Since I was a much shorter blonde child, I have always loved games. Board games, card games, trivia games and any other games you can think of. Even though games become less of a common activity the older you get (even though for the life of me I can’t understand why), I also think that one of the best ways to spend your social downtime is to have a games night. You get to spend time with friends, enjoy some light-hearted competition and be nourished by delicious snacks. I love hosting game nights because I get to enjoy games that I don’t get to play often enough, and I get an evening of my friends’ company. What more can you ask? So, because hosting events/social activities and games are two big loves of mine, I’d like to combine them in today’s blog post. For all of you who also enjoy a good board game or are looking for an excuse to socialise with friends but don’t feel like hosting just another dinner, here are my tips for hosting the ultimate games night.
You can’t host anything without the basic details, even though these things are usually forgotten about. Pick a relatively convenient time and day to host your game night, and if you are hosting, then the location will likely be your own house. Evenings on the weekend are usually best because you don’t have to worry about finishing late. You also need to make sure you allow enough time for your ultimate games night. Four hours is pretty good because it leaves enough time for people to wander in, chat, settle in and play a game or two with food breaks, although there is no harm in going for longer if you have the energy.
Pick your guests
This one might seem obvious – you’d invite your friends, right? Well, I’m not so sure about you, but I have different friends that I like to do different things with and so you need to make a choice with who you invite to your games night. If you just want a relaxed evening of cards, then ask your friends who aren’t too competitive and can enjoy a peaceful evening. Or, if you’re going to play board games where lots of players aren’t great, why not have a couples games night? Personally, I love couples games nights because you can play with your partner, and invite more people without it making problems in the actual games. You also want to make sure that you invite a small enough group to have good quality time, but also enough so that there are more than just two players in the game. So, have a think about the type of games night you want to host, and then choose the appropriate friends.
Get everyone to pitch in
Just because you are hosting, doesn’t mean you have to do and pay for everything yourself. Hosting a 6-people game night could get pricey in terms of food and drink, and it isn’t fair that you should be sponsoring all of it if everyone else is planning on enjoying it. You also don’t need to be the one sourcing all of the games. So, once you know who all is coming, have a chat about getting everyone to pitch in. Maybe everyone can contribute some money towards food, or you guys can take turns that one person hosts, and the rest sort out food, drink and the games. You don’t have to spend tons of money to enjoy a good night. You could even ask everyone to just bring their favourite snack/drink and game. That way, you ensure both a variety of games and food, and you didn’t have to sponsor all of it.
Mix and match the games
Games – the core of your evening. The thing that everything else will revolve around. So, this is where you really need to think and make the right choices about what you play. I suggest mixing and matching the games you play. You don’t just have to play board games or card games. You can do one of each, to keep things fun and exciting. Also, try to mix old games and new games. You might have an old childhood favourite or discover one that you loved as a kid but had forgotten all about it. Mix in the old nostalgic games with the new ones or adult ones. That is how you will have a fun-filled night of games. Just beware though when you are choosing games. We all know games like Monopoly have a tendency to ruin relationships and Cards Against Humanity may not always suit the company. So, while you’re choosing the games, make sure you choose ones that will keep the fun going instead of crushing it.
Snacks and drinks
Snacks are the best part of any function, right? Or is that just me? Either way, snacks and beverages are quite essential to hosting the ultimate games night. You can’t play competitive board games without staying well-hydrated and having the right sustenance, so you need to have a think about the survival rations. Snack food is usually the easiest. Things like crisps, vegetable sticks and dips, nachos, little candies or sweets and bite-size snacks that you could pop in the oven just before your guests arrive. Or, if you and your friends agree, you could arrange to get takeaways somewhere in the middle of your evening, which will be an excellent excuse to take a break and let things cool down. I’d suggest not getting anything too messy (like burgers or ribs) and instead go for things like pizza or Chinese. But, the choice is yours, and it all depends on what you and your guests feel like. (Just remember to get one or two snacks for you all to nibble on even if you are having a meal because gameplay is hard work).
Make the ambience nice
The ambience is everything and can make or break your games night. You don’t have to go crazy and have themed decorations everywhere (you can if you want, though), but there are a few basic things that can make such a big difference. Make sure things are tidy and that you have enough cutlery, clean glasses etc. Make sure there is toilet paper in the bathrooms!
Another big thing to check is that you have a clean, clear and stable space to play your games on. You’re going to struggle to play a board game if you don’t have a solid table to play on and enough space for everyone to sit comfortably around the board so make sure you have that angle covered. Another little thing you could do is have a theme, and then your games and snacks could match. Predictably, my theme would be a Disney or Harry Potter theme, but there are many themes you can go for, and at the end of the day, all that matters is that you have a fun-filled evening of games.
And so there you have it! I hope that you all enjoyed today’s blog post and are now prepared and psyched to host your next ultimate games night. I hope that these tips make planning and hosting your games night a little easier and that with these tips under your belt, you can’t wait to call up your friends and get gaming. What I’d like to know is:
- Have I missed any crucial tips?
- Do you have any favourite game night snacks?
My absolute favourite snacks would have to be nachos, crisps and dip or chocolate-covered strawberries. Not exactly the healthiest, I know, but I just can’t resist them. Anyway, thank you all so much for reading today’s blog post. Please don’t forget to hit that like button if you enjoyed it and subscribe so that you don’t miss out on any future blog posts. I wish you all a fantastic weekend and happy gaming!
Lots of Love
Blondey on a Mission xxx