One of the greatest things about being a kid in the 1970s was the sheer number of cool board games available. My family, friends and I played a lot of different ones. Several of which I believe are worth rediscovering. Here’s a quick rundown on a few worth pulling out of the attic:
“The Bermuda Triangle Game”
I absolutely adored the “Bermuda Triangle Game” by Milton Bradley. It came out in 1975 and was given to me by my Uncle Henry, who served in the U.S. Navy. He was always buying my siblings and me games that had a military or ocean theme. The “Bermuda Triangle Game” was one of the best games he ever bought me. As a matter of fact, it was right up there in status next to “Rock ‘Em Sock Em Robots” and “Battleship.”
The goal was to get your cargo, which consisted of bananas and other assorted stuff to various ports and rack up as much money as you could. The main thing that kept you from reaching your goal was the magnet cloud. If you got to close to it, it would suck your ships underneath it. It was really cool to watch the ships slide under the cloud. The other cool thing was that sometimes the cloud would unexpectedly spit your ships back out. That would happen if too many of your competitors ships landed under the cloud and there just wasn’t enough room to hold them all.
“Pick Up Sticks” by Pressman
Remember the deceptively simplistic looking game, “Pick Up Sticks”, by Pressman? It was just a container of thin, multi-color sticks that you dumped out onto a table. Each player would try to remove a stick without disturbing all the rest. The person that disrupted the other sticks would lose a turn. The sticks had points assigned to them and the person who collected the most points at the end of the game would win. One of the main goals of the each player was to capture the black stick because the person that got it could use it to manipulate the other sticks. Plus it was traditionally worth the most points. Personally, I thought it was a fun game to play.
“Chinese Checkers” by Pressman
“Chinese Checkers” by Pressman was a great game to play on a rainy afternoon. It consisted of a game board that had a six-star design painted onto it. The object was to move your colored marbles from one side of the game board to the other. The best part about it was that you could move your marbles in all sorts of funky directions and not worry about getting captured. In my opinion, that made the game more fun to play than regular checkers.
“Operation” by Hasbro
“Operation” by Hasbro is another great game that is worth pulling out of the attic. The game board consists of a man’s hollowed out body that was laid out on a makeshift operating table. The goal was to use the special tweezers that came with the game to remove assorted body parts from the man’s cavity without touching the sides of the cavity. If you touched the cavity, the board game would make a loud buzzing sound and the man’s nose would light up. The buzzing sound was really loud and would always make me jump. Hasbro still makes the board game to this day but I don’t know of many young children that have actually played it.
“Pay Day” by Parker Brothers
“Pay Day” by Parker Brothers was a wonderful board game to play in the 1970s. I liked playing it as much as I liked playing “Monopoly.” The goal of “Pay Day” was to make your paycheck last an entire month. In some odd sense, it was good practice for adult life. Like “Operation”, the game is still sold today but I don’t know how many people still play it on a regular basis.
Killeen Gonzalez enjoys playing board games with her family.
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