What Board Games Were Released in the 1980s?

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By Eric Wilson

The 1980s were a golden era for board games, with many classic titles still beloved by fans today. In this article, we’ll take a look at some of the most notable board games that were released during this decade.

Trivial Pursuit

One of the most iconic board games of all time, Trivial Pursuit was first released in 1981. Created by Canadian designers Chris Haney and Scott Abbott, the game quickly became a sensation thanks to its challenging trivia questions and unique gameplay mechanics. The game has since spawned numerous spin-offs and adaptations, including themed editions based on popular TV shows and movies.

Axis & Allies

Released in 1984, Axis & Allies is a strategy game set during World War II. Players take on the roles of various countries involved in the conflict, each with their own unique strengths and weaknesses. The game has since become a cult classic among strategy enthusiasts, with numerous expansions and revisions released over the years.


First released in Europe in 1989 (and later in North America), HeroQuest is a dungeon-crawling adventure game that combines elements of roleplaying games with traditional board game mechanics. Players take on the roles of heroic characters who must explore dungeons filled with monsters and traps to complete various quests. The game was notable for its high-quality miniatures and detailed game board.

Fireball Island

Released in 1986, Fireball Island was a unique board game that utilized a three-dimensional playing surface complete with ramps, bridges, and other obstacles. Players move their pieces around the island while trying to avoid being hit by fireballs launched from a central volcano. Though it was not a huge commercial success at the time, Fireball Island has since become something of a cult classic among board gamers.


First introduced in the 1950s, Risk underwent a major redesign in 1986 that resulted in the version of the game that is still played today. The game is a classic strategy title in which players attempt to conquer the world by moving armies across a map divided into territories. The popularity of Risk has led to numerous spin-offs and adaptations over the years.


The 1980s were a time of great innovation in board game design, with many classic titles released during this decade. From Trivial Pursuit to Fireball Island, these games have stood the test of time and continue to be enjoyed by fans today.