The 7 Best Collaborative Board Games for Cooperative Teamwork

These cooperative board games won’t rip a group of friends apart like some other games are known to do.

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A lot of people think of board games as a head-to-head activity where each player is tasked with taking out their opponents for their own benefit.

But there’s actually an entirely different type of board game where each player works together in an attempt to best some sort of greater problem: the collaborative, cooperative board game.

These collaborative board games won’t rip a group of friends apart. Instead, these games will actually help you and your friends form a closer bond as you work together toward victory.

Not only are these games good for bonding, but they’re incredibly fun. If you and your friends love board games (or you have a group of friends you’re trying to turn onto board games), these collaborative board games are perfect for you.

1. Gloomhaven

When it comes to collaborative board games, few are as beloved as Gloomhaven. The game has a staggering 8.9 on BoardGameGeek, which is extremely high.

It’s one of those games that’s meant to be played over the course of numerous play sessions, giving your character time to grow and your story a chance to develop. The card system is innovative, and the story feels a bit like a choose your own adventure book.

2. Horrified

Horrified is a game about survival. The players are being stalked by the infamous Universal Monsters, and they need to fulfill certain requirements to bring the monsters down before the monsters get them and the villagers they’re trying to protect.

Each of the seven monsters has its own mechanics, with some being more difficult than others. This creates some fantastic replay value.

3. Pandemic

If you haven’t heard of Pandemic, I have to assume you’ve been living under the proverbial rock, because this is one of the first collaborative board games most players are introduced to.

The game is well over 10 years old, and it remains incredibly popular all this time later. In this game of world-ending disease, each player takes on a different role, creating plenty of different strategies and ways to play.

4. Mysterium

Mysterium is another game that’s been very well-reviewed by BGG with a solid 7.4 rating. If you like Clue but want a game with more depth, Mysterium is perfect for you.

One thing that makes Mysterium a fantastic option is the fact that it’s not too difficult to learn, so even if you and your friends are casual board game players, you should be able to dig in and enjoy the ghostly experience.

5. Betrayal at House on the Hill

Betrayal at House on the Hill is an interesting game because it starts out as a coop game and evolves into an asymmetrical head-to-head game where one player becomes the bad guy.

Players are tasked with exploring and designing a mansion while one player ends up betraying the group, leading to a second phase of the game where the remaining players are forced to take down the backstabber.

It’s fun, and it almost feels like playing two separate games.

6. Zombicide: Black Plague

Zombiecide: Black Plague is kind of like the video game Left for Dead in board game form, set in a medieval setting.

Each player takes on the role of a survivor, and they work together to live through attacks from hordes of zombies. It has lots of replay value with multiple scenarios, the ability to download more from the developer, or the ability to create your own.

It has a solid 7.7 on BoardGameGeek, which definitely makes it worth playing for anyone who loves zombies and cooperative board games.

7. Spirit Island

Spirit Island is one of the better-reviewed coop games on BGG with a rating of 8.3. It’s also one of the heaviest games in terms of difficulty, so this is one you’re going to want to save for your more experienced board game friends.

Each player is a spirit of the land with its own special powers. They are attempting to defend their island from conquering invaders.

The 7 Deadly Sins of Game Night

Are you sick of people ruining game night with bad manners?

Maybe you’re reluctant to say anything because you don’t want to cause trouble. Or maybe you’ve already told them off multiple times and you’re starting to feel like a broken record.

We’ve created a nifty PDF that you can print out and stick on the wall. It highlights the 7 Deadly Sins of Game Night, which you can use as a reference for all players during game night.

Download the cheat sheet below and you’ll never have to directly confront anyone about their behavior. If anyone fights back, just tell them that whatNerd says they’re wrong!

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