Top 50 Fantasy Board Games for Adults
Roll the dice and prepare the cards: TOP 50 fantasy board games
In an era when digital technology is part of our everyday lives, talking about board games might seem retrograde. But what many people might not know is that the market of this kind of game has been growing between 25 and 40% a year during what Nick Meenachan, from the YouTube channel Board Game Brawl, called the “golden age of board games”.
The ICv2 estimated that, hobby board games yield profits of around $125 million in the U.S. and Canada. In 2016, Gen Con, a big event focused mostly on pen-and-paper, board, and card games, reunited around 500 exhibitors that presented new games to more than 200.000 visitors.
Board games have been gathering families and friends for many centuries and, even with the growing video game’s market, the passion around them hasn’t faded. Being a board game fan or not, you might enjoy the following article listing the 50 best fantasy board games:
Command a Hero to defeat the Darkness that is threatening to cover all land in this fully cooperative game. You will have to choose between five Heroes, each one with a unique deck of cards that gives the player freedom to impact the story in their own way. Through the actions of each player, the Boss Deck that controls the actions of the Darkness is activated, which allows all the players to control the impact it has on the game.
This is a fun cooperative game that will allow the players create their own stories.
Cooperate to win!
49) Star Wars: Rebellion
In Star Wars: Rebellion, you will choose your side to engage into the epic conflict between the Galactic Empire and the Rebel Alliance. As the Galactic Empire, you will have to find and destroy the Rebel’s base; as the Rebel Alliance, you will have to survive enough to raise your reputation among common citizens at the Empire to create a revolt.
Controlling not only your troops, but also important characters such as Darth Vader, Emperor Palpatine, Leia Organa and Luke Skywalker, you will be able to take part on an intense and epic battle.
Count with the presence of Luke Skywalker, Darth Vader and many others
Side with the Empire or the Rebels
48) Caverna: The Cave Farmers
In this game, you control the leader of a small dwarf family that lives in a cave. Each member of the family represents an action during the turn, and your goal is to exploit the forest and mountains nearby to build up your home. The player with the more developed home wins the game.
Expand your family to increase your actions each turn, develop your farms, mine the caves to find ore and build new weapons and tools, cut down the forest in front of the cave and build fences to hold your animals. Caverna will provide you with a short and fun experience raising a family and increasing your wealth.
Help your dwarf’s family to grow
Increase your wealthy and build a comfortable home to your offsprings
47) War of the Ring
Choose between controlling the Free People or the Shadow Armies to determine the fate of Middle Earth. While the Shadow Armies will fight the Free People and look for the One Ring, the Free People will be divided between fighting Sauron and protecting the Bearer of the Ring while he advances to Mount Doom to destroy the One Ring.
Take part in the fantastic battle in J. R. R. Tolkien’s Middle Earth in this epic wargame.
Join the Free People or the Shadow Armies
Be part of the war to decide the fate of Middle Earth
46) Game of Thrones: The Board Game (Second Edition)
This game settles after the death of King Robert Baratheon. The player will choose between one of the Houses of Westeros to fight for control and their place on the Iron Throne. Military strength isn’t enough, though; you will also have to use diplomacy and strategy planning in order to win.
In this fantastic game settled in A Song of Ice and Fire’s universe, the players battle to spread the influence of their favorite Houses and conquer the Iron Throne for themselves.
An extremely tactical wargame
Defeat the other Houses of Westeros to conquer to right to sit on the Iron Throne
45) Terra Mystica
In this complex strategy game, the player controls one of the fourteen groups spread through seven landscapes. The groups have to exploit neighboring lands in order to grow and develop their skills.
Terra Mystica is a game about being subtle and carefully planning your strategy.
Explore this fantastic world.
This game requires carefully planning your moves.
44) Risk: Godstorm
You are a priest leading your civilization to dominate the ancient world and the Underworld. The game is settled in ancient Europe and Northern Africa, and you can choose between Greek, Celtic, Babylonian, Norse or Egyptian civilizations. You can also acquire the city of Atlantis, but the city can end up sinking and taking all the forces in there down with it in case of a chaotic event.
This is a fun alternative to people who enjoy playing Risk.
