Relationships can be tricky. They’re a fine balance between wanting to do everything together and having your own personal interests. Board games can be an excellent way for a couple to spend time together. However, they do carry with them the burden of competition. It can be a strain on any relationship to be fighting over resources, turn order, and points, even if it’s all in good fun. First dates are different than relationships. Everyone is putting their best foot forward and trying to impress. Sure, you could go to a movie or dinner, but playing games can be an excellent first date activity. It immediately creates a focus to your energies and can take off a lot of the pressure of making conversation.
For this week’s CMON Feature Friday, we decided to take a look at some of the benefits to gaming on dates and some games that work well one-on-one.
The first thing to consider when planning a first date game night is that not every guy or gal is going to be a fan. Float the idea out there first before investing too much time in finding the perfect titles. If your date is interested in the idea of gaming as an activity, gage their experience level. You may not want to bring Blood Rage to the table if the last game they played was Candyland. Give them a few options, so that if they’re not into your first pick, you have somewhere to go from there. Lastly, make sure you’re able to teach the rules of the game fairly well. It’ll just make the date go smoother if you (at least appear to) know what you’re doing.
Here are a few suggestions for games that might work well on a date:
On a first date, you might not be ready for high stakes competition. Opting for a cooperative title allows you to get your game on without generating negative feelings. In The Grizzled, you’ll work together to survive the trials of war, offering support to one another and taking hard knock for the team. This can be a tough game to win, so consider playing with The Grizzled: At Your Orders expansion, which allows you to set the difficulty level. Its short play time and bonding gameplay make for a good first date. You may not get out of the war alive, but you’ll have a great story to tell. #loveisabattlefield
If you want to go the competitive route, but want to keep things low stakes, consider Sherlook. You play detectives examining two nearly identical crime scene photos, trying to identify how many differences there are between them. Sherlook is silly, fast, and fun! You will have a great time scanning the images, racing to outdo your opponent. Sherlook plays with the way we perceive things in an interesting way, and while you might be competing, it’s hard to become too emotionally invested in winning. It’s just a laugh riot. Sherlook plays very quickly too, so you’ll be able to try a few rounds if it’s a hit. Sherlook will be in your FLGS on July 28. #lovepolice
If you want to dazzle a potential romantic partner with a whimsical, visually stunning game, Potion Explosion is a really safe bet. You play students completing your final exams at a magical school. The only thing standing in your way of graduation is your potions test. You pull ingredient marbles from the slide dispenser and attempt to make explosions by having the same ingredients smash into each other. With the marbles you gain on a turn, you complete potions that will earn you points and special powers. There is a lot of strategy to the game, but the rules are really easy to pick up. For some extra excitement, you can add the Potion Explosion: The Fifth Ingredient expansion available July 28. It includes new potions, variable rules, and a new wild ingredient: Ghost Ectoplasm. #magiclove
Rum and Bones: Second Tide
If you think your date is the type of person that could enjoy, or even revel in, and intense head-to-head minis game on the high seas, then Rum and Bones: Second Tide is definitely the title for you. Each player leads a crew of Deckhands and Heroes in an attempt to board their opponent’s ship and destroy target objectives. This game lasts anywhere from 60-90 minutes, so at least you know your date will last that long. Sometimes, some good old competition is just the thing you need to know what kind of relationship you’re getting into. Setting the mood with some rum-based beverages can’t hurt things either. If you can spend some time beating up on each other’s minis and come out of it still laughing, you might have a keeper on your hands. #seaoflove
These are just a few suggestions of games that might work in a first date setting. We’d love to hear stories of your first date gaming successes or just about what you like to lay with your significant other. Reach out to us on Facebook and Twitter using the hashtag #CMONFeatureFriday to share your story.