10 Modern Board Games That Don’t Suck

If you’ve spent any time on Kickstarter perusing successful projects, you may have realized we are in a sort of board game renaissance. We’re not talking Trouble, Mouse Trap, or Life, these games can get complex and reward your patience with a deeper gaming experience. Even if you didn’t hop onboard years ago, there’s never been a better time to add something new to your collection than right now. So gather up a few friends, crack a few beers, and spend a night tossing around some dice.



1. Euphoria

Euphoria is a worker placement game where you attempt to claim a dystopian city. You’re in control of your workers as you restrict the freedom of others and cash in on artifacts to fight your way to the top. But you’re no kind-hearted soul, you purposely make your workers dumb and pay them in drugs to keep them from getting wiser about their shitty lives. (2-6 players)
(Stonemaier Games)


2. Inceptor

Currently sailing to Kickstarter funding, Inceptor is the board game version of the movie Inception. The entirety of the game takes place inside a dream and the board is the dreamer’s mind. Grab your totem and dive in. (2-5 players)
(Pilot Study)


3. Amerigo

The best part of Amerigo, the part that will make you want to come back for more, is the unique cube tower at the center of the game. The tower is filled with different-colored cubes and players drop more in that will knock some of the stuck ones free. It’s partially luck and partially skill trying to remember which colors are in there since each corresponds to a different action. The gameplay is more involved as you sail around the board, but the tower is original and makes the game just that more entertaining. (2-4 players)
(Queen Games)


4. A Game Of Thrones

This isn’t some shoddy knock-off that just gets by because of its name, it’s an exciting way to spend some evenings between episodes. It’s your chance to lay claim to the Iron Throne. You play for 10 rounds and whoever conquers the most land shall get to rest upon that terribly uncomfortable-looking throne. (3-6 players)
(Fantasy Flight Games)


5. Ticket to Ride

Since its debut around a decade ago, Ticket to Ride has been collecting awards for its addictive gameplay. The idea is simple – get your train pieces down and get around to different cities – but the strategy of blocking other players’ routes makes it a bit more cutthroat than you’d imagine. Easy to learn with tons of replay value. (2-5 players)
(Days of Wonder)


6. Kemet

If you’re looking for a great-looking game with sharply designed pieces, Kemet is perfect. Luckily, it also happens to be a great little war game as well. It’s made by the same guys who made Cyclades (a very popular game in its own right) and takes a little bit of time to get down, but once you do, you’ll be battling all over either side of the two-sided board. (2-5 players)
(Asmodee)


7. Agricola

Many people will tell you that, after playing it a few times, Agricola will become your favorite board game. Honestly, it’s hard to argue after doing so. You control your little family and try to plan a successful future while leaving your little wooden shack behind. It’s a turn-based game that is complex yet not too difficult to grasp, and with so many different ways to attack it and strategies to plan, it will remain entertaining for a long time. (1-5 players)
(Z Man Games)


8. Trajan

Using ancient Rome as a backdrop for anything immediately gets our attention. In Trajan you try to gain power in a variety of areas of life – politics, military, trading – and your path to the most victory points is never a simple one. The mancala-style system adds an element that is rather unique and it makes you think many moves in advance to be successful. It also happens to be visually stunning. (2-4 players)
(Passport Game Studios)


9. Cards Against Humanity

It might not technically be a “board game,” but that doesn’t mean it won’t be the greatest thing to happen to your game night since beer and Doritos. It’s like Apples to Apples but for people with a messed-up sense of humor. Basically, don’t break it out with the grandma. (4+ players)
(Cards Against Humanity LLC.)


10. Small World

Small World puts a bit of a light-hearted twist on your standard war game. Each player looks to expand his/her empire while simultaneously pushing their opponents around the board. Kind of like Risk but in a more colorful and lively fashion. The artwork is top-notch and the four different boards add to its replay value. (2-5 players)
(Days of Wonder)