This award-winning game is made of dozens of cards with beautifully drawn art, and players must find the storyteller’s card while fooling the other players into choosing their own card.
The storyteller has to make sure that the clue he gives is neither too obvious nor too vague; otherwise he is penalized for it. The fun comes from trying to figure out the clue or reference that you know only some of your friends will get.
The problem with most educational trivia games is that if you aren’t familiar with the subject, you are at a distinct disadvantage. Timeline fixes that by requiring only an approximation rather than a specific answer. Each card shows a particular invention or historical event, and players must figure out where that cards fit in the “Timeline.”
They don’t have to know the exact year, just whether it was before or after a certain event card. Was the matchstick invented before or after the garbage bag?
Quick, simple and just plain fun, this comes with different versions for different categories (Inventions, Historical Events, Discoveries and, our personal favorite, Music and Cinema).
Ticket to Ride
Ticket to Ride has become every board game enthusiast’s choice of a gateway game—the kind of game you recommend to people starting out in the hobby. Simple enough to be taught in a few minutes but with enough strategy to keep players involved throughout the game, Ticket to Ride gives players the opportunity to act as railroad tycoons building railways throughout America. They must complete their contracts before the other players do, and block their own connections.
This is the perfect all-ages game to suggest to anyone who’d like to get a taste of modern boardgaming.
Takenoko maximizes cuteness without sacrificing strategy. Players must build a bamboo garden by cultivating the land, irrigating them and growing different species of bamboo, all while fending off an extremely adorable panda hungry for its next meal.
The Settlers of Catan
Widely credited as the game that started the current board game renaissance, the best-selling Settlers of Catan is now considered a future classic. Players try to be the dominant force on the island of Catan by building settlements, cities and roads. They need to gather valuable resources to build these developments, and must often trade with other players to get what they need.
The Settlers of Catan proves that you don’t have to be in direct conflict with each other, and that trades and negotiations can just be as competitive.
Ca$h n’ Guns 2
After a successful bank heist, a gang of criminals now gather around the pile of loot to decide on the split. Trouble brews when they can’t agree on what is a fair share and soon their guns do the talking…
Sounds like an old-fashioned Mexican stand-off? Ca$h n’ Guns helps you relive your favorite gunslinger scenes by letting you point foam guns at each other. The goal of the game is to gather more money than anyone else while trying to keep alive by “threatening” people with your gun.
Laughter often follows after seeing just who everyone is pointing at. This game is most fun for large groups of up to eight people.
The Resistance: Avalon
Less of a card game and more of a social experiment, Avalon: The Resistance is often joked to be the game that ends friendships.
You have been tasked by King Arthur to complete different quests for him. The problem? Some of your group are really traitors out to sabotage the rest! But which ones? Who can you really trust?
Deceit, manipulation and betrayal among friends are all too common in this game, but that’s what makes it so fun! Just make sure to leave all bad blood within the game as it ends.
Toc Toc Woodman/Bling Bling Gemstone
This smash hit from South Korea is guaranteed to to make you forget all about Jenga. In Toc Toc Woodman, you are lumberjacks delicately trying to chop down barks of the tree without causing the entire thing to fall. Each “bark” is worth one point but each fallen “core” is negative five points.
The sequel Bling Bling Gemstone has a slightly different scoring system and replaces the lumberjack theme with that of a miner looking for gems, but are otherwise identical. This is a perfect game for those looking for a certain “toy” factor in their gifts.
The animals have escaped from the farm! You need to bring them back before they get into trouble—and you want to do so faster than your opponents!
In the fast-catching game Fun Farm, players compete to spot and catch the animal shown on the cards before all their opponents. Each round, the active player reveals the top card from the deck, placing it next to any others still on the table.
After rolling dice, if a die depicted on a card matches the color rolled on that die, players race to grab the animal toy from the table that matches the animal depicted on the card. Whoever does so first claims the card; and once the deck runs out, whoever has the most cards wins!
Another award-winning game, 7 Wonders has you playing leaders of ancient civilizations. Gather resources, develop commercial routes, affirm your military supremacy and build your city—all with the ultimate goal of building an architectural wonder that will one day be known as one of the 7 Wonders of the ancient world.
The game is a little more complicated than the others in this list, but the innovations in card game design are hard to ignore. The game is deep in strategic decisions without being overwhelming, as you choose the cards that will make up your empire.
Best of all. the game’s unique card drafting system keeps the game’s length at a steady 30 minutes, regardless of whether you are playing two players or seven.
You can find and play these games and over 600 others at Ludo: Boardgame Bar & Cafe, 26 Sct. Torillo, Quezon City; tel. 0920-9218482.