[Top 10] Best War Board Games

best war board  games , war themed board games, 10 war board games
Let's stick to war games and not actually have a war.

What are some of the best war board games out there?

War games have been really important and one of the most loved genres in gaming history. It was originally used to educate people about the principles of war. While its original intention was for actual warfare, we use war board games more for the enjoyment of it. 

While it may not be similar to the fantasy genre of board games it still involves a lot of strategy, story-telling and skill building you need when you play one. Here’s a list of some of the board games we love and think you should try out.

10. Memoir’44 

Memoir'44 Box and Inclusions

This game was designed to commemorate the efforts and sacrifices brought by the people who took part in the Second World War.  The players get to command their own army and face off opposing forces. Soldier placement and scenarios mimic the  2nd World War. Players have to use the different Command Cards to move their troops around the board or engage in battle. The object is to win as many Victory Medals in game via the different Victory Conditions.

What’s fun about Memoir’ 44:

  • Good for Beginners, if you’re new to War Board Games, then this is an awesome game to start with.
  • Simple but engaging, The rules are simple enough to grasp but you still need to think a lot of “how” to win. Perfect for Casual Play.
  • Historical Scenarios, several of the in-game scenarios are based on actual battles that happened during the war.

9. Runewars

Runewars Box

If you want something outside of the usual war games, why not try your hand at Runewars, a fantasy war board game for 2-4 players. All of you will battle in order to take control of the Dragon Rune. Unlike other war games where you play on a single mat, the game comes with thirteen hex shape tiles which you and the other players get to set up, keeping things fresh and new every time you and your friends decide to play this particular war game. Four faction sheets are also used to keep tracks of resources and other aspects of gameplay so you won’t get lost. 

What’s fun about Runewars:

  • Seasons Changing, 4 seasons represent a full year and the season card being laid out affects certain areas of the gameplay.
  • Create your own map, instead of a single board we are given 13 hex shape map tiles.
  • For those who love RPG board games, trying out war board games is a big shift, Runewars puts the elements of fantasy theme into a war board game making it easier for Fantasy board game players to appreciate war games.

8. Rising Sun

Rising Sun Box

Something more than a show of power, Rising Sun puts a good twist to war games by inputting a sense of comradery among opposing players. The board game allows 3 to 5 players and is set in feudal Japan. Ancient gods have decided to overtake the country and now each of you has to fight for the survival of your respective clans. Not only is it a battle of surviving the god’s wrath but also gaining the Kami’s favor in order to shift the tides of luck over to you so you can have the advantage at taking more land as your own.

What’s fun about Rising Sun:

  • Team up, you’re given a chance to align yourself with another player during the game. Make sure to choose someone to your benefit.
  • The More the Merrier, while I enjoy most of the tactical board games against 1 more person, Rising Sun makes having more players more enjoyable especially with the alliance system.
  • Kami and Oni Interferences, they can influence how the battle goes. 

7. B-17 Flying Fortress Leader

B-17 Flying Fortress Leader Box

We’ve pretty much covered the ground troops, now let’s take to the skies with B-17 Flying Fortress Leader. The game’s setting is during World War II European Theater Operations. You are in command of the Eight Air Force stationed in England. Your main mission is to reduce Germany’s ability to wage war by destroying the Luftwaffe to ensure a successful D-Day landing. Aside from the main mission you will have smaller side missions that will require you to launch attacks on areas that provide resources as well as artillery bases. Don’t expect this to be an easy mission as the Luftwaffe Squadrons are also ready to launch their countermeasures against you.

What’s fun about B-17 Flying Fortress Leader:

  • Solo-player, you can enjoy this game anytime, no waiting for anyone.
  • Several Campaigns to pick from, depending on which campaign you choose will also affect the military force Luftwaffe has against you.
  • Pretty long but easy to set up, you can always continue your mission the next day if you want.

6. Root

Root Banner Art

Don’t let the cute designs fool you, Root is a great adventure war game for 2- 4 players where each faction has their own goals in mind. Generally, it is still a game of territory but each faction has a different way of doing it. Each player gets to choose to either play as Cats, Birds, Mice or the single Vagabond, the Racoon. Players get to experience a fairy tale-like setting only with war-game mechanics, a combo we didn’t think would fit till we tried the game out ourselves.

What’s fun about Root:

  • Quick War Game, some war games tend to be long especially if it’s medium weight. Despite belonging to the same category, one game is just a little over an hour to complete (could be less).
  • Different animals, Different winning conditions. There are 4 different types of animals you get to command and each of them have different goals. Learning how to meet the winning conditions is a fun experience
  • Expansion, The Riverfolk expansion now allows you to enjoy the game solo or add more players making it from a 2-4 player game to a 1-6 player game.

