There Ain't No Sheep for the Wicked, and Brick Don't Grow on Trees!
Check out these great introductory board and card games!
Whether you were introduced by friends, picked up a rulebook at a local bookstore, or born into a family of gamers, every gamer starts somewhere!
If you love Pathfinder and other roleplaying games, chances are you have a fair share of board and card games in your tabletop arsenal as well. But, for players who haven't made the leap into this genre, or if you're looking to introduce friends or family to gaming, we've got a bunch of great suggestions to get you started!
Intro board games have expanded in the last few years beyond classics like Catan and Ticket to Ride (which are still classics in their own right), or other collection staples such as Dominion, Dixit, Tsuro, and Carcassonne. From the co-creator of the critically-acclaimed, but not quite introductory game Dead of Winter, comes Heroes & Tricks, a great game that checks all the right boxes: easy to learn, quick to play, and a whole lot of fun! Heroes & Tricks takes a unique approach to standard trick-taking card games. Players place one of their cards—which are similar to standard playing cards with a few variations—into a specially designed card box and pass it to the next player. The players can only see the color and suit of played cards, through a cutout in the card box. The player who matches the highest suit, highest number, or highest gear card wins the trick.
Codenames, and Codenames: Pictures have quickly become the go-to party game for new and veteran board gamers alike. In Codenames, two teams compete to see who can make contact with all of their agents first. Spymasters give one-word clues that can point to multiple words on the board. Their teammates try to guess words of the right color while avoiding those that belong to the opposing team, and everyone wants to avoid the assassin.
Short on time? Fast-paced card games like Machi Koro or Sushi Go! are great quick and easy options for new and seasoned gamers alike. In Machi Koro, you'll compete to build the perfect city by building a series of landmarks, but you gotta be quick and get there before the other players. Sushi Go! puts players in a sushi restaurant to collect their favorite types of sushi, sashimi, and desserts before other players (and, if you have more gamers at the table, consider Sushi Go Party!, which expands your culinary options).
These are just a few out of many options of great introductory board games—there are many, many more titles like 7 Wonders, Dice City, Hanabi, King of Tokyo and King of New York, Pandemic, and Small World. You can also find more gaming gems in the Golem Sale & Clearance, and now would be a great time to use the rain17 discount code (for 10% a paizo.com order) to start or expand your collection.
Do you have a favorite intro-game that isn't listed here? Sound off in the discussion below!