Being a VERY competitive person, when I was first introduced to cooperative board games, I scoffed and said to myself “where’s the fun in playing against a board game?…this will definitely be a one and done game”. Wow was I wrong. Cooperative games have quickly become our favorite type of board games to play as a family. Keep reading to find our why you should be playing cooperative board games!
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Game Changing! 5 Reasons to Play Cooperative Board Games
First, to level set, what is a cooperative board game? A cooperative board game is a board game where all the players work together to accomplish an objective. This type of gameplay brings a lot of benefits to the table that competitive games can’t provide…
1. Learning opportunities
The first thing we noticed when playing cooperative board games with our kids was how many new learning opporunities they provided. Cooperative board games teach all the same skills as competitive board games (numbers, letters, reading, math, critical thinking, strategy, etc.), but they also teach a whole host of other skills. Because players are working together and discussing moves, cooperative board games teach communication, cooperation, and negotiation. If kids want to make moves in these games, they have to learn to make their voice heard and how to sell their ideas!
2. The Gateway Game
Cooperative board games are great for introducing people to modern board games. If you grew up playing Monopoly or Checkers, but haven’t played much since, the leap to the new strategy games can be pretty intense. Especially when you’re playing against game nuts who already know the ins and outs of these games. Cooperative board games are perfect to bridge this gap, because new gamers can learn from their more experienced counterparts and ask questions without hindering their chance of winning the game.
3. No More Board Throwing!
I think most people who have played board games with kids have seen pieces go flying or tempers flaring at one point or another. With cooperative board games the stress level of losing is greatly reduced. There is a BIG difference for kids in losing TO your parent/sibling/friend vs. losing WITH them. With cooperative board games, it’s very clearly ‘just a game’.
4. Be a Role Model
With most things in life, kids look to you to learn how they should respond. however it’s really difficult for kids to take their cues from you when playing competitive board games. The reason? You’re always doing the opposite of them. They can’t see you lose gracefully when they just won and are busy celebrating. And on the flip side, they don’t notice how kind you are to them when you won, because they are feeling the weight of the loss they just took! With cooperative board games, you and your kids win and lose together, creating the perfect opportunity for you to model the behavior you want to see in them.
5. Cooperative Games can be Played Solo
One thing that can be a challenge if you love board games is that you need at least two to play. This goes doubly when your kids love board games and want you to play ALL THE TIME. While we want to play every time the kids ask, in the hectic world we live in, that’s not always an option. Cooperative board games provide a great solution to this as most of them can be adapted for solo play!
So what are you waiting for?
We have loved playing cooperative board games, and they have really taken our families gaming to the next level of enjoyment and been a great family time activity. Ready to get started? Check out our list of the 30+ best cooperative board games! This post has recommendations for ever age from toddlers to older kids so you can find the perfect cooperative board game to bring to your table.
Do you love or hate cooperative board games? Comment below on your favorite or least favorite things about them!