A new version with a nice twist on the classic board game Risk
Expand your Gods’ influence
In Caylus, the players control master builders trying to gain King Philip the Fair’s favor. For that, they develop the King’s castle and raise up the small city of Caylus around it. Players must gather resources and money to construct and upgrade buildings in order to gain prestige points; the one that earns the most prestige wins the game.
This is a fun, light-hearted game to play with your family and friends.
Raise up the city of Caylus and your own prestige
Build the castle of King Philip the Fair
42) Discworld: Ankh-Morpork
Ankh-Morpork is a city building fantasy game set in the universe of Discword. You must choose one of the different factions trying to take control of the city after Lord Vetinari’s disappearance. Each faction has secret and specific victory conditions.
This is a simple strategy game in which you will use cards to play an action. It recreates Terry Pratchett’s universe and brings up the most famous characters in it.
A fantastic game set in a beautiful scenario
Fulfill a secret goal in order to win
In Elysium, you are an upstart demigod looking to earn the favor of the Olympian Gods and become a legend. Collect cards to gain allies, artifacts and powers, combine them to earn gold and victory points, then, transfer the cards to the Elysium and write down your Legend.
This is an epic card game that will transport the players to the mythical ancient Greece.
Become a Legend!
Earn the favor of the Gods
40) Star Wars: X-Wings Miniatures Game
Command a group of Rebel or Imperial pilots in this amazing ship-to-ship combat game. The game features beautifully crafted miniatures and detailed components, such as the possibility of choosing how to equip your ships, that make each pilot you control unique. There are three unique missions in which you can recreate the most memorable battles you’ve watched in the movies.
If you are a passionate Star Wars fan who’ve always dreamt of piloting a spaceship like Luke Skywalker’s or Darth Vader’s, you will enjoy this tactical combat game.
Command your pilots towards victory
Recreate some memorable battles from the Star Wars movies
Runewars is a wargame in which the players choose one of four factions fighting to conquer the territory in order to build fortified cities, recruit heroes and, ultimately, gather dragon runes to be able to dominate the world.
This game takes place in the same fantastic universe as Runebound, Rune Age and Descent: Journey in the Dark.
Runewars is a beautifully crafted board game
It’s a journey to dominate the world!
38) Betrayal at the House on the Hill
In Betrayal at the House on the Hill, you will explore a haunted mansion with your friends, facing spirits, omens and traps and finding valuable items. But beware! One of the members of your team is a traitor, and you must find out who they are and defeat them before it’s too late.
This game is a good call if you like to adventure into suspenseful environments.
There’s a traitor within your team
Gather your friends to face spirits and omens in this haunted mansion
Netrunner depicts the cyber-battle between the Runner, a hacker, and the Corp, a global corporation. The Corp must complete several agendas and protect itself against the Runner, who needs to break into its system and steal the Corp’s data.
This is an interesting and intense collectible cards game set in a cyberpunk fantasy world.
Be a part of this cybernetic battle!
Play as a hacker or as a global corporation
36) Mansion of Madness: 2nd Edition
On Mansion of Madness: 2nd Edition, you will explore the cursed mansions of Arkham guided and assisted by an app, which provides, between others, the narrative and the musical ambience. You will solve puzzles, fight monsters and collect weapons, tools and information in this intense and immersive horror adventure.
This game was inspired by the works of H. P. Lovecraft and set in the same universe of Eldritch Horror and Elder Sign.
Explore the mansions of Arkham
Play with some beautiful miniatures
Command a dragon in a fight between dragons and humans to dominate the land and collect gold. Claim or destroy villages to build an Empire and fight other dragons to stop them from stealing your riches.
This fun and beautifully crafted game is a good call for an enjoyable evening with your friends and family.
In Dragoon, you are the Dragon!
Collect gold and claim villages to build an Empire
Catan was released in 1995 and it’s one of the most traditional fantasy board games. In this game, players dispute to be the most powerful settler on the island, building establishments, cities and roads. Each turn, dice are rolled to determine the resources the island produced and the players must collect them to build civilizations.
This game is a classic fantasy board game and, although it has a simple concept, it’s a fun way to spend the evening with friends and family.
