The Daily Worker Placement

Saturday, May 18, 2024

Board Game Dictionary #3

by | published Friday, January 2, 2015

Area Control/Majority Games
You’ve played an area control game, or at least you’ve heard of one. Probably the most famous is RISK, but area control is any game where you are pitting your forces against the other players to capture portions of the board. Usually these battles take place on a map. Themes can range between Calvary and Infantry battles for global domination to a fantasy world where flying giants fight wealthy ghouls! Battle victories can be determined by dice, cards, or pure number superiority. Some games are won on points, others won’t end until there’s only one person left standing. The big thing you want to consider before sitting down to an area control game is ‘Are these friendships important to me?’

Some examples of GREAT Area Control Games: RISK: Legacy, Small World, 1812: The Invasion of Canada, Kemet

Cooperative Games
Sick of tearing your friends apart on the field of battle? Looking for a world where you can all just get along? Cooperative games have you covered. They are designed to be played together as a team against the mechanics of the game itself. You will be working with your teammates to solve a problem while the game will throw challenge after challenge in your direction. They can be a welcome relief, especially if you often play with overly competitive people. The only major problem with cooperative games is that they often suffer from the ‘Alpha Player’ syndrome. Now I know you’re asking yourself ‘What’s an Alpha Player?’Pandemic

Some examples of GREAT Cooperative Games: Pandemic, Mice and Mystics, Hanabi, Forbidden Desert

Alpha Player
Alpha Players usually make an appearance in team or corporative games. They know the game best and they know the right move to make in any situation. An alpha player will spend the round ‘helping’ other players optimize their move. To be fair most alpha players have the best intentions at heart. They’re just used to analyzing the best move for themselves. Throw them in a situation where they have to cooperate and they can tend to take over. Playing a game with them can often feel like sitting on the sidelines and watching. Your power for decision making stripped from you, sit back, wish them the best and vow to destroy them in the next head to head battle you have.


  • Sean J.

    Sean is the Founder and Photographer for the DWP. He has been gaming all his life. From Monopoly and Clue at the cottage to Euchre tournaments with the family, tabletop games have taken up a lot of his free time. In his gaming career he has worked for Snakes & Lattes Board Game Cafe, Asmodee, and CMON. He is a contributor to The Dice Tower Podcast and has written for Games Trade Magazine and Meeple Monthly. He lives and works in Toronto.

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