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flyAU
Atlanta Braves Fan
ATL
Member since Dec 2010
22065 posts

Boardgame difficulty for "game nights"
So before the virus hit, some neighbors were having game nights where we would play some pretty normal type of board games (cards against humanity etc). Well this opened my eyes to all the fun looking boardgames out there. During lockdown i purchased a few games in hopes that things would finally get to normal.

So these are the games I bought.

Pandemic: Rapid Response

Betrayal at House on the hill

Arkham Horror


So last night I was going to set up the Pandemic game. It quickly was apparent that there were a lot of moving parts (with a sand timer counting down with little learn on the fly ability). With some drinks being drank, I figured it was best to hold off on playing until I could understand it. That made me worried about the two horror mystery games that I got. Are these going to be extremely intense in concentration etc? My wife loses interest quickly if things get too complicated so I think I may have 100 bucks of board games that arent good for game nights.

Thoughts?
This post was edited on 6/28 at 9:29 pm


skrayper
Alabama Fan
Member since Nov 2012
18186 posts

re: Boardgame difficulty for "game nights"
If you're drinking, all of those games are going to be a bit much. Both of your horror games are a lot of fun. Betrayal is not so bad, until you initiate the betrayal portion. Then it can get a bit more complicated.

Arkham Horror can be alright because the app does some of the work for you. Sometimes a lot of it. Way better if you have a tablet for the puzzles.


flyAU
Atlanta Braves Fan
ATL
Member since Dec 2010
22065 posts

re: Boardgame difficulty for "game nights"
quote:

Arkham Horror can be alright because the app does some of the work for you. Sometimes a lot of it. Way better if you have a tablet for the puzzles.



I have no clue what I am getting into

I had no clue there was an app or anything. Hmmm

Can you help me with difficulty level of each? Don't want to dive into the hardest one first.


dcrews
UNO Fan
Baton Rouge
Member since Feb 2011
24515 posts

re: Boardgame difficulty for "game nights"
Want real entertainment? Play Sorry! with your wife and kids.


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skrayper
Alabama Fan
Member since Nov 2012
18186 posts

re: Boardgame difficulty for "game nights"
quote:

I have no clue what I am getting into

I had no clue there was an app or anything. Hmmm

Can you help me with difficulty level of each? Don't want to dive into the hardest one first.



My bad, I was thinking Mansions of Madness.

How complex Arkham Horror can vary depending on which onez but none are rules light. Betrayal is probably best for your group. Classic Pandemic isn't that bad.

Mansions of Madness 2nd edition and Eldritch Horror are the best ones IMHO. Arkham is a good one though.


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Freauxzen
USA Fan
Utah
Member since Feb 2006
34303 posts

re: Boardgame difficulty for "game nights"
quote:

So last night I was going to set up the Pandemic game. It quickly was apparent that there were a lot of moving parts (with a sand timer counting down with little learn on the fly ability). With some drinks being drank, I figured it was best to hold off on playing until I could understand it. That made me worried about the two horror mystery games that I got. Are these going to be extremely intense in concentration etc? My wife loses interest quickly if things get too complicated so I think I may have 100 bucks of board games that arent good for game nights.


quote:

Arkham Horror




This will not end well.



Stick to the "medium weight" games if you are new.

I'd suggest Horrified (but it is much like original Pandemic, I like it more though), Ticket to Ride until you get the hang of it.

Other good ones:

Power Grid - A bit, a but of a step up.
Isle of Skye
Quacks of Quedlinberg - An awesome drinking game


Super underrated game that's different from TTR is Whistle Stop. Can find it cheap, a little complex, but not much so. HIGHLY recommended. It will push you a bit.



If Pandemic setup was daunting other games like Arkham can quickly get out of hand.


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puffulufogous
USA Fan
New Orleans
Member since Feb 2008
6139 posts

re: Boardgame difficulty for "game nights"
I would caution you to be very careful with your burgeoning board game group. You don't want to try too much too fast. There are a lot of factors that go in to a game being a success for a group of new gamers, and while it's easy to get excited, your other group members might not have the same interests you do.

How do the other group members respond to competition? Are they cutthroat or are they happy to playing around while having cocktails? Are you going to piss off your wife if you snatch victory away from her on the last turn? co-operative games can be good because it takes some of the fear of decision making away, but for my group they never worked because if there's no winner what's the point.

Are they open to themes like horror? The fun of betrayal is the lead up to the haunt where suspense builds, but if your neighbor is going to be annoyed or weirded out when he becomes a werewolf or space alien 2/3 through the game that might turn them off. Find a theme that everyone can get into, not just you.

Try to keep the complexity down for a while. I think you want something light that can be fun for everybody and doesn't take more than 30 mins to play. I've had a lot of success with Azul for new gamers. There are limited actions to take which makes it easier to teach and play. It's tactile meaning the players get to touch the parts which is fun. There's just enough backstabbing to not offend other players.

Another recommendation is a game like love letter. It's small and intimidating but there's so much replayability. Rounds are very short so it's good for post dinner drinks.

