Posted Monday, 27-Nov-2017
Black Friday is coming! Here’s two dozen of the very best games you should be adding to your shopping list.
As a quick note, prices for all these games may fluctuate throughout the day as different retailers put their games on offer.
Based on Wolfgang Kramer’s Top Race and lovingly restored by Justin Jacobson and Rob Daviau (Pandemic Legacy), let this game of high speed racing and high stakes bidding drive its way into your heart. Downforce is a bidding and betting game where players play cards which will send their cars screaming down the track.
Those cards will often also move your opponent’s cars, but since you can bet on any car, not just your own, you stand to win big by reading the track and capitalizing on that single moment between first and second.
On November 30, 1803, the United States purchased Louisiana from Napoleon. U.S. President Thomas Jefferson decided to send two explorers – Meriwether Lewis and William Clark – to discover this huge terra incognita.
In the Lewis & Clark board game, players must manage their expedition as they head westward across the American Continent, racing to be the first to reach the Pacific. Recruit Native Americans to your Discovery Corp, manage your characters, and balance between supplies and speed.
Runebound is an adventure board game where players take on the roles of great heroes journeying across the lands – exploring lost ruins and forgotten forests, fighting monsters – being as heroic as can be, with a unique combat system and lots of leveling up.
Set in the Terrinoth universe (shared with Descent: Journeys in the Dark, Runewars, and other games), Runebound allows players to step into the shoes of six different heroes fighting against either Margath the Dragonlord or the Corpse King, Vorakesh – both of whom come with their own set of unique adventure and story cards for a different experience each time.
The air rises electric as the leaders round the final corner! Which team has best positioned their sprinter to bolt across the final straight for the finish line?
Flamme Rouge is a bicycle racing game of strategy more than speed. Each team consists of a sprintuer and a rouleur, and you must choose where to position your riders carefully. Will your team lead from the front and risk exhaustion? Should you play it safe in the middle of the pack? Could you surprise everyone by striking from the back with a perfectly timed slipstream?
Anyone can race, few become champions!
Set in the world of The Resistance and Coup, Grifters is a card game about thieves and ringleaders, crooked cops, hackers, and swindlers.
Each turn sees players trying to perform capers with their specialist team of grifters, or else team up their specialists in the right combination of skill sets in order to perform daring heists – but specialists you send out have to shake the heat, and won’t be able to return for more work until some time has passed…
Rise above your enemies – and crush them!
Star Realms is a fast paced deck building game in the vein of games like Dominion and Ascension where players assemble their fleet of spaceships to dominate their opponents in epic
Recruit each of four unique factions, each with their own special abilities and powers, that can chain and combo together in powerfully destructive ways. Construct space stations and send your ships against the enemy forces to take them out and conquer the Star Realms once and for all.
The few survivors of a cataclysmic invasion from nameless beings have taken refuge in the forgotten city of Gravehold. There, these survivors have harnessed the power of the very breaches that were used to claim their world, transforming them into spells and weapons for their last hope: the breach mages.
Players will struggle to defend Gravehold from the Nameless and their hordes using unique abilities, powerful spells, and, most importantly of all, their collective wits.
The Capital calls. Will you answer?
Capital Lux is a strategic card game with decisions balanced on the edge of a razor. Each turn players must play cards from their hand in one of four sublimely illustrated professions – the cleric, the merchant, the scholar, or the agent (pictured on the box) into either their home town or the capital. Playing into the capital lets you use the special ability of each profession – but playing into your home town is the only way to score points.
However! The point value of cards in your home town can never exceed the point value of cards in the Capital – or you will lose all your cards.
Welcome to Citadels; a game of nobility and intrigue, where emperors rub shoulders with assassins and scholars and wizards play politics with the best of them.
This new edition of the classic role selection card game comes with 27 characters, most of them new to the game, 30 unique buildings, and suggested pre-set character lists to play with. Choose which noble you need to help you build up your city district – or destroy your opponent’s districts.
The streets of Arkham fill with growing dread. There’s something afoot here, and you and your fellow investigators have to put a stop to whatever eldritch nightmares are rising next.
This co-operative card game blends roleplaying and traditional deck construction card games. Play as an investigator with their own strengths – and fatal flaws. As you journey through the game’s campaign with your friends, Arkham Horror will test you, your will, and your wits. Your choices will have consequences, and things left undone may return to haunt you in future games…
The classic game of farming and livestock-raising, Agricola is now in its 6th edition with absolutely no signs of slowing down.
Build paddocks, sow fields, and feed your family as you go from nothing to being a thriving farmstead. There’s always work to be done and not enough time to do it in – harvests loom and there’s technology to familiarize yourself with, like cookstoves and ploughs that can make life easier for you and your family.
Snow Tails is a racing board game where players each control a dog sled with two dogs and a brake. They race through a modular board by playing cards that influence their speed and braking. Some part of the course must be taken at a lower speed or a dog sled will take damage. Obstacles will also cause damage. The right mix of pressing your luck without being too crazy will likely help secure the lead. The first dog sled to cross the finish line wins!
