Today I am reviewing some of my new favourite board games that can be played in one hour or less (for two experienced players). While all of them are quick, each of them contains a satisfying amount of strategy. Nevertheless, they are all great entry level games as well!
You can find four others in my review from 2021 (Azul, Quacks of Quedlinburg, Splendor, Search for Planet X)!
Skyjo – 15 min
The rules could not be simpler: the fewer points the better. You take turns uncovering and swapping cards until one person has flipped over all their cards. It is a fantastic game for any player that you keep coming back to due to its straightforward, yet exciting game play. This is my go-to game for “just a quick one” when friends are over.
Verdict: often out of stock, so get it as soon as you can!
Subastral – 15min
The makers of Search for Planet X (see review here) have dreamt up another visually stunning game. This time you collect different types of ecosystems in an appealing card game to score you the most points according to a clever tally system. In particular, I like the mechanisms of the game as they give you a lot of options that are all beneficial.
Verdict: a great combination of strategy and relaxation.
7 Wonders Duel – 20 min
You might know the original “7 Wonders” game, a stunning multiplayer engine building game. 7 Wonders Duel takes all the exciting flavours of the original and turns them into a stand alone two-player variant. The rules are substantially different, yet the identity is retained. It is very quick to set up, learn (there is a “Watch it played” video), and enjoy. This game really achieves a fantastic balance between strategy and ease of play.
Verdict: ideal for two strategy players that just want a quick game.
Railroad Ink – 25 min
Connect railroad to railroads and highways to highways, that’s basically it! Equipped with cute dice and dry wipe markers you set out to construct an intricate web of roads and rails on your little map that will score you plenty of points in the end. You can easily add more players by purchasing additional boxes which makes it great for larger groups! Railroad Ink comes in different colours, each featuring an optional extension to the base game (e.g. the red box adds seas of lava) to keep you excited.
Verdict: great for board game enthusiasts and sceptics alike.
Tinners’ Trail – 45 min
This game got all the ingredients of a heavy euro game: auctions, different kinds of currencies, resources, even a fluctuating commodities market. Nevertheless, Tinners’ Trail is seamless to play. It has the right amount of strategy to be utterly satisfying, yet does not bog you down with cumbersome mechanics or overly complicated rules. The beautiful Cornish theme just adds to the whole experience!
Verdict: a true strategy gem without any of the hassle.