Bar Games – What Board Games Work Well at a Bar/Brewery?
Sometimes you want to go out for a drink, and you can substitute a coffee shop for a bar, but you want to play board games as well. What board games work well in a brewery, bar, or coffee shop?
The criteria that I’m looking at is the size of the game, the complexity of the game (though that matters less), and the components of the game. To a less extent I’m going to consider the length of the game. Sometimes you just want to play a quick game.
Cribbage – Might not be the game that you expect, but it’s a fun game and one that a number of people are familiar with. I think that helps get it to the table because people will at least recognize it. It also has the small footprint because you have the board, but beyond that, you are just using a deck of playing cards, so those are easy to replace if you spill a drink on them.
Skull – Now, with this game just don’t confuse them with your coaster, but in this game you have five cardboard discs and you are playing them face down, eventually someone is going to say how many they can flip over without hitting a skull. It’s a simple push your luck game and bluffing game, but it works well and while the discs are coaster size, that is it for the game, so each person just needs a little room in front of them.
Love Letter – I’d be tempted to sleeve this game as there are only a few cards in the game, and that will keep it in better shape longer, but this simple deduction game works well as the rules for the cards are on the card. Plus there are player aids. With this game you are just playing down cards trying to knock out your opponents so that your love letter gets to the princess. There are other variations on the game as well, such as Batman Love Letter if that’s more up your alley. This game has almost no footprint.
Welcome To… – This could probably be a number of roll and write or flip and write games. I just happen to have this one. Yes, you are writing on fairly thin pieces of paper, if you wanted to make it more hearty, you could laminate them, but because it’s just a sheet you use for a single game, if it gets damp, it isn’t that big a deal as long as it doesn’t get soaked. Welcome To… does have a few cards in it as well, but you could use the box lid to protect them by setting the cards in there. It’s also a relaxed game so that you can take your time playing it, and like Skull can do a high player count, in fact, this is the going to be the highest player count game.
Zombie Dice – All you’re doing is rolling dice, keeping track of brains you’ve gotten, and hoping to roll a few more brains. But if you roll enough shotgun blasts, you can’t bank your brains, so you have to decide when to push your luck. It just has dice, and those are going to be fine around liquid. I could have put something like Farkle here as well, but in Zombie Dice you’re just keeping track of the brains that you’ve collected, so you don’t need a score sheet.
Just One – This party style game does have cards, but you just use 13 of them (I believe), and you end up with them standing in a holder most of the time. Besides that, people are just writing clues on little white boards. It’s a fast game, it’s a simple game to teach, and it’s one that basically everyone will enjoy. It’s also good because you have time for conversation while playing it. I’m tempted to recommend Stipulations, but that one you need to be able to hear each other.
The Resistance – Final one is a social deduction game, The Resistance has you going on missions to bring down the corporations. This game doesn’t need a moderator, and you have a tiny little board in the middle plus a few cards. You just decide who goes on a mission and then if the mission succeeds. You’re seeing if enough missions will be failed before enough successes happen. It’s not complex, but that makes it easy to teach on the fly.
What other board games would work well at a brewery? Kristen and I have played some big games there, but that depends on you getting a large enough table. There are games like Dice Throne that would work well, because they don’t need too much room, but they are bigger than I was trying to list, but if you try, you can play something like Dead of Winter or KrosMaster there.
Share questions, ideas for articles, or comments with us!