Takenoko is a game about growing bamboo gardens and making sure the adorable panda doesn’t eat them all. (Yes, really.)
In the cute, accessible board game of Takenoko, players must cultivate bamboo plots, ensure they are properly irrigated and grown – and keep the panda from nomming too heavily on them by distracting it to eat the plots which matter less.
(Seriously, it has a panda miniature. Why are you still here.)
HEY! THAT’S MY FISH!
Competition for food is fierce in the animal kingdom – and penguins are no different. Hey, That’s My Fish is a simple game of placing penguins and moving them to claim the best fishing spots.
Players slowly claim fishing spots and remove tiles from the board, restricting movement and leaving your opponents stranded on the ice, surrounded by open ocean. As the ice gets thinner and thinner and the food supplies dwindle, players must make hard choices as the islands shrink.
The town of Dale attracts of all the great traders and merchants of the world, and here they compete for a membership in the vaunted Guild…
Dale of Merchants is a deck building card game in the style of Dominion that casts players as animal merchants trying to prove their prowess by hiring different species to their cause. From the efficient Scarlet Macaws to the thieving Northern Raccoons, to the tricksy Veiled Chameleons and lucky Ocelots, stock your stalls with interesting items and get there ahead of the competition!
Dale of Merchants separates itself from other deck building games by being adorable, low on luck, and high on timing and skill.
Based on the Evolution game system, The Beginning re-imagines the card game of adaption and evolution for all ages.
Compete for food, adapt to suit your niche, protect yourself from predators – or become one yourself. The Beginning is an evolutionary arms race as you try to keep your populations high while not allowing any of your species to die out from starvation. Keep ahead of the ecosystem and adapt or perish.
A mage, a warrior, and elf, and a dwarf walk into a shopping mall…
Four mighty adventurers are stuck in a shopping mall, where they plan to complete a heist! Magic Maze is a real time co-operative board game of finding your way to the right shops, robbing them, then making your way out again. Each player controls one DIRECTION of movement, not a character – so one player is responsible for moving left, another is responsible for moving up, and must direct their attention all over the board.
(Did we mention you can’t talk or point?)
Do you dare enter the mansion? It may cost you dearly…
The long-awaited second edition (fully compatible with the first!) of the investigation mystery game returns to Arkham, but with a technological twist. Gone are the long setup times and 1 vs many gameplay – Mansions of Madness is now fully co-operative and driven by a free app.
Providing randomized scenarios, voice acting, atmospheric music, and many puzzles, the app portion of Mansions of Madness helps drive the game forward while you venture deeper into the house and explore the secrets lying beneath.
There’s been a murder at Warwick Manor, and the old mansion is now home to a ghost.
One player takes on the role of the ghost and the other players are mediums attempting to help the ghost remember the details of his own murder. The mediums must figure out who killed the ghost, where he was killed, and what the murder weapon was. Since the ghost can’t speak, all clues are given to the mediums via visions—artistic cards that the mediums must interpret without any other help.
The world did its best. It wasn’t good enough.
In Season 2 of Pandemic: Legacy, the final fragments of humanity live their lives on the open seas in hiding from the plague that ravaged the planet. But the cities, holding out for 71 years, have begun dropping off the grid…
Continuing the events of the critical smash hit Pandemic Legacy, this co-operative narrative board game experience will deliver a story in a way unique to board games. Your decisions in one game will carry over to the next as you make permanent changes to your copy of the game. Unlock new components. Destroy old ones. Watch as your favorite character succumbs to their wounds.
Are you ready for the epic journey?
“My sisters wake from the same nightmares. A skeletal hand, pale and white as snow, grasping out from darkness. Thousands of red-eyed crows flying over a field of dead. A bloody maw gaping open with rows of gleaming teeth the size of daggers. I see these images in my own dreams and I fear for what is coming.”
Of Dreams & Shadows is a co-operative board game of dark fantasy adventure. Crafted to give players a role playing experience, Of Dreams & Shadows gives you control of Champions who must save their realm from evil forces.
The game features three scenarios, each with a unique storyline, end boss, and monsters to fight. Teamwork is a must as you use the tactics available to you to come out ahead.
Europeans have come to your island to invade your lands and enslave your people. Cast them back into the ocean! Behold the power of Spirit Island!
Spirit Island is a co-operative settler destruction board game where magic and spirits of land sky and sea fight back against colonial Europe. In Spirit Island, the land itself fights back with the players taking on the role of spirits, using magical powers and elemental magic to drive off the spread and ravage of the Invaders.
Published by BoardGamePrices.com
Can we fit all the photos we took at Spiel into this article? No. But we’ll sure try! Here’s your last look at the last day of the biggest board games show in the world.
The tiredness starts to take hold; but we press on toward Day 3! We’ve got dice! We’ve got minis! We’ve got mechs! It’s Spiel!