7 Thematic board games for an interactive board gaming session!
In this slow flow of events to a post Covid world. We are looking to have more interaction even in our games and thus today we are referring you to 7 games filled with theme and chances to roleplay and interact with the other players at the table within the safe number of people during these trying times.
Find your muse and live the life of a painter, submitting your masterpieces for competition against other artist for both recognition and prestige.
On a player's turn, players will collect art cards, which are mostly transparent other than the art on them, bidding to take cards later in the row but with inspirational tokens. Put 3 together in as master sleeve and create your own unique Painting. On top of the artwork on each card, there are also icons which will define scoring opportunities depending on the order you cover the icons. Scoring cards are also randomly shown so each game of Canvas differs. Paintings are scored based on a set of Scoring cards which will change each game. Once players have created and scored 3 paintings the game ends.
At the end, the cool moment is seeing the unique paintings that are yours and with the whimsical art, the feeling of having created something artistic does come true. Good for both gamers and the family.
Become the second best thing about Disney movies or the best if you are like me. The Villain. In Villainous you play as one of multiple famous Disney baddies, each with their own personal decks, goals and play styles. And as Villains do, there can only be one winner.
Gameplay wise, Villainous is played by moving your figure on your personal board, each section allowing you do multiple actions be it to discard cards, play cards, attack heroes, etc. There is also a interactive element that sees each character having a personal hero deck and when another player lands on a fate action, they can choose a player to draw from the fate deck and for example, Long John Silver will be attacked by Peter Pan or the lost boys. The player that achieves their goal first wins.
A quick playing, family game that really brings out the theme of the movie the Villain comes from. Definitely quote-worthy as a Disney fan and one in which the theme is backed by just as good gameplay.
Game of Thrones: Catan - Brotherhood of the Watch
There must be an heir for the leadership of the watch on the Wall. Land yourself in the Northern end of Westros as a black brother and build your influence through building roads, collecting items, setting up villages and more. All the while fighting back the hordes of Wildings assaulting the wall.
Gameplay wise, each player will also have a famed Black Brother like Samwell Tarly, Jeor Mormont with them, which will grant them abilities unique to them. Using the hero though means he will leave your service and might be recruited by others. Also, each turn players will collect resources, trade among their rivals and use said resources to build infrastructure or draw cards for items or special actions. At some point the Wildings will attack the wall and the only way to hold them off is if you had put guards on the wall but doing that means you are not using your turn to do more to build influence among the Brotherhood.
The unique thing about Game of Thrones:Catan is unlike normal Catan there is not only the common 10 Victory points to win but if the Wildings manage to get through the wall 3 times, the player with the most guards on the Wall wins as the player with the most military strength among a ravaged north.
Unique among Catan with a theme that truly comes out in play and a good step up strategically after one has played the original Catan.
Chronicles of Crime
Murder she wrote, Sherlock Holmes and the like but in board game form. Solve mysteries and the like by interviewing suspects, witnesses and more and also search crime scenes to pick up on vital evidence to lock in and capture the culprit. An app assisted game, you use a phone with the free to download app to scan the QR codes on the game boards and cards to do your interviews, crime scene investigations and the like. Every scan taking a certain amount of time away from your case and each scenario having different end conditions to lose, while to win you have to answer a few questions asked by the app about the case.
A fully immersive game all about the story and people involved in the case. There is even an option to use VR glasses to do the crime scene investigations. If story and crime dramas are your thing then look no further than Chronicles of Crime. And if the base game's cases are not enough, there are many themed expansions for players to explore.
Twilight Imperium (4th Edition)
The game that started the legendary Fantasy Flight Games company. In Twilight Imperium, you are playing out a literal Space Opera in boardgame form. Its Designer Chris Peterson inspired by movies and books like Star Wars and Dune. A epic theme that plays just as long, at timings that stretch from 4 to 8 hours depending on the players and their familiarity with the rules and the strategies to win.
The Game has many rules but basically you get phases for politics to vote on rules that affect everybody in the galaxy, trade with fellow players, technology that makes your actions and spacecraft better and of course combat to round up the gameplay experience.
That being said, players should note that this is not a game of constant action. Twilight Imperium is more of a game of thoughtful actions. For example, the better the spaceship, the longer it will take to gear your economy to build it and thus there is a real sense of loss when you lose a big spaceship or worse, an entire fleet. An immensely satisfying experience and one of the most immersive games you and your group can play.
Based on the popular Lord of the Rings LCG by Fantasy Flight Games, Marvel Champions sees you using a pre prepared or a deck of your own build based on a hero of your choice and a trait you want to give, such as justice or leadership to fight a villain and his or her scheme.
Gameplay wise it is a cooperative game. On a player's turn, a player uses cards to do actions to thawt villain schemes, fight villains head to head, get locations or build up their characters. While the villain will look to achieving their schemes if they are still in play.
What gives it the marvel flavour is that each character and villain has been customised to be different and keep their unique traits in the comics. Thus playing as Hulk is a different experience than fighting with Ironman. If Marvel is your theme, Marvel Champions is for you and plays just as well solo too in reviews.
Thematic and educational. A combination that makes Photosynthesis a game that has sold very well to schools and individual players alike. It's theme on how plants grow and the sunlight they need to prosper.
On your turn the sun piece moves around the board and it's rays will travel in a straight line. If sunlight reaches your trees, you gain sun points equal to the level of your tree, which can be used to put out seeds, grow your trees into bigger ones or have them die to turn into fertiliser and turn into points that will win you the game. Beyond points, you also want your tree to grow bigger as the taller they are the more sunlight they gain and they will also block opponent trees from getting sunlight by casting their shadow.
A game that is easy to learn and can be taught using its theme of Photosynthesis. A true test of a game designed with theme.