When you and your partner are looking for new and fun ways to connect or just pass the time, games are a great option, but trying to choose the best board games for couples can be daunting. After all, when you search the internet for two-player games, you get dozens and dozens of results. (Fun fact: This is probably because the board game market has grown immensely in the past several years. Yep, game night is making a comeback.)
With all the options, it can be hard to know which games are worth checking out and which ones you should pass on, but here's the upside: The plethora of options means that there really is something for everyone. From strategy to trivia to games that require you to come up with the most creative and hilarious responses, I've included options on this list for every palate. There are even some updated throwbacks, like a Game of Thrones-themed Monopoly that will simultaneously transport you back to your childhood and Westeros.
So snag your partner and pull a couple chairs up for my look at the best board games for couples to play.
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1. A Game That Will Make Your Brain Cells Fire On All Cylinders
Riddles, brain teasers, and trivia: Wit's End will give you a mental workout. To move ahead on the board, you'll draw a card and attempt to answer a series of questions correctly. Each card has four categories: brain teasers, odd one out (i.e., picking out what doesn't belong), sequence (i.e., putting things in the right order), or a wild card category.
With Wit's End, you may not get all of the questions right, but reviewers consistently point out that they feel as if they learned something after each round. So if you're open to picking up some new knowledge during gameplay, this is the choice for you.
According to a player: "I gave this as a gift to a couple who wanted a game for two or more. We played it with them once. Super fun."
2. A Murder Mystery Game That Works With Alexa
Harkening back to the days of classic Hollywood noir cinema, St. Noire tasks you with solving a murder mystery and uncovering the killer before time runs out. And here's the really cool part: The game works in tandem with Alexa. The game features professional sound design and sound acting, and will take you through a collection of soundscapes, like seedy dive bars and late-night diners. There are multiple storylines and endings, so you can keep solving mystery after mystery.
According to a player: "One of the most impressive things about the game is the use of voice actors, so instead of Alexa’s voice, scenarios feature real actors, ambient scene sounds. The production quality of the sound was fantastic - the high quality of the box, board and cards was stunning and elevated the overall experience."
3. A Fast-Paced Word Game That Gets Your Creative Juices Flowing
This fast-paced word game is incredibly easy to learn, but it's still tons of fun. Here's how it works: You draw a card which will have a total of nine categories listed on it like "things your mom was right about," "hippie hobbies," or "names of cities." Then you roll the lettered die and have two minutes to think of an answer for each category that starts with the appointed letter — get your answers written down on a whiteboard in time and you'll get points.
According to a player: "This game was sooo much fun! Even with two people, we were laughing so much! Cant wait to play with a bigger group! Definitely would recommend!"
4. A Railroad Strategy Game That's Quickly Becoming A Classic
In this strategy board game, you collect train cards to build railroad routes in early 20th-century America, and your objective is to connect distant cities or even build a route that stretches across the country. But in order to build the longest railway, you'll have to elbow your partner out by blocking their progress, and trust me — things can get competitive (in a fun way). Although not necessary, you can use your Alexa device to help guide you through the game and add some cool sound effects while you're playing. This game is on its way to becoming a new classic and has garnered over 6,000 five-star ratings.
According to a player: "Great couple game/2 player game. Fun game for 2 or more players."
5. This Game Of Thrones Version Of Monopoly
Do you often find yourself wishing that winter would come again? This Game of Thrones version of Monopoly makes that wish come true, but with the added bonus of getting to play a classic board game. Choose from one of the six tokens that represent the great houses, and wheel and deal locations from the seven kingdoms while placing holdfasts and castles — instead of houses and hotels — on your properties. You'll totally dig the throne-shaped card holder, too.
According to a player: "This game is so much fun. Obviously it has all of the Game of Thrones elements that make it super cool, but the chance cards are absolutely savage and make Game play a ton of fun!"
6. A Sailing Game Where You Have To Fend Off Sea Monsters
In this game of chance and strategy, you're the captain of a ship navigating a treacherous sea, replete with dangerous sea monsters lurking below the surface as well as competing sailors. Your objective is to be the last captain standing, and you can achieve that by rolling the dice and moving your ship to (what appears to be) the safest tile option possible. The artwork on this game board is outstanding, so this is a great choice for any design-savvy players.
According to a player: "As another review or two mentioned (and I am grateful for those people), this is a GREAT choice for couples looking for games that can be played in a group of 2 with as much fun as a group of 4."
7. A Trivia Game That's Super Easy To Set Up
If you're looking for something you can pull out and play —without a lot of setup required — this simple trivia game is it. The game comes with more than 400 questions you ought to know the answers to like "Is starboard on the left or right side of a boat?" and "How do you say Japan in Japanese?" Unlike other trivia games, though, you don't accumulate points — you get points deducted for each wrong answer.
According to a player: "Rather fun. Good for Family, singles, couples."
8. A Oldie But A Goodie Word Game That Has Stood The Test Of Time
With all the new game options out there, it can be easy to overlook a tried-and-true option like Scrabble which has been around since the 1930s. In this classic game, you form words on the board with your letter tiles — and score more points for placing tiles on premium squares and using tricky letters like "Q." This deluxe edition kicks it up a notch with a wheeled game board and nonslip grips to keep the tiles in place. You can also check out the premium mahogany-finished version or this retro Scrabble edition based on the 1949 design.
According to a player: "The case is so convenient and will be great for trips and hotel rooms. Scrabble, in this case, is a must for couples who love the game, even when on vacation or business trips. Very well made and no worries about the box opening and letters getting lost."
9. A Delightfully Geeky Game Based On The Periodic Table Of The Elements
This unabashedly geeky game game is based on the periodic table of elements, and it's a great pick for any couple looking to pick up a little knowledge while having some fun. It's a strategy-based game that requires you to abide by the structure and function of the periodic table in order to move across the board. This one really exercises your brain muscle, so it's best for those who are ready to get down and dirty with science.
According to a player: "We really like this game! [...] I haven't thought about chemistry in quite a few years, so I was very rusty. The game does not require you to know chemistry to play, but I love how much chemistry my brain started picking up during our play."
10. This Old-School Game That Lets You Get Up Close & Personal
Yes, I am totally calling Twister a board game; it's just that in this case — the game board is on the floor, and you and your significant other are the game pieces. It's a great way to work a little physical movement into game night, and you're almost guaranteed to laugh when you both fall over. Plus, this updated version has a few tweaks, like being asked to put your leg in the air or even bark like a dog in order to stay in the game. There's no time like the present to channel the sleepovers of your youth.
According to a player: "It has all of the simplicity of the version we played as kids, but also a few additional twists that add laughs to the game. Rather than simple "left foot red" movements only, some spots call for putting a foot or hand in the air, which sometimes adds imbalance. There is also an additional set of commands that combine activities, "put your left food on red and bark like a dog."
11. A Classic Game That Will Clear Your Head & Make You Laugh
While it's definitely not a board game, there's nothing like a few rounds of Jenga with your significant other to take focus your concentration and have a few laughs. In case you're not unfamiliar, you stack the wooden blocks to build a tower, then one by one, you take turns removing one piece at a time until the whole thing collapses. It definitely requires your full attention, but it won't require as much thinking as a game of strategy or trivia. And although we all know that tower eventually will topple, it still somehow always comes as a shock and provokes some healthy, cathartic laughter — probably why this game is such a popular pick at bars.
According to a player: "My partner and I bought this in hopes to of widling away some quarantine boredom. It worked.Granted it’s just blocks of wood but the game is today’s version of Jax."
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