5 surprisingly savage board games that will test your friendships
Some board games look like sweet and chilled experiences when, in actuality, they’re all about screwing over the competition however you can. Here are five surprisingly savage board games that will test your friendships.
This video is sponsored by Voodoo Ranger
This video is sponsored by Voodoo Ranger
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Quentin said Wing Span is "but" while I am here holding on to purchase what seems to be a superb engine building game with birds as their pièce de résistance. Help me initiated players, for I need your help making up my mind! Thank you.
"Diplomacy" The game that has ended more friendships than all those listed. (It has had longer to do it.)
Red Dragon Inn. My brother in law has a second, sinister personality we refer to as "Red Dragon Steven." Cold. Ruthless. Merciless. It was quite the Christmas Eve.
Join the lizard cult! We are turning clearings into sanctuaries, all the clearings …..
I've actually lost a friend because of one round of Dead Last.
My friends and I played Shadows over Camelot together. I was playing it for the first time. Things seemed well, as I collected Excalibur and helped heal others. I nearly died and they used the grail to revive me. Ultimately I had fend off a catapult from being placed or Camelot would fall. I then placed the final catapult to everyone's confusion as they assumed I didn't understand how the game worked. I flipped my card revealing I was the traitor all along!! I could imagine Emperor Palatine slow clapping and saying "…Good , Good!" as I did it. I was passively screwing them by wasting the cards they needed to get Excalibur. I played along just enough to make seem like I was helping. The concept of me being a traitor hurt my best friend's soul as he found the idea I could ever be that impossible. It was like watching a computer try to process a logic paradox in star trek. How could the most honorable and goody two shoes paladin be the bad guy? Oh the salt and bitterness that game caused.
Bloodrage …simply makes the blood rage.
I don't know how my kids did it, but they turned Carcassonne into a blood sport.
Arboretum. You can spend the game building a great great path and another person can reduce it to zero points. Maddening.
if you've ever played either of the first two Pokemon Master Trainer games, they'd defiantly be on this list. Brutal isn't what you'd expect from a Pokemon game of all things, but Master Trainer 1 and 2 certainly qualify.
About 10 years ago I played a variation on Junta with some friends for about a full week, with decisions in the real life affecting the game as well… long story short, I lived on bananas that entire week and teamed up an other team, just to get backstabbed and thrown into defeat on the last turn… I haven't eaten a banana since '-.-
Loved the video! Great job!
Balloon Race is the most cut throat game I own… It's amazing.
Agricola. It's a nice farming game.
Except the key mechanics are placing workers to block the other players. I find myself thingking, "I'll do something that doesn't help me much this turn so I can go first next turn. Then you can't have any kids."
Dice rolls always in your favor is … boring.
The occasional failure keeps things spicy.
I'd remove Wingspan and choose something like Arboretum. Otherwise fair list.
Our games of 7 Wonders are now all about "Hate Drafting", basically, watching who you are passing your cards to, and using the ones they may want or benefit from by discarding, or building your wonder with them.
Mine would be Through the Desert. You look at the pieces and they are nice little pastel colored camels. They look like candy. But they aren't. They are a way to cut off your opponents move and make them just plain angry. You think that it's just a nice little friendly kids game, until you are half way through it, and you think "Oh my Lord, I have done everything wrong and I'm going to lose by a whole bunch of points."
Cool video. Was expecting a splotter game to make this top five 🙂
5 card draw sorry, especially two player.
Chicago Express – The first plays of this game seem completely harmless. "Oh boy, I'll buy some stock in this railroad and build it as far as I can!" However, after a small handful of plays, subtle strategies start to reveal themselves, and they are all absolutely ruthless. And this is a game where you can be effectively taken out of the running due to a single miscalculation, once it reaches that point. Fortunately it only takes an hour to play and keeps people coming back for more.
Junta, constant lying and back stabbing
After seeing Carcassonne in the intro I thought for sure it made the list but it didn't. Carcassonne can be really brutal if you get to a competitive level of play online.
Ticket To Ride ended up with 2 players throwing little trains and screaming at each other … didn’t play that one with them again.
