When we think of board games, we often picture multiple people huddled around one game board on a table, but this is not always the case. Oftentimes, board games can be played solo. This is where single player board games come into play. Knowing the best solo board games is key if you want to play board games alone or you find yourself in a situation where the only option is to play board games as a single player. Bring on the best solo board games!
In this article, I will be going over some reasons as to why people might play solo board games and some of the best single player board games that are currently on the market. These are the must have, best solo board games we have in our collection!
Note: We have updated this article because we know that many of you are quarantined or stuck at home due to the current world’s situation. We hope you find this guide helpful in relieving some of your at home boredom and/or stress.
I want to make this clear. Playing board games alone IS NOT LAME. If you have a love for board games but find yourself in situations where you must play alone, then there are many solo board games that you can play by yourself. I’ll let you know some of the best solo board games that you can start playing today.
Personally, there are times when I find enjoyment in playing board games alone and feel that it also improves my board game strategy and skills. It’s the perfect opportunity for me to get better at board games before playing the game with other people. I make sure to play only the best solo board games so that I can improve my board game skills or just have fun by myself.
With that being said, let’s go over why playing the best solo board games is a great idea, and the reasons people may want to play a board game solo. I’ll also give you some ideas on the best single player board games that you should be playing. Let’s get into it!
If you are not interested in the different reasons people play single player board games, then feel free to skip to the best solo board games by clicking here!
WHY DO PEOPLE PLAY SINGLE PLAYER BOARD GAMES?
When I asked some of my board gamer friends if they play solo board games, the answer was mostly yes. If you asked the Game Night Gods team, the answer was ‘yes’ as well.
Some people cringe at the idea of playing board games solo. They say, “what’s the point of that?” Well, there are actually a wide array of reasons why someone might want to play a board game alone. Hey, you might find yourself relating to one of these reasons and find the urge to start playing single player board games. Don’t count yourself out just yet!
Why would someone play a board game alone? Well here are a few reasons…
1. A lot of board gamers like to play a board game solo before playing with others so that they can figure out the rules first. People don’t realize, but a lot of cooperative games can also be played solo. This gives board gamers an opportunity to practice their skills and learn all of the rules and details of the game. It’s a great reason to take a game out, get it organized with all of the moving parts, and learn the rules. If you want to master a board game, then you should think about playing it solo first.
2. Another reason is that sometimes players can’t get their friends together for a board game night, so they turn to single player games so they can still have their own fun. People aren’t always around, so why wait around for them? If your friends live faraway or you don’t have many friends (it’s ok, I’m here for you), then you can play by yourself without having to rely on others to play with you.
3. Games can be really long and take up a lot of your time. Playing a board game solo can allow you to pause and come back to it at a later hour, without having to wait for others to be available to play. You may have the urge to play a certain game, but cannot convince others to play with you. Therefore, you can set it up and play on your own! Take breaks from the game and come back to it whenever you want. You will be on your own schedule and can complete the game at your own leisure.
4. Also, people work and may travel a lot, so they can bring their solo board games with them to play in order to pass the time. Single player games can compliment business travel with compact games. Make some room in your luggage for some board games and play when you are bored in your hotel room. They are a great way to pass the time when you are alone on business travel!
5. If you are a parent, then having to care for your kids can prevent you from going out to a board game night with friends. Also, not many people in your family may play games or are too young to play the games you want to play. Therefore, you can whip out a single player board game when the kids are asleep and play the night away. You can also play your own board game while the kids are playing with their toys, but beware… They might become intrigued and want to know what you are doing. Play in front of your kids at your own risk, as it may turn into a distraction.
6. If you are stuck at home with noone to play with, such as being quarantined (yes, we are currently facing the COVID-19 outbreak and are all stuck at home), then you may be forced to play board games alone. If you are practicing social distancing and you cannot get together with your friends to play board games, then bring on the single player games. This is the perfect opportunity to try out new board games and play single player board games since you are stuck at home anyway!
7. Sometimes the reason is that people just enjoy playing solo board games more than they like playing with others. They rather play a game at their own pace and leisure. Therefore, single player boards games are the perfect solution for wanting to play board games alone.
Have a reason for playing solo board games that is not listed here? Leave us a comment below this article and let us know why YOU play single player board games.
THE BEST SOLO BOARD GAMES – SINGLE PLAYER BOARD GAMES
There are so many games produced strictly for solo play. It’s great! Solo playing board games is a great way to get in your gaming fix. There are also many cooperative games that you can also play solo. There are times when I have the opportunity to play with friends, but prefer playing some of the best solo games currently on the market.
If you want to practice the strategy to a competive game, you can even whip that out and play as all players. For the sake of this article, I’ll be going over games that were made for playing solo, although many of them you can play cooperative as well.
Check out my list of some of the best single player board games below.
1. GLOOMHAVEN – SOLO BOARD GAME
Gloomhaven is a board game made for 1-4 players. However, you don’t need others to play through the game. Therefore, it is a game that you can play perfectly on your own, making it into the category of ‘one player board games.’ As a single player, you have your own set of skills and quests of exploration throughout the game board that you must use to progress further into the game.
