Before the digital revolution, most indoor games were either played with cards, dice, dominoes or were more traditional board games. Whole families would play for hours and have a great time pitting their wits against each other. Friends would have games evenings and whole communities would get together for games such as whist and bridge, as well as the occasional pub quiz.

‘Aiga/NY design pub quiz’ by AIGA/NY via Flickr (CC BY 2.0)

Then, along came the internet and, eventually, smartphones and other digital devices. For a while, no one bothered too much with these games. Now, there is a revival of games with more human interaction involved, board games in particular, but not the old style ones. There is a whole host of new board games that are proving very popular, and people have started to put down their digital devices for a while and play a board game instead. There is even a forum, BoardGameGeek, dedicated to them and, in the US and Canada, board game cafes are a blossoming new trend.

Some people think this new interest in board games has been spurred on by the millennials who want their children to see how they kept themselves occupied before the onslaught of the digital era.

Playing Older Games Online

You can still buy most of the older board games, such as Monopoly, Chess, Ludo, Yahtzee, and Game of Life, to name just a few. However, you can also play them all online and have been able to for a number of years. Several sites offer their own versions of them, sometimes with a slightly different name; the popular mobile game Words With Friends is a version of Scrabble and 5 Dice is very much like Yahtzee.

Sometimes you play against the computer but there is often an option to play against other live opponents. With the card games in an online casino and games like roulette, you can play in virtual rooms, where the dealers and other players are there in real time.

Some companies have collaborated with developers to produce games that provide the best experience for players, while communities have sprung up specifically to introduce interested parties to each other. Mr Green Casino, for example, has joined with NetEnt and VE for a media buying services partnership, while Ludust and DevelTeam serve as a kind of dating site for artists and developers interested in making new games.

Ventures such as these are ensuring that the gaming world continues to evolve to keep pace with new technologies and innovations.

Playing Newer Games Online

Many of the newer games that started out as physical ones are also now available online. Exploding Kittens is just one example, the digital version being a direct translation of the physical game. There are digital versions of Ticket To Ride, Splendor, Forbidden Island, and many more. Just as with the older games, some of them are called something different. Lords of Waterdeep, for instance, is based on the Dungeons and Dragons universe.

The revival of physical board games has been followed by an upsurge of digital board games, most of them being played on smartphones and other mobile devices. It seems that the old tradition of family games evenings is showing a revival as well, although that is just as likely to be with online games as much as board games. Whether it’s with a physical game or online, playing against real opponents in a friendly atmosphere would be most peoples first choice.