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"Group game recommendations" Topic

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652 hits since 27 May 2013
©1994-2018 Bill Armintrout
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Last Hussar27 May 2013 7:49 a.m. PST

Looking for games to play at family gatherings. At the moment we have Apples to Apples, plus a little known game called 'Imaginif' (Imagine if a John OFM was an military period, would he be 1) Ancients, 2) war of the Roses, 3) WSS, 4)Napoleonics 5) ACW or 6) WW2, Everybody votes, and those who are in the majority DESPITE WHAT THE SUBJECT SAYS get a point.)

So we need games that are a laugh, a large group can play, and won't put off the non wargamers.

Personal logo Pictors Studio Sponsoring Member of TMP27 May 2013 7:55 a.m. PST

I made up a racecar game based off of a boardgame. It handles up to six people and as long as you have 2 die and 12 things to use as markers for your cars it is pretty much free.

If you have more than six people you will need 4 die and 24 markers.

If you're interested in the rules let me know.

Last Hussar27 May 2013 8:00 a.m. PST

Pictors- sounds interesting, but not the sort of thing I see my mum/wife/daughter in law playing!

Parzival27 May 2013 8:33 a.m. PST

Balderdash (or the more obscure Bible Balderdash): A card is drawn with an obscure word, name, or place, and everyone creates a definition for it. The definitions are read out loud, including the actual definition, and everyone votes as to which is the correct meaning. You get points for guessing the correct definition, and for having others vote for your made up definition. The Bible Balderdash works the best, as it will feature words like "shibboleth" and "Ashurbanipal." I once convinced my old Sunday School class that an obscure place name was actually "A captain of Assyrian chariot forcesó" so being an avid Bible reader is no guarantee of victory (and you don't have to be a believer to enjoy the game).

If they're at all entertained by classic horror/mystery movies, you might try Betrayal at the House on the Hill. The players control a group of people who explore a creepy old house (building it as you go) until somebody triggers an event ("The Haunt") that turns one of the players into "The Traitor" and sets off a horror-movie storyline where everyone else tries to either stop the event or escape, while the Traitor tries to further the evil along. A bit more involved, but still very accessible.

Survive (originally "Survive," then sold in Europe as "Escape from Atlantis" or "Survive: Escape from Atlantis" and now re-released as "Survive" again…) Players control of a group of people trying to flee a sinking island before the volcano erupts. The island is made up of tiles representing beach, jungle and mountain. Markers representing different numbers of people (the numbers are hidden) are placed on the tiles. Each turn a player can move a single marker 3 spaces or divide the 3 moves among up to three markers. Markers can jump off the island and try to swim to safety (but only one hex at a time) or get on boats (which will hold 3 markers and move up to 3 hexes a turn). However, there are sharks in the water that move about eating swimmers, whales that knock apart boats to throw markers into the sea (for the sharks), and sea serpents that eat everything. Each turn a player moves his markers, removes a tile from the island (which may also introduce a shark, whale, boat or whirlpool (that sucks everything around it in) or give the player a special advantage to use later (such as Kill a Shark, Harpoon a While, Move a Swimmer… etc.). As his last act each turn, a player rolls a die to determine if a shark, whale or sea serpent moves, and then makes that move (usually away from his own markers and towards or onto someone else's). The winner is the player who gets the highest total number of "people" (as shown by the hidden marker values) to safety. Easy to play, finishes up in less than an hour (tops). 3-4 players. My mother-in-law (who is definitely not a gamer) loves it. She particularly enjoys demurely sending sharks across the board to eat other people's swimmers.

SECURITY MINISTER CRITTER Inactive Member27 May 2013 1:54 p.m. PST

Formula De for a race game. There's also "Kill Dr. Lucky. There are also several train games of varying complexity.

Personal logo etotheipi Sponsoring Member of TMP27 May 2013 5:55 p.m. PST

Whist. The classic 19th century card game. The core rules are simple, and there are variant set ups for lots of different numbers of players. Makes it easy to split and join subgroups. Also lets the kids play a grownup game. It also has a nice Victorian air.

