Strategy Board Games 2018

In the fast-paced digital age, strategy board games have managed to carve out a special place in the hearts of enthusiasts. As we enter the year 2018, the world of strategy board games is abuzz with anticipation and excitement.

From classic titles to innovative creations, this genre offers an exhilarating experience that combines critical thinking, tactical planning, and immersive storytelling. Whether you’re a seasoned player or new to the world of strategy board games, 2018 promises to be a year filled with thrilling gameplay and intriguing challenges.

Strategy board games have a rich history that dates back centuries. It is fascinating to trace their evolution and witness their enduring popularity. The simple act of moving pieces on a board has given rise to some of the most iconic games of all time, such as Chess and Go.

Over the years, rules have been refined, new mechanics introduced, and themes expanded upon, creating a diverse landscape for players to explore. In this article, we will delve into both the past and present of strategy board games, examining how they have captivated people across generations.

As we enter 2018, there is no denying the rapid rise of strategy board games. With advancements in design and manufacturing techniques, game creators are pushing boundaries like never before. This has led to an increase in accessibility and variety in the market, making it an exciting time for both designers and players alike. In this section, we will analyze the current trend and market growth of strategy board games in 2018.

With more options than ever before, choosing where to begin can be overwhelming for newcomers or those wanting to expand their collection. However, fear not. We will also be unveiling our top five must-have strategy board games of 2018 to help guide you towards some standout options.

So whether you’re seeking challenging gameplay mechanics or diving into captivating storylines, get ready to immerse yourself in an exciting year for strategy board games. Strap on your thinking caps, assemble your armies, and prepare to step into the compelling worlds that await you. Strategy board games in 2018 will test your skills, ignite your imagination, and provide endless hours of fun with friends and family. Let the games begin.

A Brief History of Strategy Board Games

Strategy board games have been around for thousands of years, and their history is as fascinating as the gameplay itself. Tracing the evolution and popularity of these games can provide us with valuable insights into how they have transformed over time.

One of the earliest known strategy board games is Senet, which originated in ancient Egypt around 3100 BCE. This game was played on a grid-like board with distinctive symbols and involved strategic moves to reach the final square.

Strategy board games also had a significant presence in ancient cultures such as Rome, Greece, and China. For example, Mancala, a game that originated in Africa and spread throughout different regions of the world including Asia and Europe, requires players to plan their moves carefully to outsmart opponents.

Fast forward to the 20th century, strategy board games started gaining popularity among a wider audience. Classics like Chess and Risk became household names, captivating players with their complex tactics and calculated decision-making. During this time, advancements in manufacturing allowed for more intricate game designs and components, further enhancing the playing experience.

With the advent of modern technology and online gaming platforms, strategy board games have experienced a renaissance in recent years. Digital adaptations have made these games more accessible to a global audience while still retaining the essence of physical gameplay. Moreover, crowdfunding platforms like Kickstarter have provided independent designers an avenue to bring innovative strategy board games to life.

As we delve into the exciting world of strategy board games in 2018, it becomes apparent that these games have evolved from simple mechanical challenges to immersive experiences that blend mechanics with compelling themes and storylines. The growing demand for unique gameplay elements has spurred designers to create innovative mechanics such as worker placement or deck-building systems. This constant evolution has ensured that there is always something new for enthusiasts to explore.

The Rise of Strategy Board Games in 2018

The popularity of strategy board games has been on the rise in recent years, and 2018 is no exception. With advancements in technology and an increasing demand for immersive experiences, strategy board games have seen a surge in popularity among players of all ages. This section will analyze the current trend and market growth of strategy board games in 2018.

One reason for the rise in popularity of strategy board games is the growing interest in tabletop gaming as a whole. People are looking for ways to disconnect from screens and engage with others face-to-face, and strategy board games provide the perfect opportunity for social interaction. Additionally, the resurgence of tabletop gaming conventions and events has helped to further promote the hobby and bring more attention to strategy board games.

Another factor contributing to the rise of strategy board games is the accessibility and variety available in today’s market. There are now countless options to choose from, ranging from simple card-based games to complex, multi-hour epics. This allows players to find a game that suits their preferences and skill levels.

Furthermore, advancements in game design have made modern strategy board games more engaging than ever. Many new titles feature unique mechanics, innovative gameplay elements, and immersive themes that draw players into richly detailed worlds. This appeal has not only attracted experienced gamers but also newcomers who are intrigued by the depth and complexity offered by these games.

As a result of these factors, the market for strategy board games has experienced significant growth in 2018. Sales have been consistently strong, both online and in physical stores. More publishers are investing in developing high-quality strategy board games, leading to an increase in releases each year.

