19 Board Games You Didn’t Know You Should Be Playing With Buddies

Whether you’re planning a get-together with the fam bam or your colleagues, board games are almost always the order of business. However, instead of the usual Monopoly, Scrabble or Risk, we’ve scoured Shopee to unearth some interesting board games you probably didn’t know about but should.

From strategy games that’ll get your minds thinking to brainless party games that’ll help you relax your minds, there’s definitely something in this list of board games that you should be picking up to play with your cousins during this Hari Raya. Trust us, you won’t want to miss the party with these best board games lying around.

1. Pandemic


If you’re not the competitive sort and just want to test your team-building capabilities, Pandemic is one of the best board games for you. In this board game, each player has a distinct role with special abilities and they must work together to save the world from an infectious disease.

When it’s your turn, you can use up to four actions to move between cities to treat the infected, discover a cure or build a research station. One deck of cards will provide you with these abilities. But, here’s the catch – sprinkled throughout this deck are Epidemic! cards that accelerate and intensify the diseases’ activity. It can also be used as a 2 player game since there are restrictions this Raya!

Ps….. There is also a second separate deck of cards, that are able to control the spread of infections.

Players: 2 to 4
Playing Time: 45 minutes

2. Bang!

Davinci Games Bang


Do you have fans of the wild wild west coming over this Hari Raya? Then take out Bang!, one of the very few and best board games that recreates an old-fashioned shoot-out. Each player will be assigned a random character to determine their special abilities and a role that’ll determine their end goal. There are four different roles, each with a unique victory condition:

  • Sheriff – Kill all outlaws and the renegade
  • Deputy – Protect the sheriff and kill any outlaws
  • Outlaw – Kill the sheriff
  • Renegade – Be the last person standing

Only the Sheriff’s role is known to all. The other players need to guess each other’s roles. Out of the 22 different cards in the draw deck, there are cards like “BANG!” and “MISSED!” that allows you to shoot at another player or dodge the shot respectively. Other cards in the deck can help provide temporary boosts while in play.

Players: 4 to 7 (Expansion pack available)
Playing Time: 20 to 40 minutes

3. Citadels



For fantasy lovers, this is one of the best board games that’s bound to impress your uncles and aunties this Hari Raya. In Citadels, players take on new roles every round to represent characters they hire in order to acquire gold and construct buildings. 

Players all start with the same number of building cards in their hands. At the start of each round, the player who was “King” the previous round discards one of the eight character cards at random, chooses one, and passes the cards to the next player. Each character possesses a special ability and the usefulness depends on the situation. At each turn, you can earn gold and play your action. The entire game ends at the close of a round when a player constructs his/her eighth building. Players will then tally their points and the player with the highest score wins.

Players: 2 to 8
Playing Time: 20 to 60 minutes

4. The Resistance: Avalon

The Resistance Avalon


You might have heard of The Resistance, a party game of social deduction. The Resistance: Avalon is basically a spin-off of the former that challenges players to deduce the identities of other players. This game has taken over Singaporeans by storm during circuit breaker, deeming it one of the best board games. It’s time to whip out this game to impress your family this Hari Raya!

In The Resistance: Avalon, the Good is represented by Arthur, while the Evil is represented by Mordred. Though the latter might be few in numbers, they have knowledge of each other. There is one individual that stands out – the Merlin – who knows the Evil. However, this player can only speak in riddles. The game ends when at least three out of five missions succeed or fail. The Good, will automatically win when three out of five missions succeed, and conversely, the Evil will automatically win when three out of five missions fail.

Players: 5 to 10
Playing Time: 30 minutes

5. Splendor


Splendor Game


As one of the best chip-collecting and card development board games, Splendor players act as merchants trying to buy gem mines, means of transportation and shops, so that they can acquire the most prestige points.

On each player’s turn (it acts as a 2 player game too) , you can choose to either collect chips (gems), or buy and build a card, or reserve one card. Gems come in the forms of chips and developments come in the forms of cards. In order to buy a card, you have to pay for its price in chips. These cards also increase your wealth as they provide you with a permanent gem bonus. A player has to reach 15 prestige points in order to win the game.

Players: 2 to 4
Playing Time: 30 minutes

6. 7 Wonders


7 Wonders

In 7 Wonders, each player is the leader of one of the 7 great cities of the Ancient World. Your task is to gather resources, develop commercial routes and affirm military supremacy. The idea is to build your city and construct an architectural wonder that will transcend future times.

