Hey everyone, glad you’ve come by to check out how my weekend was. I will not be doing any reviews or interviews this week, and instead I will be letting you all in on the wonderful weekend I spent at a friends cottage this weekend and playing games. So buckle up, here we go!
This weekend was an awesome weekend for a number of factors. Four of the guys that went up are work friends and usually the only time I see them is while we are working. It’s nice to see work buddies out of “hi-vis” and not climbing trees and working. On top of that, the work friend whose cottage we went to has been out of commission at work since the end of April. Being an Arborist is a dangerous profession, and don’t let anyone ever tell you otherwise. But with proper training, it can be about the best career you can get into. Anyway, I won’t get into specifics about his being out of commission, just that he is. So having finally been able to hang out with him again was awesome. Especially since he loves playing board games.
That was only half of the great time as well. There were also two non gamers from work who came up for the weekend as well. I came up fully prepared to play anything and do anything the group wanted, whether it was board games or something else. However, if on the off chance that games were the group consensus, I was well prepared. I brought up almost 20 games for 2 nights. It ranged from very light, small compact games, to bigger and more in depth games. Being willing to play any of them was something I made sure I was ready to do. I didn’t want interest of something from a non gamer that I didn’t want to play. That’s why I cut it down to 16.
We didn’t play nearly 16 games. I think we played through about five of them. But the games we played stayed on the table for hours. Hours. It was excellent. Every game that showed any bit of interest was an almost immediate hit for all of us. Realistically, they weren’t all big box games. In fact, I think only two of them were. But this weekend, I really took note of how good the small games are at hooking non gamers into playing games.
In the course of one weekend, I never picked one game to play. I knew I would have to be willing to play all, and teach all. Our weekend started Friday night around 7:30 or so with a few games of Welcome to the Dungeon. This got our non gaming buddies really into playing games for the rest of the night. Once we played through three games (each game had a different winner) we decided to change up and give our go to a co-op game. I was going to bring Forbidden Island as the co-op game, but my tin is really wonky and doesn’t close. It’s very saddening because I really don’t like taking it out anywhere because of that. But, we did play Pandemic, so I mean, it’s a pretty decent back up right? We had one of the most amazing games I’ve ever been a part of in that game. We played with every Epidemic in the deck, and we pulled off a last turn win. We were so convinced we were going to lose that we had spent at least 20 minutes looking at one turn. Taking that time had actually brought us to a solution, and we risked a lot to go for the win. When we got it, we actually stopped and three grown men spent at least a half hour dancing to Taylor Swift because of our amazing win. We may have been indulging in beverages.
By Saturday, I thought that we had run our course for games for the weekend, which was okay with me, since we were outside playing lawn games and going for the coldest swim of the year. However, the board game gods had other plans. As Wil Wheaton would say, they wanted us to “play more games”, and it started raining, sending us inside for a good chunk of the day. We were trying to think of something else to do that didn’t involve games, just so the weekend wasn’t completely full of games, mainly for the non gamer.
As we were sitting around, that same non gamer we were looking for other things to do for, picked up and read the back (bottom?) of the box for Batman Love Letter. He was very intrigued by it and actually convinced us that it was time for more games. We played that game for hours. Literally hours. We planned on learning for a couple rounds, then play a game, then lunch. We ended up playing for hours. We stopped very briefly to cook some lunch, but even then, we were playing while we were cooking. We were completely immersed with this game. We played four or five rounds back to back. It was amazing how quickly everyone picked up on game play and wanted more immediately.
I completely believe that this was a successful weekend for gaming with friends. Slowly bringing guys into games will hopefully lead to having those friends ask about hanging out and playing some games (a guy can dream can’t he?). Even if that isn’t the case, at least I can sleep well knowing that there was exposure to new games, and hopefully I’m slowly planting seeds for those guys to get their children small games that they can all play together.
So, this is all well and good, but why am I writing this? Well, this is my story to tell you that I believe that the games I played this weekend with my friends were all amazing games to introduce non gamers into the world of board games. So, in my humble opinion, if you are looking for a few fun games that you can play with some friends who are not as immersed in gaming as you may be, I would suggest some of the following.
- Welcome to the Dungeon – This is very poker-esque I think, and someone who enjoys bluffing and trying to get people to back out of rounds will love this game. Thematically, they may think the dungeon theme isn’t fun, but I found that my friends only complained for about a half of a round about it.
- Pandemic – This is perfect for helping out a new gamer grab the concept of a co-op game. It’s very easy to help out, as everyone has the same goal, and you will win together, and lose together. The tough part about this one, is keeping a bit of distance, and letting the new players make their own decisions (I know I’m awful for this).
- Batman Love Letter – This game was the hit of the weekend. It took one turn for everyone to understand the game. On top of that, I think the theme makes a little more sense for new gamers to grasp, which makes it funner for them.
There are most certainly other games that we tried playing, but I feel that these 3 were really the highlight of the weekend, and since this was the first weekend I had a true games weekend with non gamers, I decided to let you all in on what worked for us this weekend and what we enjoyed playing.
Anyway, hope you all enjoyed this read, and always remember I love you all!