The 10 Best Strategy Board Games

video play icon

This wiki has been updated 11 times since it was first published in September of 2020. From ancient classics played in pairs to new releases that can entertain the whole family, these strategy board games will put your logical reasoning skills to the test. In our selection, we've included options that vary considerably in complexity, run time, and potential for conflict so that you can find one to fit any occasion, whether it's an adults' night in or a birthday party for kids. When users buy our independently chosen editorial selections, we may earn commissions to help fund the Wiki.

1. Klaus Teuber's Catan

2. Chess Armory 15-Inch

3. Z-Man Carcassonne

Editor's Notes

September 28, 2020:

There's lots of variation when it comes to strategy board games, and the situation in which you play one is just as likely to determine your enjoyment of it as are the tastes of the players.

Abstract strategy games like the Chess Armory 15-Inch and Gigamic Quarto typically don't take long to complete, and their artful wooden sets look good enough to leave out in a living room or parlor where they'll draw the eye and tempt guests to sit down for a quick game. For more games that cater to pairs, check out the best 2-person board games.

In group settings, though, Eurogames are better options. These are economically-themed games which often involve indirect competition with other players through bartering and resource acquisition and which tend to be better with 3-7 players. Also, Eurogames don't feature elimination, meaning everyone participates until the game ends, making them especially appealing if children are playing. Most of our choices fall into this category, including Klaus Teuber's Catan, Days of Wonder Ticket To Ride, Z-Man Carcassonne, Asmodee Splendor, and several others.

Special Honors

Avalon Hill Diplomacy Only for large groups of close friends, this marathon of negotiation and betrayal can strain social relationships, as it requires that nations struggling for supremacy in pre-WWI Europe make and break promises to each other. It also calls for a massive time commitment of six hours on average, and is quite pricey, but those willing to overcome these hurdles will find an incredibly compelling experience that fully engages their social prowess, facility with lying, and analytical abilities.

Yellow Mountain Imports Bamboo 0.8-Inch Go This high-end set provides all the materials needed to learn, play, and store the oldest board game in recorded history. In addition to a reversible bamboo board bearing a 19x19 grid on one side for standard gameplay and a 13x13 grid on the other side for learning the rules, the set includes stones, two bamboo bowls secured with vinyl straps to store them, a carrying bag for the bowls, a protective felt sleeve for the board, and an instruction booklet.

4. Days of Wonder Ticket To Ride

5. Stonemaier Games Scythe

6. Asmodee Splendor

7. Gigamic Quarto

8. Blue Orange Photosynthesis

9. Hasbro Risk

10. Asmodee 7 Wonders

Sheila O'Neill
Last updated by Sheila O'Neill

Sheila is a writer and editor living in sunny Southern California. She studied writing and film at State University of New York at Purchase, where she earned her bachelor of arts degree. After graduating, she worked as an assistant video editor at a small film company, then spent a few years doing freelance work, both as a writer and a video editor. During that time, she wrote screenplays and articles, and edited everything from short films to infomercials. An ardent lover of the English language, she can often be found listening to podcasts about etymology and correcting her friends’ grammar.

Thanks for reading the fine print. About the Wiki: We don't accept sponsorships, free goods, samples, promotional products, or other benefits from any of the product brands featured on this page, except in cases where those brands are manufactured by the retailer to which we are linking. For more information on our rankings, please read about us, linked below. The Wiki is a participant in associate programs from Amazon, Walmart, Ebay, Target, and others, and may earn advertising fees when you use our links to these websites. These fees will not increase your purchase price, which will be the same as any direct visitor to the merchant’s website. If you believe that your product should be included in this review, you may contact us, but we cannot guarantee a response, even if you send us flowers.