Expand your territory and collect resources!
Uncover the island of Catan
33) Small World
In Small World, you will play with two of fourteen different races (wizards, amazons, giants, orcs, humans etc.) to expand their territories and control the world. On each turn, you flip a coin to determine which one of the races you will actively use, while the other will remain “in decline”.
This is a wargame based on territory building, in which the biggest twist is being able to control more than one race.
Fight against your friends to expand your territories
The world is too small to fit all of you
32) 7 Wonders
In 7 Wonders, you control one of 7 great cities of the Ancient World and must gather resources, expand your city and affirm your military strength in order to construct an architectural wonder. This is a card development game in which the players also have an individual board to organize their cards.
This is a fun, fast paced game that will remind you of the Wonder Race in the Age of Empires’s franchise. If you are a fan of this kind of game, you will probably enjoy 7 Wonders.
Build a wonder that will transcend times
The game happens in three different rounds, called Ages
31) Defenders of the Realm
In Defenders of the Realm, the King calls his finest Heroes to defend countryside of Monarch City against the spreading Darkness. As a Champion, you must repair the damages and defeat the Orcs, Dragons, Undead and Demons before they reach the Citadel.
Being able to choose between a Sorcerer, a Paladin, a Wizard, a Dwarf, a Ranger, a Rogue, a Cleric or an Eagle Rider, the player will have a unique experience each time they play.
Choose your hero and attend the King’s call
Fight the Darkness that spread around Monarch City
30) Harry Potter: Hogwarts Battle
In this cooperative card based game, you choose between commanding Harry, Ron, Hermione or Neville to increase the defenses of Hogwarts and fight the evil forces within its walls in order to ensure the safety of the school. Each player starts with a deck and can add more cards to it as they gain influence during the game.
This is a fantastic adventure divided in seven parts that the Harry Potter fans will love.
You will be able to choose between playing with Harry, Ron, Hermione and Neville
Revive the adventure of the seven Harry Potter books
29) Blood Rage
In Blood Rage, it’s the last chance for the Vikings to prove themselves to the Gods before the Ragnarök comes. You must crush your enemies, pile villages and fulfill quests to increase your clan’s prestige.
This is a card-based strategy game with beautiful miniatures, in which the players will certainly have fun destroying the world and their enemies.
Prepare yourself, the Ragnarök is coming!
Fight or die for the Gods!
28) Arcadia Quest
In this game, players will control a guild of three unique heroes to defeat the vampire lord and reclaim Arcadia for their own. They must face each other and several monsters controlled by the game to fulfill the many quests and be able to conquer the scenario before choosing how they will continue their journey.
Arcadia Quest is a great experience to people who enjoy exploring new fantastic worlds.
Explore and reclaim the fantastic world of Arcadia
Control a guild of heroes
27) Millennium Blades
Millennium Blades is a CCG-simulator that parodies Magic the Gathering, Yugioh and many other collectibles card games. You will build your deck and compete in Regional to National tournaments for prizes and fame.
Featuring around 600 different cards, this game is versatile enough to allow you to play and replay it several times in a unique way.
A parody of many collectible card games
This game features around 600 different cards
26) Survive: Escape from Atlantis!
Released in 1982, Survive: Escape from Atlantis! is a strategy game based in which you and your friends are explorers who have to run from the sinking island of Atlantis with the high-valued pieces you stole, having to face sea serpents, whales and sharks on your way out.
This is a classical survival game that has a very simple and casual dynamic.
This is a classical survival board game
Escape from the sinking island carrying the pieces you stole
In the card-drafting game Nevermore, the player will build a hand each round by collecting cards and passing along to your opponents the ones they don’t want. Your goal is to transform all your opponents into ravens.
Since it can be easily learnt and each game is very short, it appeals even to the most casual of players.
This is a fast paced game
Transform your friends into ravens or become one
24) Warhammer: Chaos in the Old World
Chaos in the Old World settles on the fantastic world of Warhammer. In this game, you will play as one of four Gods of Chaos disputing for supremacy as they corrupt the Old World: Khorne, the God of blood, war and murder; Tzeentch, the God of change, evolution, intrigue and sorcery; Slaanesh, the God of pleasure, passion and decadence; and Nurgle, God of disease, decay and destruction.
