I love playing board games and have for as long as I can remember. When we weren’t playing Legos, my brother, sister & I used to spend hours playing board games in our younger years, sometimes making up our own rules but mostly playing by the original rules. In addition to the usual ones such as Risk, Clue and Monopoly, there were a few unique ones that were really quite fun. It’s a little disconcerting that many of these games are now considered VINTAGE! Here are a few of my favorites in no particular order.
In this game endorsed by the World Wildlife Fund, players race around the world trying to find specific kinds of animals to fill their zoos. It was a fun game that subtly taught players different facts about animals including where each type was found in the world. For example, you could only find the giant panda in China. Alligators could be picked up in Florida. You could pick up animals that weren’t specific to your zoo and use them to trade other players for animals that you needed.
The London Game is what helped me to understand and figure out the London Underground train system long before I ever went to London. The board is a fairly accurate map of the London subway system, complete with varying colored lines weaving throughout London. Each player has a certain number of destinations to visit in London and has to figure out the best way to get there. Destinations include the Tower Bridge, London Zoo, St. Paul’s Cathedral and The War Museum. The first player to visit all his destinations and return to their starting station wins. When Sarah and I visited London shortly after we were married, I felt like I already knew where everything was and which station/line to take from years of playing this game. I was very happy to purchase this one again a few years ago.
This game, perhaps the oldest one of the lot, was another one that snuck in the educational element. The board was a map of the world with various destinations dotting the globe. Each player moved his 1950s-style jet airplane/spaceship across the map trying to visit each destination and collecting product cards before the other players reached theirs. Players learned where Moscow, Peru, Cairo, Turkey and Alaska were. A transparent weather guide that was placed on over the board in various places could cause lots of havoc since you never knew when it was going to move.
What board games do you like to play? Do you have any childhood favorites that you’ve rediscovered? Any new ones that you enjoy?