A board game is a tabletop game that involves counters or pieces moved or placed on a pre-marked surface or board, according to a set of rules. Some games are based on strategy, but many contain an element of chance. Games usually have a goal that a player aims to achieve, early board games represented a battle between two armies, and most modern board games are still based on defeating opposing players in terms of counters, winning position, or accrual of points. There are many varieties of board games and their representation of real-life situations can range from having no inherent theme, like checkers, to having a specific theme and narrative, like Cluedo. Board games have been played in most cultures and societies throughout history, the Pilgrims and Puritans of New England frowned on game playing and viewed dice as instruments of the devil. In Thoughts on Lotteries Thomas Jefferson wrote, Almost all these pursuits of chance produce something useful to society, but there are some which produce nothing, and endanger the well-being of the individuals engaged in them or of others depending on them. Such are games with cards, dice, billiards, etc. and suppress the pursuit altogether, there are some other games of chance, useful on certain occasions, and injurious only when carried beyond their useful bounds. Such are insurances, lotteries, raffles, etc and these they do not suppress, but take their regulation under their own discretion. As the US shifted from agrarian to urban living in the century, greater leisure time. The American home, once the center of production, became the locus of entertainment, enlightenment. Children were encouraged to board games that developed literacy skills. The earliest board games published in the United States were based upon Christian morality, the Mansion of Happiness, for example, sent players along a path of virtues and vices that led to the Mansion of Happiness. The missionaries are cast in white as the symbol of innocence, temperance, and hope while the pope and pagan are cast in black, the color of gloom of error, and. grief at the daily loss of empire. Commercially produced board games in the century were monochrome prints laboriously hand-colored by teams of low-paid young factory women. Advances in paper making and printmaking during the period enabled the production of relatively inexpensive board games. The most significant advance was the development of chromolithography, an achievement that made bold. Games cost as little as US$.25 for a small boxed card game to $3.00 for more elaborate games, American Protestants believed a virtuous life led to success, but the belief was challenged mid-century when Americans embraced materialism and capitalism. The accumulation of material goods was viewed as a divine blessing, in 1860, The Checkered Game of Life rewarded players for mundane activities such as attending college, marrying, and getting rich
American board game Monopoly is licensed in 103 countries and printed in 37 languages.
Men Playing Board Games, from The Sougandhika Parinaya Manuscript (1821)