Parliament 2050. My friend refuses to play it with us after two of us allied to deny him the win
There are lots. Now that I think of it, that's what makes a game great. Being as bloodthirsty as possible and then saying, it's just a game. But Progress: Evolution of Mankind is big for me. Being the only player in the game NOT able to play a card (because there's not enough in the game) with a key bonus for your chosen strategy can be very depressing. My friend routinely gets delayed getting Philosophy and her and her daughter delight in keeping me from getting Mathematics. Etc, etc because there is a shortage of every one of the 73 cards in a 5 player game and almost all at lower player counts. Figured we would wear this game out quickly since we loved it so much so I bought an extra copy for down the road. I now have an extra copy of Progress, it's one of two games I'm not permitted to suggest playing.
Coup, there is nothing like watching two friends agree to assassinate you one after the other
"No Thanks" would be more fun if it was named "Numberwang".
Diplomacy is a game that has ended friendships. Permanently. But it's so good when you get a proper game going!
My roommate recently got Quoridor. It's like simplified, vindictive chess.
18XX. Dump that stock, lose your friends.
If Wingspan can be taken as a friendship breaking game, then you can interpret any game that way. Even the most passive worker placement meets this criteria if you “take” someone spot before them.
Further, azul does have some hate drafting mechanics, but those opportunities are often rare, and at least in my experience are limited primarily to two player games because there are so many less tiles to take per round.
I feel a lot of cooperative games can be on this list, simply by virtue of their ostensible cooperative nature. Definitely depends on the group, but I feel like if there isn't a good deal of hidden information, it can lead to a "taskmaster" taking control "for the good of the table" which can strain friendships even more than any "screw you" mechanic in a competitive game. Why I always feel like cooperative games should enforce a good deal of hidden information (can be, and most often is, hidden loyalties, but doesn't need to be; could just be a hidden hand of cards, and limited/weaker actions outside those cards: if the would-be taskmaster doesn't have the same full knowledge as the player whose turn it is it tends to limit their ability to take control. They can still make suggestions, which I think is a good thing in cooperative games, but it limits it to more vague suggestions, like "I think we should take care of [location X]" more so than "Move to [location X], use your first action to gather supplies, then use your second action to attack the enemies there")
Root is definitely a Savage game. I have had my brother get super salty after playing a dominance card and everyone just jumps him and I snuck the victory as the woodland alliance from right under their nose.
Lifeboat: You are all in a lifeboat that is slowly sinking. Each player must prove why they are valuable and should live.
It's great fun to tell granny that she's old and won't live that long anyway.
I love that you’re sponsored by Voodoo Ranger. They make awesome beers !
Junta is a board game designed by Merlin Southwell first published in 1978 by Creative Wargames Workshop and published, as of 1985, by West End Games.
Also known as "misery" your in power trying to make money or trying to take power and stop them from getting money.
Wow… many surprises on your list. Coool. I would go with Gunkimono. Has a lot of "take that" surprisingly.
People still use wallpaper?
I’ll see your Cornish Smugglers and raise you one Diplomacy; Destroyer of Families and Friendships!
Possibly Everdell? I was surprised at how many time people were looking at my settlement and trying to deduce what I'd need to make sure I couldn't get it
I am surprised that Carcassonne was used as a counterexample for this list. When we play Carcassonne, it is brutal. We steal each other's castles and when we can't do that, we force our opponents to build larger castles while running roads up to them in ways that only allows one or two other tiles to complete. We also take over each other's favorite farms or make it a cloister can't be surrounded. Otherwise, great list. Also Battlesheep is another incredibly mean game.
At 2p, Azul is a math game. Even at higher player counts, I've seen players King make by calculating which player would get stuck with 6 tiles neither player could use.
Munchkin. One of my friends completely loses it whenever we play. Also two card games, Grass and Bottle Imp, have been known to cause ructions.
"a chill game about what move will benefit you most while completely screwing over the competition"
3:03 It's the ghost of Wheels!
1:00 is a little bit chilling. Literally 60 seconds into the video and I’m wondering how many people Johnny has slain
Most of the games here have the capacity to be really nasty. But Wingspan?? Really? 🤣