Engrossed in the world of video games, it’s easy to think the medium has surpassed its table-based counterpart through shiny graphics and only experiences. But the age of board games is far from over, in fact it’s alive and thriving like never before. There’s a frankly overwhelming number of stellar board games out in the world, but finding the time and money to get involved with many of them can be tricky.
Thankfully, many have now made the jump to digital, releasing versions on both Apple’s iOS as well as Android. Tablets and touchscreens offer a great opportunity to try out some real classics at a fraction of the physical game price, as well as letting you take them with you on the move. Read on to discover eight of the best board game apps available on iOS and Android.
Splendor (iOS/Android - $4.99)
An intriguing puzzle of chips and cards, Splendor is one of our favorite board games. Each turn, players choose to either collect three gems from a pool of five colors, or spend them by purchasing cards from a tableau. These cards also count towards your gem totals, and over the course of the game enable you to purchase more expensive cards that are, crucially, worth victory points. It’s a simple game to learn, but the variety of ways you can approach its puzzle makes for an deep and exciting experience each time.
The app is a very faithful conversion, and while you do lose the satisfying weightiness of the gem chips, the structure of the game holds up perfectly. The ability to play it solo against AI is also an option the physical game can’t provide. While competing with AI is usually an inferior experience, Splendor offers a range of AI playstyles to mix things up. The challenge to the game is usually as much of a competition with yourself as it is with your opponents, making it great to delve into for a short commute. The app also offers online play and a selection of challenges to flesh things out a bit.