Board games are a great way to pass the time and have fun, but they are usually thought of as something that requires multiple players. While this is the case for the majority of board games, there are actually a lot of games that can be played alone. Some of them are designed for multiple players as well as a solo mode, but there are some specifically created for solitary play.
You may miss the social fun and group activities when you play solo, but you are free to take in all the strategic development and mental challenges. When you are playing by yourself you can try different approaches and various strategies without the pressure of opponent players. In some games there may be artificial opponents you must overcome; in others you may have to beat a high score. In other cases, you may have to win the game before a time limit ends. In any case, solo board games are a great way to boost your critical thinking and spend a few hours of quality alone time. Here are some of the best board games you can play entirely solo:
1. Arkham Horror: The Card Game
Arkham Horror: The Card Game is a cooperative living card game set in the world of H.P. Lovecraft’s Cthulhu Mythos. Players take on the role of investigators, exploring the mysterious and dangerous city of Arkham, Massachusetts, in an effort to uncover the secrets of the ancient and powerful forces that threaten to consume the world.
The game is designed for 1-2 players, and each game session is designed to be a unique and thrilling experience. Players must work together to uncover clues, battle monsters, and ultimately face off against the Ancient One, a powerful and mysterious entity that threatens to consume the world. The game is highly replayable, as each game session is different, and the investigators must use their wits and resources to survive.
The game is based on the popular Arkham Horror board game, and features a unique card-based system that allows players to customize their investigators and build decks to suit their playstyle. The game also features a variety of expansions that add new investigators, monsters, and Ancient Ones to the game, as well as new scenarios and challenges.
2. The 7th Continent
The 7th Continent is an cooperative adventure game for 1-4 players, and it is set in a mysterious continent that has been discovered in the middle of the Atlantic Ocean. Players take on the role of explorers who are trying to uncover the secrets of this new land.
The game is played over a series of turns, and each turn consists of a few different phases. During the Exploration phase, players will explore the continent by drawing cards from the deck and placing them on the board. These cards represent different locations, and they can contain items, monsters, and other surprises.
During the Action phase, players can use the items they have collected to take actions such as fighting monsters, solving puzzles, and gathering resources.
The game also features a unique card-based system for managing the players’ health and sanity. As players explore the continent, they will encounter various dangers that can cause them to lose health or sanity. If a player’s health or sanity drops to zero, they are eliminated from the game.
Scythe is a board game designed by Jamey Stegmaier and published by Stonemaier Games. It is set in an alternate-history 1920s period and is a competitive game for 1-5 players. The game is set in a world where the Great War never ended and the world is divided into several factions. Players take on the role of leaders of these factions and must use their resources to build their own mechanized forces and expand their influence.
The game is played over a series of rounds, with each player taking turns to move their pieces around the board and take actions. The goal of the game is to gain the most victory points by the end of the game. Victory points are gained by completing objectives, controlling territories, and building structures.
The game is highly strategic and requires players to think carefully about their moves and how they can best use their resources. It also requires players to think about how their opponents are playing and how they can best counter their strategies.
As most of Stonemaier Games’ products, Scythe has a solo variant called The Automa designed by the Automa Factory, which is an amazing system that controls dummy opponents.
4. Underwater Cities
Underwater Cities is an exciting and immersive game that allows players to build their own underwater cities. Players can build their own cities, manage resources, and explore the depths of the ocean. The game is set in a vibrant and colorful underwater world, with a variety of creatures and plants to discover.
Underwater Cities is designed to be easy to learn and play, with a variety of different strategies and tactics to explore.
5. This War Of Mine
This War of Mine: The Board Game is a unique and immersive experience that puts players in the shoes of civilians struggling to survive in a war-torn city. The game is based on the video game of the same name and is designed for up to six players. Players take on the roles of survivors, each with their own unique skills and abilities, and must work together to scavenge for resources, build shelter, and make difficult moral decisions in order to survive.
The game is set in a fictional city that has been ravaged by war. It is designed to be a cooperative experience, with players working together to make the best decisions for the group. Players must also manage their resources carefully, as they are limited and must be used wisely.
The game is highly replayable, as the city is randomly generated each time the game is played. This means that no two games will be the same, and players must adapt their strategies to the changing environment. The game also features a variety of events and encounters that can drastically change the course of the game.
Overall, This War of Mine is a great way to experience the struggles of war from a civilian perspective and is sure to provide hours of entertainment.
6. Pax Pamir: Second Edition
Pax Pamir: Second Edition is a strategy game set in 19th century Afghanistan. It is a game of negotiation, bluffing, and area control. Players take on the roles of rival Afghan leaders vying for control of the region. The game is designed to be a deep and engaging experience, with a focus on the political and economic dynamics of the region.
The game is played on a map of Afghanistan, with each player controlling a faction of Afghan leaders. Players must use their resources to build alliances, expand their influence, and ultimately gain control of the region. The game is won by the player who has the most influence at the end of the game.
The game is highly interactive, with players negotiating and trading resources in order to gain an advantage. Players must also manage their resources carefully, as they are limited and can be used to build alliances or to purchase powerful cards.
Pax Pamir also features a unique card-driven system, which allows players to customize their strategies and create unique combinations of cards. This system adds a great deal of replayability to the game, as players can experiment with different strategies and combinations of cards. The game also features a unique scoring system, which rewards players for their strategic decisions. Players can score points by controlling provinces, building alliances, and completing objectives. It also contains a variety of special cards, which can be used to gain an advantage or to disrupt an opponent’s plans.
7. A Feast For Odin
A Feast for Odin is a worker placement and resource management board game designed by Uwe Rosenberg and published by Z-Man Games. The game is set in the Viking Age and players take on the role of Viking chieftains, managing their clans and gathering resources to build and settle new lands. Players must manage their resources carefully, as they will need to build and upgrade their settlements, construct ships, and trade with other players. The game features a unique “feast” mechanic, where players can gather resources to build a feast for Odin, which will grant them special bonuses as well as a “trade” mechanic, where players can trade resources with other players in order to gain an advantage.
A Feast For Odin also features an “upgrade” system, where players can upgrade their settlements in order to gain more resources and bonuses. Another aspect of the game is the “exploration” mechanic, where players can explore new lands and discover new resources. And finally we have the special “combat” mechanic, where players can battle each other in order to gain control of resources.
Even though all of the board games on this list were specifically designed for two players and above, they have all implemented a system for solo-play as well. This shows the increasing popularity of exploring a game alone. So if you can’t get a hold of anyone to sit down and play a board game, or if you want to get a head-start from your gaming group on your next game night, I highly recommend getting started in the world of solo board gaming.