Baxter’s Top 10 Lockdown Games

Hey hey folks!  I have something a little different for you all today. This week’s Top 10 list is a collaboration between myself and Brian, we put our socially-distanced heads together (via Zoom) and came up with 5 games each that have been keeping us occupied during lockdown. As these games have featured on previous lists, we’ll be focusing more on our experience with them during lockdown than on the games themselves.  Over to you, Brian.


Thanks Baxter!  Hi everybody, as Baxter said, we’ve opted to share the games that have been keeping us in a good headspace during this difficult time.  This should also help to clear up any rumours that I am just Baxter in a human suit as you’re finally seeing us both at the same time!  Baxter also generously allowed me to go first, though I suspect that has more to do with him wanting the # 1 spot on the list, but hey, his den, his rules. 

10. Marvel Champions - Brian

I’ve been playing Marvel Champions again lately with my son while also binge watching Agents of Shield, having already done a marathon of all the Marvel movies.  He’s right into his superheroes right now, and Marvel Champions allows us to play our favourite heroes together at the table! Great fun, and I enjoy it almost as much solo, though I do miss my sidekick when playing alone. 


9. Lords of Waterdeep - Baxter

Lords of Waterdeep is a favourite of mine as it's just good clean simple worker placement fun! Nothing over complicated and I feel like we can all just relax in our bubble and enjoy the familiarity and the theme of adventure and intrigue in the city of Waterdeep! One of my classic all time favourite games!


8. Nemesis - Brian

I don’t think I’ve made any secret of how much I love this game!  Nemesis is one I like to break out in the evenings when everyone else has gone to bed. I put on Alien and watch it idly in the background, having long ago memorized every beat and line of dialogue. Seeing the tension build up on the board in front of me in step with the movie is , I’m always suitably challenged and often fail to achieve my goals, but the theme keeps me coming back for more, time and again!


7. Sleeping Gods - Baxter

This has definitely been my zen game of lockdown.  Sleeping Gods allows me to escape the encroaching confines of the den.  I can almost smell the salt air as I captain the crew of the manticore to parts unknown, uncovering mysteries and discovering fantastic locations as I try to get them home.  The hours fly by and there are times I forget I’m just sitting alone at my table.


6. Descent: Legends of the Dark - Brian

I’m sure I would have gone slightly mad if I hadn’t snagged this one up just prior to lockdown.  Descent: Legends of the Dark has kept me suitably entertained over the past couple of weeks.  My characters have progressed steadily through the campaign and each scenario is creative and different enough from the last to keep pushing me forward, eager to see what surprises the next adventure will bring.


5. Mansions of Madness - Baxter

Like Brian, I don’t mind the odd scare here and there. Mansions of Madness is one that has kept my little fox instincts sharp during these quiet days indoors. The app increases the spookiness to the next level with its weighty voice acting and fear inducing ambience.  Similar to Brian’s experiences with Nemesis, I also find I’m on the back paw here more than I’d like to admit.  Mansions of Madness is all my favourite horror movies wrapped up in a massive board game. I love it as much as I fear it!


4. Mystic Vale - Brian

I don’t think I’ve ever been as pleasantly surprised by a game as I have with this entry. If Sleeping Gods is Baxter’s Zen game, then Mystic Vale is mine.  With the addition of the Nemesis expansion that enables solo play, the card crafting, the interactions and the gloriously lavish artwork create a perfect storm of visuals, tactility and gameplay.  In fact I dare say this one is going to replace Wingspan for me as my go to card game. It hits all the same beats and has the added advantage of a fantasy theme which I enjoy.


3. Scythe - Baxter

I seldom manage to get this beastie boy to the table these days, but if lockdown has been good for anything, it’s giving me more time for the simple pleasures in life.  Scythe is one of those! The automa does a fine job of providing just the right mix of challenge and fun, and even if it can prove a little clunky at times, hey, at least I’m still playing Scythe, so for a time, the world feels right and good again.


2. Unmatched - Brian

Another one I’ve been enjoying way too much lately!  Unmatched hits a sweet spot for my son and I. It makes for a great game before his bedtime, and gets him off his screen.  Unmatched is fast, uncomplicated, has a great deal of replay-ability and makes for a great test of mental agility and situational awareness. Also Buffy gets to hunt Dracula, so that’s cool!


1. Wingspan - Baxter

I don’t know what Brian’s thinking! How could you ever replace Wingspan? Unless of course you created a game around the lifestyle of foxes, that would definitely knock this entry off its perch (see what I did there? Brian has been teaching me the finer points of dad jokes). Wingspan has proven immensely popular, released as it was during a time of global upheaval, the serene theme of our little twittering friends has helped many get through some tough times.  Love it or hate it, it’s proven to be a major contender in the board game space and even with two expansion packs, Stonemaier Games has only scratched the surface of what this game has to offer.

Baxter: So folks, that’s it for this first staff collaboration! Whose choices were most in step with your own? We’d love to hear all about the games you’ve been playing during lockdown, so please leave a comment below or share with us on the Game Kings Gamers Facebook page!  Any last words, Brian?


Brian: Thanks for having me Baxter, I’ve missed tripping over you at the office.  I look forward to hearing everyone’s lockdown gaming experiences.  Until next time, it’s goodnight from me.


Baxter: And it’s goodnight from him!


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