The Best Two-Player Games for a Cozy Night In

Stop boredom in its tracks with these top-rated games that are perfect for two or more players.

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April 08, 2020

My husband and I are no strangers to game nights at home. When we want to save a little money but still connect in a meaningful way, we almost always end up grabbing a six-pack or bottle of wine and playing a two-person game in the living room. It's a cheap date idea that results in a lot of laughter and quality time together.

As you can imagine, we've developed quite the game collection over the last few years, from traditional board games to card decks that double as conversation starters. Here are a few of my all-time favorite two-player games that you can enjoy with your S.O., family member or roommate whenever you need a break from your phone or TV.

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If you grew up on The Black Eyed Peas, Destiny's Child, Britney Spears or Nelly Furtado, then this is the game for you. Packaged in an old-school cassette tape, the neon green deck contains 40 cards that feature trivia questions and "next line" challenges. (So you can finally belt all the words to "Complicated" by Avril Lavigne and "It Wasn't Me" by Shaggy.) When we're playing on our own, my S.O. and I take turns drawing cards and then award bonus points for finishing the song.

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If you're looking for more of a classic board game, then I suggest you check out Ticket to Ride. It has nearly 300 reviews and a five-star rating on Target for a reason. After you lay out your board, you and your opponent will take turns drawing cards and claiming train routes, with the goal of connecting American cities and having the longest continuous railroad. It's easy to play, incredibly addicting and will give you a good excuse to sing that one song by The Beatles.

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Nothing like a walk down memory lane, eh? Revamped with a hilarious "High School Reunion" theme, this parody of Guess Who? will have you asking wild and awkward questions to reveal your opponent's mystery person. If you have old yearbooks gathering dust, you can even cut out images of your classmates and personalize the game. It's not required, but it definitely makes things more interesting.

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I'm not going to lie to you: When this game came out last year, I took one look at the box and immediately bought myself a copy. And I'm so glad I did. If you and your S.O. or roommate have seen your fair share of movies, then put your trivia skills to the test with this Blockbuster-inspired board game. You'll battle it out in the movie rental parking lot to name the most films, then attempt to describe certain titles using only one word or body language.

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You know what's more fun than scrolling through social media on your phone? Using your device to complete scavenger hunt-like challenges from this stack of prompt cards. But fair warning: You might have to show the most embarrassing photo in your camera roll or even reveal how many alarms it actually takes you to wake up in the morning.

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PSA: This adults-only game is even better with a glass of wine. Trust me. Inside the Incohearent box, you'll find 500 cards, each bearing a hilarious (and sometimes scandalous) phrase and a strip of color that correlates to a category like "Pop Culture" or "Party." Your job is to then decipher the seemingly nonsensical term before the timer runs out. Technically, the game's meant for three or more players, but you can easily adapt it for two by either taking turns or racing to see who can decode the phrase first.

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If you'd rather play something that will make you feel more calm than competitive, try Photosynthesis. Perfect for two to four players, it's a beautifully illustrated board game that invites you to take your trees through the life cycle, from seedling to full bloom.

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I'm pretty sure this is the most beautiful board game ever. Designed by world-famous, award-winning game author Michael Kiesling, Azul invites two to four players to step into the world of Moorish artists competing to decorate the walls of the Royal Palace of Evora. As you go along, you'll pick up certain tiles to maximize your score and earn extra points for blocking opponents from getting theirs.

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Sure, you might know how your partner takes their coffee or the story behind their most embarrassing moment ever, but do you know how they feel about James Bond vs. Jason Bourne or living inside an Olive Garden? Cover all the important bases with this hilarious card game, which boasts thought-provoking (albeit ridiculous) questions straight from the internet.

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Alternatively, you can skip the funny and go straight to the heartfelt with this card game from the creator of We're Not Really Strangers. Designed to build intimacy and strengthen relationships, the deck has three levels that you'll follow in order, starting with "Perceptions." According to the directions inside the box, the more vulnerable you're willing to be, the better.

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