Defeat the other gods and fight the mortals trying to banish you while you spread chaos in the Old World. It’s a fun and dynamic way to learn more about the mythology of Warhammer.
“Embrace your hunger, your lust, your desire. The universe is ours for the taking!”
"By this sacrifice, darkness, tell us."
23) Mice and Mystics
In Mice and Mystics, those still loyal to the king are turned into mice and must find their way through a twenty times bigger castle and many adversaries in order to warn the king and defeat their enemy, Vanestra. Between her minions, there are cockroaches, spiders, other rats and Brodie, the castle’s cat.
This game has very unique design and features, bringing the players together into a fun and ever-changing environment.
You are suddenly a mice and your king is in danger! What now?
Gather your friends and combine your powers to save the king!
22) Marvel Dice Masters: Avangers vs X-Men
Marvel Dice Masters is a dice building game in which players are able to choose from a team of pre-selected characters to gather a bag of dice that must be drawn through the course of the game. As the players add more dice to their bags, they can draw more characters to use against their enemies. You win when your enemy’s life is reduced to zero.
This is a casual game with an interesting dynamic featuring some of the most important characters of Marvel’s universe.
Gather favorite team of superheroes
Roll the dices to determine who will win
21) Smash Up
In this card-based game, the player must shuffle the decks of two different factions together into one deck in order to conquer more bases than their opponent. Each combination of decks gives the players a complete different experience in game.
Be prepared to form unbelievable decks, such as a Zombie-Alien and a Pirate-Ninja, and play this game over and over.
Combine two different factions to create a unique experience
Are you a Zombie-Pirate or a Wizard-Ninja?
20) Magic The Gathering: Arena of the Planeswalker
This game is settled in the world of Shandalar, from the universe of Magic the Gathering. In it, the player must choose between the five different Planeswalkers and move through a customizable map with their armies to gain the advantage required to defeat other players.
If you are a Magic the Gathering’s fan, be prepared to experience its universe in a very unique way.
Explore the fantastic world of Magic the Gathering
Control one of five Planeswalkers
19) Dead of Winter: Crossroads Game
Settled in a world where humans are, mostly, either dead or zombies craving for human flesh, all the players, each one leading a faction of survivors living in a colony, must work together to survive. But there is a twist: each player must fulfill a secret mission, that can be harmless to the group or even put at risk the entire colony. So, it is about balance between working together for the sake of everyone or towards what’s best for yourself.
Dead of Winter: Crosswords Game is a cooperative psychological survival game settled in a post-apocalyptical world. If you like making hard and heavy choices and surviving in a world filled with zombies, you might enjoy this game.
Winter is coming!
Survive or perish!
In Kemet, each player represents an Egyptian tribe asking for the help of their Gods and their powerful armies to score victory points in battles against other players and conquer new territories. The game is divided in two phases: the Day, when the actions happen, and the Night, which is a maintenance phase.
This is a fun game, especially if you like wargames with a mythological background.
Pray to the Gods for help
Conquer new territories and fight your enemies
17) Mage Knight
Mage Knight combines different elements of RPG, board games and card games to create a unique and fun experience. The player must choose one of the four mage knights in order to explore and conquer the land that lies under the control of the Atlantean Empire.
This game allows you to play a competitive scenario or a cooperative one.
This game mix aspects of card games and RPG
Explore and conquer the land!
16) Lord of the Rings: The Card Game
In Lord of the Rings: The Card Game, the players choose three heroes and a deck of allies to combine forces and fight against Sauron, represented by an “encounter deck”. Players can also choose between completing quests to advance through the scenario in a more aggressive campaign, or to stay in guard and defeat enemies as they appear.
The game also counts with several expansions that represent scenes from the books, which creates an ever-growing experience to the players.
Relive the adventure of Lord of the Rings
Join forces with your friends and the heroes of the Middle-Earth against Sauron
15) Eldritch Horror
An ancient evil awakes from its deep slumber and threatens to take over our world. You must work together with your allies as you investigate the horrors this evil force brings along with it. In this cooperative game, players take the role of investigators as they travel the world to gather clues and solve mysteries, fighting monsters and other horrors in order to stop the Ancient One's arrival.
