Hive board game
Hive board game


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Overall Rank: #88 | Trending Rank: #710

Hive is a boardless, strategic game for 2 players ages 8 and up. The object of the game is to surround your opponent's queen bee while trying to block your opponent from doing the same to your queen bee.

Each player has 11 tiles, all in all, representing 5 different insects. The players take turns, either choosing to add a tile to the hive or moving a tile in the hive.

Each tile has a unique way of moving (like in chess) and resembles the movement of the insect depicted on the tile. For instance, the grasshopper is the only tile which can jump.

Hive is a fun game to play because of its simple rules, yet challenging for its depth. Hive enhances each player's skills of strategic planning, tactical thinking and spatial vision. To win, you must play both the offense (surround your opponent's bee) and the defense (to protect your queen bee).

A nice decorative storage bag makes it easy to carry, store and play anywhere.

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User Ratings & Reviews

  • It was a new "style" of chess but it was kind of strange playing with bugs..
  • by
    This is currently one of my favorite games. It seems very simple, but there's actually a lot of strategy involved!
  • Perfect abstract thinky game to take outside for quick play. Didn't score it higher just because there's no conflict in this game
  • A great strategic 2-player game. It really challenges you to get inside your opponent's head and try to anticipate their moves. It gives me that chess feel without the length of a chess game. I can see this one being a regular when I have some 2-player opportunities.
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To clarify, yes, #Hive Carbon is black and white, a very stylish version and the same size as Hive. Unlike Hive, it includes the two expansions Mosquito and Lady Bug, like #Hive Pocket does. The latter has classic colors for the bugs and is smaller.

For original Hive, for Hive Carbon, and for Hive Pocket, the Pill Bug expansion is available, and they're all different, so make sure you get the right one if you decide to get it.

Note. If you want to play Hive with the Pill Bug Expansion, find the rules and play it by turning one of the bugs upside down. For Hive, perhaps use one of the spiders for that. But experiment the way you want. See

I've enjoyed my plays of #Hive on Board Game Arena.

I recently bought #Hive Pocket, because the version #Hive Carbon (not cataloged here), is a bit large in my bag with over 100 games. Hive Pocket takes 1/3 of the space, but plays the same. It's a favorite abstract of one of my play buddies. Note. Hive Carbon also includes two expansions (Mosquito and Ladybug).

We seem to gravitate toward the original game and don't like the Pill Bug expansion too much. That expansion crosses the line as it can move an opponent's piece. The Pill Bug is not included in Hive Pocket, but the other two expansions are (Mosquito and Ladybug)! Hence, it's a bargain, too.

If I had to start my collection all over again, I would go with some of the new-classics that really got me hooked into the hobby. Games like #Terraforming Mars and #Scythe. I would also throw in a few of my all-time favorite games including #Hive (+ expansions of course) and #Root. I would likely try to avoid some of the "harder to get" games in my collections. While worth playing every time, sometimes the cost is up there to just to obtain a copy. I would also avoid large box games like Gloomhaven and #Dice Throne: Season Two – Battle Chest

One game that comes to mind that I have a difficult time trying to find is #Two Rooms and a Boom. I've been sorta wanting to trade for a copy but its increasingly difficult finding a copy that isn't too used. I would also love to find a copy of #Too Many Bones so that I could finally try it. 

There are three games in my owned/played list that are in the 60's but I think it should be pushed up into the 70's: #Hive, #Friday, #Skull. This usually occurs with abstracts, "smaller" games, games with luck, or family games.

I would think #Hive would be another great outdoor game, particularly to bring on a camping trip. Those chunky pieces aren't flying away anywhere

I share your appreciation for abstract games and have the same problem of not having the right group (or person) to play them with. First off, here are the abstracts I've played (I think I got them all??): Chess, Go, Janggi (Korean variation of Chinese chess), Santorini, Hive, Azul, Chinese Checkers, Onitama, and I guess I should include Tiny Towns here since most people seem to call it an abstract.

It's hard to order them because they serve a different purpose, but I'll try. This list assumes that I'm playing with a competitive opponent who's either my equal or better:

  1. #Chess - It's a classic and never gets old for me.
  2. #Santorini - Expanding the world of tic-tac-toe with fun powers! If I didn't consider the god powers, this would drop several positions.
  3. #Hive - You get to play with chunky tiles and the idea of the different bugs' movement patterns is brilliant.
  4. #Azul - Satisfying pattern building and you get to play with great tiles. I just don't enjoy it as much if I feel like I have to make sub-optimal moves so that I'm not being mean to a beginner.
  5. #Tiny Towns - Deceptively deep and difficult, fun spatial management, and surprisingly brain burning... Tiny Towns has a lot to offer but isn't one that I find the most relaxing.

Why Go didn't make the cut:

I considered placing this at #2 but ultimately didn't. I have fond memories of playing this a bunch of times throughout my elementary school days and even attending lessons, but it's not one that I'd gravitate toward at this stage in life. Even though it has deep tactical elements (probably the deepest game out of all games mentioned here) and zen-like appearance, the game also presents you with constant moments of tension and one bad placement can have devastating consequences. I think I now just want something a little less involved metally/emotionally.

Abstracts I'd love to try the most:

  1. #War Chest
  2. #Shobu