10 Easy-To-Store Games

November 2014 Hannah Smith

When it comes to houseboating, space is one of the most important factors. So here is a list of our top 10 space-saving games that you can keep onboard without worrying about big bulky boxes with a million little pieces.

Nada

Nada is played with 36 dice in three rounds. The first round starts by rolling six orange dice and six white dice. The players must search for matching symbols on the dice and shout out the symbol before anyone else can. The first person to call a match gets to collect all the dice holding that symbol and roll the remaining dice again. If there are no matches, the first player to yell Nada gets to collect the remaining dice. The next two rounds are carried out the same way. At the end of the three rounds, the one with the most dice wins. 

Our Take

This game is a great onboard game because of its compact size and fun logos. Make it even more fun by giving bonuses to the player who finds matching nautical dice. Be careful with the pieces though; if a die goes overboard the game is over.

Ages: 7 and up

Players: 2-4

Contents: 36 dice and a travel bag

Price: $14.99

www.blueorangegames.com

Monopoly Deal

In Monopoly Deal, each player starts with five cards. On each turn the players must pick up two cards and can play only three. There are three different types of cards to play: money cards, property cards and action cards. The action cards have specific actions, such as taking money from another player or drawing two more cards. The player who completes three sets of properties first wins the game.

Our Take

No one wants to take the six hours required to play monopoly and no one wants to deal with all those ridiculous pieces in the box. This is why Monopoly Deal is a better option for your houseboat. It requires no more space than a deck of cards and it doesn’t require much time. It is a good strategy game that will be entertaining without being overwhelming with space, time and patience. 

Ages: 8 and up

Players: 2-5

Content: 110 playing cards

Price: $5.99

www.hasbro.com

Farkle

Farkle is played by taking turns rolling six standard dice. On the first turn a player must score 1,000 points to mark. Points are determined by the dice: a one equals 100 points, five equals 50 points, and three of a kind is worth 100 times the number rolled. After the first turn the players can decide to either stop after reaching 350 points or continue to roll. If on any roll, a player doesn’t roll any scoring dice, they have “Farkled” and lose their running points and their turn has ended. After three Farkles in a row, the player is penalized 1,000 points. The first player to reach 10,000 points wins.

Our Take

All you need to enjoy a fun game of Farkle is six dice and a piece of paper to keep score.

Farkle is a good option because it require little to no storage and can be entertaining for hours at a time. 

Ages: 8 and up

Players: 2-8

Contents: 6 dice

Price: $9.95

www.pocketfarkel.com

Phase 10

Phase 10 is a game with 10 rounds played. Each round holds a different challenge or level of play. The goal is to complete the challenge, such as collecting two sets of three of the same number, and end the round. Those who are able to complete the challenge before a player has discarded all their cards is able to move on to the next round. Those players who do not complete the challenge must stay on that level and try again the next round. The first player to complete the 10 phases wins the game.

Our Take

Phase 10 is a good choice because it is a fun game that has different challenges each round. It can be played with a big group and makes for a lot of fun and laughter.

Ages: 8 and up

Players: 2-6

Contents: 108 playing cards and reference cards

Price: $5.54

www.mattel.com

Shrimp Cocktail

Shrimp Cocktail is played by flipping over a shrimp card into one of the three fishing zones set up around the players. If all three fishing zones have matching shrimp, the first player to grab the squeaky starfish in the middle of the playing area gets to collect all the shrimp cards from the fishing zones. The shrimp can be matched according to their size, origin, color or quantity. The game is played until no one has any more shrimp cards left to play. The player with the biggest haul wins.

Our Take

The game is housed in a small container, which is perfect for storing in those small spaces on your boat. Despite the age rating, younger kids seem to enjoy it as well. The fun fishing theme makes it the perfect game for those quiet nights on the houseboat, maybe with a delicious shrimp cocktail in your hand.

Ages: 7 and up

Players: 2-6

Contents: 81 shrimp cards, 3 fishing zones, 1 squeaky starfish

Price: $14.99

www.blueorangegames.com 

Mao

Mao is like the card game Uno but with a fun twist. Players who have never played before are not taught the rules but must learn through trial and error. Players are also forbidden to speak during the game except when changing the suit or issuing a penalty card. It is played with a standard deck of cards where seven is a skip card and eight is a reverse card. Players are dealt seven cards and the goal of the game is to be the first one out of cards. The player that runs out of cards shouts Mao and that round is over. The winning player gets to create a new rule for the next round, but does not tell any other player what the rule is.

Our Take

This game is fun for all ages and rules can be adapted for each situation. This keeps the simple card game fun for a long period of time.

Ages: 7 and up

Players: 3-8

Contents: Standard playing deck

Price: $4.78 for two decks

Spot It

Spot It is played by quickly matching one of the eight symbols on each player’s card with the top card on the draw pile. The first player to find and say their matching symbol wins that card and gets to put it on top of their draw pile. The player with the most cards in their pile after the draw pile is empty, wins.

Our Take

It seems easy, but don’t be fooled. Spot It can be a frustrating and fun game. The symbols seem to blend in and after a few rounds you think you see stuff that isn’t there. It comes in a nice compact container and contains minimal pieces so it won’t fill up all the extra space on your boat.

Ages: 7 and up

Players: 2-8                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                   Contents: 55 cards

Price: $12.99

www.blueorangegames.com

Spoons

Spoons is played with a deck of cards and a spoon for every player but one. The dealer deals four cards to every player. The game is started by the dealer picking a card from the draw pile and passing a card to the dealer’s left. Each player will pick up the card that was left by the player to their right and discard one to their left. This continues until a player gets four of one number in their hand and grabs a spoon from the middle, causing everyone else to grab the remaining spoons. The player left without a spoon is out of the game and the next round starts with one less spoon. The last player holding a spoon at the end of the game wins.

Our Take

This is a fun and exciting game that can be played with all ages. It also requires little storage space and can just be played with equipment already found on your boat.

Ages: All ages

Players: 3-9

Contents: Spoons for each player and a standard playing deck

Price: $2.39 for deck, plus spoons 

Pass The Pigs

Pass The Pigs is a simple game that involves taking turns rolling a pair of pig figurines. The way the pigs land determines how many points the player receives. The player’s turn ends when they decide to quit or they roll an oinker or a pig out. An oinker removes all the points the player accumulated during that turn and their turn is over. If they roll a pig out, they lose all the points they have accumulated during the game and their turn is over. If the player rolls a piggyback with one pig resting on the back of the other, they are completely out of the game. The first player to reach 100 points wins.

Our Take

This game is simple and easy for people of all ages. Its cute little carrying case is slim and very easy to store on your houseboat. Plus the fun figurines make the game an instant hit.

Ages: 7 and up

Players: 2-4 players

Contents: 1 pocket-size pig case, 2 pigs, 1 score pad, 2 pencils

Price: $9.64

www.hasbro.com

Boggle

Boggle is set up by placing the letter dice in the tray and shaking them until all the dice have landed in the spots. Players have three minutes to write down all words they can find using the letters showing. The words must be three letters or more. The larger the word, the more points it is worth. Letters must be touching either horizontally, diagonally or vertically and they must be in sequential order. When the time runs out, the players read their lists while crossing off words found by other players. The player with the most points wins.

Our Take

Boggle is the perfect onboard word game. It can be played in many rounds as long as the players want. It can also be played in a large group. The pieces are fairly small and convenient and can be easily stashed in a cupboard. It is also available in a travel size.

Ages: 8 and up

Players: 2-6 players

Contents: 16 dice, tray and timer

Price: $20.17

www.hasbro.com

 

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