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Back When All of the Games Were Multiplayer and Came with Boards

Illustration for article titled Back When All of the Games Were Multiplayer and Came with Boards

Put down the controller and dig through the closet for the dusty remains of childhood memories courtesy of commenter Vlyke615, reminiscing about his favorite board games in today's Speak-Up on Kotaku.


I have a lot of fond memories as a kid growing up, and some of those moments were playing games…Board Games. I'm sure I'm not the only one that would love to see a board game brought back from the graveyard as a board game once more or even an App, Console download or PC playable. I'm talking about board games that were not commonly known. I tend to have more memories as a kid with board games than with video games. These three I am listing below are the ones I have the most time remembering when it comes to flash backs where my brother and I would play the ones below to death with either his friends and/or mine.

Scotland Yard – Think of the game "Hare & Hound" similarity. This as far as I know is a very rare game. The board is of London and you play as either Mr.X (Criminal) or the police. You each would take turns moving via taxi, bus or the underground (subway), or waterways (Mr. X Only). The Police are shown at all times but Mr.X was always hidden (only showing his/her locale ever 5th move). The object of course is for the Police to land on the same spot as Mr.X in a set amount of turns. Failed to do so and Mr. X wins. There would be 3-5 police on the board (depending on the players playing) and the players as the police had to talk it out as to how they would move their pieces (if they so choose), which made it easier for Mr. X to get away. However a two player game could be played where one person controlled three policemen making it more difficult for Mr.X.


Fireball Island – This was a fun one. The board was unlike the normal flat board games you saw. This one was an upraised board like a topography map. The object of this game was to reach the top to obtain the jewel while avoiding the fire spitting (marbles) idol at the top then head back down to the boat to escape the island. Sounds easy, but if you have the jewel, other players could steal it from you if they are lucky enough. The upraised board provided pathways for the marbles to roll down on towards the player(s) or to destroy the bridge.

This last one I would do anything to see again revived as an app, console download or PC playable.

Key to the Kingdom – This is a very complex yet fun game. You are stuck in the Kingdom full of monsters, traps and a Black Knight. You would start off with certain number of equipment that would help you along the way. There was also a Hazard book which explained what needed to be done when you came upon a certain hazard. You also had to defeat monsters in order to obtain either a piece of treasure or the key itself. The board is small but if you land in the whirlpool the board unfolds reveling a longer map full of more traps, hazards and monsters. The first person to obtain the key, one piece of treasure and leave the kingdom wins.

Video games are fun and I do have fond memories of them growing up, but as a kid none of them will ever trump times I had fun playing board games.


About Speak-Up on Kotaku: Our readers have a lot to say, and sometimes what they have to say has nothing to do with the stories we run. That's why we have a forum on Kotaku called Speak-Up. That's the place to post anecdotes, photos, game tips and hints, and anything you want to share with Kotaku at large. Every weekday we'll pull one of the best Speak-Up posts we can find and highlight it here.

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I have a lot of favourite board games, mostly because my social events usually involve them. My tabletop order of popularity is:

#1: Dungeons and Dragons. I know it's not a "board game" but it is a table top game! I'll always be a lifelong D&D and RPG fan. We avoid 4th Edition, but play older stuff like 1st. Ed. AD&D.

#2. Arkham Horror. My favourite true board game, because it emphasizes cooperation as well as being based on the works of H.P. Lovecraft.

#3. Clue. A classic, and one of the greats.

#4. Scrabble. Because I am a cunning Linguist.

#5. Carcassone. it's a bastard to tally up the scores, but I love this game.