Stuck at home without your trusty tabletop game group? Try one of these board games on for size…
The coronavirus lockdown became boring pretty quickly, didn’t it? Thankfully, we know exactly what you and your flatmate should be doing to while away the hours: playing a brilliant board game, that’s what.
Forget Monopoly and Cluedo, though. In the age of Covid-19, and all the self-isolation and social distancing fun it brings, it’s best you stick to smaller gaming groups. Tiny, in fact. Just you and whoever you’re living with, basically.
Thankfully, as Stylist’s digital editor-at-large (and noted board game fanatic) Kayleigh Dray points out, there are plenty of tabletop games out there that work for just two people.
With that in mind, these are the ones you need to order via special delivery, stat.
Codenames: Duet keeps the basic elements of the OG Codenames – give one-word clues to try to get someone to identify your agents among those on the table – but now you’re working together as a team to find all of your covert operatives. It’s a little like Articulate, I guess, but with higher stakes. Happy hunting!
Forget staying indoors: with this beautiful board game, you can visit fjords, mountains and the Baltic Sea as you rush to build the first (and best) railways between the great northern cities of Copenhagen, Oslo, Helsinki and Stockholm. A simple enough concept, sure, but it’s still taxing enough (and competitive enough) to make it worth your while.
Board game aficionados will no doubt have played the OG 7 Wonders at some point in their tabletop gaming career. The Duel expansion is much the same: similar to PC classic Age of Empires, players acquire cards that provide resources or advance their military or scientific development in order to develop a civilization and complete wonders. The only difference? They’ve adapted the rules and gameplay so that, this time, two people can play.
Ah, an old classic: I’m willing to bet big money that everyone’s played this strategy game at least once in their lives. The aim of the game: to sink your opponent’s battleships… before they sink yours. Trust me: it’s a lot easier (and a lot less boring) than it sounds.
In this beautiful game, you ‘build-a-dinosaur’ from 12,000 different options – before trying to guide it successfully through the Jurassic Period. Gently taxing, without making you hurl the board at the wall in frustration.
Every single classroom had one of these waiting for a rainy day. Just one, though, and usually with about six pieces missing. Now you’re a grown-up, you can buy your own copy (hurrah) and play in earnest: can you guess who your opponent’s mystery character is? Lock the slider on your favourite and don’t give yourself away, while you look for the right clues to be the first to score.
A little too close to home with everything going on? Maybe, but there’s no denying that Pandemic – which sees players work together to find cures for fast-spreading diseases, and get them out to the people who need them most – is an absolute cracker of a game.
This card game sees you take on the role of a monarch facing off against… well, against another monarch for control of the land. You’ll achieve your victory points through building the most ideal deck by acquiring different cards to their initial hand at the beginning of the game. Which sounds complex but, trust us, it’s about as taxing as the average crossword puzzle.
All the fun of Pandemic, sans the terrifying viruses. This cooperative game of fire rescue sees you work with your fellow firefighters to put out a blaze and rescue everyone inside, before it’s too late.
Fancy a trip to Southern France? Then you’ll want to give Carcassonne a go. This aesthetically-pleasing game sees you work against your opponent to develop the landscape of a medieval fortress city, one tile at a time. The player who makes the most strategic placements of tiles will score the most points (duh) and win the game.
An oldie, but a goodie. Whoever plays the fox needs to remove as many geese as possible from the board, making it impossible for the geese to trap her. The geese, meanwhile, win if they succeed in trapping the fox so she cannot move. Happy hunting.