Best Literary Board Games for Book Lovers

Board games and literature give us an escape into a fantastical world of adventure and excitement. It only makes sense that the two often go hand in hand. These games also make excellent gifts for all of the readers, writers, and board gamers in your life! So, without further ado, let’s get whisked away into a literary adventure of the best board games for book lovers.

? Our Top Picks for Best Board Games for Book Lovers

In a hurry? Take a quick peek before you go.

Best Mystery

Sherlock Holmes Consulting Detective: The Thames Murders & Other Cases
Sherlock Holmes is synonymous with intrigue and mystery, and Consulting Detective is one of the best iterations of a Sherlock board game.

Best Deck-Builder

Harry Potter: Hogwarts Battle
Harry Potter Hogwarts Battles puts players in the shoes of fan favorites as you relive and battle and grow over the 7 years at Hogwarts.

Best Overall

Robinson Crusoe: Adventures on the Cursed Island
Robinson Crusoe is a powerhouse in the board game world. It combines amazing cooperative gameplay with an incredibly fun challenge. It’s a classic literary story with a perfect board game adaptation.

#1. Shakespeare: The Bard Game

Shakespeare: The Bard Game Board and Box

Players: 2-5
Playing time: 60mins

Based on: Famous playwright, William Shakespeare

Bardolaters unite! 

Become an Elizabethan theater entrepreneur and stage extraordinary Shakespearean plays!

Shakespeare: The Bard Game centers around players producing plays by collecting scripts, finding actors, gaining props as well as financing the whole production. This game is perfect for drama kids or people who enjoy playing a behind-the-scenes role. 

This game offers different strategies and complexities, keeping the questions interesting! 

Shakespeare: The Bard Game
  • Game Designer: Richard Heffer & Mike Siggins
  • Players: 2-5
  • Playing time: 60 mins

#2. Robinson Crusoe: Adventures on the Cursed Island

Robinson Crusoe: Adventures on the Cursed Island Board Game

Players: 1-4
Playing time: 60-120mins

Based on: Daniel Defoe’s novel, Robinson Crusoe

This one is for the real serious gamers. Buckle down and let the adventure live!

Robinson Crusoe: Adventures on the Cursed Island is a complex cooperative game in which players create their own castaway scenarios. Tasked with building a shelter, exploring the island, warding off dangers, and finding resources, the element of strategy is ever-present. 

With seven different scenarios, you’ll be given different, more difficult, and curious experiences to play. What’s fantastic about this game is you can play it solo if you’re looking for a bit of a challenge or in a cooperative group play. 

This is the ultimate survival game with an immersive storytelling experience. Don’t just read about Robinson Crusoe’s adventures, create them. 

#3. Sherlock Holmes: Consulting Detective

Sherlock Holmes Consulting Detective Single Player Board Game

Players: 1-8
Playing time: 60-120mins

Based on: Arthur Conan Doyle’s fictional character, Sherlock Holmes

Roaming the streets of London, players will try to solve some of the most heinous crimes. Each clue you find will bring you closer to the truth. Will you make the right choice? Can you compare your detective skills to the master detective himself, Sherlock Holmes? 

Sherlock Holmes: Consulting Detective is a cooperative game in which players work together as a detective team to solve mysterious cases. Interview suspects, search the papers, and go to the streets to solve one of the ten epic cases. 

If you’re more of a lone wolf when it comes to solving, no problem! You can play Sherlock Holmes as a single player. Brush up on your skills and catch the bad guy. 

#4. The Witches: A Discworld Game

The Witches Board Game Box and Board

Players: 1-4
Playing time: 90mins

Based on: Sir Terry Pratchett’s Discworld book series

Set in the magical land of Lancre, players take on the roles of witches in training. You’ll learn your craft and deal with the many problems that arise in Discworld, all while coming across some famous and infamous characters in the Discworld series. 

Combat huge crises like an elf invasion or learn to deal with petty problems while keeping an eye on the extremely important ‘cup of tea’.

The Witches board game has options for different styles of play. Play solo, competitively, or cooperate with other players. This opens up the game to incredibly high replayability making it a great purchase, whether you’re a big Terry Pratchett fan or not. 

This is a fantastic game to immerse yourself into the wonderfully wacky Discworld and have a cup of tea if you feel a little ‘Black Aliss’. 

The Witches: A Discworld Game
  • For 1-4 players
  • 45-90 minute playing time
  • Maps out another part of Disc world

#5. Eldritch Horror

Eldritch Horror Board Game

Players: 1-8
Playing time: 120-240mins

Based on: H. P. Lovecraft’s fictional writings

Although horror is in the title, Eldritch Horror is nothing short of a fantastic time. Get lost in the terrifying Lovecraftian world of disturbed souls, lurking creatures, and ancient mysteries.

Eldritch Horror is an ever-popular game of terror and adventure. Across the realm, there are ancient evils, and you and only your most trusted confidants must unite to work against the horrors that lie at the end of the world. 

Eldritch Horror seamlessly combines strategy and cooperation to fight the evils while trying to keep your sanity. With twelve different investigator characters (all with their own inner demons), four Ancient Ones, and many monsters, the game feels unique with every play. 

If you’re a fan of Lovecraft or Arkham Horror and are up for the challenge, play Eldritch Horror (or one of its expansions) before the unspeakable nightmares take over.

Eldritch Horror
  • THRILLING GAME OF TERROR AND ADVENTURE: Ancient evil is stirring...
  • SCARY STRATEGY GAME: Defeat foul monsters, travel to Other Worlds...
  • COOPERATIVE MYSTERY GAME: Brave investigators team up to pit...

