Exercising your brain doesn’t have to be a strenuous task. We compiled a list of board games that’ll help your productivity skills.
Board games have been shown to increase numerous skills to benefit our minds. From memory and cognitive skills to emotional development, board games can improve your thinking and strategy, by extension improving your productivity.
Not only are board games helpful for individuals. They can also be played at work. Studies have shown that ‘play at work’ can increase employees’ happiness, teamwork, productivity, and performance outcome. Whatever the setting, give these best productivity board games a try!
Table of Contents
🏆 Our Top Picks for Best Productivity Board Games
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Best Games to Boost Productivity
The greatest job in the world? A panda caretaker.
Long, long ago, the Emperor of China offered the Emperor of Japan a Giant Panda to restore peace. Your task is to care for this politically-important Panda. Tend to bamboo gardens, and make sure the panda has lots of food to eat.
Takenoko is all about creating a productive system for your Panda. You’ll need to multitask: cultivating land plots, installing irrigation systems, and growing the bamboo plantation. It seems like a simple farming and territory-building board game, but Takenoko throws a few curveballs in your way. The weather can change with each turn and players must prepare for the temperamental environment.
Castles of Burgundy
Playing time: 30-90 mins
The Renaissance is approaching. Do you have what it takes to propel your estate to prosperity?
Based in France, you’re an influential prince in the 15th century. With immense power, your goal is to build the Burgundian estate to become the most prosperous monarchy in all the land.
Castles of Burgundy is an ideal game to stimulate your mind as it’s in-depth with highly strategic challenges. Giving players a variety of gameplay, players must make decisions carefully as they lead their realm to fortune and prestige.
It takes a lot to assure your estate is top-notch. Juggling many different responsibilities such as agriculture, trading, and building roads all help with city development. Like all successful cities, the realm must focus on developing academia, ensuring long-lasting growth.
Playing time: 60-120 mins
Trade, build, settle. This modern classic is the ultimate productivity game.
As adventurous settlers try to tame the rich isle of Catan, players embark on a quest to monopolize the land. Catan will have players strategizing how to balance the many different resources needed to settle.
Taking control of the resource-rich areas, you’ll spread your settlers across the hexagon board. Building roads, negotiating trade, and developing cities are just a few responsibilities you’ll face along the way.
If you can think strategically and get creative, you’ll successfully build your way to victory!
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Playing time: 30-45 mins
In Portugal, the Royal Palace of Evora invites artists to design beautifully ornamented walls. The king has been struck by the Moorish style of decorative tiles. Compete for the best-arranged tiles but make sure you have none left over.
In Azul, players take turns selecting tiles, taking matching tiles from the disc. The goal is to create matching rows in your display, however, you’ll lose points if you have leftover tiles. The choices are simple but meaningful decision-making is what gives Azul such depth.
Creating patterns while foreseeing your competitor’s moves takes skill. It’ll have you playing Azul again and again!
If making it to Mars seemed like a big step, taming the Red Planet is only the beginning.
Terraforming Mars is a fantastic science-fiction game. In trying to make Mars habitable, innovation is needed to advance human infrastructure. In the 2400s, mankind has begun to terraform Mars. The task is not so simple. Giant corporations must work together in the process to complete the huge projects needed such as raising the temperature, oxygen levels, and increasing ocean coverage.
Although this is a cooperative game, each player takes on the role of a different corporation. By completing brave and commendable tasks, you’ll compete for victory points, giving Terraforming Mars a nice balance of competition and cooperation.
Will your corporation start the beginning of a new era?
Kemet: Blood and Sand
Playing time: 90-120 mins
In Kemet: Blood and Sand, each player takes on the role of an Egyptian god at war, seeking to dominate with each battle. This challenging wargame has players immersed in the rich world of the Nile Delta, using tactics and developing strategies in the name of victory. By combining divine powers, your god must build pyramids, win battles, and take control of temples.
Buying powers and mythical creatures will help your troops sing the song of war as they enter brutal battles for their divine master, your god.
Will you crush your rivals and reign supreme?
Playing time: 30-60 mins
Nova Luna is a family-friendly game, in which every decision has far-reaching consequences. Full of strategic decisions, players look at the new moon as a time to think about the future and take the first steps to complete tasks. With a moon clock, a time component encourages players to think quickly while making the right decisions.
Nova Luna is a tile-placement, tableau-building game in which players place beautiful tiles. By drafting tiles, you’ll seek to create abstract combos on a moon wheel. With every new tile bringing a task, problem-solving skills are tested as you try to cope with each new strategy the moon wheel throws at you.
Playing time: 100 mins
2,000 years ago, the mighty Roman Empire ruled the lands around the Mediterranean Sea. Dynasties thrived through peace and order within the provinces. Guide your dynasty by sending colonists to spread the Empire to new realms.
Concordia is a peaceful strategy game but with intense economic development. With no luck component, players must fully rely on their strategic skills to ensure their dynasty is the most productive. In this game, it’s of the utmost importance to plan and consider your opponent’s moves. Outpace your rivals by determining which goals they are pursuing.
While figuring out your rival’s moves, you’ll also have to focus on developing trade and expanding the great realm. Appease the ancient gods to stand a chance to emerge victoriously!
Euphoria: Build a Better Dystopia
Playing time: 60 mins
Who doesn’t enjoy a good dystopian game? Why not increase your productivity skills while building a better dystopia?
Euphoria: Build a Better Dystopia is a worker-placement game in which the dice determine your worker’s abilities. Each die represents the worker’s knowledge that you’ll compare with other players. The more workers you have, the more knowledge you gain, which will help you discover the twisted dystopian world around you. But be careful, don’t let the masses learn too much… or they’ll rebel.
The path to victory is paved on the hard work of your workers and the tunnels they dig to explore other areas of the world. Gather rare artifacts and forge alliances to discover what you are willing to sacrifice to build a better dystopia.
Playing time: 60-150 mins
Joining a mythical cult has never been more fun!
Terra Mystica has mermaids, witches, dwarves, giants, halflings, alchemists, and fakirs expanding lands and developing resources.
In Terra Mystica, players govern one of 14 factions. Trying to tame the lands and build structures will take strategy and compromise. Building far from other players allows your faction to expand, but building close to other factions gives you some added benefits.
In this dense territory-building game, nothing is left to luck. Strategic planning is rewarded. Terra Mystica is a perfect-information abstract strategy board game. Only your skills and abilities will enable your faction to join one of four religious cults.
Here’s to getting things done! We hope you enjoyed our list of the best productivity board games! These types of games are sure to improve your critical thinking skills, helping you to strategize on the tabletop and in your everyday life. Playing productivity board games can make you smarter, more creative, more productive, and better at resource management and abstract thinking.
Have you tried any of the games on this list? Did we miss any that you think should be here? Drop a comment below and let us know. We’d love to hear from you!
Ready Player Christine. Since my first D&D game, which took a turn for the weird and wacky (probably my influence), the world of board and tabletop games came alive. Now today, I get to write about these fantastical, fictional, and downright fun worlds.