The entire game lasts three ages, In each age, each player receives seven cards from a deck. You are required to choose one of those cards and pass the remaining cards to the next player. Players reveal their cards at the same time and interact with other players in various ways. Players have individual boards with special powers and they can organise their cards. Each player then chooses another card from the same deck. This process repeats until each player has six cards in play from that age. 

Players: 2 to 7
Playing Time: 30 minutes

7. One Night: Ultimate Werewolf

One Night Ultimate Werewolf

When you’re itching for a fast-paced game to get your adrenaline rushing, One Night: Ultimate Werewolf should do the trick. One of the most well sought after and best board game for you and your cousins during family gatherings (perhaps this Raya)! Each player gets a different role which has a special ability. In the course of the ‘night’ and the next ‘morning’, all the players will have to decide who among them is the “Werewolf”.

There are a dozen different characters, each with a special ability. This is one of the rare board games that are so fast and engaging that you’ll want to play it again. We assure you – no two games will ever be the same!

Players: 3 to 10
Playing Time: 10 minutes

8. The Quacks of Quedlinburg


Quacks of Quedlinburg


As a charlatan or quack doctors, you are given the opportunity to create your own secret brew in one of the best board games – The Quacks of Quedlinburg.

During each round, each player can simultaneously draw chips and add them into their secret brew. The higher the face value of the drawn chip, the further it is placed in the swirling pattern. You can try to push your luck as far as you can go, but if you accidentally add too much, your pot can explode. At the end of each round, players gain victory points and coins. The player with the most victory points at the end of nine rounds wins the game!

Players: 2 to 4
Playing Time: 45 minutes

9. Exploding Kittens


If you love Russian Roulette, you’ll adore Exploding Kittens! The game is simple. Players take turns drawing cards from a deck until someone draws an exploding kitten. The game continues until one player remains.

To make things interesting, the deck is also made up of cards that can allow you to avoid exploding by peeking at the cards, forcing your opponent to draw multiple cards, re-shuffling the deck or even just saying no! This is no childplay if you’re playing with your friends this Hari Raya because the game will get more and more intense with each card you draw and as the deck becomes smaller!

Players: 2 to 5
Playing Time: 15 minutes

10. Betrayal at House on the Hill

Betrayal At House On The Hill

Betrayal at House on the Hill is a tile game that allows players to build their own haunted house room by room and floor by floor. It is a game that rapidly builds suspense and thrill as players explore a haunted mansion initially as a team. This is the best board games for your aunties and uncles who love telling ghost stories on Hari Raya!

However, in the course of the game, one of the players will betray the rest of the party. Following a story, the innocent players must defeat the “Betrayer” in their midst by performing certain actions. At the same time, the “Betrayer” also has his/her own motives. The game ends when either the “Betrayer” or the innocent players succeed in their missions.

Players: 3 to 6
Playing Time: 60 minutes

11. Off Track! Game

Off Track! Game


In Off Track! you can be one of the three randomly selected characters. Depending on your role as an Office Lady, a School Boy, you will have to work with your team to either build a track route to your specific destination. If you’re a Disruptor, your main goal is to stop both teams from reaching their desired destinations.

At the start, each player will pick a character card at random and start by drawing cards from the draw pile. The Destination Cards are placed face down at random at the centre of the Map. Home Cards are placed face up at the four corners of the Map. At your turn, you are allowed to play any one of the following actions:

  1. Place 1 Track card on the map.
  2. Play 1 Action card on other players.
  3. Play 1 Action card on yourself.
  4. Play 1 Action card on the Map.
  5. Discard up to 2 cards face down and take back the same number of cards that you discarded.

Players can keep playing until the Draw Pile and cards in hand run out. If the Office Ladies or School Boys have not reached their Destination by then, Disruptors win!

Players: 3 to 9
Playing Time: 20 to 45 minutes

12. Istanbul



If you’re a fan of strategy games, you’ll love Istanbul. In this game, you lead a group of one merchant and four assistants through 16 locations in the bazaar. At each such location, you can carry out a specific action to acquire goods. When you choose to take an action, you must move your merchant and an assistant there, then leave the assistant behind. If you want to use that assistant again, your merchant must return to that exact location to pick him up. The game ends when a merchant has collected five rubies in his wheelbarrow and all players have completed the round.

To add to the longevity of the game, there are various ways in which the bazaar can be built, depending on the difficulty level. At the easiest, merchants can easily pick their assistants up. At the hardest, merchants will find it a challenge to pick their assistants up.

