Arkham Horror

Theme, Flavour and Mechanics

In boardgames, there are (for me) three main aspects that determine how much I like a game. These are Theme, Flavour and Mechanics.

The Theme is the overall story or setting of the game. It could be a Star Wars game or a Cthulhu game, a Sci-Fi space exploration game or a Sword and Sorcery D&D game. I am less likely to play a game if I am not fond of the theme. I don’t want to run a farm, for example, or sell textiles in medieval Florence. I want to shoot stormtroopers, or fight dragons, or try and stop the world being eaten by oceanic elder gods. You get the idea.

Let us suppose (correctly) that I am interested in any game that has anything to do with Cthulhu. What makes a good Cthulhu game?


‘Gateway’ games, like gateway drugs

I find a lot of people get the wrong idea when I tell them I like boardgames.

I suspect they immediately think of traumatic childhood family experiences playing Monopoly or Cluedo (known as ‘Clue’ in the US), or maybe they remember feeling dumb in Trivial Pursuit or having dinner parties that ended with couples bickering over Pictionary.

So when I say “I like boardgames”, I can see them taking a mental step back from the obvious loony stood in front of them 🙂