Frugality

9 of the Best Two Player Board Games for Couples

December 17, 2021

Looking to expand your collection of board games for couples? Here are our top picks for the best two player board games we’ve ever played!

Cards and game pieces in background with text overlay.

These are our favourite board games that are perfect for two players, whether it’s for couples date night, roommates or just friends hanging out. 

While some can be played with bigger groups, these games work just as well – if not better – with just two players. 

Enjoy them any night of the week, or save them for holidays like birthdays, Easter or Christmas. 

We own each of these games and love all of them for their incredible replayability, themes, storylines and mechanics. It’s also a great way to unplug and get off the tech for a while!

Where to Source Board games

Free Ways

Library

Our favourite frugal way to try new board games is through our local library. The range is constantly expanding and we’re even able to request board games to be added to the collection. Then if we’ve played one enough and still love it, we can consider the investment.

Borrow

Do you have the best kind of friends? ie friends that love board games too? Do a swap and try out each other’s games. Play them together on a games night or borrow to play them at home. 

Buy Nothing

Join a Buy Nothing group in your area and keep an eye out to see if anyone is offering their games as #gifts. Alternatively you can #ask if anyone has games they can lend or gift you. Be specific or keep it a generic request and you might be surprised what people are willing to give away once they’re done with it.

Christmas Present

While family board games are usually more popular around the holiday season, you may want to ask Santa Claus for some two player games instead! If you know there’s family and friends who always want to buy you a present, this is a great way to ask for exactly what you want. No more trivial pursuit!

Frugal Ways

Buy Second Hand

Sites like Gumtree / Facebook Marketplace / Craigslist are great for buying games second hand, and chances are they’ll be in much better condition than buying from an op shop. 

Facebook Groups 

Look for specialised Facebook groups that offer board games for swap, sell or trade in your area. This is a great way to find more specialised/ rarer games of higher quality, since you’re sourcing directly from other avid players. 

You’ll save money AND resources when buying second hand instead of new. Then once you’re finished with a game, you can relist it on those sites and keep the circular economy rolling!

Buy Online (Wait For Sales)

Online stores tend to offer much better prices, especially if they’re having a sale. A great way is to have a list of games you want and keep an eye on prices. For example, CamelCamelCamel is a great website to show you product price fluctuations.

Best Two Player Board Games for Couples

Girl at table in front of Dice Throne Adventures.

15-30 Minutes

Age of War

This addictive game hits our table almost every single board game night. With simple rules and an exciting fast paced play style, Age of War is the perfect board game for couples, but works just as well if playing with groups of up to 6 players.

You’ll use dice rolls to capture castles in feudal Japan, aiming to collect all castles from a particular clan. Other players can attempt to recapture any castle you own, unless you get all castles from a particular clan. If you do, those points are yours and can’t be stolen. 

It sounds simple, and it is. What surprised us most was how engaging the theme is and how competitive we get trying to capture castles and steal them from each other to conquer a clan. Rolling to conquer a castle using the proper set of dice symbols can be harder than you might first think, so it’s extra satisfying when you do capture one of the more difficult castles. 

Find out more about Age of War

Herbaceous

Herbaceous is a fun board game for couples when you want to feel a little bit of zen while you’re at it. 

It’s a competitive game that hits the sweet spot where it doesn’t make you feel stressed or anxious waiting for your next turn. You’ll definitely be tempted to push your luck for the best collections of herbs to pot in your private garden!

The artwork is gorgeous and the whole experience is fun, exciting yet relaxing at the same time. 

We think this game is perfect for two players – any more and it can take a bit too long to come back around to your turn. 

Find out more about Herbaceous

30-60 Minutes

Dice Throne 

Dice Throne combines the best of cards and dice games all into one epic game. Pick one of the many characters, each with its unique strengths, weaknesses, upgrades and play styles. Then battle your partner in a duel to the death or, as we like to call it, in an epic training session until the next battle. 😉

Both Season 1 Rerolled, Season 2 (and new Marvel) box sets are great board games for couples to while away a fun evening at home, and also work well for game nights with up to 6 people. However, be prepared for each session to take longer the more people you play with. 

