Board Games: Competitive vs Cooperative

I'm feeling a general sense of frustration with competitive board games, like Settlers of Catan, Monopoly, Risk, and the like. When I play these games I end up in last place, or near to last place, and I'm left with nothing to do during the game. The rest of the players continue the fun as I then sit by myself, sip a drink and ruminate over the rule book to see if there was something I could of done differently. Was it my luck? My inability to strategize? Maybe a bit of both.

Enter cooperative board games: a few years ago I played a cooperative board game called Defenders of the Realm. At first I was drawn in by this game's attention to detail, visually stunning renderings and beautifully crafted backstory setting the stage for the players. Then, I was blown away by being able to get feedback on my strategy as a newbie from other players and also coordinate my moves with other players. I was hooked, and inspired.

Ever since I learned about cooperative games as a genre, I've been itching to design my own cooperative game. About four months ago I began designing and testing it out with friends.

Stay tuned for updates as I continue development! And in the mean time, let me know what you think of competitive and cooperative games in the comments section below. What do you like about them? What do you hate about them? How well does it hold your attention throughout the course of the game?

A prototype of the game I'm working on.

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