Monday, May 19, 2014

Geekery: Cooperative games worth playing

So I love a good game. Yes, even board games. My favorite are cooperative games, in which you battle against the board game, and either win as a team or lose as a team. Here are three games I'd recommend:

Pandemic: (You may have seen the app version of this) In Pandemic the board game, you and your cooperating players are tasked with stopping 4 virulent plagues. You "research" to find the cures for each. When all four plagues have a cure, you win... but while you're researching, the plagues are spreading, and if you don't devote time to preventing outbreaks, the whole world will be lost. Can you save the world?

You play as one of several roles, and each role has a special ability. There are special cards that cause outbreaks, or disease-splosions, and you can choose how many you want to add to the deck. It's a hard game, but a really fun one; and on this list I'd say it's the best to introduce someone to cooperative games. 30min-2hours, depending on the players.

Betrayal at House on the Hill: Mostly a cooperative game. You're exploring a haunted house, and weird things keep happening. Suddenly, something goes wrong! One player becomes the bad guy, and the rest of the players must work together to stop the evil before it destroys the party. A lot of fun, but with some creepy themes. It's more fun the more your evil-convert gets into their part. It can be pretty complicated, but once you pick it up, it's lots of fun, and a fairly quick play. 30min-1hour.

Arkham Horror: It's an awesome game, but it can get long. With three people we averaged 2-4 hours. You're living in the city of Arkham in the 1920s, and strange things are happening. Portals to other dimensions open up, monsters are appearing on the streets, and you and your allies--from tommy-gun wielding mafia men to the local mystery writer--are all that stands between Earth and the eldritch terrors trying to awaken.

I'd spare Arkham Horror for more advanced players, but it's one of my favorites. Worth a try, especially if Lovecraftian themes are your cup of tea.

Do you have a favorite cooperative board game?


  1. Forbidden Island and Forbidden Desert are both fun. Everyone is trying to find and collect treasure before the island they're on sinks/they get covered by sand dunes.

    1. That's what it was--Forbidden Island is great! Haven't tried Desert yet but Island is also awesome. :)