Buying board games can always be an expensive endeavor, but I am here to help you find the best board games for the best price. I have previously written other similar articles about the top board games under 25$, 20$, 15$, and 10$ that I highly suggest you check out. I try to keep each game selection within the price range so the articles do not overlap so depending on how much you wish to spend you may want to check out one of the other ones through the following links:
Best Board Games Under $30
Fuse is an exciting and nerve-racking game were players work together to defuse twenty different bombs that have been found on board their ship. This task must be completed in ten minutes or else you lose!
The game consists of 25 dice and 65 cards and ton of explosive action. The method to defuse each bomb is pretty simple, as all you have to do is get one player with the right combination of dice. However, during each roll of dice, you must choose for one dice to go to exactly one player each time. With only ten minutes to get the combinations to more than twenty different bombs, you won’t have time to sit and debate who should get what dice. Decisions have to be made fast if you want to win.
This is a great filler game that works for both adults and families. Knowing that it will only take ten minutes to play will guarantee that you spend too long.
Citadels is a fun family/strategy board game that incorporates a little bit of everything from bluffing to card drafting. The objective of the game is to have the highest score at the end of the game from your built building. However, the game ends whenever a player finishes their eighth building and from round to round players can steal gold and eliminate another player for a round. This adds in an interesting aspect as each round players choose which character they want to use for a round and are able to use their abilities respectively.
The scoring system is based off the score value of each building built and a few other special cases. For example, bonus points can be earned for having a building of all five colors or for being a player with eight building.
This is a great gateway game if your friend or family are still new or inexperienced to board games. Overall, it is a great addition to any collection as it can accommodate up to eight players.
3.) Ninja Dice
Ninja Dice is a fun Japenese themed push your luck party game suited for 2 to 5 players. The game is played out over three rounds of increasing difficulty wherein each round players role a house set of dice and then a skill set. The house set chooses what the challenges will be for the ninja and the skill set is used to overcome the challenges.
This game has some unique features to it that are not commonly found in push your luck dice games. One specific example of this is the fortune dice which allow players to boost their current dice depending on their specific position the on the table. Another unique feature is direct interaction between the players as each re-roll presents other ninjas with the opportunity to shoot the other ninja and steal their treasure.
This is another simple yet fun game that anyone can play. Ninja Dice is also relatively compact making it a great board game for traveling.
4.) The Castles of Burgundy
The Castles of Burgundy is a 2-4 player game where each player starts off by controlling one small princedom. The objective of this game is to end the game with the highest score by building various settlements, exploiting silver mines, and constructing powerful castles. To do this the players must take settlement tiles and use their specific functions to help strengthen their own princedom.
This game consists of five different phases and five rounds. At the begging of each phase, the gameboard is stocked with different goods and settlement tiles. In each round, the first player in order rolls a goods dice that decides what goods are made available. Then from there, the other players roll their dice also. During each player’s turn, they may do two of any four available actions.
- Take a settlement tile from the game board and place it in the staging area of their board
- Take a settlement tile form the staging area and place it on the player board
- Deliver Goods
- Take worker tokens
All of these actions are affected by the dice roll of the respective player.
Each tile offers its own benefits and can be used for strategic purposes. Once the fifth phase and fifth-round finish the game ends and the score are tallied to decide the winner.
This is a great game although if you are a pure strategist I would suggest you avoid it as it is 50/50 luck/strategy style of play. Overall, it is a great Euro economy game for those who like both simplicity and depth. Would definitely suggest if your friends and family are not heavy board gamers.
5.) Smash Up
Smash up is an easy to learn fun deck building game where you get to combine any two of the eight given factions into your own special deck. The decks come pre-made so there is not a lot of decisions to be made other than choosing the two factions you want to use. The eight factions available in this edition are as follows:
- Ninjas – The Ninjas are the annoying faction that plays with stealth and are capable of stealing a victory from their opponents.
- Wizards – Wizards are capable of using magic to play extra cards or draw them.
- Dinosaurs – Dinosaurs have the strongest cards in the game with some protective abilities.
- Pirates – Pirates are capable of changing their position by switching between different bases. They are also able to destroy weak minions through different abilities.
- Zombies – Zombies are able to do zombie-like things. They can raise minions from the dead pile and bring them to the battle zones of the bases or put them back into the owner’s hand.
- Aliens – Aliens are able to use their advanced technology and do things such as return opponents minions to their hands or gain victory points instantly.
- Robots – Robots have some of the weakest minions in the game but are able to play multiple minions in one turn with all sorts of abilities and powers.
- Tricksters – The Tricksters are able to change the way bases work and can make other players discard cards from their hands.
