Solo Gaming: Good for gamers?

In recent weeks, I’ve noticed that more and more gamers are becoming more comfortable with the idea of Solo Board Gaming.  When I first made Board Game Duel and joined the Twitter community, there was definitely a negative attitude toward solo gaming.  However, a few gamers kept posting about their solo gaming experiences, and it inspired me to get my first solo game: Friday.  Since then, I’ve played Friday dozens of times, reviewed it, and even wrote a blog on strategy tips.

photo-86

Solo gaming for me, is no different than grabbing my 3DS and playing a one player video game.  Sure, there’s more set up, but having that tactile feel of dice or cards is very satisfying.  I think the biggest concern with solo gaming among the board gaming community is that it will replace playing with people.  While this may be the case in a very select few, most people that solo game do have a game group or people they play with somewhat occasionally.

Being a stay at home mom, I am home with a two year old for 8 hours a day.  I love being able to game during the day, and to wind down by playing Friday or Dungeon Roll.  Once my son is older, he’ll become my main gaming partner, but at this point, he’s still learning not to rip the Spot It! cards.  I’m fortunate enough to have a consistent gaming group and a spouse and parents that love gaming, so I’m often playing with people, more often than most people I would guess.

photo-114

I’m still getting into solo gaming, but I hope to add more games to my collection as time goes on.  My favorite games I play solo right now are Friday, Space Hulk: Death Angel, and Dungeon Roll.  I need to try out Firefly, Lewis and Clark, and Gravwell’s solo variants.  For the most part, I like to play solo games that have easy set up and relatively short playing time.  I can’t typically keep my game up for hours at a time, but I hope to one day make my office into a solo gaming/LEGO building room.  For now, I’ll play on my kitchen island, away from the 2 year old’s grasp.

I’m hoping that more gamers will get on board with solo gaming.  It’s not as antisocial as one may think, especially when people are sharing their experiences on social media.  Plus, not everyone has people to play with 100% of the time, and why should we not game simply because there’s no one around?

Need ideas for solo games?

Friday

Space Hulk: Death Angel

Lewis and Clark

Firefly

Viva Java Dice Game

Infection

and many others!  This is just the icing of the cake!  Also, check out Jacob Coon’s posts on solo gaming on Indie Cardboard!  And thanks to Willie Hung (Gameritisguy) for inspiring me to get Friday and Death Angel.

Share

2 thoughts on “Solo Gaming: Good for gamers?

  1. Hi BGD!

    I don’t think gamers are resistant to solitaire board gaming because it will replace people necessarily I think they are hesitant because one of the best things about board gaming is the community and the interactions with the other people at the table.

    Compared to playing Call of Duty against adolescents and hearing swearing and cussing non stop in the lobby–sitting down playing a nice game of King of Tokyo with people of all ages and laughing your head off is an amazing experience.

    What solo gaming brings to the table is the other valuable aspects of board gaming such as entertainment without screen time, intellectual stimulation, helping learn or refresh on the rules of a game, and creativity when people tinker and design solitaire variants.

    Thanks,

    Greg
    Cardboardcrusader.com

    1. I agree that board games are about community for sure. But we don’t always have people to play with, hence why it’s awesome having solo games or solo variants. I also think that playing solo games and sharing experiences on social media is community building as well. I’ve been able to connect with people all over the world when talking about beating a solo game or getting/giving strategy advice, etc.

      I’ve had people tell me they think solo games are anti-social, and that only people who don’t like being with other people like them. That’s why I did my first point, because people actually have told me this. I wanted to bust that myth, that only antisocial people play solo games. I have a couple different game groups a week but I still solo game because I am at home all day with a toddler. I sometimes need that break and want to use my brain. I don’t think games are 100% community/playing with people, but like you said, can be for intellectual challenges and creativity. A huge part of board games is community, but that’s not all there is to games. I often play games because of the intellectual challenge, and many people don’t understand why I want to have optimal strategy. It’s not like all I care about winning, but it’s about finding the strategies that work. To me that is fun, having that challenge. It’s a reason why I love solo games so much. Thanks for your thoughts!

      -Tessa at BGD

Leave a Reply