Last recommendation is that no matter what game you choose, learn it inside and out and learn how to teach it effectively before playing with the group. Nothing kills a new game like the glassy eyed look of others who are tuning you out while you're trying to teach it. There are guides on how to teach games in general out there.


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Gusoline
Auburn Fan
Jacksonville, NC
Member since Dec 2013
6641 posts

re: Boardgame difficulty for "game nights"
Underdog sorry... and I just made this up...


Everyone is against one player. No knocking back others unless it's your only move... even if they're about to win.

Play until there's a last place. Everyone who loses to underdog drinks a full drink. Last place is new underdog

ETA: if underdog beats everyone they all drink 2 and underdog is passed to the right. If underdog finishes last they either drink 2 and pass or drink 1 and repeat.
This post was edited on 6/29 at 9:07 am


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bluebarracuda
New Orleans Pelicans Fan
Baton Rouge
Member since Oct 2011
15084 posts
 Online 

re: Boardgame difficulty for "game nights"
Resistance is a good drinking game for larger groups. Normal Pandemic isn't a hard game to learn, but it's a really fricking hard game to win. Plus it's a team game, so it makes it easier to play with people IMO


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jmarto1
LSU Fan
Houma, LA/ Las Vegas, NV
Member since Mar 2008
25732 posts

re: Boardgame difficulty for "game nights"
Betrayal is easy to figure out on the fly. Good replay value as well


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SG_Geaux
LSU Fan
Googolplex Posts
Member since Aug 2004
68911 posts

re: Boardgame difficulty for "game nights"
Forbidden Island is a Team play game that is easy to learn but is almost always a nail biter.


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imjustafatkid
UAB Fan
Alabama
Member since Dec 2011
22958 posts
 Online 

re: Boardgame difficulty for "game nights"
Get Jackbox Party Pack 3 on XBox or whatever you have, play Quiplash 2 with friends. Or Trivia Murder Party. 8 can play, but if there are more around they can be in the virtual "audience" and join in. It is a fantastically good time. Everyone plays on their own web browser on their cellphone.

I'm sure the other Jackbox Party Packs are also good, but I've only played the 3rd one.
This post was edited on 6/29 at 11:36 am


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SeeeeK
Missouri Fan
St.Louis
Member since Sep 2012
20366 posts

re: Boardgame difficulty for "game nights"
We enjoy playing Guesstures

People can get really into the game, some are just terrible at the game, and some while drunk are amusing, except when on your side.


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VinegarStrokes
Atlanta Braves Fan
Georgia
Member since Oct 2015
10153 posts
 Online 

re: Boardgame difficulty for "game nights"
Codenames and Wavelength are both good games for any number of players (well, 4 or more anyways). They actually take some thought and knowing your teammates well, but they are very simple to play in terms of game mechanics.

of course, my group has gone absolute bonkers with game nights. we and another married couple (each family with 2 kids around the same ages) decided to get into Gloomhaven last fall. We were making ok progress, but once COVID hit, we decided to make them our quarantine buddies and we've probably put in a total of 150 hours so far. the kids love it because they get to play and watch movies together for extended periods of time. we love it because we cook good food, drink whiskey, and frick shite up in the scenarios. Still are only about 66% completed though, and we've already bought into the Frosthaven kickstarter lol.


TigerNutwhack
LSU Fan
Baton Rouge
Member since Jan 2004
3824 posts
 Online 

re: Boardgame difficulty for "game nights"
We don't have a regular group, but our go to for me and the wife is Battle of Hogwarts, a deckbuilding game. We'll put the kids to bed, bust out the drinks, throw on a Harry Potter movie in the back ground and play for an hour or two.

It starts out very simply, and you can progress through the years to make the game more complicated/interesting.

We've also loved Betrayal, but with two players it's not super fun. Another game we've recently played a few times is "Last Night on Earth", a B-Movie Zombie themed game. It's meant to be played with a person controlling the Zombies, but we've played co-op against a "programmed" Zombie horde and it's worked out well.


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bluebarracuda
New Orleans Pelicans Fan
Baton Rouge
Member since Oct 2011
15084 posts
 Online 

re: Boardgame difficulty for "game nights"
Codenames is a blast. Especially if you get the other ones like pictures and deep undercover. Rotate between the 3 to shake it up


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saintsfan1977
West Monroe, from Cajun country
Member since Jun 2010
4792 posts
 Online 

re: Boardgame difficulty for "game nights"
I bought Arkham to play with my kids. They were all gung ho about it. After an hour of setting it up, and reading the instructions, I said frick this. Put it back in the box and haven't touched it again. It's too much. I watched a YouTube video on how to play and I'm done with it.


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AgCoug
Texas A&M Fan
Houston
Member since Jan 2014
3934 posts

re: Boardgame difficulty for "game nights"
One Night: Werewolf is a great drinking/party game. You will learn a lot about how well your friends can lie to your face as well.


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jsk020
Louisiana Tech Fan
Nola
Member since Jan 2013
1315 posts
 Online 

re: Boardgame difficulty for "game nights"
Splendor, small world, 7 wonders.

These are easy, sort of complex games that are fun with all types of groups I have found.



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