After the decks are created the location cards are then put together and shuffled each location card has a point value and some special modifier on it. These location/base cards are then placed out equal to the number of players plus one onto the table.
From there, players are given one of two options or both. To either play a minion or to play a special ability depending on what they deem to be the best option. When a minion is played you may use their ability to help you capture the area. At the end of the player’s turn, they may draw cards and then let the next player make their move.
The base cards are given a value called the breakpoint and whenever the breakpoint is reached from minions being placed at it players receive points based on who controls the area for first, second, and third. That base card and minions at its location are then removed and a new one is placed. This continues until one player reaches a total of fifteen points to win.
The game is fast, simple and fun for a light game night. Furthermore, the customization is an awesome aspect being able to have priate-ninjas or wizard-dinosaurs and so on. Also, I would like to add that the game is not a very good two player game even though it can be played with just two. It is much better suited for 3-4 players.
6.) Boss Monster 2
Boss Monster 2 is the sequel to Boss Monster it is a stand-alone game and is debatable more balanced than the first game. This game brings to life love of classic video games into a board game. Each player gets to be their own video game like boss who is trying to collect 10 souls. To collect the souls players must build dungeons and lure heroes to them. Once the heroes our lured they must defeat them and capture their souls. Players can build one room with its own unique damage and treasure value. The treasure value attracts more heroes to the room but with higher treasure value comes with weaker damage.
7.) King of Tokyo
King of Tokyo is a fun family game that is great to play with kids and adults. The game is basically a giant battle between epic monsters where players can win one of two ways. The first is to be the last standing monster and the second is to achieve 20 victory points. Players can capture Tokyo granting them additionally victory points and the ability to attack all other monsters at once. However, controlling Tokyo makes you the main target of everyone else and also prevents healing.
A cool feature of this game is that you can purchase abilities for your monster as the game goes on through the use of energy. If you are looking for a great battle royale type game to play then King of Tokyo is the best board game under $30 for that.
8.) Lords of Waterdeep
Lords of Waterdeep is a strategy board game intended for 2-5 players. This city building game comes fully loaded with an awesome Dungeons & Dragons theme that you will love. In the game, each player takes on a role as one of the Lords of Waterdeep in hopes to acquire the most points before the eight rounds are over.
Points are gained through the use of agents who can complete various tasks. For starters, you are able to recruit adventurers to go on a quest on your behalf, expand the city, or help/harm other lords by playing intrigue cards.
Lords of Waterdeep is a great game for anyone it is one of the top 50 games of all time (rated on boardgamegeek) and especially a great game if you love D&D. You can typically find a copy this board game for under $30.
Cartagena is a great board game if you have children who you are looking to play with mainly 8 to 13 years old, as both of you will find this game fun and full of depth.
This game is based on the 1672 jailbreak from Cartagena which was lead by pirates and has the theme fit it perfectly. The objective of the game is simple, to be the first player to get all six of his pirates to escape through the dangerous underground passage leading to the port.
The game uses some heavy hand management tactics as you can only move your pirates by placing down a card. Each of the cards come with one of the six different symbols and when you play that specific symbol you may move on pirate to the next tile with that symbol on it. If a pirate is already on that symbol you get to go to the next one instead.
The catch to this game is that you can only draw cards by moving one of your pirates back to the first tile that has another pirate on it. This makes the game quite interesting as players must manage their playstyle based on of their cards, pirate position, and other players actions. As you can see the game brings a great amount of depth while still being a simplistic game that even your children can play.
Acquire is a bit of an old and forgotten game by many, but for those who are looking for a strategic business like game, this is the perfect option. In the game, players take on the role of businessmen/investors who are trying to invest in businesses and retain their stock. Invested business will grow based on their tile placement and can also merging presenting opportunities for the shareholders to acquire bonuses and so on. Players must utilize the growth of their investments to keep growing their money until one player acquires the greatest amount of wealth.
Acquire is definitely one of the best board games under $30 for those interested in a business-themed game.
11.) Ticket To Ride
Ticket to Ride is a fun and easier to learn game that is both enjoyable for adults and children. The game involves collecting different train cars which can be redeemed to claim different railroad across the board. These railroads earn the player a certain amount of points and also prevents other players from using those railroads. Unless the railroad is a double railroad. Furthermore, on top of earning points form the laying of railroad tracks players can also earn points from various destination tickets.
Other than being one of the best board games under $30 Ticket to Ride is also a great gateway game and a great board game for couples.
Conclusion: Playing board games can be a lot of fun, however, finding affordable board games is always a challenge. Hopefully, with our list of Best Board Games Under $30 you were able to find something suited to your needs. If you think a game should be added to the list please post it in the comments.