Top 5 Must-Have Strategy Board Games of 2018

The year 2018 has seen an abundance of exciting and innovative strategy board games that have captured the hearts of enthusiasts. With so many options available, it can be overwhelming to choose which games are worth investing in. To help narrow down the choices, here are the top five must-have strategy board games of 2018:

  1. “Gloomhaven” – This highly acclaimed game takes players on an epic journey in a persistent world with deep character development and challenging scenarios. With its branching storylines and immersive gameplay, “Gloomhaven” offers countless hours of strategic fun.
  2. “Root” – Set in a woodland kingdom, “Root” pits different factions against each other in a battle for dominance. Each faction has unique abilities and play styles, making each game session a dynamic experience. Its stunning artwork and engaging gameplay make “Root” a standout choice.
  3. “Scythe” – Combining elements of resource management, area control, and strategic combat, “Scythe” transports players to an alternate history 1920s Europe. With its elegant design and rich theme, this game offers players endless possibilities for achieving victory.
  4. “Terraforming Mars” – In this game, players take on the role of corporations tasked with terraforming Mars into a habitable planet for human colonization. As players compete for resources and strategically employ various cards, they will witness the transformation of the red planet before their very eyes.
  5. “Spirit Island” – This cooperative game allows players to take on the roles of powerful spirits defending their island from colonial invaders. With its deep tactical mechanics and intricate strategies, “Spirit Island” provides gamers with a truly unique experience.
NFL Strategy Briefcase Board Game
Game Description
Gloomhaven An epic journey with character development and challenging scenarios.
Root A woodland kingdom battle with unique factions and play styles.
Scythe Resource management, area control, and strategic combat in an alternate history Europe.
Terraforming Mars Compete to terraform Mars by gathering resources and using various cards.
Spirit Island A cooperative game defending an island from colonial invaders using tactical mechanics.

These top five strategy board games of 2018 offer a combination of immersive themes, engaging gameplay mechanics, and replayability. They have garnered critical acclaim from both players and experts in the gaming industry, making them must-have choices for any strategy game enthusiast.

Whether you enjoy the deep character development of “Gloomhaven,” the dynamic faction gameplay of “Root,” or the strategic decision-making in “Scythe,” these games provide hours of entertainment and challenge. So grab your friends, gather around the table, and let these fantastic games transport you to worlds where strategy is key.

Exploring the Mechanics

Types of Strategy Board Games

There are numerous types of strategy board games, each with its own unique gameplay mechanics. One common type is the “territory control” game, where players compete to gain control over specific areas on the game board. These games often involve strategic planning, resource management, and tactical decision-making to outmaneuver opponents and secure victory.

Another popular type is the “deck-building” game, where players start with a basic deck of cards and progressively add more powerful cards to improve their chances of victory. These games emphasize timing, card combinations, and hand management as players must carefully choose when to play certain cards for maximum effect.

In addition to these types, there are also cooperative strategy games where players work together towards a common goal, as well as asymmetrical strategy games where each player has unique abilities or objectives. Exploring the mechanics of different types of strategy board games can provide a deeper understanding of the challenges and strategies involved in each one.

Components and Actions

Strategy board games often have a variety of components that contribute to the overall gameplay experience. These can include dice for resolving conflicts or determining outcomes, miniatures or tokens representing units or characters on the board, cards that provide special abilities or resources, and various other elements that add depth and complexity to the game.

Players take turns performing actions in strategy board games based on their chosen strategies. These actions can include moving units across the board, collecting resources such as gold or energy, attacking opponents’ pieces or territories, building structures or upgrading units, trading with other players, and much more. The specific actions available may vary depending on the game’s mechanics and objectives.

The interplay between these components and actions creates a dynamic environment full of strategic possibilities. Each decision made by players can have ripple effects throughout the course of the game. Understanding these unique gameplay elements is essential for mastering strategy board games and developing winning strategies.

Immersive Themes and Engaging Storylines

Strategy board games offer players the opportunity to fully immerse themselves in captivating worlds and engage with compelling storylines. These games go beyond simply rolling dice or moving pieces on a board; they create an interactive experience that hooks players and keeps them coming back for more. In 2018, strategy board games have evolved to include a wide range of themes that appeal to a diverse audience.

One popular theme in strategy board games is fantasy. Games like “War of the Ring” and “Twilight Imperium” transport players to richly detailed worlds filled with magic, mythical creatures, and epic battles. These games allow players to take on the role of powerful characters or civilizations fighting for dominance, adding an extra layer of depth and excitement.

Another prevalent theme in strategy board games is history. Games like “Scythe” and “Power Grid” let players relive iconic moments in time and make strategic decisions that could change the course of history. Whether it’s building an empire or leading a nation through war, these games offer a unique blend of education and entertainment.

