Jazz icon Ella Fitzgerald once sang “Summertime and the livin' is easy”. Unfortunately, we are currently a long way from summer, sun, happily jumping fish and flowering cotton plants. The summer of 2016 has not been summery at all so far and holiday feelings don't really want to come up either. We're not weather experts, but we still assume that we'll have really good travel weather ahead of us, which will then also lure one or the other board gamer on vacation. So that the journey doesn't get boring and because you can play board games in a particularly relaxed way on vacation, we would like to give you some tips for good travel board games. We wish you a lot of fun reading the following article and already have a nice holiday trip!

Smash Up: Incredibly fun deck building game

They still exist, the classic travel games that have sophisticated folding mechanisms, but experienced board players in particular prefer to use travel board games with more complex rules when they are on vacation. Our first recommendation for a fun game for the summer vacation comes from Pegasus Spiele and goes by the name Smash up

Travel board games: our tips for your vacation
Travel board games: our tips for your vacation

This holiday game comes from the game author Paul Peterson and is originally distributed by AEG. Smash up is a deck building game - and an unbelievable one if you want to believe the slogan on the game packaging. And in fact it is in the rulebook of Smash up in contrast to other deck building games, quite a bit different. It starts with putting together your personal play deck. Instead of spending hours tinkering individual cards into a tactically strong deck, you choose at Smash up simply two of the factions, of which 8 are available in total. The appropriate deck is then automatically composed of the 160 playing cards. This "deck building system light" is ideal for a quick game round on holiday and allows for almost unbelievable combinations from the available factions. Robots and zombies form a powerful team, just like aliens and pirates. Creativity is only limited by the probability calculation. A total of 28 different decks are possible. Basically not even that little and for the trip anyway completely sufficient. After choosing the factions, each player receives his deck of cards, which also consists of two times 20 cards. 

The course of the game of Smash up* is comparatively simple: The aim is to use your creatures skillfully to destroy the enemy bases in order to earn victory points. In each turn, players can play up to two of their hand cards and thereby perform an action and / or creature. However, since there is no compulsion to take action, one must weigh up whether a game action makes tactical sense. It is then determined whether one of the bases can be destroyed or not. To do this, the combat values ​​of the creatures are simply calculated and victory points are distributed according to the instructions from the basic cards. Since the player with the most battle points does not automatically receive the most victory points, tactical skill is necessary to get the best result from each round. So if you don't want to miss out on a deck building card game while on holiday, you can take it with you Smash up As a travel game it is spot on: the games are prepared quickly, the length of the round is manageable and the entertainment factor is great. And if you have seen enough of the creatures of the base game, you can fall back on numerous expansions that introduce further factions.

Tobago: Caribbean flair even in rainy weather

Tobago is not only the name of the smaller of the two main islands of the island state Trinidad and Tobago, but also the namesake for a wonderful board game from Zoch. But it is no coincidence that the board game is also about islands. The visually successful game plan and the excellent game material turn every rainy day into a Caribbean trip. Is really compact Tobago not, but the immense fun factor of this board game compensates for the dragging. Everything revolves around an island full of treasures and the roles of the treasure hunters are of course the board players. Tobago is aimed at game groups with 2 to 4 players from approx. 10 years of age. The strategic claim is always noticeable, luck only plays a small role. The real highlight Tobago* is not just the look of the game board, but the modular structure, through which up to 32 different island worlds can be created. That makes for a lot of variety and makes Tobago one of the best travel games ever. Since no two games are the same, it is basically just enough for vacationers Tobago to pack in the suitcase (in addition to some clothes, of course). 

Travel board games: our tips for your vacation

Getting started with the game is not difficult due to the good instructions. Even the first games are exciting and don't have the usual demo character of other, much more complex board games. Difficult alone rarely means good. Each game is about finding treasures scattered around the island, which are marked with clues. These can be tips like "in the mountains" or "in the jungle". Players use their hand cards to further restrict the locations of the treasures by cleverly placing clue cards. The unique field then houses the treasure that needs to be collected using the player cars. This extraordinary hint mechanism requires shallow strategic decisions and is fun. This makes Tobago an ideal family game for the next holiday. 

The palaces of Carrara: fun with marble

Carrara should be a household name for holidaymakers in Italy. The city in Tuscany is always world-famous for the white marble that is quarried there. The board game also revolves around this high-quality raw material The palaces of Carrarafrom the publishing house Schmidt Spiele. The Palaces of Carrara is of course not only recommended for Italy fans, but also for every vacationer who does not want to miss out on first-class board game strategy while on the move. The aim of the game for 2 to 4 players, ages 10+, is to make a lasting impression on the king by building buildings in various Italian cities. The higher the material used for the magnificent buildings in the respective cities, the greater the impression your player will make on the king. That not every building material can be used indiscriminately in every city The palaces of Carrara into an exciting strategic board game. Fame and lots of gold can be amassed by successful builders by the end of a game - the more, the better. The two-stage level of difficulty of this ideal travel board game is particularly practical: depending on the requirements, you turn the player board to the appropriate side. During the moves, a tactically considered approach decides success. The players choose from three different actions: buy raw materials, erect buildings or rate a city or building. The raw materials are positioned on a movable turntable, which is rotated by one level as soon as one of the players wants to buy a raw material. The turntable is not just a visual highlight, it also determines the price of the raw materials. Raw materials can then either be particularly expensive or even completely free. Stupid if you need one of the cost-intensive resources for your magnificent building. 

Travel board games: our tips for your vacation

Probably the most strategic and at the same time most important decision concerns the third game action - the evaluation. Each player can decide for himself when a building or a city should be scored. Buildings can only be rated once, cities can only be rated once per game. Do the scoring actions The palaces of Carrara to a strategic board game all about resource management, which rewards a clever approach. If one of two victory conditions is met, the remaining points are also counted. The board game The palaces of Carrara doesn't even begin to weigh as much as a chunk of marble and is therefore perfect for the next summer vacation.

Always possible: Games for two from KOSMOS

The board game series for two players from KOSMOS Verlag is particularly interesting for couples traveling. The selection is huge, so every couple should find a suitable board game for their upcoming vacation. The best titles in this series include board game pearls such as the award-winning one Targi or the classic Kahuna.

Travel board games: our tips for your vacation
Specially geared towards duels.

There are also titles for card-playing adventurers (Lost Cities) or games that motivate historians who love to travel in particular to play board (Rose king). Football fans grab it Goo! and experience thrilling championship finals right on the Ballermann, with the board game in one hand and the sangria bucket in the other. Even fantasy fans don't miss out on vacation: thanks to the 2-player title Lord of the Rings - The Search If you wish, Frodo will be your constant companion, even outside of New Zealand. Couples, on the other hand, are entertained divinely or godlike when traveling Caesar and Cleopatra as well as lightning and thunder, although we of course only wish you the latter on the board game table. The great thing about the board games for two from KOSMOS are the simple rules and the uncomplicated game processes with playing times of around 30 minutes. Thanks to the compact dimensions, all titles are also extremely suitable for travel, as they should still find space in the most fully packed suitcases - otherwise you simply sort out a pair of socks that you don't need on the beach anyway.