Playing board games together is one of my favorite date night activities. Whether we are playing a competitive strategy game or a cooperative game, it’s a fantastic opportunity to spend one-on-one time together. I love the connections we build together through game nights. It’s the perfect mix of socialization, thinking, and fun. So, if you are planning a sweet Valentine’s Day with your significant other, end the evening with a board game or two.
Patchwork is a quilt themed board game designed for only two players from Lookout Games. It’s an abstract strategy game that you can play in about 15 minutes and perfect for anyone who enjoys puzzle-type games. Each player has a quilt board and uses buttons to purchase patch puzzle pieces to place on their board. While you are not interfering with the other player’s board, you are racing against time. To win, you need to balance purchasing enough pieces to cover as much of your board as possible while also keeping a supply of buttons on hand.
This is an excellent option for a quick game after dinner. Who knew a game based on quilting could be so fun?
Lost Cities is a two-player card game from Thames & Kosmos, and one of our favorites for date night. Each player is an explorer trying to have the most successful expeditions. There is a set of numbered cards for each of the five locations, plus a few fundraising cards. The gameplay is simple and quick to learn, but you will need a mix of strategy, luck, and risk-taking to win. You can learn more about how to play Lost Cities the card game in our playthrough.
Lookout Games’ Agricola is one of my favorite games. It takes longer to play than some of the other suggestions on this list, but the time will fly by. It is designed for one to four players, but plays very well with only two people.
Each player is a farmer in the 17th Century who is trying to grow their family and create a successful farm in this turn-based game that is played over six harvest phases. You get one turn per family member during each round, but the more family members you have, the more food you need to grow to feed them. While it is a competitive strategy game, players do not interfere directly with each other’s boards. Only one person can use an action each round, so it is possible for your opponent to take the action you wanted.
Space Cowboys’ Jaipur is a fast-paced card game and often recommended as one of the best two-player games. Both players are powerful traders in the city of Jaipur, who are competing to be invited to the Maharaja’s court. On each turn, players will either sell or take cards. With either choice brings more strategic decisions to make. For example, if you decide to take cards you will do one of three things: take only one card from the market, take all the camels, or swap some of your cards with the market cards. This game is played over several rounds and you can complete a full game within about 30 minutes. That leaves just enough time to challenge your partner to a rematch.
Splendor is another game that is designed for two to four players, but scales well for two players. In this game from Asmodee, you are jewelry merchants competing for the most prestige points. Players will start by collecting gem tokens, then begin trading them in for cards from the marketplace. Some cards will only count as gems while others also contain prestige points. Your trading strategy is key to gaining points for the win. This game is quick to set up and is simple to learn. You can play a full game in about 30 minutes.
Gamewright‘s Forbidden Island is a cooperative game, which means you and your partner will be working together to win against the game. Take a trip to a Forbidden Island in search of lost treasure and make it back to the helicopter landing pad before the entire island becomes flooded. Each of you will have a special role that can be used to bend some of the rules to your advantage. On each turn, you may take up to four actions. This includes moving, sandbagging tiles that are getting flooded, trading cards, and collecting treasure.
Cooperative games require teamwork and communication, making them a great option for date night. They are also perfect for people who enjoy playing non-competitive games. If you enjoy Forbidden Island, there are more games in this series: Forbidden Desert and Forbidden Sky.
Sagrada is one of the prettiest games I’ve ever played. In this puzzle game from Floodgate Games, each player is creating a stained glass window with colorful dice while following placement rules. The players’ boards look like the frame for a stained glass window and you slide in a puzzle card. In addition to the already established placement rules, the puzzle cards include an additional challenge where players can only place a certain color or number on specific spaces.
There are also public objective cards that players try to complete for points (no repeating colors in a row, for example) and everyone has one private objective card. It’s a delightfully relaxing puzzle game that is perfect for a quiet evening in. The player with the most points at the end wins, but you are not directly interfering with each other’s boards.
Exit the Game: The Sunken Treasure
If you or your significant other love puzzles and escape rooms, then Exit the Game: Sunken Treasure by Thames and Kosmos is perfect for a unique date night.
Exit is a line of escape room games you can play at home without an app. Each one has a different theme and they vary in difficulty. Exit: Sunken Treasure is a good one to start with. In this one, players are investigating a mysterious shipwreck when they get trapped underwater. Players have to solve the riddles to recover the treasure and get out before time runs out!
We hope this list of board games for couples to play on Valentine’s Day inspires you for your next date night. For even more family board game recommendations, check out this list of our favorite games.