Players: 2 to 5
Playing Time: 40 to 60 minutes

13. Codenames



One of the best board games of the decade, Codenames. Here’s a team game you can play with your family this Hari Raya that would put your wits to the test. In Codenames, two teams will compete with each other to see who can make contact with all their agents first. 

The team leaders, also known as Spymasters, are given a card that shows the location of the red or blue agents, a beige innocent bystander or the deadly assassin. They will give one-word clues that can point to multiple words on the board. Your team wins when all your agents are marked on the board while avoiding the deadly assassins.

Players: 2 to 8
Playing Time: 15 minutes

14. Secret Hilter


Introducing A New Game Of Wits Secret Hitler is a social deduction game for people about finding and stopping the Secret Hitler. Players are secretly divided into two teams: the Liberals, who have a majority, and the Fascists, who are hidden to everyone but each other. If the Liberals can learn to trust each other, they have enough votes to control the elections and save the day. But the Fascists will say whatever it takes to get elected, advance their agenda, and win the game.

Players: 5 to 10
Playing Time: 45 to 60 minutes

15. Sheriff of Nottingham



In Sheriff of Nottingham, players take turns playing the Sheriff, looking for contraband goods, and the Merchants trying to stock their Stall with the best goods. The Sheriff can inspect any bag they want, but they must be careful, as they’ll have to pay a penalty if they find the Merchants were telling the truth. This new edition includes updated rules, as well as expansions such as the 6th Merchant, Black Market, and Sheriff’s Deputies. Do you have what it takes to be seen as an honest merchant?

Will you make a deal with the Sheriff to let you in? Or will you persuade the Sheriff to target another player while you quietly slip by the gate? It’s time to look out for the Sheriff of Nottingham!

Players: 3 to 6
Playing Time: 60 minutes

16. Wingspan 



Know of any uncles who are bird enthusiats? It’s time to wow them this Hari Raya. Wingspan is a competitive bird-collection, engine-building Game. You are bird enthusiasts researchers, bird watchers, ornithologists, and collectors seeking to discover and attract the best birds to your aviary. Each bird extends a chain of powerful combinations in one of your habitats (actions). These habitats focus on several key aspects of growth: gain food tokens via custom dice in a birdfeeder dice tower.

This game allows you to, lay eggs using egg miniatures in a variety of colours and draw from hundreds of unique bird cards!  Winner is determined on who has  the most points accumulated from birds, bonus cards, end-of-round goals, eggs, cached food, and tucked birds. This just might be the best board game for bird enthusiasts (it works as a 2 player game too)!

Players: 1 to 5
Playing Time: 60 minutes

17. Root: The Marauder Expansion 



Lord of the Hundreds is both charismatic and terrifying. He rules over a vast horde of warriors who recently arrived at the woodland and is interested only in its domination. To help speed his conquest, he lights massive fires which can spread throughout the woods and destroy the buildings of other factions. The Lord also interacts with crafted items, which he can plunder from players. These items increase his strength, but also cause him to develop an increasingly fearsome monomania. Promises a fun time with your buds, be it competitive or fun play!

Players: 2 to 5
Playing Time: 60 to 90 minutes

18. Monopoly Super Electronic Banking



Hands down, the best board game for family and friends at gatherings. The Monopoly Super Electronic Banking Ultimate Rewards board game features an all in one electronic banking unit, and amps up the excitement with unique rewards!

Each player has a bank card that will earn them different rewards for gameplay: roll a certain number, land on a certain space, or purchase a particular property. Players can also choose to fly to any property on the board, and force another player into trading one of their coveted properties. There is no paper money in this game — the cards and banking unit track each player’s cash. It’s an exciting game as players buy properties, collect rent – and get rewarded for it! And if you’re up for more interesting versions of this OG board game, give Mandai Monopoly (available on Mandai Wildlife Reserve) a go!

Players: 2 to 4
Playing Time: 20 to 180 minutes

19. The Singaporean Dream: The New Normal 



It’s time to ruin more relationships! The Singaporean Dream by SGAG is back with an all-new expansion, this time with more players and better ways to sabo your friends! The best card game with a local twist which you can play with your family this Hari Raya!

Look out for the New Personality Card: Safe Distancing Officer and New Dream Cards: Find a vaccine, Travel ban lifted, Gatherings above 5! It’s time to ramp the fun up this Hari Raya with the best card game ever!

Players: 3 to 9
Playing Time: 20 to 25 minutes