#6. Harry Potter: Hogwarts Battle

Harry Potter: Hogwarts Battle Deck-Building Board Game

Players: 2-4
Playing time: 30-60mins

Based on: J. K. Rowling’s Harry Potter book series

If you also didn’t receive your letter to Hogwarts, fear not, us mere muggles have a fantastic board game to delve into the magical world of Harry Potter.

Players will choose the role of one of the beloved characters, Harry Potter, Hermione Granger, Ron Weasley, or Neville Longbottom, all while defending the wizarding world from the forces of evil, A.K.A Voldemort. 

With this cooperative deck-building game, players gain spells, recruit allies, and uncover magical items. Hogwarts Battle has loads of game adventures, all with different difficulty levels, that become progressively more challenging with each exploit unlocked.

This is a fantastic deck-building game that still gives you the feeling of a campaign-type adventure. Speaking as a Ravenclaw, however, one criticism is the game is overt Gryffindor bias.

Only together can evil be defeated and the Hogwarts castle saved from He Who Must Not Be Named. So ready your wand and prepare for battle!

Harry Potter: Hogwarts Battle
  • Play as your favorite character to defend the wizarding world...
  • Gain influence to master powerful spells, recruit allies, and...
  • Enhance your abilities with over 140 cards

#7. Dune

Dune Board Game Box and Components

Players: 2-6
Playing time: 60-180mins

Based on: Frank Herbert’s Dune series

Getting a bit of a revamp from its original early 80s printing, Dune’s updated look does not disappoint. A game of conquest, diplomacy, and betrayal, Dune invites players to recreate the incredible world Frank Herbert conceived. 

Set thousands of years in the future, in Dune the board game you will become one of six leaders, all looking to gain control of the most valuable resources the universe has to offer, melange (a costly mysterious spice that makes space travel and visions of the future possible). 

Dune combines many different strategies of bluffing, fighting, and negotiation. Truly, a game for the diplomats among us. Who will control Dune? A noble, guild, or religious faction? You decide!

Dune
  • Set thousands of years in the future, Dune the board game is...
  • Number of players : 2-6
  • Playing time : 120-180 minutes

Also, be sure to check out Dune: Imperium for some more sci-fi board game excitement in Frank Herbert’s universe.

#8. The Lord of The Rings: Journeys in Middle Earth 

Journeys in Middle Earth Featured Image

Players: 1-5
Playing time: 60-120mins

Based on: J. R. R. Tolkien’s The Lord of The Rings Trilogy

Form your own Fellowship and become heroes of the free people of Middle Earth. The Lord of the Rings: Journeys in Middle Earth is a fully immersive campaign that’ll have the biggest of Tolkienites impressed by the exploration and adventure that the game allows. 

In this cooperative game, you’ll play single adventure games that are all part of a larger campaign. As you explore Middle Earth, players will develop their combat skills, test their wisdom, and develop their survival skills all in the quest to battle the dark forces. With a role-playing mechanism, the iconic world Tolkien created will be brought to life.

As you embark on your adventures from Gondor to the Grey Mountains, remember Gandalf’s wise words, “Go where you must go and hope!”

Lord of the Rings: Journeys in Middle Earth
  • A fully cooperative, app supported board game set in J.R.R;...
  • Form your own fellowship as you become heroes of the free peoples...
  • The immersive companion app guides you through each scenario and...

#9. A Game of Thrones: The Board Game (Second Edition)

A Game of Thrones Board Game Review

Players: 3-6
Playing time: 120-240mins

Based on: George R. R. Martin’s A Song of Ice and Fire series

This board game is somewhat a support animal for those who didn’t read the books or helping Game of Thrones fans overcome a hot mess of a TV series. It’s a comforting distraction when the HBO flashbacks hit. If you did read the books, well good on you, you’re gonna love the intricacy that this board game brings. 

King Robert Baratheon is dead. The land of Westeros is bracing for a battle. Who will claim the Iron throne? In the game, players each take the roles of the Great Houses of Westeros and then set out on an epic battle of politics, alliances, combat, and dominance, but remember… winter is coming. 

A Game of Thrones: The Board Game is a fantastic way to step into this fantasy world and become emersed in the strategy it takes to claim the throne. From being competitive to cooperative, “When you play the game of thrones, you win or you die. There is no middle ground.”

A Game of Thrones: The Board Game (Second Edition)
  • A board game based on A Game of Thrones, a novel now adapted to...
  • 3–6 players take command of the Great Houses of Westeros
  • Updated second edition, incorporates elements of past expansions

#10. Masque of the Red Death 

Masque of the Red Death Board Game Box and Components

Players: 4-7
Playing time: 60-90mins

Based on: Edgar Allen Poe’s short story, The Masque of the Red Death

Poe’s ability to create horror with such ominosity proves to be a fine starting point for this board game of social standing, and survival. 

In Edgar Allen Poe’s sinister short story, Prince Prospero tries to avoid a serious plague, which is known as the Red Death. At a masquerade ball, social climbing is the aim of the game. As midnight approaches, things go horribly wrong. Players must use their deduction and memory skills to be in the Prince’s favor by figuring out which rooms will have the Red Death, all while staying alive. 

Masque of the Red Death
  • Country Of Origin: China
  • Model Number: IDW01379
  • Item Package Dimension: 11.6535432952" L x 11.5748031378" W x...

Wrap Up

We hope you enjoyed our list of the best literary board games for book lovers! Did we miss any of your favorites? Have you tried any on this list? Leave a comment below and let us know some of your favorite literature-inspired board games! (Bonus points for your favorite books too!)

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