Even More Strategy Games to Take Camping - Panergy

by Regina Wu
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Even More Strategy Games to Take Camping - Panergy

Camping Strategy Games

I like playing games, and I like camping. Combining the two is like putting graham crackers, marshmallows, and chocolate together: It just makes sense. I highlighted three of my favorite board games to take camping in a previous post, but there are too many more in the game closet to leave them unmentioned.

A tabletop game can be a great way to avoid sweating too much during the hottest part of the day, as well as a way to break the ice in situations where not everyone knows everyone well. Camping is a vacation away from the stresses of the everyday world, so if you want to have fun collecting treasure or bluffing your friends, do it.



An island that's home to four ancient artifacts is rapidly sinking, and your team of adventurers needs to collect the items and escape before the waves claim you. This is a cooperative game, in which the players are working together to beat the game itself. Each person plays a character with a specific skill that can aid the team of explorers scouring the island'made up of tiles'for its relics. Flipping cards reveals elements necessary to find the artifacts, but can also trigger a new round of sinking, dropping various parts of the island into the ocean. If two to four players manage to stay afloat and catch a helicopter off of the deathtrap, they can return for another round with an increased difficulty level. Forbidden Island  takes about half an hour to 45 minutes to play, and my 5- and 7-year-old love it. Remind your teammates to be glad they're not camping on a patch of ground that may suddenly drop out from beneath them.



To win at this game, you need to be good at giving hints?but not too good. Each card in this game features a unique painted work of imaginative art. There are knights, planets, caged birds, fire and water, keys, stars, and buildings. An anchor sits in the middle of a desert. A green vine uses a knife to cut itself. An island floats in the middle of a raindrop. An anatomical heart sits under a bell jar. When it's your turn to play, you select a card from your hand, place it face down, and give the other players a clue as to what the image is. Everybody else then selects a card from their own hand they think could be an answer to that same clue and puts it facedown in the pile. All the cards are flipped, and each person has to guess which card they think is that true answer to the clue. The catch comes in the scoring system: The clue-giver gets no points if everyone picks the right card, because the clue was too obvious. But no guesses at all also yields no points. So the goal is to get only most of the people to figure out the hint. Dixit is great for all ages and a lot of fun for three to six players at a time. The game takes about half an hour to an hour, depending on how quickly players come up with clues and make guesses!



As long as you can keep track of the tiles and have a large enough playing surface, this game is an excellent one for camping, and another one my kids especially love. Part dominoes, part Scrabble (but nothing like either since there are no letters or numbers), Qwirkle involves playing tiles with colorful shapes on them to make intersecting rows. Players can build lines that feature different shapes of the same color, or the same shape in all different colors?with no repeats. The rules are simple to learn, and the game is quick to pick up. It's intended for two to four players, and takes about 45 minutes.

Any of these games would make a good addition for the next trip, whether you're just going overnight or are making a weeklong visit to the mountains. Even the biggest box in this stack takes up less room than a portable stove, so packing shouldn't be a problem.
Just remember to do an extra sweep of your campsite before you leave. You wouldn't want to leave any pieces behind.

by Regina Wu


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