This is a board game that contains a persistent and changing world. You may find yourself completing missions of the game during different game sessions. Meaning, you may need to take breaks and come back to the game occasionally. This game can fall into the “choose your own adventure” category, as players will make decisions that will determine how the story continues. All outcomes can differ each time you play.
You must navigate through a medieval town completing different objectives and side missions. There are opportunities to level up your character as you complete different quests. During your playthrough, scenarios with popup where you will have to make important decisions to progress further in your game.
This is the perfect game to set up and come back to at your own leisure, as it can be played over many different game sessions. It’s like playing a role playing video game, where you can play for a few hours and then take a break and come back to it later on.
Gloomhaven is a bit pricey, but in my opinion it’s completly worth it as replay ability is super high and the experience is extraudinary. Also, the game can last for a long period of time, making it a definite bang for your buck.
2. TERRAFORMING MARS
Terraforming Mars is a single player board game set in the 25th Century. Players must develop a ‘New World’ on Mars and make difficult choices in order to bring life to Mars. This game can be played with 1-5 players, but it is made perfectly for solo play as well.
As mankind begin to terraform the planet Mars, you must work as a large corporation and play project cards that will introduce plant or animal life to mars, build cities, or collect resources. Players keep track of their production and resources which go towards increasing your overall rating in your process to terraform mars.
Players acquire unique project cards (from over two hundred different ones) by buying them to their hand. The cards can give you immediate bonuses, as well as increasing your production of different resources. Many cards also have requirements and they become playable when the temperature, oxygen, or ocean coverage increases enough. You must find a balance between purchasing cards and playing them, as each action can be costly.
This is a great game to play as a single player and pass the time.
In an alternate reality, the world is in disarray in the midst of a war. In the board game Scythe, you must work to return the world to its former glories. This game is made for 1-5 players, but is also perfectly made to play solo.
This game takes place in the 1920s Europa. Players are tasked with regaining territories and earning the trust of civilians after the first great war. In this engine-building game, you must conquer territories, enlist new recruits, collect resources, gain villages, build structures, and more.
Scythe gives players complete control over their fate and hidden objectives. Upgrade actions to become more efficient and expand your territories to collect more resources. There is so much to do in this game!
This is one of my favorite games to play solo.
4. MAGE KNIGHT – SOLO BOARD GAME
In Mage Knight, players must battle to conquer cities and emerge victorious in this epic fantasy game. Mage Knight offers a highly unique gaming experience for solo gamers as players are set on a path of exploration and conquest. It is the perfect solo board game for lovers of epic adventures.
You must build your army, learn powerful spells and actions, explore caves and dungeons, and conquer powerful cities. Become immersed in the Mage Knight universe in this self-contained gaming experience. As a Mage Knight, you must upgrade your character and fight off monsters in order to progress further through the game.
You will certainly have fun playing Mage Knight as a solo board gamer. Gameplay lasts for about three or more hours so this is the perfect game to setup and come back to at your own leisure.
Mage Knight is a must have! Get your copy of Mage Knight by clicking here!
5. ROBINSON CRUSOE: ADVENTURES OF THE CURSED ISLAND
Based off the famous book by Daniel Defoe, you are stranded on an island alone and must fight for your own survival. Your main goals are to protect yourself from hazardous weather conditions, build a shelter, find food, and fight off the island’s predators.
Fully immerse yourself in Robinson Crusoe: Adventures of the Cursed Island as you must strategically plan each choice you make, as it can affect you in the long term.
This game is so much fun to play as a single player. Gameplay is pretty short, ranging from about one to two hours, so you may find yourself wanting to play multiple rounds.
It’s survival of the fittest! Get your copy of Robinson Crusoe: Adventures of the Cursed Island by clicking here!
6. ARKHAM HORROR: THE CARD GAME
If you love adventure and horror, then the card game ‘Arkham Horror’ may be the perfect game for you. This single player game puts you as the head investigator of evil throughout the Arkham City.
As the investigator, you have specific strengths and weakness and must use your abilities to gather clues and solve mysteries. Every task and mystery you solve allows you to gain experience points which you can use to upgrade your character and deck.
The horror aspect of this game introduces strange creatures and haunted houses into your gaming experience. This game has also come out with different expansions that help to make the game more thrilling.
If you have an itch for horror and adventure, then you should definitely get a copy of Arkham Horror: The Card Game. To get your copy today, click here!
MORE TO COME ON SINGLE PLAYER BOARD GAMES
As we play more solo player board games, we will share our insight. Just know that even if you are playing board games alone, you are not alone. The Game Night Gods are here to answer any questions you have and to help you through your board gaming journey.
In conclusion, there are so many reasons as to why you may want or need to play single player board games. Don’t fear! There are board games that are strictly made for solo players and more companies are producing board games strictly for solo play.
I hope you enjoyed this article! If you have any questions or feedback, please leave a comment below! Don’t forget to share this article with your board gaming friends. Happy Gaming!
If you are interested in purchasing a copy of each game for yourself, here are the links again of all of the solo board games mentioned in this article to purchase them on Amazon!
- Terraforming Mars
- Mage Knight
- Robinson Crusoe: Adventures of the Cursed Island
- Arkham Horror: The Card Game
Check out more board game suggestions and game night tips over on our blog!