Board Games: And no, I’m not talking about Monopoly!

Board games are experiencing a renaissance right now. Yes, that’s right….a renaissance! Nowadays, there are an endless number of board games for all ages and interests. You can forget about Monopoly, Life, Sorry!, and Uno because now you can choose from a variety of much cooler games! Okay, asking you to forget about those quintessential childhood games may have been harsh. So, don’t think of this post as asking you to abandon them forever but more of a challenge to try new board games!

Below are my reviews of a few modern board games I own!


  • Hanabi

    Hanabi, photo from Meepletown .com

    Hanabi, photo from www. meepletown .com

This is actually a card game and a really fun one at that! The premise of Hanabi is you and up to four other people are Chinese firework masters. Your town has asked you all to work together to put on the greatest firework show they have ever seen. You hold your cards facing outward so the rest of the players can see your cards but you cannot see your own cards. By giving strategic clues everyone uses process of elimination to figure out what color and numbered cards they have in their hand. From there you play your card to create the firework show. If you play a wrong card you shorten the fuse and risk setting off the show too early.

A good friend introduced this game to me and I went out and bought it after playing a few rounds. You can find it on Amazon for about $12-15. I like that this is a cooperative game. It’s a nice break from competitive games.

  • Tokaido

A board game that doubles as artwork! Seriously, the artwork on the board and cards is gorgeous. Tokaido is a competitive game with some unique game mechanics. You’re a traveler on the road from Edo (modern day Tokyo) to Kyoto. Along the way you can choose where you want to stop to enjoy your journey to the max! You can talk with other travelers, soak in the hot springs, and buy souvenirs. Periodically, everyone is forced to stop at inns to eat some good food and rest up for their journey. All of the stopping, and eating, and talking, and soaking earns you points that determine the winner at the end of the journey.

Tokaido, Photo from www. shutupandsitdown .com

Tokaido, Photo from www. shutupandsitdown .com

My only gripe is the meeples (the character pieces) are simplistic and boring, like 3D stick figures. You can buy pieces that are the actual characters but they’re sort of expensive. Oh well, I guess that’s something to add to the wishlist. This game, in my opinion, doesn’t have a huge replay value, but it’s a lot of fun to introduce to new people.

  • Dominion

A competitive card game set in medieval times. Everyone starts with the same 10 cards at the beginning of the game. The point is to end the game with the most victory points, granting you a dominion (get it??) over the lands and other players. By purchasing new cards to add to your deck you

Dominion, photo from www. amazon .com

Dominion, photo from www. amazon .com

are able to acquire action cards and victory points. This game is a bit clunky at first, especially for newbies, but once you get the hang of it you can finish a game in about 30 minutes. There isn’t a lot of waiting around for other people to play which is nice and keeps everyone engaged.

Of the three modern games we have, Dominion is by far my favorite. It’s fast-paced, competitive, and changes every time you play. Each game consists of a different make-up of action cards which forces the players to adjust their strategies.


Hosting a board game night is a ton of fun! Hanging out with friends and playing board games with them is a great way to laugh and make memories. But beware of certain games that may cause hurt feelings (I’m looking at you Risk and Ticket to Ride!)

Have you played any of the same games as me? What board games do you think I would like to try? Let me know in the comments below.


4 thoughts on “Board Games: And no, I’m not talking about Monopoly!

  1. Zumaria says:

    I love Dominion! I own the fantasy version, Avalon. It’s so fun – I like how people get so competitive when they play! I’ve never heard of Tokaido but it sounds fun too! Have you ever heard of or played Quelf? It’s a silly game, very enjoyable!

    Liked by 1 person

    • Halee Pagel says:

      Ive never heard if Avalon. I hooe the board game bar near me has it open and ready to play! And I haven’t heard of Quelf. I’ll have to check that one or too!!

      My current board game obsession is Zombicide, a very fun co-operative game!


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