Great boardgames of all time and all cultures

Gaming has been an important part of human life for millennia. Countless anonymous gamers and game developers left us an astonishingly wealthy legacy of games, which are unknown to many people and undervalued by most.

We have a great collection of some of the best traditional boardgames of history. Beyond simply making a list of the games, we have designed pieces easy to cut, fold and assemble so that you can download, print, play and safely store your game.

While playing these games you'll be travelling through time and space, experiencing a little bit of cultures around the world.

Discover below 16 great games that stood the test of time.

Backgammon, or 'The Game of Kings', is an ancient race game that combines strategy, focus and risk assessment. It belongs to the 'tables' family of games.

A 2 player game, for 8+ years, that lasts about 40 minutes. It takes some effort to master.


Chess is a centuries old strategy game that absolutely deservers being the most iconic game in the world. It can be extremely deep and puzzling even for professionals.

A 2 player game. Chess can be taught to young children, but it is a complex game that requires effort.


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In this colorful game, players control a group of animals that can capture below their ranks (cats get rats, dogs get cats and rats, etc). It is a fun game from the chess family.

It's a fast and uncomplicated 2 players game, ideal to introduce board gaming to children.


Go is an abstract strategy game with the simplest rules imaginable - you place stones trying to encircle the opponent. But in truth, the complexity of the game is unrivaled.

A 2 player game. To be able to play Go with minimally decent skill is a feat, and takes long time and effort.


Hnefatafl is an asymmetric strategy game that used to be played by the Vikings. One player tries to capture the king, while the other tries to save him. It belongs to the 'tafl' family of games.

A 2 player game, suitable for children. It lasts about 15 minutes.


Jarmo is a unique strategy game. Its board spaces are connected almost randomly - meaning you must carefully consider the terrain before moving - and pieces may be promoted and brought back.

A 2 player game, suitable for children. It lasts about 15 minutes.


Jul Gonu is a Korean quick two player game, a member of the Gonu family of games.

Surround your opponents pieces and you win. It seems a lot simpler than it really is.

Jul Gonu

In luzhanqi, your goal is to catch the opponent's flag. Pieces are kept hidden from the opponent, and they capture only below their hierarchy. With bombs, traps and railroads, this game is a must see.

A 2 player game that is cute and full of surprises. Ideal for children.


Mu Torere is a very intriguing game from the Maori. There is only one space available each turn for you to move and you will need to plan several dozens of moves ahead if you want to be a decent match for a Maori.

A game for 2 players, suitable for children.

Mu Torere

Pachisi, which is rightly called the 'national game of India' is a race game. Each player has go take his pins around the board while preventing the opponent from doing the same.

A game for 2 to 4 players, suitable for children.


Patolli is a race game develop in pre-Columbian Mesoamerica. You have to lead your men and block your opponent, while gambling your items. Instead of reaching the goal, you win when you get the all goods.

A game for 2 players, suitable for children. It's a very cute version, too.


Permainan is a simple strategy game - you move your stones to capture the opponent's. But the board allows pieces to leave it, turn and return perpendicularly, which literally forces you to think outside the box.

A 2 player game, very good for playing with children.


Poker is one of the best card games ever. Period. You must at the same time play against the odds in the cards and against your friends' bluffing attempts. If you don't know poker, you're missing out - it's deep, dynamic and involving.

A game for 2 to 6 players.


Shogi, or Japanese chess, is an extraordinary game. Similar to chess, but pieces can be promoted, and those captured can be redeployed in your side. This makes the game extremely interesting, dynamic and challenging.

A highly recommended game for 2 players.


The Royal Game of Ur is one of the most ancient games known. Archaeologists discovered it in the 1920s and found a cuneiform tablet discussing its rules in the 1990s.

It is an amazingly fun game where strategy and luck are quite well balanced. Some researches claim that the royal game of Ur is an ancient ancestor of the Backgammon.

The Royal Game of Ur

Xiangqi, or Chinese chess, is unique because of their pieces, positioning and the river and castles. It allows for quicker offense and the use of terrain, being an wonderful alternative to international chess.

A 2 player game that can be very complex and yet still accessible.


The game of yut is an icon of Korea. It's a race game in which you must take your animal around the board. What makes it interesting is the dynamism added by the yut sticks and the shortcuts along the path.

A 2 player game. Cute and simple, it is perfect for children.