I don’t know about you, but I keep my board game collection out in the open, and people come over and they see it. Maybe they’re just used to games like Monopoly or Clue, and have never played a modern board game… and maybe they even say “Hey, will you teach me one?”. But what do you start with? Maybe they walk over to the shelf, and you have Agricola and they go “What’s this one? I like Farming”… and what do you do? Well… don’t worry, because I’m here to help. I’ve got 5 games here that are perfect for introducing new people to the wonderful games we all love and enjoy. So sit back and relax… cause I got you covered.
I already reviewed Splendor , and it’s a simple game that has very simple rules and those gem chips are really nice and feel good to fiddle with when you’re waiting for your turn. There’s a lot of strategy involved, but nothing that will overwhelm someone new to games. With it’s half an hour (or less) playtime, it’s a proven winner and always fun to teach.
So there’s only you and your friend, and maybe you wanna play a 2 player game. But they think sewing and making quilts is kinda dumb… but don’t worry, cause once you tell people Patchwork is like Tetris, then the tune changes and they’re down to play. A fun little puzzle that’s Uwe Rosenberg’s most accessible game, it’s always a blast to play. A few games of this and maybe then they’re ready for some deeper games… Le Havre perhaps? Too soon?
Kingdomino is already a award winner and the first game I ever reviewed on my site. A quick tile laying game that plays in 15 minutes, and the rules are extremely simple. A mix between Carcassonne and you guessed it, dominoes, its one of the simplest games on this list. With bright and colourful artwork, this one is sure to please, and people may even want to play it again right away!
2) For Sale
Another game that I’ve already reviewed, For Sale is a quick game of bidding for real estate, and then selling them for a profit. It plays up to 6 players (and made my Top 5 games that play with 6 players (or more!)), and that makes it unique on this list. It’s always well received with any group, and one of the best to play with a bigger group who’s looking for a quick and good time.
1) Ticket to Ride: New York
Yea, I’m not the biggest fan of the original Ticket to Ride (I even have a list of Top 5 Games like Ticket to Ride… but better!), but Ticket to Ride: New York is different. It has about 75% shorter playtime, and feels more like a race. With that 10-15 minute playtime, and the same basic rules as the original, the New York edition is the perfect game to bring out and teach non-gamers what our hobby is all about.
So there’s my top 5, all games what are simple to teach and play. So next time you have someone over, casually leave one or two of those on the table and when they notice it, you can be like “Oh, that takes 15 minutes, why don’t we set it up and I’ll show you how it plays”.