Five Fave Board Game References

January has 5 weeks in it, so this week I’m giving a little extra. In no particular order, here are 5 of my favorite board game references.

1. Stranger Things | S1E1 – D&D

Taking a page from E.T., Stranger Things opens on a group of kids playing Dungeons and Dragon. Beyond the 80’s set dressing, D&D becomes the lens through which our protagonists understand the supernatural happenings around them. Continue reading “Five Fave Board Game References”

Why do I care about Board Game References?

Anyone who knows me, knows that I love board games. I worked at a board game store, helped out a Board Game Cafe, helped organize a Board game Development Group, orchestrated a MegaGame, and was lead developer at a board game company.

Board Games have been an integral part of my life, and I see them everywhere. It’s only recently that I’ve noticed not everyone sees the board game around them. I like to point them out, and describe how cool they are.

One of my favorite board game references is from a show called RWBY. A team of young women become friends and fight monsters. During their downtime in one episode, they play a board game.

Ruby and Yang, sisters, are competitive but also super entrenched in the drama of the board game. Yang also takes an attack and turns it against Ruby, which is indicative of her melee fighting style.

Weiss grew up in a well to do family, and is confused and disinterested by what appears to be an amalgam of Risk and Yugioh. Well, Weiss is only disinterested until Ruby points out that she’s winning, then Weiss becomes overly invested in the game.

Blake is distracted and frustrated. There’s a real life problem that she’s become obsessed with that’s driving a wedge between her and the rest of the group, and it become obvious how bothered she is by how she’s not interacting with the game. Also, society’s “rules” have never been kind to Blake, so it’s not surprising that a board game would not immediately appeal to her.

When these four characters sit down at a board game, we see a ton of personality, set dressing, and foreshadowing at the same time that the show is being genuinely funny. This is just looking at the characters, too, there are a ton of implications about what it means for the society these young women live in that a board game exists about warring kingdoms.

I . . . won’t usually write these walls of text for the upcoming articles, but I could go on and on. There’s so much depth to these references, that’s what Board Game References is all about.