Best board games to play in 2024 

Jack Bye
Betrayal at Baldur's Gate board game in action

There’s certainly no shortage of excellent board games to try out in 2024, from old favorites that have stood the test of time to new and innovative titles from the best developers in the business. From strategy games to social deduction, these are some of our picks for the best board games you can play in 2024. 

Whatever your play group or preferred style of play, you should be able to find the perfect game for you.  We’ve provided a diverse range of titles for you to check out below, that we believe represents some of the best that modern board games have to offer.

Whether you’re a board game newbie looking to dip your toes in, or a veteran player looking for the latest title to introduce to your group, we hope you’ll find something to engage your interest. 

1. Gloomhaven: Jaws of the Lion 

The best board game overall


  • Players: 1-4 
  • Age range: 14+ 
  • Play time: 30-120 minutes 
  • Complexity: Mid-High 

Reasons to buy: 

  • More beginner-friendly spin-off 
  • Still has Gloomhaven’s depth 
  • Addictive dungeon-delving experience 

Gloomhaven is a universally beloved title that most players would rank among the best board games of all time. Jaws of the Lion expands on what makes the property so great while paring back some of its more daunting elements. 

Stradling the line between a traditional board game and a TTRPG, Gloomhaven’s world and mechanics expand at a thrilling rate as you play. A year or more in and your Gloomhaven sessions will look totally different than those at the start of a campaign. And while a year might sound like a hefty investment, anyone sucked into Gloomhaven’s orbit will know that once you’re in, you’re in for the long haul. 

But, while Gloomhaven is beloved for exactly this reason, it can also be a steep barrier to entry. Jaws of the Lion attempts to do away with the baggage and draw new players into Gloomhaven’s engaging world. It presents a standalone dungeon-crawling adventure, balancing brutal resource management with more forgiving character advancement, providing an easier on-ramp into this fan-favorite world. 

2. Dead of Winter

The best resource management game 


  • Players: 2-5 
  • Age range: 13+ 
  • Play time: 60-120 minutes 
  • Complexity: Mid 

Reasons to buy: 

  • Deep replayability through missions and expansions 
  • Engaging co-op gameplay 
  • Variety of characters 

A grueling survival game that is surprisingly accessible, Dead of Winter remains comfortably in the upper echelons of co-op board game experiences. 

At first, you’ll just be looking to keep up the barricades around your colony and keep your stockpiled food from dwindling. But as each game progresses, you’ll need to risk increasingly dangerous trips outside in order to collect what you need, whether that be fuel from the gas station or formulae from the suspicious abandoned lab nearby. 

With dozens of survivors with unique stats and abilities to control, Dead of Winter provides what every good zombie narrative needs; a reason to care about its characters. 

Balancing risky searches for survivors and supplies with punishing resource management, it can be a struggle to stay alive in Dead of Winter, much less complete your objectives and succeed. But while Dead of Winter’s difficulty can often be punishing, the playing experience is rarely anything less than joyful.  

There’s something about survival games that can bring players closer in cooperation than many other genres. Whether it’s divvying up crucial items, making choices for the good of the colony, or venturing out into the ruined world together, Dead of Winter still shines like a beacon in the blizzard. 

3. Betrayal at Baldur’s Gate 

The best fantasy game


  • Players: 3-6 
  • Age range: 12+ 
  • Play time: 60 minutes 
  • Complexity: Low-Mid

Reasons to buy: 

  • Blend of RPG Mechanics and board game exploration 
  • Co-op to competitive twist 
  • Excellent D&D Worldbuilding 

Those who have played the original Betrayal at House on the Hill know that it’s an all-time classic of the medium, with near-endless replayability, tons of flavor, and a killer collaborative-turned-competitive midway twist. 

Betrayal at Baldur’s Gate takes all of that and repackages it to fit the world of D&D. No longer creeping through a haunted house, players are instead picking their way through the streets and sewers of Faerun’s most famous – and dangerous – city. 

While the flavor may have changed, moving away from horror and more towards fantasy, there’s still plenty of peril to encounter in this co-op adventure. For players with fond memories of House on the Hill, Betrayal at Baldur’s Gate is simply a new and engaging way to play. And for fans of Baldur’s Gate 3, this game presents a second chance to delve deep into the city and its secrets. 

4. Root 

The best strategy game


  • Players: 2-6 
  • Age range: 10+ 
  • Play time: 60-90 minutes 
  • Complexity: Mid 

Reasons to buy: 

  • Each faction plays completely differently 
  • Deep gameplay but low barrier to entry 
  • Uniquely charming style 

Don’t let the wonderful, cutesy art style fool you, Root is far from a friendly woodland frolic. Foregrounding strategic choice and ruthless competitive gameplay, Root is an accessible step into wargaming for players of all kinds. 

