Five Games for Christmas Day

Well, it’s almost here. This Friday is Christmas day, and gamers all over the world will be together with family and loved ones to celebrate the holiday. And, of course, when there are groups of people gathered together there’s usually an opportunity for a game or two!

Now any gamer worth their salt won’t let an opportunity like this pass them by, so let’s take a look at a few titles which might fit almost any scenario. These games will all be easy to teach and can hopefully scratch the itch of the most veteran of gamers!


King of Tokyo

King of TokyoIf you’re getting together with a group that includes the pre-teen or teenage group, King of Tokyo is a pretty safe bet. After all, nothing says Christmas more than giant monsters beating the snot out of each other! This is a good one for the post-present, pre-dinner time when the younger kids might already be a little more rambunctious. Good for any kid from about 8 or so up, the rules are easy to explain and the gameplay is quick – the perfect recipe.

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codenamesThis one has been taking the gaming world by storm lately, and it’s easy to see why. Quick to learn, fun to play, and quite hilarious, Codenames will make almost everyone want to take a turn as Spymaster. If you’ve got a larger group getting together, say six or more, you’ll find that this one is going to occupy quite a bit of your time as everyone gets their turn. Bring this out after dinner has settled and keep people from falling asleep!

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Between Two Cities

btcGot one of those slightly larger groups which might be interested in something a little more involved than monster fighting? Well, Between Two Cities might be the one for you! This one will probably become one of the more well thought of gateway games, so it’s no surprise that it’s on our list. After you’ve played this one a few times, you’ll be able to explain it in about five minutes, and it’ll only take about 30 to play. Crack this one out while you’re all sitting around thinking about having another slice of pie.

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splendor_tmbWant to wind down the evening with a nice quiet game? Well, bring Splendor to the table and you’ll have a solid game to close the festivities out with. A simple game that still has some strategy to it, Splendor will draw people in with the wonderful gem tokens and colorful cards. It’ll only take you a couple minutes to explain to someone, so getting into the game should be a breeze. Heck, you could even have a Splendor tournament where the loser gets Aunt Sally’s fruitcake leftovers.

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Ticket to Ride

ttrncLet’s say you’ve got a smaller gathering of people will some time to kill this weekend. There are few games that are better to crack out than Ticket to Ride. You’ve got a time-tested classic which anyone will be able to pick up, and it’s going to take about 90 minutes if you’ve got newer people playing. This one will work well for almost any age, and I’ve successfully taught this game to my older relatives at Christmas. Bonus points are available if you’re able to play the Nordic Countries map – thematic points all around!

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