Board Game of the Year Award: Codenames Named Best; Where Is Isle Of Skye?

By Yves Matthew Amodia, Parent Herald July 24, 04:50 am

This year's Spiel des Jahres, otherwise called the Board Game of the Year, has been given to the word-association party game Codenames after an exhaustive search by a caucus of board and card game critics. The decision was not really a surprise since its release in late 2015, it is already a hit among board game lovers.

To win Codenames, one of the two teams competing Board Game of the Year must finish first in covering up cards on a 5 x 5 grid by using word association. All the cards have a word on them and the goal is to only select the words that are associated to your team. If you choose a word that does not belong to your own team, you will lose points while choosing the hidden assassin card would end the game. Only the team's spymaster can give the number of safe cards and a single-word clue on which are safe.

Even before Codenames was announced as this year's Board Game of the Year, users at Board Game Geek have already deemed it as the best party game of all time, a testament to Codenames' popularity.

Other nominees for Board Game of the Year include Egyptian-themed cube pushing game Imhotep and maze game Karuba, Ars Technica reports. Auction game Isle of Skye also won Kennerspiel des Jahres, the award for more complex board games. T.I.M.E Stories and Pandemic Legacy were also considered for the award.

Last year's Board Game of the Year winner was Colt Express, an 1800s-set game. The Spiel des Jahres is decided by a group of German-speaking board and card game critics from Austria, Switzerland and Germany. The design, game concept, rule structure and layout are the considerations for the award.

Other previous Board Game of the Year winners includes Camel Up, Kingdom Builder, Qwirkle, Thurn and Taxis, Ticket to Ride and Villa Paletti. 

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