5. Star Wars: Rebellion Board Game

Star Wars: Rebellion Box and Inclusions

Experience the Galactic Civil War beyond your screens with this board game. In this game you and your opponent have to choose which side you are on; will you choose to take command of the Galactic Empire or the Rebel Alliance? Each player has to control starships, troop movements and the rally system. Both sides have different win conditions as well as different specialties. As the Imperial Player you need to find and destroy the bases of the Rebel Alliance. As the commander of the Rebel Alliance your goal is to sway the citizens to your cause, survive long enough to strengthen your reputation and lead the galaxy to a full-scale revolt.

What’s fun about Star Wars: Rebellion Board Game:

  • Thematic Missions, there are small missions you need to fulfill in the game, some with the use of “leaders” who are classic characters from the Star Wars franchise.
  • Best for 2 with a fellow fan, this is one Star Wars game that’s fun to geek out about with one other fan.
  • Playing the Rebel, while the Galactic Empire is usually the one to play aggressively, being part of the rebellion gives you a shot to play either aggressively or passively. Remember: your goal as the rebellion is to survive long enough.

4. U-BOOT The Board Game


These days it’s common to see a lot of board games emerging with companion apps, while some are against it—it opens a whole lot more opportunities for game designers and players to explore new gameplay. U-BOOT allows you and your companions to operate your submarine and complete missions while minding the resources you have. Each of you pick one of the four characters to play, your character shows you what your role is in keeping the submarine alive and a successful mission. It’s a great co-op game where having 4 players manning all parts of the submarine brings out the full experience of the game.

What’s fun about U-BOOT: The Board Game:

  • Real-time gameplay, you can keep moving till your characters need to rest. Sort of feels like you really are in a World War II submarine doing your part in the common goal.
  • App Companion, adds to the experience, one of those app-driven games that works well and adds to its charm.
  • Teamwork, best played by four so all your jobs are equally distributed. All of you need to play your parts to complete the mission, no idle players.

3. Twilight Struggle

Twilight Struggle Box and Inclusions

The Cold War was a battle of different ideologies that caused a 45 year long dance between the United States and the Soviet Union. The game is set up into ten rounds, each round being a certain time period during the war and ending in 1989 the end of the Cold War. The goal of the game is to spread your influence around the world as the new superpower. There will be event cards that will be played during the rounds that will guide you through what cards need to be played/dealt within the game. Once all ten rounds are finished the scores are tallied on all the regions and the winner is declared.

What’s fun about Twilight Struggle:

  • Card game but not about luck, nothing random happens in this game so it’s really how the both of you learn how to play with your hand.
  • Practice Makes Perfect, despite it being straightforward it’ll take a couple of playthroughs for some to get the feel of the game.
  • Historical themes, a lot of focus have been put to WWII games, it’s nice to know that the Cold War has been covered here as well.

2. Warhammer 40,000: Kill Team

Warhammer 40K: Kill Team Set Up

Warhammer is pretty much a really huge game to get invested in, worst case scenario is if you find out Warhammer really isn’t your cup of tea for a tabletop. This is why Kill Team is all you need to test the waters when it comes to Warhammer 40K. It’s a scaled down version of the Warhammer 40,000 tabletop game. You take control of a small squad while your opponent also takes control of a small squad. Shooting and combat are fought using dice and are based on the skills of each unique unit. The objectives are dependent on the scenario you and your opponent choose to play. 

What’s fun about Warhammer 40,000: Kill Team:

  • Paint your own, honestly one thing I love about the Warhammer Tabletop is that you get to paint your own figures.
  • Fast-paced, compared to the full-scale Warhammer game this can be finished much quicker.
  • Control one piece instead of the whole unit, you can even split them up compared to the full-scale game where they move as one.

1.Axis and Allies 1941

Axis and Allies 1941 Box

Axis and Allies have been around for quite some time and has been a classic war game throughout the ages. But if you’re pretty much new to Axis and Allies, then 1941 is a pretty good game to start with. This edition plays for a shorter time but still manages to bring the flavor of any good Axis and Allies game. You get to control one of the Axis or Allied powers. You command both your country’s military force and its war-time economy. To come out on top you need to conquer your other opponents or occupy other powerful countries.

What’s fun about Axis and Allies 1941:

  • Shorter gameplay, unlike other Axis and Allies which takes more than 2 hours to play. This game allows you to play more times in one gaming session.
  • Great intro to Axis and Allies, again if you are new, this is the game to start with, the mechanics are pretty much the same for the heavier games.
  • Fast set up, makes getting onto the game quicker.


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An Alchemist who offers her creations to wandering travelers for their stories. Pat’s potions often have immense healing capabilities, sometimes a potent poison— you never really know till you try.
Gamer Since: 2001
Favorite Genre: RPG
Currently Playing: Pokemon Sword
Top 3 Favorite Games:Child of Light, Danganronpa Trigger Happy Havoc:, Mortal Kombat X

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