Speaking of which, The Minister's Cat is a good one, too.

A good board game is The Amazing Labyrinth. For a simple mechanic, it has an amazing depth of play. Good for kids. Its also a good challenge for adults to work with kids. With all adults, the possibility of working the game out several moves ahead (its a perfect knowledge game) is intriguing. There are enough options and unknowns for a good brain-bender.

mad monkey 127 May 2013 6:40 p.m. PST

Ticket to Ride.

Parzival28 May 2013 12:57 p.m. PST

Or better yet, Hearts. Nothing throws a trump game on its head as much as the goal of not taking tricks…

artslave Inactive Member29 May 2013 8:33 a.m. PST

If your family enjoys detective stories, and especially Sherlock Holmes I can recommend "Consulting Detective". Although designed as a competitive game, I think it works best as a group cooperation game. We take turns reading out descriptions and clues, and each person gets to pick a place or person to be the next focus. At the end, we all agree on a solution, or vote on the best guess before relieving the ultimate ending. Very involved plots and a huge collection of materials to sift through gives a whole group lots to do.

Dropzonetoe Fezian04 Jun 2013 4:07 p.m. PST

Timeline – super simple to learn and fun to play.

myrm1110 Jul 2013 8:53 a.m. PST

Mad Scientist U fits the bill…..plays with up to 8 easily

If you go for Apples to Apples and Imagineif, then you are squarely in this games territory.

If you can find it still then Chronology is a handy game for this sort of non-gaming group.

Formula D is a great game, but a few crashes may irritate some people – I find newbies get frustrated by taking risks everywhere and crashing out. Five players can play with two cars a piece, but more goes to one car.

Ave Caesar does up to 6 and fits the race bill easily.

Citadels is a decent game for up to 8, card game so generally easy to explain to non-wargamers.

Fluxx of some flavour or other is a real filler that works OK too. Very Silly, especially the Monty Python flavour – although for reason I will comment on later the Monty Python vrersion is best for those that are already gamers or like Monty Python.

Sherlock Holmes card game works for up to 6 or so, though the inevitable 'Fog' cards can irritate with large numbers of players.

Another one I have a reasonable success rate with non-gamers is Bohnanza….plays with 6-8 depending on expansions and so long as you ensure that they understand how the hand cannot be re-ordered at all and there is a fixed front, back and thats why you have to trade – then it works well. A lot get frustrated by that if its importance is not stressed.

If you are dealing with non gamers then I find theme is vital. The more real world and understandable the theme the better. As soon as you go into the realm of fantasy stuff, sci fi etc for someone not into it then it will get stonewalled. The more the theme is to the niche side of interests the more likely it will be to fall over.

As such some light games designed for for gamers like Chez Geek fall over for those who will not get the theme. Similarly Muchkin is a no-no for the same reason. Both fall into those games that you have to be sure the non-gamers/new gamers/non-scifi go for. Similarly – Lords of Waterdeep is a great game, fairly easy to teach but with the DnD logo on it I've even had boardgamers go 'its an RPG thing, not playing'

Rallynow Supporting Member of TMP07 Oct 2013 9:00 p.m. PST

Trivial Pursuit
Civilization (AH original)
History of the World (AH original)
Circus Maximus
King Maker

bobm195905 Jan 2014 9:59 a.m. PST

Scattergories is a great group game where teams (better for youngsters etc) can happily play against solo players (you know… the bright one who always wins).
As a sit around without board pen or paper "Garibaldi" can be a good way to get everyone involved. Summary for those not familiar….one person (last time winner) secretly decides to be "someone" real, fictional, mythical etc. Everyone else then takes turns to ask a question where the answer can be yes or no; the "someone" must answer truthfully and not neccesarily yes or no as it might be "maybe" or "some think so". If you get a straight "yes" you carry on questioning, anything else the next person questions until a player asks a straight "are you ……" and gets "yes".

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