Other board games

Last week’s question was: ‘Are you interested in chess variants?’ By far the most common answer was ‘no’, you only play classical chess over-the-board. Even the second-most-common answer was ‘correspondence chess’, so the true chess variants are still very much a minority pursuit.

I am with the majority, as over-the-board chess is the only one for me. Late in 1994, I did start a handful of correspondence games, but after taking ill at the end of that year, I forgot all about them. It was years later before I remembered them, and I found out I had effectively ‘lost on time’ (belated apologies to my opponents).


Continuing my idle curiosity about your likes and dislikes – Do you also play other board games, or just chess?

There are so many board games that I will not even attempt to give options. Just a straight choice between ‘only chess’ and ‘I play other board games’. You can name your other board games in comments, but I am betting on a win for ‘only chess’. But if you play other versions of chess, such as Shogi, then I would count that as a different board game.

13 thoughts on “Other board games”

  1. I don’t play other two-player deterministic full information games, like Go or draughts. Chess is enough for me in that regard.

    But I do play more casual board games with friends, like Settlers of Catan or Pandemic and many others. Diplomacy is best, but it rarely happens that 7 players have a full day available…

  2. I dabble in Go (11 Kyū), but more often play more casual board (but also card) games with a chance element (Carcassonne, Pandemic etc.). The chance element is good for making it more interesting for people of very different skill levels (without going to a game that is nearly completely by chance, which just bores me such as “Mensch ärgere dich nicht” – or, say, something like Roulette), although the board games I mention are still not ideal – for family gatherings we bring out things like Skulls & Roses, which has worked very well.

  3. As a kid, I played everything available. Since I grew up, I regard playing anything other than chess as a kind of infidelity.

  4. Hi,

    I play chess mainly (2200elo),but,
    I play Go also (2dan), and many board games.
    A very good website for playing board games is http://www.boiteàjeux.net.
    The site is in French but translated in other langage as well.



  5. I play occasionaly Go (only on the internet), and many multi-player boardgames such as Puerto Rico, Civilisation, Pandemic etc etc.

  6. 2 dan in go is impressive, pretty close in strength to your 2200 chess rating! I know that Tiger Hillarp Persson is a dan-level player as well. I’m 4 kyu and have my eye set on 1 dan some day. It is nice to see go represented well here, especially since players of each game often look down on the other one; I think that the skills I have picked up in each game have been nicely complementary. I do admit to slightly enjoying the recent consternation of go-only players when AlphaGo beat a top-level pro, as the inability of computers to play at the highest level was something they liked to hold up as proof of go’s superiority.

    I play poker when I can (less often since the silly US rules about online poker) and I know that many chess players, including top-level ones, play pretty seriously. I feel like locally there were a lot of backgammon players a while back, but that trend may have passed.

    As with many others here I also enjoy “European” board games such as Carcassonne and Puerto Rico.

  7. I’ve played a lot of Ticket to Ride with the (default) North America map over the last decade. That’s a superb game with outstanding balancing. Easy to get into, and every game is different to the last one.

  8. @Remco G

    I’m pleased to see another Diplomacy player here – but please remind me to never ever trust what you’re saying 🙂

  9. In college, I delved into Scrabble for several months, until one day I woke up and realized that I was spending my time memorizing a list of 900 3-letter words.

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