Corona quarantine got you BORED? Here are the best family BOARDGAMES to lighten the viral load

Rob Eno

Stuck at home with the family because of coronavirus and looking for things to do? It's a perfect time to join the boardgame renaissance and dive into one of these top five family boardgames. These games and the hundreds of others now available, teach valuable critical thinking skills, and most importantly are a welcome distraction from the digital – and viral – age we live in.

Grizzled old veteran boardgamers such as myself would call most of these games, gateway-games. Easy to play and as the name implies, a gateway to the hobby.

Here's the list:

Catan, aka Settlers of Catan: It's hard to believe but this game has been around for 25 years. Catan is the first German style, or "Euro" game, to crossover into the U.S. market. Germans have had a long history of enjoying boardgames with families and many of us in the hobby during the 1990s would import these games from German online sellers and search out translated rules. Catan was one of the first of these games to be brought to the US market and take off.



In Catan you play one of two to four settlers of a small island, don't worry if your family is larger there's an expansion that lets you play with up to six. The island consists of hexes that represents different types of land where resources can be gathered, wood in the forest, ore in the mountains, brick in the clay pits, wheat in the fields, and sheep in the pastures.

Each hex has a randomly assigned number on it. On your turn you roll and everyone gets the resources on the hexes they have a settlement placed on the number rolled. On your turn you get to build settlements, roads, cities, or development cards with the resource cards you've collected. You can also trade with other players for their resources. You'll get the hang of it and be saying, "I'll give you a sheep for two wood," in no time.

The winner is the first person to reach 10 points. Catan is a great way to teach your family networking, resource management, and valuable trading skills. Plus it's a heck of a lot of fun.

Ticket to Ride: 'Ticket to Ride' is the first game of the boardgame renaissance to go mainstream. It was one of the first of the new style boardgames to find its way into Target and Walmart. In the game you are building out a rail network by drawing cards of different colors. When you have the right number of cards for a particular rail link you lay the cards down, rummy style, and build out that link.



You score more points for longer links. But there's a catch. Each player also has secret network cards that are worth points at the end of the game if they can complete them. The other players don't know which card you have.

Ticket to ride is a game where you only need to know how to count, and see colors. It's a perfect gateway-game. And if you like it there are more versions set all over the world.

Space Base: I've tried for years to find the right game to get my parents, who love playing card and dice games, into the hobby. The game that finally did it, after 25 years of trying is Space Base, they play the game multiple times every night. Like Catan, in Space Base there is little down-time as you get to do things on other players turns.



In the game, you're the admiral of a fleet of ships setting out on a cross galactic voyage. You have ships of different values from one to 12 – the numbers you can roll on two six sided dice. On your turn, roll the dice and add activate one or two cards using the two dice. Roll snake eyes, you can either activate your two card once, or your one card twice.

Here's the cool part, your opponents get to activate all the cards they've got in those slots on the top row of their board when you roll. You put cards on the top row after you've bought a new card for the slot. Often your most powerful actions happen on other people's turns.

If waiting for the other four people to go in Monopoly is why you hate boardgames, the constant player interaction in this game is a treat.

Dixit: Dixit is a great game that will appeal to the more creative people in your family. It's a game that falls in the charades family where you're guessing based off of things people do. In this case it's the beautiful piece of art you lay down.



Players have a hand of art cards. When it's your turn, you lay down a card and say a phrase. For instance, if there's a lion and a metal funnel in the picture you may say "The Wizard of Oz." Then other people will play image cards that match, as best they can, your phrase.

The cards are randomly arranged, and players get points for people who guess that their card was the card the active player – you played.

Wingspan: The newest game on this list is also the most educational. Wingspan was the runaway hit of 2019. In it you are running your own bird sanctuary. As you build out your sanctuary the actions you can take grow. In the hobby this is called an engine-building game.



The birds have powers that are based upon their real world traits. This is a science lesson disguised as a game with Audobon fieldbook quality art.

Your birds need to eat, lay eggs, and yes even kill other birds in order to survive. It's tremendously more fun than a game about birds should be.

Don't have these games yet? Don't worry, most of them are readily available on Amazon and other online retailers. It should only take a day or so for them to be delivered. If you've found yourself hooked on the hobby after trying these games, check out BoardGameGeek.com. It's the world's largest on-line community of boardgamers and has the most extensive database of games available.

Jump in, and have fun.

Everything comes down to the two Senate runoffs in Georgia. If we lose both races, we lose the country. Democrats know this and are pouring in millions to usher in a Marxist agenda.

