Strategy games are games that employ decision-making and tactics; the mechanics of the game rely heavily on logical thinking and execution.
Examples: Chess, Risk, Hive, Settlers of Catan, Power Grid, Carcassone, Magic the Gathering, Ticket to Ride, El Grande, Rummikube, Agricola, Pandemic, Smallworld, Arkham Horror, Castle Panic, Fluxx, Forbidden Island, Gloom, Clue
Library Applications: Tournaments, Live Action Versions, Board Game Nights, Collectible and Trading Game Swaps
Using this type of gaming experience in libraries can be very rewarding but time-consuming if you opt to go the route of planning a live action version. I’ve done several live action games based on popular board games. Here are some examples:
- Vampire Clue. Using the classic game of Clue for inspiration, we created a vampire version which we offered as a celebration of Breaking Dawn’s release (the book, not the movie). There were a few twists to our game: vampires needed a blood bag to make a guess and there were some locked doors that required keys. (If anyone’s interested, shoot me an email and I can provide you templates and rules).
- Medieval Lock-in. We created a large cooperative version of Settlers of Catan for teens to play during an all-night teen lock-in. During the lock-in teens were grouped into four teams which each represented a kingdom. Throughout the night, they would compete in events which could earn them resource cards which would be used to build settlements, roads, and cities on a huge game board.
Gaming tournaments are also a good choice for libraries. We will be hosting our first Magic the Gathering workshop and tournament at the end of March. We are working with the Haunted Game Cafe in Fort Collins who will not only be providing discounted starter decks ($5ea), but they are also providing a Magic Judge (basically a game master who sets up the tournament), and a how-to-play workshop prior to the tournament.
What strategy games have you used in your libraries? What ideas do you have for other ways to use strategy games in libraries?