Rudy Panucci On Pop Culture

The 2022 PopCult Gift Guide-Day Seven: Retro Board Games

Yesterday in The 2022 PopCult Gift Guide we offered up five “Retro Cool” ideas, and today we’re still in a retro mood, only with board games.

Back in the dark days of the pandemic, board games had a surge in popularity as folks decided that staying in was better than dying of a horrible disease. As people ordered the classic board games they remembered from their youths, some of them were distraught to discover that they had been changed, some quite dramatically.

This has actually been going on for some time. As such a market developed for retro versions of the classic board games that stripped away decades of “updates” and “improvements” and presented these games just as they were back when they were introduced.

Today we have five board games that are all retro-d out the wazoo, with vintage graphics and packaging and more nostalgic button-pushing than you shake a vintage stick at. The cool thing is that you can share these games with your kids or grandkids, and they’ll like them too, because the games play pretty much the same. These are all great gift for anybody who enjoys playing board games.

You can find some of these games at a wide variety of retailers, but I’ll be providing links to either Target or Amazon, because they have the best price as I write this. Be aware that they might change their prices several times a day, so it won’t hurt to shop around if you’re not in a hurry.

Retro Series Sorry! 1958 Edition
Available from Amazon for just under $32

Fondly remembered by people of a certain age who grew up watching The Carol Burnett Show, this game figured prominently in one of “The Family” sketches as Mama, Eunice and Ed play Sorry! until civility breaks down.

This Retro Series Sorry! game looks like the 1958 edition, with bold vintage graphics and classic wooden pawns.

The packaging mimics the orginal 1958 design, with a big “RETRO” logo there to make sure nobody tries to pass it off as original on the collector’s market.

This set Includes full-sized gameboard based on the 1958 edition, SORRY! card deck with retro graphics, 16 classic wooden pawns, and instructions

Classic Battleship game Retro 1967 edition
Available from Target for under $16.

Since 1967, the Battleship game has been thrilling would-be naval commanders. This retro edition is inspired by the original favorite game where 2 players try to sink each other’s hidden ships. It’s full speed ahead to hunt, hit, sink, and win! The first player to sink all 5 ships in the enemy fleet wins. The average playing time is 20 minutes per game.

Plus you’ll get the fun of picking up all those pegs when you forget to close the game all the way and then pick it up.

Includes 2 self-contained game kits (each has an ocean grid, barrier lid, and storage compartments), 2 fleets of ships (each has a Carrier, a Battleship, a Cruiser, a Submarine, and a Destroyer), and 2 sets of marker pegs (white and red). Ages 7 years and up.

Classic Yahtzee, An Exciting Game Of Skill And Chance
Available from Amazon for under $13.

Yahtzee has been one of the most popular dice games in the world since its introduction in the 1950s, with Over 50 million games sold each year. This speical edition “Classic Yahtzee” features the same styling as the original.

The name of the game is also the name of the best hand. The odds of rolling a “Yahtzee” (5 OF A KIND) on your first roll are 1295 to 1, so you won’t see that happen very often!
While luck plays a big role in Yahtzee, strategy makes a huge difference. You score each combination just once, and the number of different combinations you can score is equal to the number of turns in the game.

The game ends after each player has 13 turns and has filled every box in the column with a score or a zero. The Player or Team with the highest total score for all games (up to six) wins.

The game includes five white dice, a score pad, eight bonus chips (four red, four yellow), and a storage tray and instruction sheet. Plus this retro dice cup has the original aluminum rim. All in a package featuring the original graphics from the first edition, which was released almost 70 years ago.

Pressman Retro Mastermind
Available from Target for under $15.

One of the best-selling games of all time now features a great retro look that goes all the way back to 1989. Return to an old favorite with Retro Mastermind, the classic game that brings together a Codemaker and a Codebreaker with a great retro look.

Break the hidden code in this game of cunning and logic where players take turns setting and solving secret codes. The Codemaker will give clues to the Codebreaker, who will need to use logic, deduction, and maybe even a little luck to break the code.

With more than 2,000 possible codes, every game is guaranteed to be a brainteaser. This retro version is complete with built-in storage trays for pegs and a flip-top code shield that stays securely in place. For 2 players, ages 8 and up.

RACK-O, Retro package Card Game
Available from Amazon for under $12

Rack-o was originally released in 1956, and since then families have enjoyed this Rack’Em & score fun-filled card game. This retro edition, featuring fine quality cards with bold numbers, will delight players young and old. Rack-o is timeless fun.

The game play is sort of like Rook or Gin Rummy, only with completey different rules and the addition of neat little plastic racks into the process. Who doesn’t like neat little plastic racks?

Players randomly slot 10 cards on their rack. The race then begins to draw and discard until one player positions 10 cards in numerical sequence from low to high. Sound simple? it is – but you will need skillful play, concentration and just a little luck to win. We include a deck of (60) playing cards, (4) plastic rack-o racks and instructions. Recommended for ages 8+, 2-4 players.

Those are today’s five picks for The 2022 PopCult Gift Guide. Check back tomorrow for five more fresh gift ideas!

1 Comment

  1. Thomas H. Wheeler

    I actually have the original version of that Battleship game. 🙂

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