Marginally relevant to personal finance?
A bit of a tangent today. I love board games, wargames, card games, strategy games, so for me they provide incredible value for money.
I find board games more valuable than computer games because they have a tactile and social element that computer games lack (plus I spend far too much time buried in a screen every day as it is).
This year I picked up a copy of Dominion to play with my family. I got the Japanese version as it's much cheaper on Amazon, and I wanted to encourage my family to play. Once you understand the rules it doesn't really matter what language the game is in.
Domion is an award-winning card game for 2-4 players (up to six can play if you have a second set, like one of the expansion sets). It takes an hour or so to play, and the gameplay is pretty simple.
Each player is trying to build up their kingdom by buying resources, and the game ends when a certain number of resources are used up. You can see the official rules in English here (which are incredibly difficult to understand) or the Boardgamegeek FAQ here.
The thing I really like about Dominion is that, unlike many board games, games tend to be pretty close and everyone can continue playing until the end. It's definitely not like Monopoly where everyone can tell who will win after about twenty minutes, but it then takes another two hours for them to do so.
We have played four games since I got the game, and every time the difference between the winner and the runner-up has been about 10%. Even better, my wife and daughter have gotten really into it and we've had some great evenings (I definitely think the red wine and olives improve the experience).
And some less great evenings...
And one terrible evening.
But this was by far the best purchase of the holidays: hours of fun for the price of two cheap cinema tickets.
Next I'm going to try and persuade some friends to come round and try it. Cheap night in, lots of opportunities to chat.
Any other good family board games or family activities?