: StarCraft could be modeled after anything really, because the game itself is sound. It is a lot of fun, the mechanics of placing orders and moving troops and building are all awesome. It tends to get a tad clunky with fighting, but most of the time it works out just fine. The games tend to be a little longer, but once you get the hang of the turn structure, the games can fly.

4. Small World – This is a really fun and really silly game. You basically take fantasy races like Hobbits, Trolls, elves, Giants, or skeletons (to name a few) and you conquer places on a map to collect gold. But the map itself is super small, so you are always stepping on the toes of other players. It gets crowded quickly and people tend to hold grudges. The game moves super-fast and can be played in about 30 minutes.


3. Battlestar Galactica – My favorite game where everyone starts on the same team, and then peoples alliances, motives and views of one another shift, often times quickly and harshly. In this game, everyone starts out on the same team, and then cards are drawn at random and all of a sudden, there are secret Cylons amongst you. Working in secret, the Cylons try to sabatoge the human players before the humans find out who they are. It becomes a race against time, resources and each other as everyone is a suspect and tempers tend to flare. A truly brilliant board game.

2. Sorry – Sentimental reasons, this was the game of choice in the Leinenkugel household. It is easier than Monopoly, shorter than Risk and easily playable by a kid over a game like Scrabble. For some reason my father really liked this game and I can still see him drawing a card and studying the words on it. Then he would carefully count out the number of squares in front of his pawn with his finger before going back, getting the pawn and bouncing one of my tokens back to the start. He would then look up, smile with that know-it-all grin as if he planned everything and would say, “Sorry”. He was so proud of himself in those moments.

1. Game of Thrones – Set on the continent of Westros, This game is my favorite because of how it is set up. It is a game that has almost zero luck factor. Almost everything that happens can be controlled one way or the other. Every choice that you need to make will affect the outcome of the turn, and then the game. This means that when you win or lose it was because of choices you and the other players playing made. It has all the strategy of Risk, the secretiveness of Battlestar, the suspense of StarCraft and the politics of, well, the politics seem to be unmatched in any other game I have played thus far. Also, the game itself really isn’t that hard to pick up once you start playing.

Game of Thrones

My honorable mention would have to be Star Wars Epic Duels. It is a super fun, fast moving game set in the Star Wars universe.

There are two lists for top 5 board games! What is your list? Leave it down below and feel free to discuss ours lists!

Leave a comment


  1. andlynfro

     /  July 24, 2012

    Wow. Those are some pretty non-traditional board game favorites. Not hating, just surprised. I kind of hate board games because of the pressure but if forced to play, hopefully with some not uber competitive folks, I would choose:
    Risk – I enjoy the prospect of dominating the world or to go out trying.
    Scrabble – Despite what my students think, just because I am an English teacher, doesn’t mean I know every word ever. Scrabble is difficult and largely luck of the draw, but it is a fun wine sipping, clever smack talking sort of game.
    Balderdash – I have been told that I have a great “poker face” in this game and read each prepared definition in all seriousness. I think it is fun to make crap up.
    Bananagrams – I love this game. Not really a board game, but oh well.
    Settlers of Catan – Now, I have played this game and all the expansions like four hundred times with the most competitive group of folks ever. As such, I tend to groan a little when I hear we will play because the pressure is high, but all in all, it is a really fun game. It is very complicated and lasts sometimes longer than Risk. And come to think of it, I don’t think I have ever won Catan, but you know, that’s okay. It is such an intense game that maybe I like that it lets me hide a little. Because I don’t care if I win most games. And most people think that’s weird.

    • I suggest you give Small World a try next time it is being played around you. You would probably really enjoy that game and it isn’t as competitive or cutthroat as say Game of Thrones or Battlestar.

  2. brian

     /  July 24, 2012

    5. chess
    4. statego
    3. Risk
    2. Cranium
    1. Scattegories (not sure if this counts as a board game but it is still super fun to play.)

  3. brian

     /  July 24, 2012


  4. Risk for sure. I wasted plenty a sunny day rolling dice and drinking MGD Light trying to take over Paraguay.

  5. We just picked up Last Night on Earth and it’s been pretty enjoyable. I’m a sucker for co-op, so I’m biased, but it’s still fun. I can definitely see where a few imbalances can screw with people, though.


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