Best board games of 2021

2021 was a standout year for fans of thematic euro-adjacent games with games at every weight class sure to please. Other extremely original games are creating new standards and genres, so be sure to check out the best board games from 2021!


  • Top 10 list
  • Community ranked
  • YouTube

How is this list made?

The games on this list have been calculated by aggregating many public Top 10 rankings from YouTube. They represent an overall picture of the board game scene and do not represent any one person's opinion. Check out the full list of rankings below.

View the Top 10 rankings

It’s never been a better time to be a fan of board games with some of the best tabletop games ever made being available. Long gone are the days where you’d struggle to get anyone to pick up anything but Risk or Monopoly. With all the amazing board games out there it can be challenge to pick one, so let us help you pick from this list of the best board games. These lists include a wide variety of board games, both in terms of theme and gameplay. Whether you’re looking for the next co-op game to share with your friends, a new part game to play at the holidays, or a heavier strategic game to dig in to, you’ll be able to find an entry to fit your criteria. There are scary games, historical games, fantasy titles and even war-themed board games, meaning that whatever the weather you’ll have a fantastic tabletop title to pop onto the table.

The list: top 10 games

  1. 10
    Game poster

    The Initiative

    Year published2021
    DesignerCorey Konieczka
    ArtistsDavid Ardila, Chan Chau + 1 more
    PublisherUnexpected Games + 4 more
    Player count1 - 4
  2. 9
    Game poster

    Dune: Imperium

    Year published2020
    DesignerPaul Dennen
    ArtistsClay Brooks, Brett Nienburg + 2 more
    PublisherDire Wolf + 10 more
    Player count1 - 4
  3. 8
    Game poster

    Ark Nova

    Year published2021
    DesignerMathias Wigge
    ArtistsSteffen Bieker, Loïc Billiau + 2 more
    PublisherFeuerland Spiele + 19 more
    Player count1 - 4
  4. 7
    Game poster

    Merchants Cove

    Year published2021
    DesignerJonny Pac, Carl Van Ostrand, Drake Villareal
    ArtistsMihajlo Dimitrievski
    PublisherFinal Frontier Games + 6 more
    Player count1 - 4
  5. 6
    Game poster

    Roll Player Adventures

    Year published2021
    DesignerKeith Matejka, Peter Andrew Ryan, James William Ryan
    ArtistsJJ Ariosa, Damien Mammoliti + 4 more
    PublisherThunderworks Games
    Player count1 - 4
  6. 5
    Game poster


    Year published2021
    DesignerJohn D. Clair
    ArtistsJacqui Davis, Philip Glofcheskie + 1 more
    PublisherAlderac Entertainment Group + 7 more
    Player count2 - 4
  7. 4
    Game poster

    Terraforming Mars: Ares Expedition

    Year published2021
    DesignerSydney Engelstein, Jacob Fryxelius, Nick Little (I)
    ArtistsWilliam Bricker, Garrett Kaida + 4 more
    PublisherFryxGames + 16 more
    Player count1 - 4
  8. 3
    Game poster

    Hadrian's Wall

    Year published2021
    DesignerBobby Hill
    ArtistsSam Phillips
    PublisherGarphill Games + 12 more
    Player count1 - 6
  9. 2
    Game poster


    Year published2021
    DesignerRandy Flynn
    ArtistsBeth Sobel
    PublisherFlatout Games + 11 more
    Player count1 - 4
  10. 1
    Game poster

    Sleeping Gods

    Year published2021
    DesignerRyan Laukat
    ArtistsRyan Laukat
    PublisherRed Raven Games + 10 more
    Player count1 - 4

Want to see more games? This is the top 10 games, click below to see the extended list of the best 25 games.

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