Eldritch Horror is placed in the universe of H.P. Lovecraft and has won awards in the past for its amazing artwork and exploration of the theme.
Eldritch Horror settles in the same world as Betrayal at the House on the Hill
Investigate horrors to stop the awaken of the Ancient One
14) Champions of Midgard
You are the leader of one of several Viking tribes. You and others arrive at a lone, once prosperous port town as it is threatened by catastrophe after its Jarl died. Recruit warriors, hold powerful magic, and battle mythical creatures along with your army. Fight to protect the people and win the glory that comes with it while disputing with other leaders for the position of the town's Jarl.
Champions of Midgard is an epic adventure about conquering glory through winning battles and defeating monsters.
Command your Viking to conquer the title of Jarl
Recruit warriors and battle mythical monsters
13) Potion Explosion
In Potion Explosion, you are a student on your final exam of a potion class and your goal is to be granted with the Student of the Year award. This will require you to collect marbles and mix them to create valuable potions.
It’s a simple, quick and fun puzzle game settled in a fantastic ambience. If you are a casual gamer who loves puzzle and is looking for a light-hearted experience, you will love this game.
In this game, you might become the best student in your potion class
It's a quick and fun puzzle game
12) Arkham Horror
Once again the Ancient One seek for a passage into our world. Players take the role of up to eight from sixteen available investigators in this cooperative adventure game. Players will spend their time gathering resources as they fight through the streets of Arkham to close the portals opening around the city. With too many portals open, the Ancient One awakens and it is up to the players to defeat it in one final combat.
In this game, the players will be able to explore the universe created by H.P Lovecraft.
Fight the Ancient One to save the world
Explore once again the city of Arkham as you search for the portals
11) One Night Ultimate Werewolf: Daybreak
In your town there has been an outbreak, werewolves lurk in every corner and it is up to the townspeople to find out who has the curse. Luckily, these are very skilled people, each with their own singular abilities that will help the group free the town from the werewolves trying to hide amidst lies and subterfuge.
One Night Ultimate Werewolf: Daybreak is a standalone sequel to One Night Ultimate Werewolf. It is a fast paced game that expands on the idea of the original and may even be played in combination with it.
This is a casual and fast paced game
Find out who between your friends has the werewolf curse
10) Talisman: The Magical Quest
In this quest for power, you will travel the land and across worlds, battle mythical creatures, make allies and gather resources in order to reach the ultimate goal, the all-powerful Crown of Command. Others will stand in your way, they will try to stop you as they attempt to get to the ancient artifact themselves. Be the first to reach the Crown of Command, learn the Command spell and then use it to destroy all your enemies.
Talisman is a classic board game where each of the players take the role of one out of the fourteen characters available, each character with its own stats, equipment and unique abilities.
Talisman is a classic board game released in 1983
Conquer the Crown of Command
9) Warhammer 40k: Forbidden Stars
The Heraklion Cluster has been out of reach for very long, now the violent storms that once surrounded it have dispersed and ancient treasures and uncharted planets lie there for the taking. All great factions of the galaxy want their share, if not all of it. It's a race for domination, with every faction determined to win no matter the cost.
Forbidden Stars takes place in the Warhammer universe with each player taking control of one of the series' iconic factions. They fight to claim key objectives scattered throughout the map, while making use of each faction's unique units and play styles. Take the objectives, build your army and exterminate your foes.
Race to conquer the Heraklion Cluster
Explore the universe of Warhammer 40k
8) T.I.M.E Stories
The T.I.M.E agency sends their agents through time and space to prevent disruptions in the continuity of history that threaten to destroy the very fabric of time. As an agent you'll be sent in missions where you occupy the body of beings from anywhere in time, be it other world or reality, to complete your goal. You can't fail, quite literally, as you're allowed to go back in time and try again as much as needed.
T.I.M.E Stories is a narrative game of exploration and puzzle solving. The players will have many different scenarios to choose from, each consisting of a large deck of cards that presents players with items, clues, riddles, puzzles, enemies and other dangers.
