Board game deals round-up

Board game deals round-up

Where to buy popular games, including £16 Articulate (normally £33) and £13 Scrabble (normally £21)

Board games are an integral Christmas Day activity for many, as well as a good idea for a gift with plenty of mileage, so we've rounded up the best deals on some of the most popular titles. As some of us may not be able to physically play board games together still this year, we've also suggested how you can adapt a few of the most popular games to play virtually. 

If you're buying a game online to play on Christmas Day, be sure to check each retailer's website for details of when you need to order by to get it delivered in time for Christmas. See our Last order dates blog for a round-up of the deadlines for free and cheap delivery for top retailers.

When doing our research, we found that prices on Amazon change very frequently – so always double check you're getting the best deal before buying. 

🏆 Most popular and highest rated board games 🏆

We researched the best board games by scanning review listicles and best seller lists (find our sources below), and collating some of the titles which appeared most often. The results cover both new and classic games, and varying levels of difficulty. For more about how to play each game, see 'What's the gist?' below each table. 

Board game Lowest prices we found How easy is this to play over video call? Is there an online version instead?
Articulate! £16 at TK Maxx, £16.99 at Aldi* (normally up to £33)
Easy – it has an online version of the game (see right). Yes – for free via the Articulate! virtual cards, specially launched for lockdown.
Gloomhaven

£103.20 at Amazon* (normally up to £139.99)

Not possible – you can't play over a call. No – there's no online version.
Ticket to Ride
£27.29 at Zatu, £30.95 at Amazon*, (normally up to £39.99) Not possible – you can't play over a call. Yes – via an app (currently £4.99 via Google Play or £5.99 on the App Store).
Scrabble
£10.39 at Amazon* £13 at Argos* (normally up to £21) Difficult – you'd need to make sure the same letters were removed from each player's bag each time. No – but there are free apps such as WordFeud which let you play a similar game with friends via your phone.
Pandemic £24.99 at Smyths Toys, £26.09 at Zatu (normally up to £40) Not possible – you can't play over a call. Yes – you can play virtually online for £7.19 on Steam.
Carcassonne
£25.09 at Zatu, £25.99 at Amazon* (normally up to £35) Easy – it has an online version of the game. Yes – thanks to the free online version at BoardGameArena.
Exploding Kittens
£10 at Amazon*,  £12.90 at OnBuy (normally up to £20) Not possible – you can't play over a call. Yes – via an app currently £1.79 via Google Play or the App Store for the same price.
Five Second Rule £16.99 at Very (normally up to £20)  Bit fiddly – one household could manoeuvre the pieces and read from the cards while other households could shout out answers. No – there's no online version.
Cards Against Humanity (family edition) £23.44 at Amazon*, £24.99 at John Lewis* (normally up to £30) Easy – you'd all need to print free pack from the Cards Against Humanity website. To save paper, consider downloading and viewing onscreen instead. Yes – you can download for free from the Cards Against Humanity website.
Prices checked at 4.09pm on Tue 21 Dec

🎲 Classic board games 🎲

Board game Lowest prices we found How easy is this to play over video call? Is there an online version instead?
Jenga £9.99 at Amazon*, £10 at Argos*, £11.99 at Very (normally up to £15) Not possible – need to be in the same room to play. No – there's no online version.
Connect 4 £9.60 at Argos*, £9.99 at Smyths Toys (normally up to £12) Bit fiddly – one person would need to put all the tokens in. Yes – via an app (currently free via App Store or Google Play).
Monopoly £13.60 at Argos*, £13.99 at Smyths Toys, £18.99 at Zatu, £19.54 at Amazon* (normally up to £24) Bit fiddly – each player would need to move/place all pieces on their own board. Yes – via an app (currently £4.49 via Google Play and £3.49 via the App Store).
Prices checked at 4.20pm on Tue 21 Dec

⭐ Top board game picks from MSE HQ ⭐

Board game Lowest prices we found How easy is this to play over video call? Is there an online version instead?
Dobble
MSE Laura B's pick
£9.27 at Onbuy, £13.40 at Amazon* (normally up to £13) Possible – for some versions, you'd all need your own pack.(See Connect and Play for which versions can be played virtually). No – there's no online version.
Dominion
MSE Laura F's pick
£44.99 at Amazon* Not possible – you can't play over a call. Yes – there's a free Dominion online version.
What do you Meme?
MSE Sarah's pick
£24.99 at Smyths Toys, £27.99 at Amazon* (normally up to £28)
Not possible – you can't play over a call. No – there's no online version.
Cluedo
MSE Rhiannon's pick
£14.99 at Very, £14.99 at WHSmith (normally up to £25) Possible – so long as one person has the set, they can move pieces for everyone. Yes – it's £11.99 on Steam or there's an app (currently £4.49 via Google Play or the App Store)
Guess Who? Norwich City FC edition
MSE Kelvin's pick
£24 at Official Norwich City FC Merchandise. Not available elsewhere Possible – you'd all need your own (same version) board. Yes – Twinkl has a free printable Guess Who-style game.
Linkee
MSE Laura F's pick
£19.59 at WHSmith, (normally up to £28) Easy – only one person needs a pack. Everyone else can listen and call out. No – there's no online version. 
The Mind
Whole team's pick
£7.95 at Chaos Cards, (normally £10.99) Possible – each player could use a random number generator to get a number/s, then call it out rather than producing a card. Yes – there's an app (currently £2.69 via Google Play)
Prices checked at 4.20pm on Tue 21 Dec
  • What's the gist?

    Here's a little more information about each of the board games above: 

    Board game What's the gist?
    Dobble

    MSE Laura B's pick

    A lightning-speed, high-energy set of games revolving around matching symbols.

    Ages 8+

    Dominion

    MSE Laura F's pick

    Build your empire through strategic card play.

    Ages 13+

    What do you Meme?

    MSE Sarah's pick

    Match photo cards with caption cards to get the biggest laughs.

    Ages 17+

    Cluedo

    MSE Rhiannon's pick

    Work out the murderer, weapon and scene of the crime.

    Ages 8+

    Guess Who? Norwich City FC edition

    MSE Kelvin's pick

    Ask yes/no questions to deduce your opponent's identity.

    Ages 6+

    Linkee

    MSE Laura F's pick

    Work out the answers to four questions and the connection between them.

    Ages 14+

Other ways to buy

If you're not fussed about buying games brand new, MSE Rhiannon suggests checking your local charity shop for bargain board games:

I've seen popular games like Trivial Pursuit and Cluedo for £3. Plus, if they're old enough, you might be able to sell them on eBay after you're done with them – 90s games like Grape Escape sell for around £20 each.

More virtual games

If you'd rather keep your gaming solely in cyberspace, if the games listed above don't take your fancy, there are plenty of free sites you can use to find games of your choice.

BoardGameArena features a selection of popular games and lets you play online against friends or strangers. If you've had enough of board games after reaching this section, you might prefer the free quizzes over at Sporcle.

If your Christmas game-playing usually involves a festive tipple, see our Christmas bubbly deals.