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The Best Board Games To Play In 2021: Board Games For Adults, Families, And 2 Players

From Pandemic Legacy to Wingspan, here are the best board games and card games we've played and recommend.


It goes without saying that we love video games here at GameSpot. They draw you into their expansive worlds with incredible vistas, swelling orchestral scores, and immersive gameplay. But we also have a huge appreciation for board games, which offer a different kind of immersion. Whether you're working toward a common goal with a group of friends or employing cloak-and-dagger strategies against every other player at the table, board games have a way of sucking you into their worlds with their gorgeous artwork, vivid writing, and enticing role-playing. In fact, many of the best board games feature campaigns that must be played over several sessions, giving each playthrough a sense of progression and each group a feeling of camaraderie. And while the COVID-19 pandemic can make getting together for a physical board game night difficult if you don't already live with a group of people, many of the best board games can be played digitally through versions on Steam or Tabletop Simulator.

Whether you're taking on a multi-session strategy campaign, want to embark on an adventure with some great role-playing games, or having a lighthearted family game night, there's nothing quite like gathering around a table with friends or family to break out a new board game or card game. If you're new to tabletop games, you may not realize just how vast the world of board games is, spanning every genre from horror and military strategy to fantasy and even romantic comedy. Whether you're playing with people who don't play board games regularly or tabletop pros, we've got a pick for the best board game for you.

To help you discover some new board games for your collection outside of Trivial Pursuit and Monopoly, we've rounded up some of the best board games that have been played and recommended by our resident tabletop enthusiasts. Looking for an easy-to-learn party game, a German-style board game, a role-playing game, a game that requires some hand-eye coordination, or a heftier strategy game? No matter what you're in the mood for, we're sure you'll find a board game to love on this list.

Quick look: The best board games to play in 2021

As mentioned earlier, some games are available as official DLC for the Steam game Tabletop Simulator, which is a fantastic way of playing board games online with friends. Some of the best board games have official digital versions available on Steam and other platforms as well.

If you're looking for some single-player or co-op video game suggestions instead, check out our lists for the best Switch games, best PS4 games, and best Xbox One games. We also have guides to the best Switch games for kids if you have little ones, the best fitness games for staying active indoors, and the biggest video games launching in 2021.

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