Best Date Games
john frink
United States
Davis
California
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I've recently reentered the world of dating and it occurred to me that having a light, portable easy to learn, but still interesting game to play on first or second dates might be fun. I don't think any of my current games fit the bill as they are either multiplayer, too long, or too hardt to learn. Please share any ideas you have along with pros/cons in this situation. Thanks!
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1. Board Game: Chess [Average Rating:7.09 Overall Rank:412] [Average Rating:7.09 Unranked]
john frink
United States
Davis
California
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I much prefer Go, Shogi, or Arimaa but many more people know how to play chess.

Pros:
most people know how to play
somewhat portable
some strategy/tactics (at least at the level I play at which isn't very high)

Cons:
dry
reputation
length
may demand too much attention
 
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2. Board Game: Diamant [Average Rating:6.83 Overall Rank:626]
Will Moller
United States
Lincoln
Nebraska
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A pretty easy game to learn, readily available too! My wife loves this game.

Push-your-luck style that doesn't give much advantage to those with experience, so everyone's on equal footing. It has a fun tension about it. Plays quickly, usually you'll want to play several games in one sitting.

Can't think of any serious cons. I suppose it might take at least a few minutes to explain the game, especially if someone isn't experienced with "gaming" in general outside of the standards. Still, pretty easy to learn.
 
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3. Board Game: Backgammon [Average Rating:6.53 Overall Rank:1098]
p55carroll
United States
Minnesota
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I don't know if games are a good idea for dating; I guess it depends on you and your date. But backgammon has been a tried-and-true game for me. Works with my wife, and I don't think I ever met anybody IRL who disliked it. It's quick to set up, easy to teach, portable, fast-paced, and short. It also has a nice balance of chance and skill, IMO.

A couple other good, old standbys are Dominoes and Cribbage (the latter is hard to teach to newcomers, though; better to play with someone who already knows the game).

If you want a modern game with some theme, try something from the Kosmos two-player series.
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4. Board Game: Busen Memo [Average Rating:4.82 Overall Rank:15455]
Thomas Fuhs
United States
Goldsboro
North Carolina
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*sigh* Someone HAD to do it, right?

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5. Board Game: An Enchanting Evening [Average Rating:5.31 Overall Rank:13469]
Leonard Moses II
United States
Hixson
Tennessee
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And yes as a matter of fact I do own it ha ha. Mostly because I didn't pay anything for it and thought it could be funny.
 
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6. Board Game: Takenoko [Average Rating:7.32 Overall Rank:215]
Leonard Moses II
United States
Hixson
Tennessee
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It is girl friendly.
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7. Board Game: Bridge [Average Rating:7.47 Overall Rank:503]
Eddy
Germany
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I haven't been in the date business for a while, so feel free to dismiss my idea here. But your list made me consider what I'd do if I were, and I quickly came up with this...

"Do you play Bridge?"
"No."
"Neither do I. But I have a few friends who do. Would you be interested in learning together, and we'll take them on some day?"

There's a variant called Honeymoon Bridge that's played by two. If my date was interested, we'd try it out. (This probably ain't first-date material.)
 
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8. Board Game: Coloretto [Average Rating:6.97 Overall Rank:487]
Claudine Finlay
United States
Herriman
Utah
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Easy to learn, fast, portable. Others to consider:
Roll Through the Ages: The Bronze Age
YINSH
Hive
And +1 for Takenoko, it's CUTE!!


 
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9. Board Game: Hive [Average Rating:7.33 Overall Rank:204]
Keith Rudolph
Canada
Langdon
Alberta
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Hive immediately comes to mind. Designed for two players, travels easily so you're not confined to a house or table, light rules, easy to learn, and quick to play.
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10. Board Game: Pandemic [Average Rating:7.65 Overall Rank:73]
Keith Rudolph
Canada
Langdon
Alberta
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Pandemic is another one that I used to get my girlfriend into gaming. Another one that's pretty easy on the rules and, as an added benefit, you get to work together for a change instead of competing head-to-head.
 
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11. Board Game: Pinguin-Party [Average Rating:6.35 Overall Rank:2747]
Geert Vinaskov
Belgium
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I've recently re-entered the dating environment also.

And naturally, good gaming girls are hard to come by , and even though I love gaming, I think just talking works better on a date. "Making moves" also is really weird or impossible when gaming, making your move just works plain better when you're talking.

So I tend to play the lighter fare. Short games that are rules light, portable, fluid, accessible, interactive, with enough luck yet not mindless. You can play your best, and probably win, but after a few rounds they should win at least once.

Short games have the benefit that you can keep playing as short or as long as you like. It's low risk: when you start a 30-minute game, and she isn't enjoying herself, there will be tension of the bad kind in the room, and it may affect your self-confidence, my friend. Better to test the waters with a five-minute game. If she enjoys it, you can keep on playing.

I'm not taking these to bars or public places, but when I expect to sleep over, I might slip one or two in my pocket/bag.

Pinguin-Party
Monopoly Deal Card Game
Timeline: Inventions
Cockroach Poker

Girls/women which you're dating probably won't have children themselves. So they love spending time with their nephews and nieces. Gaming easily leads to topics girls/women just love to talk about, such as: their nephews/nieces, children, gifts, friends. When you're having a pleasant conversation you should also be willing to get your mind of the games and give her your full attention: this is a lot easier when playing a five minute game.

Edit1: of all the suggestions in this thread Backgammon is the best. I guess Coloretto is also okay. I don't understand things like Pandemic or Takenoko. What are the logistics there? How are you going to bring a box that large?

Edit2: I see you have Scrabble Slam!. I've tried this, and it went fine. It's easy, fun, and she recognizes the scrabble brand. It isn't ranked in the top 1000 or so, and it isn't a fair game at all. But that's not the point. It gets some adrenaline flowing for a few minutes. Don't play it four more than two or three rounds, and definitly don't play your best here (I find that experienced players school new players in Scrabble Slam). I like the fact that you can make funny words and comment on them.
 
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12. Board Game: 2 de Mayo [Average Rating:6.96 Overall Rank:1052]
♬♪♪ ♫ ♩ ♫♫♪ ♩♬♪ ♫
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MURRUMBEENA
Victoria
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Obviously a date game.
 
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