Science fiction is also well-represented in the world of strategy board games. Titles like “Terraforming Mars” and “Eclipse: Second Dawn for the Galaxy” transport players to distant planets and challenge them to colonize new worlds or manage scarce resources in hostile environments. These futuristic settings provide a fresh perspective on strategy gaming and open up limitless possibilities for gameplay.

Strategy Board Games for Different Skill Levels


Strategy board games have long been a popular choice for both casual and dedicated gamers. With their combination of tactical decision-making, strategic planning, and immersive gameplay, these games offer a unique and engaging experience.

In 2018, the world of strategy board games has expanded even further to cater to players of all skill levels – from beginners looking to dip their toes into the genre, to intermediate players seeking more challenging experiences, and advanced players hungry for deep and complex strategies.

Catering to Beginners

For those new to the world of strategy board games, there are plenty of options available that provide a gentle introduction to the genre. These games often have straightforward rules and mechanics that are easy to understand. They may also incorporate elements of luck or randomness to level the playing field among players with varying skill levels.

One example of a strategy board game suitable for beginners is Ticket to Ride. In this game, players compete to build railway networks across various locations on a colorful map. The rules are simple: collect matching cards and place your trains strategically on the map. Ticket to Ride strikes an excellent balance between accessible gameplay and strategic depth, making it a perfect choice for those new to strategy board games.

Challenging Intermediate Players

Intermediate-level players who have already gained some experience in strategy board games might seek something that offers a bit more complexity and depth. These players enjoy honing their skills through careful planning, analyzing opponents’ moves, and adapting their strategies accordingly.

A great option for intermediate-level players is Dominion. In this deck-building game, each player starts with an identical deck of basic cards which they use to acquire other cards that grant special abilities or resources.

The goal is to build the most efficient deck possible in order to earn victory points. Dominion offers countless opportunities for strategic decisions as players must consider card combinations and anticipate opponents’ moves, making it a satisfying and challenging experience for those looking to take their strategy board game skills to the next level.

Appealing to Advanced Players

For advanced players seeking a truly deep and intricate gameplay experience, there are strategy board games that provide complex decision-making and intense competition. These games often require extensive planning, foresight, and meticulous execution of strategies.

One standout choice for advanced players is Twilight Struggle. Set during the Cold War era, this two-player game simulates the political and military struggles between the United States and Soviet Union.

With an array of cards representing historical events and real-life figures, players must manipulate global influence, engage in espionage, and manage military operations in order to win strategic advantage. The depth of strategy in Twilight Struggle has made it a favorite among advanced gamers who appreciate its historical accuracy and challenging gameplay.

Whether you are a beginner taking your first steps into strategy board games or an advanced player craving new challenges, there is a game available to suit your skill level. The diverse range of options ensures that strategy board games remain an accessible and rewarding hobby for gamers of all backgrounds and abilities.

The Benefits of Playing Strategy Board Games

Playing strategy board games not only provides entertainment and enjoyment, but it also offers numerous benefits for players. One of the key advantages of playing strategy board games is the enhancement of cognitive skills. These games require players to think critically, analyze different situations, plan strategies, and make important decisions.

As a result, players can develop their problem-solving abilities, logical thinking, memory retention, and strategic planning skills. Research has shown that regularly engaging in these mental exercises can improve cognitive function and overall brain health.

Chinese Strategy Board Game

Furthermore, strategy board games promote teamwork and collaboration among players. Many of these games require players to work together towards a common goal or objective. This encourages communication, cooperation, and coordination among team members. Players learn to listen to each other’s ideas, share knowledge and resources, delegate tasks effectively, and work towards achieving a collective victory. These skills are transferable to real-life situations such as group projects or team-based work environments.

Additionally, playing strategy board games can also foster creativity and innovation. Many of these games feature unique gameplay mechanics and allow players to explore their own strategies within certain constraints or rules.

This promotes out-of-the-box thinking and encourages players to come up with creative solutions to overcome challenges or opponents. In a world where creativity is highly valued in various fields such as business or art, playing strategy board games can help individuals develop their imaginative thinking skills.

Overall, the benefits of playing strategy board games extend beyond mere entertainment. From enhancing cognitive skills to fostering teamwork and encouraging creative thinking, these games provide a well-rounded experience that can have a positive impact on various aspects of an individual’s life.

Benefit Description
Enhancement of Cognitive Skills Improves problem-solving abilities, logical thinking, memory retention, and strategic planning skills.
Teamwork and Collaboration Promotes communication, cooperation, and coordination among players.
Creativity and Innovation Fosters out-of-the-box thinking and encourages the development of imaginative solutions.

