Want to get the perfect gift for your board game geek or playgroup? You’re at the right place! Our team at Magic Omens got together, and we created what we would say is the Ultimate Holiday Gift Guide for 2022.
Below you will find recommendations and info for some of the most popular new and classic board games that any tabletop gamer will enjoy!
Board Game Holiday Gift Guide 2022
Board games are getting more popular each year, so there is no better time to get a board game gift for one of your friends or family! These games will be both great for seasoned board game players and as an introduction to the board game hobby to beginners. Each one will be a great family activity or an addition to your regular board game meetups.
Party board games for the whole family
Are you looking for fun and quick games for any occasion? Look no further! Party games like these are perfect for that!
The Codenames series of games has you split up into two teams and compete in finding all your tiles from 20 clue tiles on the table, but there is a catch. The person who knows which tiles are yours can only give you one word and one number as a clue. Try to guess as many connected images or words as you can, without missing! This game is a great icebreaker for mixed friend groups, a fun family game (especially the Disney or Marvel versions) or a battle of wits with your friends. The games are around 15 minutes long and can be played with 2 or more players, although we suggest not over 12.
Another wacky and fast-paced game, anybody can enjoy is Exploding Kittens. In this game, every player starts their turn by drawing a card and if that card is an Exploding Kitten, they are out of the game. Sounds pretty simple, right? Well all the other cards in the game give you abilities like shuffling the deck, looking at cards on top of the deck, making others draw cards and many more! Be the last person standing in this funny cat board game. A game of Exploding Kittens is around 15 minutes long and can be played with 2 to 5 players.
Love Letter on the other hand is a bit more serious in tone, but just as fun. In Love Letter, all players are trying to send a love letter to the princess by playing cards on their turns until there is only one player left standing. That player gets a token of affection. Whoever gets the required number of these first wins the game. Each character card has a different ability, and they are all simple to understand and play, but the fun is in reading what your opponents are planning and playing accordingly. This exciting game of deception, intrigue and love is played in around 20 minutes with 2 to 4 players.
Classic Board Games for Beginners
These games are well known by many for a reason, they are the classics that stood the test of time and are still played daily in many board gaming groups. These will make a great gift for people just starting their board game collections or expanding an existing one!
The Settlers of Catan and all of its expansions are the most known board game for a reason! This is a game of building towns and roads on an unexplored island. Gather resources, trade with other players and build the best settlement you can! Catan can be played by 2 to 4 players (or up to 6 with the extension) and a game takes about 60 minutes to play out. This is the perfect gift for beginners in the board gaming hobby!
Ticket to Ride Europe puts you in charge of building railroads and connecting different cities and regions on a map of Europe. Each route you finish gives you points and blocks other players from building their railroads between the two locations. Each player also gets secret missions at the start of the game, telling them which 2 cities they need to connect to earn extra points. This creates a fun puzzle for every player, since they need to figure out how to get around the map without getting blocked by other players’ railroads. There is also Ticket to Ride which has very similar gameplay and features a different map, the map of the United States. A game of Ticket to Ride lasts around 30 to 60 minutes with 2 to 5 players.
The last, but certainly not the least, of the big three is Carcassone, an amazing tile laying game. This game is very simple to learn and intuitive to play. Each player places tiles featuring fields, roads, cities and walls on the table, building together a map of a French inspired landscape. Each of the tiles interacts with the game in some way and generates points accordingly. It’s a relaxing and thought-provoking game that lasts about 30 minutes with 2 to 5 players.
Deduction and Mystery Board Games
Work together to decipher the clues and solve some unforgettable mysteries in this category.
We have both family friendly options and games for more serious crime solving groups!
MicroMacro: Crime City is a series of games reminiscent of the classic “Where’s Waldo?” illustrations. Each game comes with a huge map filled with characters, locations and events all depicted in cute but sharp detail. Your job as players is to read case cards and use the information there as well as the info on the map to connect the dots and deduce what has happened! Both this and MicroMacro: Crime City 2 Full House include cases appropriate for all ages, so this can be the perfect gift for the little detective in your life.
Sherlock Holmes Consulting Detective is a game series based on the truly amazing stories by Sir Arthur Conan Doyle. In these games, players work together to solve a case presented before them. You will explore interesting locations, interview suspects and witnesses, read newspaper articles and much more to get all the information required to solve these intriguing mysteries! This game will delight any fan of mystery, especially as a gift for fans of true crime media.
Best Buy Board Games this Holiday Season
Betrayal at House on the Hill: 3rd Edition is the most popular story driven secret role game, where one of the players is not what they seem! Work together with your friends to explore an ever-changing haunted house, but beware, each of over 50 scenarios has one of you turn on the party and be revealed as a traitor this whole time! Once this happens, the haunt begins and the remaining players need to survive and solve the mystery of the haunt before the traitor manages to finish its quest. This is a game for 3 to 6 players, lasting around 60 minutes per scenario.
Mysterium Park is a new twist on the beloved cooperative board game Mysterium. Players work together to interpret what the ghost (played by another player) is trying to tell them. The ghost can only use illustrated cards to give them clues and nudge their discussion in the right direction. In addition to all that, the players only have 6 rounds to find the solution, or the carnival will leave for good. This magnificent cooperative board game is great for groups of 2 to 6 players, with each game lasting around 30 minutes.
Jaipur is our favorite 2 player game recommendation! If you are looking for a game to play one-on-one with someone, this is it! The 2 players are competing to be the best trader in the city of Jaipur by buying and trading goods. This all seems simple, but the market is always changing, and you can only either receive new goods or sell your existing goods for the turn. That makes every turn a risk assessment, since you want to make as much money as possible, without falling behind the other player. An amazing, fun and fast-paced card game that will make any board game player fall in love in just a few minutes.