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Best of Board Games 2015 | XCOM: The Board Game

XCOM: The Board Game is a cooperative board game where you yell at your friend, make bad decisions, and try to save the world from alien onslaught.

Up to four players choose one of four jobs. First off, the Central Officer will have access to the game’s companion App, which counts down every moment, tells you who needs to be doing what, and where the aliens are coming from. It’s the electronic beating heart of the game.

Next, we have the Commander gets to control the purse strings and make the big decisions. The Squad Leader sends troops out on missions and tries to protect the base. Finally, the Chief Scientist does science things like adding power-ups and one time boosts. And everyone is working together against the clock, but you’re often making decisions by yourself as the app’s timer ticks down.

Panic too many countries and you’ll lose the game. Run out of money and you’ll lose the game. Get your base destroyed and you’ll lose the game. Play this for the first time and you’ll probably lose the game. Even the tutorial will probably wipe out your party before you get a handle on everything.

With so many co-op games, one or two people will tell everyone else what to do. XCOM: The Board Game gets rid of a lot of that since you don’t have time to tell people what to do because you’re too concerned about what’s happening to you. You have a job, an important job. You may have time to ask the commander if we have enough money to send out one more soldier, but ultimately, you are pulling most of your weight along the board.

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