Explore many different scenarios
Be an agent trying to prevent disruptions in the continuity of history
7) Five Tribes: The Djinns of Naqala
In it, the players are outsiders competing to fulfill a prophecy and become the next sultan of Naqala. You will move the meeples through the board to collect them in order to conquer the empty tiles. Also, some meeples have special abilities; for example, white elders score victory points and can be used to buy Djinns that might help your cause.
Five Tribes is possibly my number one favorite in this list. The game is dynamic, fun and fairly simple, it also has a high level of replayability value, since the tiles and meeples are placed randomly on the table each game.
Move the meeples through the board
Conquer empty tiles and collect meeples to score points
6) Lords of Waterdeep
Lords of Waterdeep is a 2-5 strategy board game settled in Waterdeep, in the Forgotten Realms. You are one of the Lords of Waterdeep and must recruit heroes to go on quests on your behalf in order to increase your influence; you will also have to acquire new buildings to expand the city and play intrigue cards to act out your plans.
The game is settled in the brilliant RPG world of Dungeons and Dragons and will appeal to anyone who loves adventures in rich worlds, no matter if they are already fans or not.
Explore the Forgotten Realms in a very unique way
Be one of the secretive Lords of Waterdeep and increase your influence
5) Pathfinder Adventure Card Game: Rise of the Runelords
Pathfinder Adventure Card Game: Rise of the Runelords is a card based campaign settled in universe of the RPG Pathfinder. The story behind it is fairly simple: heroes must defeat the evil spreading through the land of Varisia before a certain number of turns pass. Despite that, the universe and dynamic of Pathfinder guarantee you will have a fun time playing this game.
This is a very versatile composed by nearly 500 cards, in which each player can create their own hero and have a very unique campaign each time they play.
Explore the land of Varisia
Create your own hero
You are a young monarch of a small, pleasant kingdom, but you dream big and wish for a greater, yet still pleasant kingdom. You will race against other monarchs to claim yet unclaimed lands then fend them off. Build as you grow in both lands and riches and make your people proud.
Each player starts a game of Dominion with a very small deck of cards, then draw cards from the center of the table as they are able to afford them. Players build an ever-growing deck as they draw cards from the table and play cards from their hands, looking for more efficient ways to gather victory points and win the game.
Build a deck as your territory grows
Conquer unclaimed lands
3) Mechs vs Minions
The infamous yordle, Rumble has called for his friends to test his newly-crafted mechs in an assortment of secret missions. Corki, Tristana, Heimerdinger, and Ziggs must join forces and pilot their combat mechs against an army of marauding minions, in missions that will put their teamwork, programming, and piloting skills to the test.
Mechs vs. Minions is a story-driven campaign board game by Riot Games, the creators of League of Legends. In this game each player commands a combat robot through a series of scenarios using command lines to lead their robot into defeating hordes of minions in each of the five modular game boards.
Become part of this campaign created by Riot Games
The components of this game are simply astonishing
2) Star Wars: Imperial Assault
It is a dark time for the Rebellion. Although the Death Star has been destroyed, Imperial troops have driven the Rebel forces from their hidden base and pursued them across the galaxy. You must gather the elite of the Rebel Alliance to either face off against the Galactic Empire over a conflicting objective, or try a precise strike against Imperial forces.
Star Wars: Imperial Assault is a strategy board game that offers two very distinct ways of playing. The campaign game puts Rebel operatives in a stealth mission against the limitless troops and resources of the Galactic Empire as the Rebels strive to break the Empire’s hold on the galaxy, while the skirmish game puts both the Empire and Rebel Alliance to battle head-to-head over conflicting objectives.
This game sets after the destruction of the Death Star
Be one of the Rebels and fight the Imperial troops
1) Thunder and Lightning
Thor was entrusted with Odin’s ring of power to be able to recover the God’s Crown that was stolen by Loki. One of my personal favorites, Thunder and Lightning is a card game in which you will have to choose to play with either Thor or Loki, each one with its own personal deck.
This is game is simple and can be learned fast, each deck can provide the player with several different ways of experiencing the game.
Face each other for the God’s Crown stolen by Loki
Choose between Thor’s and Loki’s decks
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