Coffee shops and public spaces, littered with the doe eyed faces and blushing smiles from the tips of Cupid’s arrows. Post 14 February, St Valentine has coupled together numerous beautiful souls, corks popping to commence newly launched relationships as their “love boats” disembark the port destined for glorious romance. At Cardboard Quest, we understand EVERYTHING in relation to games, and aren’t relationships really just a game?
GREAT, we knew you’d see things our way! Now we’ll attempt to explain the stages you can expect your blossoming relationship to go through, all in next-gen hi-def Board-Game-Vision (patent pending).
Meeting / Mingling – Rococo
The start of any relationship involves a fair amount of socialising – dancing, entertaining, wining & dining. Of course to be spotted by your future romantic interest, you’ll need to make a distinctive first impression and how better to do so than to be seen wearing the latest fashionable attire at the hottest event of the decade?
Rococo (Rokoko) has players competing to host the most lavish ball. You’ll need to score the most victory points by renting out dresses and coats, setting the mood for romance. How? By recruiting the right musicians positioned to provide sultry ambiance inside the palace walls and decorating the venue tastefully. To create the perfect start to your relationship, you’ll need to have the right resources on hand to plan the perfect evening, culminating in bonus points if you manage to get your date up to see the fireworks display at the end of the game. With a unique theme of lavish opulence, it’s no surprise that Rococo was nominated for the 2014 Kennerspiel Award and mark the perfect start to any budding romance.
Wine / Romance / Travelling – Viticulture
Stonemaier Games’ Viticulture perfectly bottles the themes and challenges of dating life with your romantic flame.
Jamey Stegmaier and Alan Stone have designed an elegant worker placement game all about producing wine in rural Tuscany. You’ll need to effectively use workers throughout the year to grow vineyards, build structures, mature wine and fulfill orders to become the leading wine maker in all of Italy.
Much like dating, each turn you’ll choose who will take the initiative to plan your experiences throughout the year. You’ll need to start planting early in order for the relationship to bear fruit and you’ll also need to find out what requirements that relationship needs to ripen and be ready for harvest. You’ll need to generate income and have a little bit of luck on the way from some friends, but by the end you’ll have a functional production cycle that will see you through the rough times.
You’ll also find that the romance of Tuscany, a great bottle of Shiraz and little bit of European strategy will set the mood perfectly for a great date night.
When all that Glistens is Gold – Splendor
In many relationships, there will come a time when one of you will play your cards right, push all your chips to the center of the table and create the perfect combination of shiny elements together to commit for the long haul.
In Splendor, players are all jewel merchants trying to create a mining empire that generates enough prestige to attract the nobles to your doors and vie for an exclusive relationship. You’ll do this by amassing the base level gems to begin with and then consistently building up these assets, level by level, in order to generate enough resources that carry over each turn to catch the eye of the nobles.
Splendor is a game about looking to the future and consistently making the right decisions, which actions to take each turn and amassing consistent success in the long term plays.
Building a life together – Suburbia
In Suburbia, much like newlyweds, you’ll need to plan extensively for the long run, balancing the needs of those that rely on you with ensuring your make smart financial decisions, keeping your income increasing to support the ever evolving costs.
To plan a successful metropolis, players will need to take care of all of their cities needs through the development of business, residential, industrial and civic properties all laid out so that each provides the maximum benefit while minimizing the detriment that comes from their placement. Focus too much on business and industrial developments, and your residences and population will not grow, but focus too much on Civic and Residential without the finances and your city’s reputation will never recover.
Suburbia summarizes the necessity for long-term planning, whilst dealing with the unforeseen hiccups that come along better than many board games. There are also group goals that players are all wanting to achieve as well as balancing the personal goals that one often has throughout their development.
For those sinking times: Forbidden Island
Now we really could’ve gone with the easy laughs here with “Patchwork” for those difficult times, but we like to think we’re better than that here at Cardboard Quest. Instead let’s discuss Forbidden Island – not that of the Mills and Boon variety best not be discussed on a family friendly website, bur rather the game that requires players to work together to avoid an unpleasant drowning.
Matt Leacock probably has one of the most successful marriages, or has one of those relationships where he’s constantly needing a medium to work through issues. Either way, we love the cooperative games that he has brought to the hobby and the “Forbidden” series requires players to work together in order for all of them to make it to safety.
No person is an Island, so you’ll need to make use of each of your talents in order to find the items you need, combine them and get yourselves onto the same square in order to make it safely off the island before the raging waves engulf the island, causing you both to be swept away.
So there you have it, your the stages of your relationship as a board game collection. It’s also handy to note that as well as being metaphorically accurate, these are all fantastic games that you can play with your significant other to enjoy your time together. And always remember: the couple that games together…
…gets to experience the joys of exploring lost cities, trading silks and spices in Jaipur and farming together in the Fields of Arle from the comfort of their home.
What have we missed? Have a suggestion for something that mirrors your dating escapades more accurately? Last Night on Earth perhaps? Let us know!