On one hand, board games are evil, conniving demonic objects who have torn families apart and started wars and made grown men cry, particularly the ones where you actively sabotage your friends and family in the quest for power.
On the other hand, they’re pretty fun.
For Easter my family got a game called Stratego. You have thirty pieces each, with various numbers on them, but they stand upright and the side facing your opponent is blank and identical to all of your other pieces. The numbers are pretty normal from 10 down until you get to 3, which is the Miner and the only thing that can take out Bombs, which are immobile and kill everything except 3s. Then there’s 2, the Scout, which can move an unlimited number of spaces as long as it’s attacking but is basically useless for anything except finding out what other pieces are, and 1, the Spotter, which is the awesomest piece in the game but also the most vulnerable. It can attack and kill any number as long as it guesses what it is. You can move forward, backward, and sideways one space, and you jump on the same space as a piece to attack it. Both of you say what number your piece is, and the higher number wins, unless it’s a 10 and you have a Spy, in which case the 10 dies, or you have a Spotter and guess the other person’s number. You also have a Flag, and if you capture the other person’s Flag or kill all of their moving pieces you win.
It has brought half of our family to tears after Dad, being super duper awesome at strategy games, annihilated all of us. I didn’t cry. Jade, Mom, and Ender cried, because they allowed the demonic influence of the board to take hold of their mind and tempt them with power they did not receive. I believe Mom told Dad she hated him and wasn’t speaking to him, much to his amusement.
It’s a really fun game, actually. Demonic as it may be.
I mean, it doesn’t have near the demonic influence of that pernicious, power-mongering game Monopoly.
Let’s not even mention Monopoly. It summons the lingering poison of defeat still coiled around your soul and makes it squeeze tight with heartbreak.
Aren’t board games wonderful?