Holiday Gift Guide Vol. 5: Tabletop Gamers

This week’s holiday shopping guide: Tabletop Gamers

From the people who spend all of their time dice rolling, to those that take their property taxes a little too seriously in Monopoly, almost every family or friend group has someone delighted by boardgames. Here’s a list of some classic and some new board games that will make excellent gifts.

For the Fantasy Lover:

Small World – Amazon

Play as a slew of mythical races with magical powers and fight the other civilizations for supremacy. Get bored of your race? Retire and pick a whole new one! With three expansions this Small World can get a bit crowded.

Difficulty- 2 out of 5

For the War Geek:

Memoir ’44 – Amazon

Play through WWII battle scenarios that mimic the historical terrain, troop placements and objectives of each army. Deploy your troops and try to claim ultimate victory. It’s like a more intricate variation of Chess (for older players).

Difficulty- 3.5 out of 5

For the Family that ONLY Plays Apples to Apples:

Dixit – Amazon

The best way to describe this visually beautiful game is that Dixit is Apples to Apples but with images. One of my favorite games and a great gateway table top game.

Difficulty – 1 out of 5

For the Strategist

Alhambra – Amazon

Players acquire buildings for their grand Alhambra complex through a complicated currency and exchange system, with the most efficient players finding success. The most marvelous Alhambra will be declared the winner at the end.

Difficulty – 3.5 out of 5

For the Story Junkie

Fiasco – Bullypulpit Games Store

This is a game that only works with players willing to do a little bit of roleplaying/acting. With the right group, Fiasco will prove to be one of the most enjoyable game experiences you have.

Difficulty – 2 out 5 (unless you hate playing pretend!)

For Someone Who Values Simplicity

Tsuro – Amazon

Guide the magical dragons through the skies by lying down tiles to guide their path. Fall off the path or crash into another dragon and you lose. Games last a maximum of fifteen minutes.

Difficulty – 1 out of 5

For Great Co-Operative Play

Pandemic – Amazon

Four horrific deadly diseases have been unleashed on the world and it’s up to you to save the populations of the world. As a team, find the cure and alleviate the outbreaks. It’s the players versus the board and Pandemic is often a cruel mistress.

Difficulty – 2 out of 5 (to learn) and 4 out of 5 (to win)

For the Horror Fan

Arkham Horror – Amazon

Arkham Horror is inspired by H.P. Lovecraft lore and proves to be one of the most complicated games I have ever played. A single session will last a minimum of four hours, so brace yourself for the long haul with this one. Play through various scenarios where you must collect items, elder signs and other tributes in order to stave off the awakening of some nasty Old Ones.

Difficulty – 5 out of 5

Good luck and happy shopping!

*As a note, almost all of these games feature expanded editions or seperate expansion packs.

– E.B.



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