I am somebody who loves to be challenged, especially when playing cooperatively with other people. When playing cooperative games, I feel most satisfied if I am consistently being challenged throughout the game and have to think careful about what the best move to make is. These five games are some that every move will matter, and while it is possible to win, they provide challenge while playing to each player. I won’t say that these are the most challenging games, but they are some to take a closer look at if you enjoy the satisfying feeling of a difficult win.
- The Grizzled- This game is a wonderful balance of push your luck, resource management, teamwork and communication. Players must be able to work together to get as many cards onto the table each round without making sets of three. It is crucial that players know what to draw, and how to work together to make sure that everyone is able to make it to the end of the deck. Players will frequently lose this game, as finding the right balance and getting the right cards can be difficult.
- Gloomhaven- Gloomhaven, especially at higher difficulty is a test of teamwork and strategy in a way that other dungeon crawlers do not demonstrate. When playing Gloomhaven, players must keep in mind their resources (cards), their health and their objective. If players do not work together, they will likely die quickly.
- Spirit Island- This game is another one where finding player synergy is going to be very important. There are a lot of different aspects going on in Spirit Island. Players must know when to balance being defensive, offensive, and making sure they have the resources needed to complete their turns. Different spirits provide different synergies, so players will have to find a way to make their spirits work together in order to win.
- Arkham or Eldritch Horror- Both of these titles play in a similar way, providing difficultly through balancing resources, luck and planning skills. Players will have to play to each investigators strength while keeping in mind their limited sanity and health. The planning between investigators is crucial, as players may need to share items or clues to meet their objective. Dice rolls in this game can be unforgiving, and if players do not play carefully, it is easy to lose investigators to the various rolls that need to be made.
- Ghost Stories- Ghost Stories is a difficult game that forces players to balance resources, manage threat levels, and being able to adapt to the environment on the board. The difficulty level is high, even on lower difficulties. Players will have to communicate and plan accordingly to be successful, and even then will frequently lose due to unlucky circumstances.
If you are looking for a challenge to play with those are your table, you will not be disappointed by these choices. They provide challenging game play, that will engage players and make them carefully consider the choices in front of them.