There are so many iconic elements in the James Bond franchise that it’s hard to list them all. Whether it’s the instantly recognisable John Barry-composed theme tune or the range of gadgets and vehicles Bond has access to, the James Bond movies have given us plenty to admire and obsess over. This is a sixty-year-old franchise (movie-wise, at least – the books have been around for even longer) that keeps on giving, with Daniel Craig’s recent departure from the role opening the door for a potentially more diverse Bond. With that in mind, we thought now would be a good time to take a look at the best James Bond (or Bond-adjacent) board games and toys out there. After all, sometimes the old ways are the best.
One of the most consistent elements in the James Bond franchise is the titular spy’s vehicle, an Aston Martin. This Scalextric set packs in a miniature Aston Martin DB5 along with a Jaguar XF, and also features over 4 metres of track for the cars to race on. There’s a loop-the-loop on the track, too, as well as a half-pipe, so there’s plenty for Bond and his ostensible opponent to take on. If you’ve ever experienced Scalextric cars falling off the tracks, you shouldn’t need to worry about that here thanks to the speed-limiting controllers included in the box.
In this card-based deck-builder, you’ll amass agents from Q Branch to take on some of the Bond franchise’s most dastardly and persistent villains. Play consists of drawing Villain cards, then equipping them with Gadgets to see just how much havoc they’ll wreak. Once this is done, you’ll play your own cards, recruiting allies and deploying your own gadgets to turn the tide. This game focuses on four iconic Bond movies: Dr. No, Goldfinger, GoldenEye, and Casino Royale. Some might be disappointed by the lack of more niche or obscure Bond movies, but these are four of the best as far as we’re concerned.
Alright, so we’re cheating a little with this one, because it technically isn’t even out yet. Modiphius Entertainment’s new game isn’t due to release until 2022, but it looks like it’s going to be an excellent addition to the James Bond board gaming canon. The design team includes folks who’ve worked on games like 7 Wonders and Hanabi, so SPECTRE looks like it’s going to be pretty special. You’ll be able to spy on your enemies, indulge in blackmail, build your own villainous gadgets, and more as you vie to become the biggest enemy to Bond that you can possibly be.
This rather intriguing 1964 offering from board game legends Milton Bradley casts you and your fellow players as Bond’s agents. Your objective is to visit one of the locations on the game’s included cards and earn points based on the time at which you arrive at those locations. You’ll need to reach 100 points if you want to be declared the winner, and to do so, you’ll need to rendezvous with other agents, which will boost your points significantly. This one can be quite hard to get ahold of due to its age and relative rarity, so keep an eye out to see if you can spot it!
If you’ve yet to experience the delightful retro charms of Playmobil, then this excellent James Bond Aston Martin DB5 set is the perfect place to start. It renders iconic James Bond characters like the titular spy himself and his enemy Oddjob in adorable miniature. You will also, of course, find the car in question, a gorgeous reproduction of the Aston Martin DB5 in which Bond can sit (along with his enemies, if you so wish). The Aston Martin’s roof comes off and there’s an ejector seat, too, making for hours of fun as you constantly eject both Bond and his opponents. Ejecting Auric Goldfinger from the seat of your DB5 never gets old, in our opinion.
Whether you love or loathe it, there’s no denying that Monopoly is here to stay. With that in mind, a Bond version of the game makes total sense, especially given the extravagant wealth that’s often on display in the movies. This version of Monopoly works pretty much exactly as you’d expect; it’s regular Monopoly, but it replaces all of the locations, Chance cards, and other assets with Bond-themed alternatives. Iconic movie scenes appear on the board, and you can play as a number of pieces from the Bond universe, including the famous 007 logo and the SPECTRE symbol.
That’s right – there’s even a version of bingo with Bond’s name on it. As you’d expect, this is bingo, but with a Bond twist, so all of the numbers are accompanied by Bond-related gimmicks. You’ll also find a great little booklet packed in with the game that includes lots of trivia about the franchise, making this the ideal gift for a Bond fan who believes they have everything. Of course, it’s bingo, so it won’t be much fun if you’re playing it by yourself, but this bingo set makes a great game for the family to play when Christmas or another holiday rolls around, so give it a shot if you’re a Bond lover.