After a long week, my family decided to visit some friends Saturday night for a bit of board game fun. We don't play often -- it's one of those things that we have to convince ourselves to do, but once we get a game out and begin, we really enjoy. (Go figure.) Saturday, though, we found ourselves playing one of our very favorite board games: Settlers of Catan. We played this game for the first time last year, never having heard of it before. Apparently the game is well-known for intricacies and adaptability, but we just think it's fun. :) The premise is basically the settling of a fictional land called Catan. Players earn various resources and use those resources to build and explore and establish an empire in a new land. Players barter with each other and scheme their way to riches until one of them earns enough points to be the winner.
Why is this so much fun? Honestly, I don't know. :) I am not a good schemer, but I think for me it's the "making order out of chaos" aspect of the game that's appealing. My kids love the bartering and manipulating their resources to make new things. We also have the Seafarers edition (an expansion of the original Settlers), which allows players to create shipping empires and discover new opportunities and even gold mines on convenient Catan islands. I've even heard of the game described as a sort of pioneer version of "Monopoly," and I think there are aspects of that too. The player with the most "money" (resources) wins. But there's just something primitively satisfying about making something out of nothing -- oh, and beating your opponents! That's satisfying too. :)
So, what's your favorite board game? Do you and your family have a favorite pastime that helps relieve the stress of a busy/difficult week? Let me know what it is -- I'm always looking for fun new things to try!
Have a great week! :)