Forbidden Island 3

Forbidden Island

Forbidden Island is a light cooperative game which places you and your adventure-seeking friends on an ever sinking island. In your ever-astute wisdom, you all decide to grab the treasure before fleeing in one of your multiple helicopters…but don’t worry, you can somehow restore any part of the island that’s flooded to its gloriously dry state. A little far-fetched, maybe, but definitely a fun little filer and a great stepping stone game for learning mechanics common in much more complicated games. If you’re thinking about Pandemic or even Defenders of the Realm and haven’t played many other games yet, you might want to try Forbidden Island first to see if you like the style.


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The Castles of Burgundy 4

The Castles of Burgundy

In the Castles of Burgundy, you’re an aristocrat trying to build up your estate more efficiently than your fellow aristocrats. Though the theme is relatively dry, the game uses interesting mechanics and a style of indirect competition that makes it a great couple’s game.


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Ticket to Ride: Europe 1

Ticket to Ride: Europe

Ticket to Ride is a commonly recommended “gateway game,” meaning a game used to introduce people to new mechanics and deeper gameplay than childhood staples such as Monopoly, Clue, or Sorry, to name a few. Is its popularity well deserved? Let’s take a look!


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Lords of Waterdeep 3

Lords of Waterdeep

Lords of Waterdeep is a fairly new worker placement game that has received a lot of praise from the community. The mechanics are simple to grasp, the theme is light and fun, and the art is pretty nice too. All of this combines into what I feel makes a great gateway game. If you’re trying to get your friends into heavier games, this would be a good place to start. It has the D&D name on the box, but it doesn’t really have too much to do with D&D and shouldn’t scare you away if you’re not into that sort of thing.


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Hanabi 1

Hanabi

Hanabi is a card game with one major difference – you can see other players’ hands, but not your own. As a co-op game, you work together with the other players to deduce what cards you have in your hand, when and if you can play them, and how many points you can get before the deck runs out.


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Defenders of the Realm

Defenders of the Realm

Defenders of the Realm is a co-op adventure in which you take hold of a hero charged with defending your kingdom’s realm from four monstrous generals seeking to invade your beloved Monarch City. The base game comes with eight heroes (the Sorceress, the Cleric, the Eagle Rider, the Paladin, the Rogue, the Wizard, the Ranger, and the Dwarf) who join forces to take on Sapphire the Dragonkin general, Varkolak the Undead general, Balazarg the Demon general, Gorgutt the Orc general, and their myriad of minions. By juggling your hero’s action points and Hero cards drawn at the end of each turn, you seek to counter the ever-marching generals and prolific minions that also spread at the end of each turn.


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