Strategy Board Games as a Social Activity

Strategy board games are not just a solitary activity, but also a fantastic way to connect with others and create lasting memories with friends and family. Unlike video games or other forms of entertainment, strategy board games require face-to-face interaction and communication, making them an excellent choice for social gatherings.

Playing strategy board games with friends and family can help forge stronger bonds by providing a shared experience and creating opportunities for meaningful interactions. As players work together to develop strategies, make decisions, and face challenges within the game, they are able to collaborate, communicate, and problem-solve together. This cooperative aspect of many strategy board games fosters teamwork and encourages players to listen to each other’s ideas and perspectives.

Furthermore, strategy board games provide a unique opportunity for friendly competition. Whether it’s battling for control over territory in Risk or vying for victory points in Settlers of Catan, these games offer a healthy challenge that can bring out the competitive spirit in players. Friendly rivalries can form as players strive to outwit and outmaneuver each other, leading to memorable moments filled with laughter, excitement, and maybe even some good-natured trash talking.

Lastly, playing strategy board games with loved ones creates lasting memories that can be cherished for years to come. These games often have immersive themes and captivating storylines that draw players into unique worlds.

Whether it’s exploring ancient ruins in Pandemic or building a civilization from scratch in 7 Wonders, the experiences shared during gameplay can be truly unforgettable. From epic victories to crushing defeats, the emotions felt during these intense gaming sessions create lasting bonds between players that extend beyond the tabletop.

Strategy Board Games Beyond 2018

As we near the end of 2018, it is important to look ahead and predict what the future holds for strategy board games. This thriving genre has seen significant growth and popularity in recent years, and there is no doubt that it will continue to evolve and innovate in the years to come.

One of the major trends that we can expect to see in strategy board games beyond 2018 is the integration of technology. While traditional board games have always relied on physical components such as cards, dice, and tokens, many game designers are now incorporating digital elements into their creations.

This can range from companion apps that enhance gameplay or provide additional content, to fully digital versions of popular board games that can be played online with friends from around the world. The use of technology not only adds a new layer of interactivity but also opens up opportunities for more complex mechanics and immersive experiences.

Another trend that we can anticipate in strategy board games is an increased focus on cooperative gameplay. While competitive games have always been dominant in this genre, there has been a growing demand for collaborative experiences where players work together towards a common goal.

This shift towards cooperative play not only fosters teamwork and communication skills but also creates a more inclusive environment where players of different skill levels can enjoy the game together. Expect to see more innovative cooperative mechanics and engaging storytelling as game designers explore this emerging trend.

Last but not least, accessibility will continue to be a key consideration in the design of strategy board games beyond 2018. Game publishers are increasingly aware of the importance of making their products accessible to a wider audience, including younger players or those who may have limited experience with complex rulesets.

We can expect to see more beginner-friendly options with streamlined rulebooks and intuitive gameplay mechanics, as well as expansions or variants for advanced players looking for deeper strategic challenges.

In conclusion, strategy board games have come a long way and show no signs of slowing down. With advancements in technology, a shift towards cooperative play, and a focus on accessibility, the future of this genre is bright.

Whether you are a seasoned enthusiast or new to the world of strategy board games, there are endless possibilities for fun, engagement, and intellectual growth in the years to come. So gather your friends and family, and get ready to embark on exciting adventures in the captivating worlds of strategy board games.

Frequently Asked Questions

What are the most popular strategy board games?

Some of the most popular strategy board games include Settlers of Catan, Ticket to Ride, Risk, and Pandemic. Settlers of Catan is a game where players compete to build settlements and cities on an island, while also trading resources with each other. Ticket to Ride is a game where players aim to complete railway routes across different parts of the world.

Risk is a classic war-themed strategy game in which players battle for global domination by deploying armies and strategically conquering territories. Lastly, Pandemic is a cooperative game where players work together to prevent the spread of diseases and find cures.

What is the most loved board game?

It’s difficult to pinpoint one board game as the most loved, as personal preferences can vary greatly among individuals. However, a board game that tends to be widely adored by many is “Monopoly.”

Monopoly has stood the test of time and continues to be enjoyed by people of all ages around the world. The gameplay involves buying properties, charging rent, and managing finances, creating an engaging experience that has captured the hearts of countless players over its long history.

What is the most successful board game of all time?

When it comes to the most successful board game of all time in terms of sales and widespread recognition, “Chess” stands out as a strong contender. Chess dates back more than 1500 years and has been played by millions across different cultures throughout history.

Its enduring popularity lies in its immense depth and strategic complexity—players need to plan multiple moves ahead while adapting their tactics in response to their opponent’s moves. The timeless nature of chess has allowed it to transcend borders and generations, making it one of the most successful board games ever created.

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