Although Trainers Warehouse doesn’t focus on many content-specific board games, I’ve come across a few really good ones recently. I’ll continue to add to this list as I learn of more. Admittedly, these aren’t all “Board” games, but they’re off-the-shelf, ready-to-play.
NOTE: prices are listed as they are understood at the time of posting. They may be subject to change.
BIZ WIZ® – a business education game, teaching business overview, serving customers, measuring success, financing, operations, forecasting and more. (the Universal, self-study edition is $59.90; the simulation is $1295.)
Cash Flow 101: How to get out of the Rat Race, by Robert Kiyosaki – a cash flow, financial independence game; includes 3 CDs and a true-to-life board game that teaches you how to invest. ($195)
Colourblind – by RSVP Design
Wearing blindfolds to ensure total dependence upon the quality of their verbal communication, and holding a collection of small, irregular, coloured plastic shapes, a group works together to gather information that will allow them to solve a puzzle. For groups between 4 and 28 players. ($424)
Challenging Assumptions – by RSVP Design
So simple but such a powerful message! This activity lasts between 10 and 20 minutes and is an ideal way of raising the awareness of a group of learners about the preconceptions and assumptions we bring into new situations. In the puzzle context, they make assumptions about what colors go together, about what side of the piece is the top, or about where corners and edges go. ($139)
The four games in this category all use decks of “clue cards,” which participants are dealt. While players can verbally share what’s on their cards(s), in order to come to a team solution to the challenge, they may not show or trade their cards.
Zin Obelisk – teams must work together to solve a complex problem (download notes and create-your-own cards)
Counter Intelligence – by RSVP. Participants are dealt a few task cards, each of which contains one clue about the way a pile of colored tokens should be arranged to form a specific shape and distribution of colors. Information printed on the cards can only be shared verbally and must come up with their final solution within 15 minutes. ($111.00)
Guess Who? – A team problem-solving challenge. There are two sets of 9 clue cards that provide enough information to solve each problem. When the information is shared, the problem can be solved. Most groups find a solution in less than 10 minutes. ($44.95)
Search for The Lost Dutchman’s Gold Mine , by Scott Simmerman. A game of inter-team collaboration. The setting is modern-day Southwestern U.S. Outfitted in Cowboy hats and bandannas, teams search for gold from the famous Lost Dutchman’s Mine. The exercise draws out issues of quality, leadership, systems, communications and a variety of other organizational issues. Team size is 5 or 6 people; no limit to the number of participants. ($995 or $1695)
Pandemic – Designed by Matt Leacock. This is a collaborative board game in which four diseases have broken out in the world and it is up to a team of specialists in various fields to find cures for these diseases before mankind is wiped out. Players must work together, playing to their characters’ strengths and planning their strategy. For example, the Operation Specialist can build research stations, which are needed to find cures for the diseases. The Scientist needs only 4 cards of a particular disease to cure it instead of the normal 5. (20 minutes explanation, about 60 minute game) ($34.99)
Toxic Waste Transfer – Using only the handles of the ropes attached to the transport basket, ten students work together to move and dump toxic waste into the neutralizing containers.($118.00)
Marble Maze – 6 people must lead a marble through this heavyweight, durable maze, without letting the marble fall into a trap. The 3 maze inserts differ in shape and difficulty; and the two varying-sized marbles keep the challenge exciting. ($146.00)
Memory Maze – Teams must work together to uncover the invisible path on a large floor grid. Square by square, they move through the grid from start to finish, starting over each time an incorrect square is stepped on. Increase the difficulty by setting two teams against each other, or having them beat the clock. ($99.00)
Simbols – by RSVP Designs. Players receive printed coloured cards which have to be assembled, under challenging conditions and a tight time-frame, into a specific, finished pattern. The participants must quickly establish an efficient method to describe the cards they’ve been dealt, then determine the correct way to lay them out. All interaction is verbal until the last minute, when it’s time to “launch” their solution, laying out the cards in correct pattern, before the deadline. Requires 45 minutes, plus debrief. ($525.00)
This exercise is designed to be used in a context in which business negotiations are important for success in achieving individual or organisational goals. It illustrates the need to build strong relationships between groups as they try to achieve individual goals, maintaining dialogue over a series of rounds as they negotiate for scarce resources. T-trade involves three groups, each trying to achieve the best business outcome for themselves but needing to ‘make deals’ with other groups in order to be successful. The exercise takes some time if the negotiation process is allowed to develop and build. The basic exercise needs 90 minutes, plus time for briefing and de-briefing. Ideal numbers are three teams of 3-6 people, each working in a separate location.