Grab a partner and get ready for some great 2-player games!
While there is nothing we love more than gathering a group of friends or family for a game night, sometimes that’s just not in the cards. In these times of social distancing, two-player games are an ideal choice when it’s just you and your spouse, sibling, child, roommate, or parent. While many games can accommodate a wide variety of player counts, some are made specifically for two players—or play best at that count. Below are some of our favorite options for a two-player gaming session.
The Fox in the Forest - Chances are you have played a tricking taking game in the past: Hearts, Euchre, and Spades are all classic examples. Fox in the Forest is a two-player trick taking game where you are trying to find that sweet spot of tricks won. Players will alternate playing cards and claiming tricks, hoping to win many, but not too many. If you get too greedy and claim too many ticks, you will actually lose points!
Klask - Klask is one of those games that once you play it, it is hard not to want to try it again. Players will be moving magnets under the game board to control their playing piece, with the object of the game being to knock a small ball into your opponent’s goal. Sounds simple right? Don’t be so sure as there are plenty of wrinkles to keep things interesting, such as three small magnets in the middle of the board that will attract to your playing piece if you get too close. If you are unlucky enough to get stuck with all three of those, then it’s a free point for your opponent!
Exit The Game or Unlock! - If you have never tried an escape room before, it’s definitely a unique experience. You are locked in a room with a series of puzzles and clues to uncover and you have 60 minutes to open the exit door. Escape room board games seek to recreate this experience on your tabletop using timers, cards, and sometimes a digital app. While these games can accommodate more than 2 players, we have found that they work great at this player count because it eliminates any issues with trying to share the components with a ticking timer. If you are looking to exercise those mental muscles, give one of these a try.
Patchwork - This tile-laying board game will have you trying to complete a quilt by fitting Tetris-shaped pieces on your board. Each round you’ll need to use your limited supply of buttons and time to buy a new shape, and then figure out how best to position it on your board. You’ll have to be clever, as any empty spaces on your board at the end of the game will lose you victory points. Patchwork is easy to learn and offers engaging gameplay with minimal downtime.
Onitama - If you are a fan of abstract strategy games (Chess, Checkers) then Onitama will be right in your wheelhouse. This game of perfect information is played out on a 5x5 grid with each player controlling five pawns. The interesting part of the game comes from the five movement cards used. Each player starts with two of the cards, and after using one, it’s swapped out with the fifth card. Players will be rotating cards between them ensuring no player has an unfair advantage. The game ends if you can capture your opponent’s main pawn or get yours onto their throne space.
Jaipur - This classic two-player game is a nice blend of strategy and risk. On your turn you have to either take cards or sell cards. Cards can be sold as sets for a matching number of victory point chips with larger sets offering bonus payouts. Yet wait too long and your opponent might snatch up the high victory points chips before you do, requiring players to have to decide how long to wait before cashing in their cards. Jaipur is easy to learn and quick to get to the table, all the while offering tons of hard choices to keep you coming back for more!
What are some of your favorite 2-player games?