As the Left tries to hide how radical the two candidates really are, Glenn takes us inside the Democrat war room to expose the wolf in pastor's clothing, Raphael Warnock, and America's Justin Trudeau, Jon Ossoff. Socialism, the Green New Deal, and "defund the police" are all on the table. And Glenn warns of what's to come if conservatives don't activate: Chuck Schumer will weaponize the Senate, and the radical Left will launch an all-out assault to ravage the Constitution.

Watch the full special below:

The election and its aftermath are the most important stories in America. That's why we're offering our most timely discount ever: $30 off a one-year subscription to BlazeTV with code "GLENN." With BlazeTV, you get the unvarnished truth from the most pro-America network in the country, free from Big Tech and MSM censors.

Sen. Ted Cruz (R-Texas) joined the "Glenn Beck Radio Program" to explain how mail-in ballots are typically disqualified during recounts at a far higher rate than in-person, Election Day ballots, and why this is "good news" for President Donald Trump's legal battle over the election.

"One of the things that gives the greatest cause for optimism is, this election ... there's a pretty marked disparity in terms of how the votes were distributed. On Election Day, with in-person voting, Donald Trump won a significant majority of the votes cast on in-person voting on Election Day. Of mail-in voting, Joe Biden won a significant majority of the votes cast early on mail-in voting," Cruz explained.

"Now, here's the good news: If you look historically to recounts, if you look historically to election litigation, the votes cast in person on Election Day tend to stand. It's sort of hard to screw that up. Those votes are generally legal, and they're not set aside. Mail-in votes historically have a much higher rate of rejection … when they're examined, there are a whole series of legal requirements that vary state by state, but mail-in votes consistently have a higher rate of rejection, which suggests that as these votes begin being examined and subjected to scrutiny, that you're going to see Joe Biden's vote tallies go down. That's a good thing," he added. "The challenge is, for President Trump to prevail, he's got to run the table. He's got to win, not just in one state but in several states. That makes it a lot harder to prevail in the litigation. I hope that he does so, but it is a real challenge and we shouldn't try to convince ourselves otherwise."

Watch the video clip below to catch more of the conversation:

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Fox News senior meteorologist Janice Dean is perhaps even more disgusted with New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo (D) for his coronavirus response than BlazeTV's Stu Burguiere (read what Stu has to say on the subject here), and for a good reason.

She lost both of her in-laws to COVID-19 in New York's nursing homes after Gov. Cuomo's infamous nursing home mandate, which Cuomo has since had scrubbed from the state's website and blamed everyone from the New York Post to nursing care workers to (every leftist's favorite scapegoat) President Donald Trump.

Janice joined Glenn and Stu on the "Glenn Beck Radio Program" Tuesday to ask why mainstream media is not holding Gov. Cuomo — who recently published a book about his leadership during the COVID-19 pandemic — accountable?

"I'm vocal because I have not seen the mainstream media ask these questions or demand accountability of their leaders. [Cuomo] really has been ruling with an iron fist, and every time he does get asked a question, he blames everybody else except the person that signed that order," Janice said.

"In my mind, he's profiting off the over 30 thousand New Yorkers, including my in-laws, that died by publishing a book on 'leadership' of New York," she added. "His order has helped kill thousands of relatives of New York state. And this is not political, Glenn. This is not about Republican or Democrat. My in-laws were registered Democrats. This is not about politics. This is about accountability for something that went wrong, and it's because of your [Cuomo's] leadership that we're put into this situation."

Watch the video excerpt from the show below:

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As America grows divided and afraid to disagree with the Democrats' woke plan for America, Megyn Kelly is ready to fight back for the truth. For nearly two decades, she navigated the volatile and broken world of the media. But as America leans on independent voices more than ever, she's breaking new ground with "The Megyn Kelly Show."

She joined the latest Glenn Beck Podcast to break down what's coming next after the election: Black Lives Matter is mainstream, leftists are making lists of Trump supporters, and the Hunter Biden scandal is on the back burner.

Megyn and Glenn reminisce about their cable news days (including her infamous run-in with then-presidential candidate Donald Trump) and to look into the chaotic and shady world of journalism and the growing entitlement it's bred. For example, many conservatives have been shocked by how Fox News handled the election.

Megyn defended Fox News, saying she believes Fox News' mission "is a good one," but also didn't hold back on hosts like Neil Cavuto, who cut off a White House briefing to fact check it — something she never would have done, even while covering President Obama.

Megyn also shared this insightful takeaway from her time at NBC: "Jane Fonda was an ass."

Watch the full podcast here:

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Subscribe to Glenn Beck's channel on YouTube for FREE access to more of his masterful storytelling, thought-provoking analysis and uncanny ability to make sense of the chaos, or subscribe to BlazeTV — the largest multi-platform network of voices who love America, defend the Constitution and live the American dream.