BOARD GAME BENTO is a blind box subscription service for tabletop gaming enthusiasts. Every month, for as low as $45/month plus shipping & handling, subscribers receive at least $80 worth of board games and add-ons at their door step. Each box includes either three different games from three different publishers, or two games and an expansion for one of the included games. The add-ons tie into the month's theme and game content, making the experience of playing a game out of a Board Game Bento box different from playing the same game off the shelf.
The real deal breaker for me was finding several mistakes with the rule book so quickly. While reading the rules out loud to explain the game, my opponent was following along on their player screen. We found that the Push and Copy cards are illustrated incorrectly in the book as well as the rule book saying that you may pass a flag to a runner OR a defender but the player screen saying only a runner may pass or receive a flag. This put me off from the game and will likely prevent me from trying any of the variants.
We’ve opened a small share of subscription boxes in this household, and while Board Game Bento is a good value, monetarily speaking, that is a standard feature of subscription boxes and we’ve come to expect it; on the other hand, we have received underwhelming subscription boxes before despite their contents’ cash value, so what usually preoccupies us when we are waiting for them is whether they will pass the “intrinsic value” test—that is, ignoring the contents’ price points, will the box be packed with goodness?   I can tell you that our first Board Game Bento passed this test, as we have already had a wonderful time playing Spyfall, and I am already cogitating strategies for our future play; Salem and Machine of Death look like fun games with unique themes as well, and I have high hopes for them.
Artistic design, including character and monster creations, was handled by Japanese artist Yoshitaka Amano from Final Fantasy through Final Fantasy VI. Amano also handled title logo designs for all of the main series and the image illustrations from Final Fantasy VII onward.[102] Tetsuya Nomura was chosen to replace Amano because Nomura's designs were more adaptable to 3D graphics. He worked with the series from Final Fantasy VII through Final Fantasy X;[74][102] for Final Fantasy IX, however, character designs were handled by Shukō Murase, Toshiyuki Itahana, and Shin Nagasawa.[112] Nomura is also the character designer of the Kingdom Hearts series, Compilation of Final Fantasy VII, and Fabula Nova Crystallis: Final Fantasy.[113] Other designers include Nobuyoshi Mihara and Akihiko Yoshida. Mihara was the character designer for Final Fantasy XI, and Yoshida served as character designer for Final Fantasy Tactics, the Square-produced Vagrant Story, and Final Fantasy XII.[40][114]
Max is a female pilot with a rocket-fueled cardboard box. If Sky Chasers looks familiar, that’s because it draws from the classic Lunar Lander. Players must operate a pair of thrusters to soar through magical worlds. The inventive levels in Sky Chasers hark back to the days of retro platformers, with bombastic traps, twisting tunnels, and larger-than-life enemies. By earning coins in each world, players can unlock more than two dozen new spaceships, all of which have very distinctive designs.

However, unless you have a particularly robust collection or are like several GeekDad contributors (who shall remain nameless) and have a Kickstarter obsession, you’re probably safe. The games are generally from smaller, independent publishers and started out on a crowdfunding platform. Which–to me–makes them all the more exciting. These are games that might not land on “hot” lists but still deserve table time.


Kappa Sushi is located in the busy shopping center containing Trader Joe's and Board n Brew. This sushi restaurant is crowded nearly every evening of the week and the seating is extremely limited (about 50 people max). When checking in to the hostess booth, there is no waiting area. So, if there's a wait and it's cold outside, you have to wait in the cold like a hobo.
Planet Surprise by Notre Game is a scratch and play, disposable game, much like scratch-off lottery tickets. I love playing scratch-off tickets, so I was intrigued, however, this one fell flat for me. Gianna and I tried this one and we both felt the same - it’s an interesting concept, but we didn’t feel it had any strategy involved or any real benefit to playing it against other people.

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