Category Archives: Party board games

Waddington’s Formula One board game as a Cars themed party game


One of the popular party themes for young boys is Cars. The cars party theme can be based around the Disney cars theme or motor racing in general. A vintage board game that can be played by 2 to 6 players is Waddington’s Formula One racing board game and it is suitable for a car themed party.

With any board game to be played at parties, I would suggest buying 2 or 3 from EBay and then either reselling them or ‘gifting’ them afterwards, or keep one for your own family to enjoy in the future. These type of games can be purchased for about $30 each and make a great center price for any themed party.

In past blog posts I have recommended other party games, such as Waddington’s Buccaneer for a pirate themed party, and the advice I would give for incorporating board games into any party is as follows:-

1)      Purchase enough games for everyone to play at the same time (these games usually allow six players at a time).

2)      Make sure you read the rules yourself ahead of time and write the main points down so you can explain the rules to the young guests.

3)      Create banners, art work on rolls of paper, related to the game and stick them on the walls.

4)      Get a couple of trophies, nothing expensive, for the winners.

5)      Get some hats\caps appropriate for the game, so the guests can wear them during the game.

Waddington’s Formula One is an interesting motor racing game as it incorporates a car dashboard for each player that shows speed, brake and tire ware. The basic idea is for the players to drive in such a way as to conserve brakes and tires. There are also tactical cards to allow each player certain advantages that can be strategically played during the race. The game, like a real race, ends after a certain number of laps (10). What makes this game ideal for a racing themed party is that there is more strategy than luck involved and the kids will enjoy making decisions such as: go fast and use more brakes or go slower and conserve braking strength for later.

There are other racing games that can be included in a car themed party but Waddington’s Formula One really captures tha spirit, tactics and fun of a real motor racing event.

Waddington’s Careers board game for parties



Recently I played a game called Life which is a race baord game where the players go around a board collecting money, by earning a salary or receiving money for other services depending on their choosen occupations.

This reminded me of a similar game I used to play as a child (some 40 years ago) in the UK.

The UK version (of Life) was called Careers and I recall that at the start of the game the players (secretly) completed an ‘ambition’ , which was made up of a combination of wealth, fame or happiness objectives. The career paths each gave the players an opportunity to earn their points towards their secret ambition.

The player achieving their ambition, by gaining their appropriate points in the three categories (wealth, fame or happiness) would turn over their previously recorded ambition and declare themselves as the winner.

The aspect of this game, Careers, that I enjoyed was that each person would follow a different ‘career path’ depending on their secretly written objectives. That is the goal of the game was not preset for all, as is the case with many games such as the Life classic that I now play with my children.

Another aspect of this kind of game, that is enjoyable to younger players is an  kind of ‘role playing’ concept under which the player could choose, for example,  an astronauts career path (if fame was the main objectives on his or her secret ambition card).

The dice is used in this game, so lady luck plays a big part, but that said the setting of objectives and career choices to match those objectives make this a fascinating and enjoyable game for around 4 people of ages 8 and over.

I would strongly recommend anyone that has played (and enjoyed) the board game Life to get hold of an old copy of this Waddington’s classic, which is still available on

Waddington’s Buccaneer board game for parties


Here is another great board game, from the UK game manufacturer Waddington’s, this game is still available on EBay (in particular the UK site

I spent many a happy hour playing this game with my family, which conveniently consisted of 6. If you enjoy board games then add this to your collection, with the other recommendations I write about. Also let me know, in the comments, if you have played this or similar board games.

Waddington’s version of buccaneer is so much superior to the modern Pirates of the Caribbean type of race games that you will see today. The original Buccaneer game from Waddington was first produced in the 1930′s. I used to play, as a child, with a 1970′s version although the game is basically the same no matter which version is used. That said I would always check that the version supports up to 6 players (some only had 4 ships) and all the pieces are present in the game as buying replacement game parts is extremely difficult.

The game can be played with 2 to 6 players and from ages 8 to adult.

What I like about this game is the freedom of movement, in that the player points his or her ship in the direction they want to go and sets off.  The destination can be treasure island or a trading port or to battle with another pirate ship. The number of moves (squares) a player can make is determined by the players sailing strength and the players fighting strength determines the outcome of battling another pirate ship. Both sailing strength and fighting strength are calculated from cards that are given out at the start but can be changed during the game.

This game allows for multiple strategies, collecting treasure as well adding to fighting or sailing strength. The basic idea is to collect a certain amount of treasure but there are various ways this can be done, including taking it from other pirates during a battle, which of course is the most satisfying way to get your bounty.

Overall this is one of the most enjoyable board games I played growing up and I would recommend it, especially for 4 to 6 players. The game can be played in around an hour.