Relocating the factional squabbles, dynastic politics and mercenary bands of a George RR Martin novel to a world of cartoonish woodland critters is an appealingly off-beat move, and it pays off in spades for Root. 

Asymmetrical warfare is the biggest selling point here, with each player being able to select a group that plays completely differently. From the Eyrie Dynasties’ pre-programmed turns to the Corvid Conspiracy’s anarchic plots, fans of character classes and factions will have a field day with Root. Finding your preferred playstyle can be a huge part of the fun, as can picking a new faction and switching up the game each and every time you play. 

With several high-quality expansions, introducing new factions and mechanics like hirelings, Root is a deep and rewarding experience that any play group can return to again and again.  

5. Dune Imperium

Dune Imperium board game

The best deck-builder


  • Players: 1-4 
  • Age range: 14+ 
  • Play time: 60-120 minutes 
  • Complexity: High 

Reasons to buy: 

  • Expansive Worldbuilding
  • Hybrid deck-building and resource gameplay
  • Stylish, minimalistic presentation

There’s no doubt that Dune is having its moment, thanks to the rave reviews and popularity enjoyed by the release of Part 2. For those who can’t get enough of Dune, this game is a great way to expand your time with Arrakis and the wider Dune universe.

In Dune Imperium, players will come into conflict over control of the desert planet Arrakis and its valuable Spice. Players build up their forces and resources while employing relationship management with factions like the Bene Gesserit and the Spacing guild.

Dune Imperium succeeds by bringing most of what fans love about the world of Dune to life without compromising on engaging, strategic gameplay. While its intricate interlocking systems make Dune Imperium difficult to recommend for board game beginners, it will prove a treat for seasoned hobbyists.

6. Alice is Missing

Alice is Missing game

The best story-focused game


  • Players: 3-5
  • Age range: 12+
  • Play time: 120-180 minutes
  • Complexity: Mid-High 

Reasons to buy: 

  • Bridges gap between board games and RPGs
  • Excellent storytelling and worldbuilding 
  • Unique texting gameplay

Alice is Missing is the most unique entry you’ll find on this list, standing halfway between an innovative board game experience and a TTRPG.

In playing Alice is Missing, players step into the role of people familiar with the titular Alice, using their phones to text and discover clues as to her disappearance.

Oftentimes, playing RPGs and board games remotely can be a daunting and alienating task, even with the help of virtual tabletop programs. But Alice is Missing’s gameplay is perfect for remote sessions, making starting a game that much easier.

A character exploration and mystery game like no other, Alice is Missing blends roleplaying, clue hunting, and character building into a fantastic social experience for any gaming group.

7. One Night: Ultimate Werewolf

Werewolf board game

The best social game


  • Players: 3-10
  • Age range: 8+
  • Play time: 10-20 minutes
  • Complexity: Low

Reasons to buy: 

  • Role-based social deduction 
  • Easy to learn
  • Great for any number of players 
  • Perfect party game 

Werewolf differs from most of the games presented here in length and complexity but is no less enjoyable for it. This is a game without many moving parts, figures, and props. It’s a much more social, direct experience, relying on imagination and bluffing.

In One Night: Ultimate Werewolf, the classic deduction game of Werewolf is boiled down to its barest essentials. At its base level, players are handed cards marking them as either villagers or wolves. It’s up to the villagers to find the wolves in their midst and cast them out before the wolves manage to pick the villagers off.

The game can start out simple, but quickly bloom for experienced players thanks to additional roles to keep the game fresh and exciting.

One Night: Ultimate Werewolf is undoubtedly one of the best party games out there right now. With almost no prep of memorization needed, thanks to the integration of a great companion app, Werewolf can be enjoyed in groups of any size at a moment’s notice.

Best Board Games 2024 FAQ

What are are best board games to play in 2024?

Dead of Winter, Betrayal at Baldur’s Gate, Root, Gloomhaven: Jaws of the Lion, Dune Imperium, Alice is Missing, and One Night: Ultimate Werewolf are the best board games to pick up in 2024.

Which board game is the easiest to pick up?

One Night: Ultimate Werewolf is the easiest game presented here for beginners.

Which Board Game takes the longest to play?

Gloomhaven: Jaws of the Lion’s campaign can run for many sessions, and its sessions take around 30-120 minutes.