Find out more about Dice Throne 

Burgle Brothers

Despite the fact that I always call this ‘Bugle Brothers’ this is a fantastic game for two players. You’ll set up a grid of face down ‘rooms’ with wall dividers, nominate a room to ‘break in’ and then set about finding the safe, stealing the loot, and escaping to safety through the roof! 

Along the way you’ll avoid the guards and try not to set off alarms, using your character’s special skills to help you achieve your goals. 

This game works well for two players with enough of a challenge without getting too crazy. Once you add more people, the guards get more actions per round, and this can make it harder to keep everyone from getting discovered… Once one player is out of sneak tokens, the game is over for everyone!

We love the thrill of the theme and the mechanics are easy to play once you get the hang of it. The one thing we wish is that the rule book offered more scenario maps, however, there is an online generator to help you create new layouts for future playthroughs. 

Find out more about Burgle Brothers

(Ultra Tiny) Epic Kingdoms

This is an ultra tiny version of Epic Kingdoms, making it even more transportable – it’s literally the size of a deck of playing cards, yet the box includes all the cards and tokens you need to create the ultimate (tiny) kingdom.

Spend resources to research abilities, explore surrounding lands, build your tower and defeat opposing armies. A huge array of playable factions allows for a unique experience for every playthrough – with some factions offering a few extra surprises along your journey! 

This game is playable for up to 5 people, but is equally enjoyable as a two player game.

Find out more about Ultra Tiny Epic Kingdoms

60 Minutes + 

Wingspan

Essentially an engine building game, your aim is to score as many points as possible while building an ‘aviary’ of birds in your forest, field and wetland. There are so many different strategies and play styles you can use to get those points – play birds in the forest and you’ll get more food to play more birds… play wetland birds and you’ll get to draw more cards for more options. Or you can use the end of round goals or bonus cards to get ahead of your competition. 

The artwork in this game is gorgeous and we love the tactile nature of laying eggs, gathering food tokens and admiring the bird illustrations on each card. 

European and Oceanian expansions add even more birds and abilities, eggs and food types to the base game for extra fun. 

Find out more about Wingspan

One Deck Dungeon

This game really sparks the imagination and is built for cooperation. You’ll work together to make your way through a deep dark dungeon, tackling monsters and leaping over traps, making tactical choices to make the best of your character’s strengths. The bosses at the end of each dungeon are a real challenge, so you’ll have to be careful to conserve your resources to make it to the end.

We love playing the campaign mode, so our characters earn skill points that can be spent on upgrading abilities and increasing the dice pool to use on the next dungeon crawl. 

The best part? For such a grand (feeling) adventure, it all packs up into a tiny box so you can take it just about anywhere. 

Find out more about One Deck Dungeon

Near and Far

Near and Far is a game of epic adventure. Recruit followers, gather supplies then head out on your quest to be the first to discover the Lost Ruin.

Playable over a complete campaign (or single arcade mode adventures) this game will bring you hours and hours of fun.

Our favourite part of this game is the sheer number of stories and adventures you’ll play through in each map along your journey. Experience the rewards and consequences of each choice you make along the way, and take your turn reading stories out on your partner’s or friends’ turns. 

This is highly interactive and such an enjoyable way to while away the evening. The artwork is simply stunning, and the rule books and components are very high quality as well. Put on your favourite atmospheric soundtrack and get ready to embark on an adventure!

Find out more about Near and Far 

Dice Throne Adventures

Once you’ve got the hang of the base Dice Throne game, you can take things even further with Dice Throne Adventures. Together you’ll work as a team to battle your way through portal crawls and boss battles until you conquer the Mad King – then discover what lies beyond! 

Dice Throne will teach you valuable life lessons like how to be humble equally between thrashing your opponent to when the luck of the dice just doesn’t roll your way. 

We’ve only played Dice Throne Adventures as just the two of us, and wouldn’t recommend taking more people along necessarily as it will definitely add on to the session time. 

Find out more about Dice Throne Adventures

Honorable Mentions

There you have it – our top list of the best two player board games! We’d love to hear what you think, leave a comment below and let us know your experience with these games. Or feel free to share recommendations for other fun board games for two people.

What’s your favourite?

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