My husband and I love playing board games together. We play at night a lot, after the kids are in bed and use it as a chance to spend time connecting together in a fun way.
It can be a challenge to find games that work well for just two players. We quickly tired of the typical board games and so we have branched out and found a lot of really great two player games that we enjoy playing together.
Today I am sharing a list of our favorite two player games with you! These first few are all made by the same company Rio Grande Games. We have loved every game of theirs that we have tried! – This post contains affiliate links meaning at no additional cost to you I may get a percentage of the sale if you buy through these links. thanks for your support!
This is a tile laying game so it does not actually have a “board”. It works great with two players but up to six can play. There are a lot of expansions for the game also, which makes the game stay interesting because you can change things up by adding or taking away expansions.
Basic game play – On your turn you draw a tile and place it adjacent to any previously placed tile – City must connect to city, road to road etc. As both players do this you end up building cities, farms, roads and cloisters, claiming them scoring them etc. Very fun game. You can even buy it as an app on the iphone or ipad and play together even when you are not home together. I often play with my best friend who lives several states away this way.
Another wonderful Rio Grande game. This definitely my favorite game. It takes a few minutes to set up, but it is definitely worth it. The game is played with cards (not spades and hearts cards…) and the purpose is to have the most victory points at the end of the game. You purchase victory cards to gain points, but you can also purchase cards to attack the other player and make your hand stronger before the end of the game.
Very interesting game and because of the variety of cards that come with the game it also stays exciting. There are many expansions for this game also, and they are all amazing. We have all of them and always enjoy creating different card combinations with the expansions
Basic game play – On your turn ABC. Play any Action cards (this can be attacking your opponent or things that give you bonuses ie. more cards, money or actions) Buy a card using whatever coins you have available to you this turn (dependant upon what cards you drew from your deck). and Cleanup your area, including drawing 5 more cards from your deck.
Can be played with 2 – 4 players. We mainly play with 2 and it is a wonderful 2 player game. The game time varies depending on what cards are used and what strategies each person is using. You often have to change what you are doing dependent upon the way your opponent(s) are playing. It is very strategic and timing is EVERYTHING!
added bonus – the artwork on the cards is exquisite and the rules are amusing and fun to read!
This is another card game that works great for 2 people. With certain expansions it can even be played solo! So first a warning about this game. It is very likely that the first 10 or so times you play it, it won’t be fun. I hated this game for the first dozen games and only played because my hubby wanted to. After the first dozen games I started to really understand how it worked and was able to get into it. We both really enjoy this game now.
Basic game play – this is another card game you go through the game buying worlds or developments in order to gain victory points. There are so many ways to get points and win I can’t even go into them all here. But if you are looking for a game that is very strategic, makes you think on your toes and can be played/strategized many different ways this is the game for you!
There are also a lot of expansions that you can buy to enhance this game. Each one makes game play more complex and strategizing harder. Keeps it fun, but can be annoying since you have to learn how to strategize again, which is hard.
Bonus – This game also has incredible artwork. There are so many different cards in the game and each has its own drawing. Some are absolutely breathtaking.
This is a game in which each person owns a little market in China selling to different types of customers and marching your way to prosperity. Whichever player is the most ‘proserous’ by the end wins.
This game takes a long time to play – over an hour- but is a very cool concept and is fun once you get the hang of it!
Another favorite game!
This one takes around an hour to play but it is incredibly fun.
basic game play – you are allowed two actions per turn. You can choose to lay tiles or followers or trade in tiles etc. the focus of the game is building kingdoms connecting them etc. Again there are several different types of ways to gain points in this game. And there are 4 different colors of points you must gain. In the end the score of your weakest color is what counts.
Very interesting game because you have to maintain balance while trying to ‘get ahead’. I think we love this game more every time we play it!
These are two games in a series by Rio Grande games called Gipf. The series has several games in it, each one an abstract thinking game. They are wonderful stand alone games, but if you collect them all you are able to play a game called Gipf that incorporates aspects from each of the origional games. We only have 2 so far and they are very fun. We are looking forward to getting more and “unlocking” the full greatness of the game. ;)
game play is about 15-20 minutes including set up time. And all the games are ONLY 2 player.
Pandemic is a different sort of game because it is cooperative. Meaning you and your spouse play together, on the same team, to beat the game. At first I assumed this would be lame and predictable, but it is not! It gets quite difficult at times and we have lost a lot!
The object of the game is to save the world from the disease pandemics breaking out every where. There are occasional epidemics that will strike and really mess you up etc. It is really creatively done, and harder than you would think.
I enjoy it because it is nice to not have to be playing against each other and working together to “save the world” is always fun.
This is a newer favorite, you build your own little town by using hex-shaped tiles. There are specific goal challenges and the towns of each player can sometimes interact. SUPER fun.
So those are our favorites!
Many of them were Christmas gifts to or from each other, and we love that we can both enjoy them all through the year(s). Hope this gave you some good gaming ideas!
Do you have a favorite game? I would love to hear about it!
Aunt Peggy says
And, Harry and I enjoy many of the same games… and we gave you a couple of these, since we found out y’all enjoy them together too!
Finding good activities to share together means a LOT!
This is a really valuable list to me! My husband and I used to play games with people all the time before kids but now with kids we don’t end up getting together with people as much for game nights and we’ve stopped playing because we don’t have very many 2 player options. I’m going to show this list to him! Thanks so much!
Oh, by the way, our favorite game that we still play is Bohnanza. The two player game isn’t quite as fun for us, but now our 9 and 6 year olds play, so we’re enjoying it again. We also enjoy Speed Scrabble or Bananagrams and Dominoes.
We just played Pandemic (I got it for hub for a Christmas present after seeing it on your list here) – we won! It’s such an awesome game! Thanks for introducing it to me!! A lovely way to spend our Sunday evening! Thanks again, love reading your blog – my babies are 3.5y and 20m :-) Sarah x
Excellent list! We love every one of these games. A few others we like as well, and can be played with 2, are:
◇ Castles of Burgundy
◇ Jaipur (a light filler game)
◇ Agricola – All Creatures
◇ Hey, That’s my Fish (for kids)
Happy Gaming Everyone!
Victor Henriquez says
Foosball is a fun game too
Interesting list! Vastly different from mine, but still great nonetheless. Codenames: Duet is one of my favorite two player games. I have some additional ideas here https://boardgamejunkies.com/reviews/2-player-board-games-for-adults/
Find rummikub at Target or Walmart It’s pretty addicting and makes you use your brain ;)