In a cold, dark January, it's easy to fall back on old habits, but why not stick to those resolutions and make yourself a better person? Wiser, taller, better at Mario Kart - whatever you want to do to improve yourself, use board games to help!
Playing these board games are practically certificates of excellence (don't quote me on that) and can probably be added as 'extra skills' to your profile on LinkedIn (again, don't trust anything I say).
A mix of party games, family games, and two player games, these little bundles of joy will make you better than Gandhi & Ryan Gosling* combined.
1. Funemployed - 3-20 players
SKILLS GAINED: Interview prep / Confidence / Improvisation
Got a job interview coming up and you need to practise? Funemployed is a card-based party game in which everyone's trying to get jobs. Apply for real jobs, like astronaut, lawyer or priest; however, you've only got unreal qualifications, such as a dragon, the ability to speak panda, or a DeLorean...
2. Jaipur - 2 players
SKILLS GAINED: Trading & haggling / Tactical thinking
Made for just 2 rival players, Jaipur is fast-paced; a blend of tactics, risk and luck. You are one of the two most powerful traders in the city, but only the merchant with two Seals of Excellence will have the privilege of being invited to the Maharaja's court.
You'll have to do better than your direct competitor by buying, exchanging and selling at better prices. Like eBay for camels.
3. Pandemic - 2-4 players
SKILLS GAINED: Critical thinking / Teamwork / Working under pressure
In the cooperative board game Pandemic, four diseases have broken out in the world and it is up to a team of specialists in various fields to find cures for these diseases before mankind is wiped out!
In Pandemic players must work together and try to stem the tide of infection in diseased areas while working towards cures. Unofficial bonus skill: Renewed appreciation of the NHS.
4. Sneaky Cards - 1-unlimited players
SKILLS GAINED: Confidence / Kindness / Generosity / Curiosity
Not your typical board game, but definitely a skill scorer! The aim of Sneaky Cards is to complete each card objective - and that could be anything from 'Take a selfie with a stranger' to 'Pre-pay for an item at a vending machine'.
Every time you play a card and pass it on, that new person becomes a player (another sneaky accomplice!) and pretty soon, the game and its joy will spread futher than the eye can see. A lovely antidote to the evil of 2016...
5. Dead of Winter - 2-5 players
SKILLS GAINED: Zombie killing / Tactical thinking / Teamwork
If all else fails - happiness, global stability, our unique human capacity to love - then Dead of Winter will see you through the coldest and most gruelling of zombie-filled winters.
Players are dropped into a small, weakened colony of survivors. To win as a team, work together toward one common victory condition — but for each individual player to achieve victory, they must also complete their own personal secret objective. It's teamwork with a twist.
This year is the year of YOU! Become a better person and improve your body, mind and soul with board games. Failing that, at least they're fun.