Board games are a great way to spend an evening with family and friends. They offer a variety of genres and gameplay experiences that can cater to every interest and preference, from strategic challenges to fast-paced fun. And while there are countless games to choose from, the best ones are often affordable and highly replayable.
The classic board game Candy Land, a family favorite that will delight all ages, is an excellent option under $20. It’s a delightfully colorful adventure that will capture players’ imagination as they work together to reach the end of the board while encountering fun characters and delectable treats along the way. Another modern classic is Pandemic, a cooperative game that pits your team of emergency specialists against the spread of four diseases over the globe. There are a number of expansions available for this popular title that add different scenarios and new rules to increase the replayability.
Alternatively, you can pick up a copy of Codenames, which has been taking the board game world by storm. It’s a great party game for teams of six or more that will keep everyone engaged as they try to guess secret cards using one-word clues. There’s even a two-player version called Codenames Duet for those who prefer to play with just a single friend or partner.
For a more abstract strategy game, Strategist contributor Lauren Guidry recommends Dutch Blitz, which is played just like a very energetic game of solitaire and is sure to deliver a dopamine hit for those who love a challenge. And for a more portable option, check out Mint Works, which is basically training wheels for worker placement games that fits in a small mint tin and will impress your hipster friends with your cool gaming collection.