Though Gen Con 2019 was last month, the memories of some amazing games still linger. From video game inspired games, to deep role-playing tabletops, to even fun pick-up-and-play adventures, the options were plentiful. With this, here are nine games that we are absolutely excited to bring to our next Game Night!
This surprisingly simple, yet very addictive strategy game is Jenga meets an assortment of shapes. Players start with a simple pile of amorphous shapes and need to move one block to increase the height of the overall cluster. However, if you’re forced to move an orange block, then this block has to be the highest point of the entire cluster. The quick 5-10 game time offered some intense moments and silly failures; all of which made us excitingly exclaim “Ok, one more round”.
Vegas Wits and Wagers by North Star Games
Players are presented with a atypical question that most people will likely NOT know the exact answer (IE: How many quills does a typical porcupine have?) and have to write down their best guess to the answer. Once all the players write and present their responses, they then wager on what interval they think the true numbered answer it. The demo we played was quick, fun, and fantastically entertaining to see people argue and present their logic to the crazy shenanigans.
In a world of doppelganers, witches, and empaths, players must protect their village from the onslaught of dangerous werewolves. The numbered card game places cards in front of players, where they themselves don’t know which cards they even had. When a player satisfies the requirements to call a count of points (essentially the amount of werewolves in their village), whomever has the least amount of points is safe, and the players accumulate points (not a good thing). We played about 20 minutes of this and thought it was a deep gameplay where each character had unique abilities that could quickly turn the tide to any gaming endeavor.
It’s Blunderful by Games by Bicycle
If Vegas Wits and Wagers and Apples to Apples joined forces, It’s Blunderful would be the end result. Players are given several awkward scenarios and are challenged to guess how the reader would respond. This is deliciously perfect for small groups of friends to bet on their preconceived knowledge of their compatriots while also being whimsically inappropriate.
Bananagrams Duel by Bananagrams Inc.
From the company that brought Bananagrams, Bananagrams Duel is a quick 2-player game where each person creates a world-filled crossword grid using all 12 dice at their disposal. This quick-to-play game was a fun challenge to explore my lack of vocabulary skills and creativity to mix-and-match. The added layer of suspense occurs when players decide to play “Themed Games”, where a random banana card is chosen with a theme and challenges players to use at least one word connected to said theme. This added a more challenging layer to the quick game, but can be perfect for fans of the Bananagram game!
Tattoo Stories by Games by Bicycle
In a fun, and non-permanent way, players take on the role of a tattoo artist to create a one-of-a-kind tattoo for one of their clients. With over 200 words to help describe the client’s idea, players draw and ask questions to best figure out the design that’s best for them. The caveat though, just like any tattoo, is that there is no eraser….so let’s be precise and deliberate! I found this to be a fun game that can be played in small bursts or a full night of fantastic features.
We’re Doomed by Breaking Games
After complete collapse, Earth as we know it is over and it’s a mad race to get off it! With a 15-minute timeline, players act as one type of civilization (democracy, socialism, etc.) to argue, plan, and deviously strategize their best plan to save themselves. The hard timeline is great for short bursts of calamity and the ease of game was easy to pick up. This, paired with the ability to play with up to ten players, gave A LOT of fun opportunities and chances to lose control over the chaos….which is exactly what happened when no one survived our game. This is absolutely a must for anyone with an upcoming Game Night.
Word-A-Melon by Bananagrams Inc.
For the more linguistically-versed gamers, Word-A-Melon challenges players to create words based on the seed-pitted letters to uncover. The added layer of challenge, is remembering the location of letters that other players don’t use. I found this game to scale great – a wonderfully simple game for introductory players as well as a deep, methodical game for more advanced linguists.
In what is one of my most memorable games at Gen Con 2019, Blockbuster is the perfect game for ’90 and 2000’s nostalgia in films. Players separate into two groups and are challenged to complete several scenarios: movies with ghosts, Disney films, as well as Classic Films, Action, etc. The quick paced rounds are exhilarating – and coming from a movie novice like myself only means it will blow the house down for movie buffs.
So which games caught your eye? Any games we missed? Sound off below!
Follow Harry Loizides, Editor-In-Chief, through his life of video games, obstacle races, and other adventures with Instagram and Twitter.