Board games and how to win at them

One time, I tried to hit my boyfriend with a pan. This only happened in my imagination, but it was a close thing. The reason for this imaginary rage fart was that my boyfriend had won three games of Guess Who in a row.

I realise this might say more about me than it does about the inherent unfairness of a children’s board game. But that didn’t stop me accusing him of shenanigans and bollocks, then retreating to a corner of the room to cry and eat Kitkats.

I’m not sure board games are aimed at me.


Let’s think about board games for a minute. Someone sat down and said “Hey I know, let’s invent a pastime that makes families kill each other!” Someone else maybe offered him a Wagon Wheel and said “Great idea Jim!”

Fuck Jim. I hate Jim for the misery he’s brought to my life. Just because he had some misshapen bits of plastic lying around, he had to invent a way to make people use them. He should have stuck them up his arse.

I must make one thing clear at this point – I would love board games if I were any good at them. But I’m not. Instead I am a massive loser, lying on the floor covered in game cards and my own piss, sobbing uncontrollably.

Let’s have a look at some of those pinnacles of fun and japes, and how to do them properly.




The reason you’ve ever heard of “The Angel, Islington”. Don’t pretend you have otherwise.

Object of the game: Make everyone else poor. Then laugh at them as they eat their dead.

Strategy: I like to collect all the ones in the game. That fucks people off when they need a one and they have seventeen billion pound notes. Also, buy places you went to once in real life, or just like the sound of – it really pisses people off when they’re waiting for ‘Pall Mall’.

Result: Satisfying rage. Especially if you hide the ones in your special lady place, then claim you don’t know what money is.

Guess Who

guess who

Or, to give it its proper name – Guess Whom. This game was invented after the police failed to pick some guy out of a line-up. Also – all people in the world have the same five faces, just with glasses on and shit.

Object of the game: Guess whom.

Strategy: Legal defence. Refuse to guess whom until the prosecutor (your opponent) gives you a concrete case for the alleged crime. Refuse to go any further until you’ve had a chance to speak to all suspects individually. The prosecutor cannot allow this because all the suspects are joined together on a crappy plastic board thing. Also, it’s usually fucking Bernard.

Result: Divorce. Or you get really good at being a duty solicitor.



Ah, Scrabble. The old bcukcyercsvshyudvy of board games.

Object of the game: Be better at words than the other player, and be cleverer and just better than them in general.

Strategy: Make swears. Any swears will do. For example, if you can’t quite make “fucking twat face”, then “sexhen” is a good alternative. It’s a hen that does sex. Also hide the dictionary.

Result: You look wise.



This is a board game if you accept that the board is on the floor, and also that you’re not as young as you used to be.

Object of the game: Have seventeen limbs.

Strategy: Here’s where that sledgehammer I told you to get earlier will come in handy. Failing that, assuming you’re not just really bendy, do the following:

  • Kick your opponent in the fanny. If they don’t have a fanny, nip out and buy one for them. Make sure the kicking is an “accident”.
  • Lie down flat over all the circles. I’m not sure if you technically win the game, but you definitely do.
  • Smell of onions or dogshit. Suggest everyone “gives each other a rub down” after the game. No one will want to go near you and you’ll win by default.

Result: Winner! You don’t need friends, friends are shit.



The game of kidneys! Try not to kill a man, or you’ll go “Oh shit!”

Object of the game: Somehow remove all a guy’s organs, because that won’t kill him or anything.

Strategy: Get turned on by the guy and his bits. Lick each organ as you take it out.

Result: Not yet tested, but something along the lines of people turning up at your house one day and offering to do your cleaning for you and give you lifts.

10 thoughts on “Board games and how to win at them

  1. Just to say, it’s generally accepted in game design circles that Monopoly is probably the worst-designed game that ever got published.

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Game of Life was always my favourite. I also had a really cool board game, Lost Valley of the Dinosaurs, which was all kinds of awesome, what with having dinosaurs in it! 🙂 Cluedo was really great, and let’s not forget good old Snakes ‘n Ladders. The one I really wanted to work better but was always such a pain in the behind was Mouse Trap – that trap would go off from the slightest breeze sometimes, and quite often didn’t work properly any way.


    1. I still have Lost Valley of the Dinosaurs, with a fully operational pteradactyl and everything. I made my husband play it two Christmases ago and he’s still sulking about having his explorers et by said leathery bird. It’s the best game I’ve ever owned.


  3. the only thing worse than monopoly was snakes and ladders. Absolutely no skill, choice or free will involved – you might just as well roll a dice to see who gets to be winner and save time.

    By the way, have you ever cast your critical eye over Trap Door? Utterly mental claymation kids series from the 1980s…


  4. The colours on a Monopoly board actually represent different crisp flavours, actually.

    Brown (Old Kent Road and that) – Barbecue beef
    Pale blue (Pentonville Road) – Salt & Vinegar (proper ones from Golden Wonder)
    Pink – Prawn Cocktail, obviously
    Red (dunno what they are) – Ready Salted
    Orange (Marlborough thingio) – Roast Chicken
    Yellow – (Piccalilli or whatever) – Quavers
    Green – Cheese & Onion (’80s Golden Wonder, so fuck you)
    Dark blue (Park Lane) – Salted peanuts (from behind the bar, on a card with a naked woman under all the packets)



  5. Me and my sister used to have the Pac Man board game which was food, we got it from a car boot sale with no missing pieces. Monopoly is the shittest game ever.


  6. I have gone far back into your archives here, but it was worth it to find someone else with the same Monopoly strategy. I was never going to win so it was much more fun to inconvenience everyone else.
    Bought your book too, let’s not make this weird.

    Liked by 1 person

  7. We used to have Mouse Trap when I was a kid. Played it properly once and then just used to get it out, build the trap, set it off a few times and put it away again. Unutteraby dull.



Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s