Do you remember how exciting it was every time you opened up that colorful box, rifled through its colorful contents and then laid it all out, ready to play? There before you was your ticket to an afternoon of fun. As kids, we LOVED board games (and hey, some of us still do). Here's a look at some kick-ass board games from childhood that we remember oh, so fondly. And yes, I have left out such staples as Checkers and Chess, because this is about kid's play-time, not elderly grudge-matches. What were some of your favorites?
Photo credit: orijinal, Flickr
I'm not actually sure if this game had rules. In fact, I don't even know if there was an objective. All we really did was set up the trap and then spring it, watching in all its Pee-Wee-Herman's-Great-Adventure-breakfast-scene-esque glory as the trap went through its many awesome steps to completion. Then we'd just set it up again and watch it do its thing in a never-ending loop. If real mouse traps were this entertaining, then all of the rodent-gore and subsequent rodent-death wouldn't be as sad.
Candy Land was an incredibly simple game; there was no reading involved and it was a completely luck-based race to the finish. But the game-play itself wasn't where the real appeal was. As a kid, candy was a captivating, all-encompassing thing and you wanted to consume it (in quantities that transcended the concept of "portion") even if 'it' was just pictures on a game board. Although...now that I think of it, the candy in Candy Land was kind of lame. There was licorice (which as I've mentioned before is zombified chocolate), candy canes, peanuts (whiskey tango foxtrot, man, that's not even candy!), plums, lollipops and molasses. It's a kid's game for godssake, where's the chocolate, jelly beans and birthday cake? It still managed to be loads of fun even though it was probably designed by a senior citizen who had a hankering for disgusting old-person candy.
This was the perfect alternative to actually going outside to climb ladders and go down slides (why they were referred to as "chutes" in the game, we'll never know). It was a fast, easy and fun race to the top, and we loved it. And fun fact: this game is actually a knock-off of the ancient Indian original: Snakes and Ladders. Though that could have just been an addendum to the Kama Sutra.
In this kick-ass, semi-digital board game you'd pick a commando (blue was Oceanic Republic, red was Euro-National Force, green was North-American Federation and yellow was Asiatic Alliance [uh...racist]), then collect color-coded access cards and weapons like the Disruptor in order to defeat the Omega Virus. The virus' evil voice would come out of a speaker on the game board, never hesitating to mock your efforts by reminding you how much time was left until it destroyed everything. If it sounds like Omega Virus should've just been a video game, you're probably right and that's precisely why it was so awesome. But, could OV get any nerdier? Yes, because the instruction booklet began with a COMIC BOOK. Score! Though, it could also be that your characters navigated areas like docking bays, supply depots and the negatron labs to the tune of the audio prompts from the virus itself, adding a level of video game-type immersion. As an added bonus, the game board itself had really excellent "holy shit, we're inside a gigantic computer!" artwork. Suck on that Parcheesi!
While not technically a board game, this was still a good time. And simple too, my GOD it was simple. In fact, I bet you could find a dumber-than-average 5-year-old that could play without even reading the rules (side-note: were there even any rules?). No, there couldn't be, because all you really do is "guess who." There we go; the entirety of the rules could be summed up in the title of the game.
This is like a more bad-ass, 3-D version of tic-tac-toe. To connect four, you'd actually be required to have some skill and foresight, whereas triple-T only required you to have a pulse and some luck.
While the titular movie was made into a board game it never reached the popularity of its source material. So, even though the idea of jungle magic shitting wild creatures into your living room to invade the suburbs sounds awesome and would've made the board game a far more lucrative invention, I think we should just bask in that movie's awesomeness for a moment.
Love it or hate it, Monopoly was a part of our childhood. Maybe you played Star Wars Monopoly or some other sweet, themed version, but we all know the game. Not only that, but my theory is you don't ever really know someone's inner character until you play them in Monopoly and they either go easy or crush you mercilessly.