Today is International Games Day, a time to get together with family, friends, and/or complete strangers to enjoy games of all types. Whether you prefer games with cards, dice, balls, pixels, or my heart, this is the day for you. Libraries around the world, including ours, will be hosting festivities to give their community members places to get their games all kinds of on. From 6 to 8:30 PM tonight (Saturday, November 21), BPL will hold Game Night, our monthly potluck gathering for board game lovers of all ages. We’ve got a large supply of classic and modern board games, as well as giant versions of Jenga, Connect Four, checkers, and Kerplunk, so I encourage you all to take the sage advice of the Offspring and come out and play.
The occasion has gotten me thinking about my favorite games, and I’ve ranked my top 12 below:
12. Monopoly – Even though I never get to win because I’m married to the Michael Jordan of Monopoly (or Cat-opoly, as we like to play), I’m always up to take my thimble for a spin past Go and around the board.
11. Foolish Games – This isn’t even my favorite Jewel song (that would be “You Were Meant For Me”), but it’s a good one.
10. Guitar Hero – If only real guitars had just five buttons, I’d be a regular Hendrix. Not to say it’s always easy to shred on a plastic guitar; Freebird on expert will humble the best of living room rockers.
9. Hockey – Inspired by the Mighty Ducks movies in the ‘90s, roller hockey was my sport of choice in my youth. Sadly, I never did master the knuckle puck.
8. The Hunger Games – As far as I’m concerned, these books are still the gold standard for dystopian YA. The movies aren’t bad, either.
7. Scrabble – Nowadays, I prefer the digital rip off, Words with Friends, but I must give props to the Godfather of Word Games.
6. Apples to Apples – No board game, except for a certain very NSFW spinoff of this game, can make me genuinely laugh out loud more.
5. Craps – There’s something about throwing dice for the minuscule possibility of winning money with the inevitability of ultimately losing money that I find irresistible. Public service announcement: Gambling is bad.
4. Game of Thrones – Highly worth reading and watching if you don’t mind having your heart broken repeatedly by the deaths of important characters.
3. Fantasy football – It requires none of the physical skill of actual football, but despite the opinion of the New York attorney general, is a game of skill.
2. Basketball – Thanks to the awesomeness of Dirk Nowitzki, for the last decade plus, basketball has been my favorite sport to watch and play, even if I am less skilled than most dads you see in pickup games at the Y.
1. The Legend of Zelda – My absolute favorite video game franchise of all time. It makes me happy to see the youth of today come to the library to 3D print ocarinas and Triforces, proving there’s still plenty of Zelda love.
While we won’t have all of these games at Game Night, you’re invited to stop in to play the ones we do have, or bring your own and join gamers across the globe in celebration . When this crazy, workaday world gives you an excuse to relax and play, you should take advantage.