Staying in is the new going out—especially during peak season in Ibiza where a simple trip to the shop can turn into a series of epic, time-sucking queues. Games night is a perfect way to spend a long summer evening when you want to do something fun and interactive at home, instead of just plunking in front of the TV. Board games have gone from being “just for kids” to a hugely popular all-ages activity all over the world. Here’s how to throw a great board game bash.
The key to having a fun night with a group is having a variety of games so you can vary the pace and interaction. Avoid long-winded games like Monopoly that can drag on for hours, and focus on games that can be played quickly, or where you can stop at any point. Having a selection of 3-5 options ensures you can find games that everyone enjoys, as well as trying new things.
Keep it friendly
Fierce competition isn’t the point of games night. You want to create an atmosphere where everyone has fun participating, even if they are unfamiliar with the game. It’s a good idea to break the ice with something fun and simple, like a few rounds of Pictionary or Bingo to set the tone. If you’re introducing a new game be sure you (or someone else) knows the rules well enough to explain it. Playing a few warm-up rounds can help make sure all your guests are comfortable.
Size it up
For small parties, focus on fast-moving games that encourage lots of conversation. Trivia and strategy games are great ways to get people talking and keep the party lively. If you have a big group of friends over set up game stations where different sized sub-groups can play different games. You can have charades on the terrace, Cluedo in living room, and backgammon in the kitchen! Encourage people to swap spots and mingle between games.
Snacking & sipping
Food and drink are a cornerstone of any social gathering, even if the main purpose is playing games. When planning what to feed your guests, take a cue from the Earl of Sandwich who invented the food that bears his name because he wanted something he could eat while at the gaming table. Platters of sandwiches or wraps, cut into segments, are easy to snack on and won’t make a mess. You can also rely on the three-Cs of snacking: crisps, crudités and crackers, served with cheese, sliced meats or dip.
As for drinks, think fun and low-effort. Bottled beer or soda is a great choice. If you want something fancier, prepare a bowl of punch or a pitcher of cocktails. Serve in small glasses to reduce the risk of them spilling all over the board.
Board games nights are a great way to get friends of different ages or social circles to interact. They cut down on the need for small talk while giving people something fun to focus on while they get acquainted. They are also perfect if you have a mixed group of adults and kids.