Mr. Cubic Zirconia here, dear reader.

Back in the 80s and 90s, when I was growing up in Kentucky, there wasn’t much digital entertainment.

Hand-held and personal screens were mostly a thing of the future.

(ASIDE: my mother was still paying off our first Gateway computer on the 50-payments plan-- about 27 payments after the 512 MB memory on that computer got eclipsed by the memory in a new high-end graphing calculator!). 

Today, the subsequent 30 year tech revolution has brought a ton of great advantages into our lives...but at times you may agree that it can be a drawback that we’re rarely ever disconnected from the digital world (especially as it relates to couples feeling alienated from each other while each individually pursuing different digital entertainment options of an evening).

Tech for digital entertainment was still in its infancy, yet I think maybe I had greater happiness as a kid than at any time since. 

We rode our bikes around the neighborhood. 

We played outside on swing sets and teetertotters.
And when it would rain, we’d often play boardgames inside. 

One of the games I used to play with friends was called BATTLESHIP

Did you ever play that game?

If you and your “ship’s mate” significant other have been recently awash in screen time and looking to try a different tack in the romance department
, how about these suggestions?

You could clear the deck for an evening and try a his-and-her game night with 7 familiar favorite games with some spicy rule changes.

However, as one recent email reply pointed out when we suggested that idea, ANY quality time together-- no matter how you do it-- when as a couple you batten down the hatches and make time away from stress, kids, work and screens... it’s time well invested for a couple’s relationship health.

We agree.

And would amend our previously posted “7 ideas to liven up a couple’s game night” idea to add that ANY game a couple plays together can be a blast (even without sexy rule changes).

What about playing my old 90s fave Battleship during one of your next periods of couples’ quality time together?

While the flagship version of the game most people are familiar with was created in 1967 by the Milton Bradley company,  a game of this type has been around for over 100 years in one form or another.

If you’ve never played, the rules are simple: it’s a guessing game where you sink your opponent’s hidden ships when your “torpedo shot” guesses about the location for each ship on a grid are correct. Whoever sinks the other player’s full navy first wins.

Super simple.

Each player has 5 ships.

Each ship has a number of holes in it representing how many shots it could take before sinking (or each ship took up a certain number of spaces on a paper grid in a homemade version of the game).

Both players placed your ships on a grid.

You couldn’t see your opponent’s ships or grid board “sea” and your opponent couldn’t see yours.

Then you took turns guessing coordinates on the grid for each “shot” you wanted to take at his/her navy: A-5, B-7, C-2, etc. 

battleship board, couples game night

When you guessed a coordinate that corresponded with one of the holes/spaces in one of your opponent’s ships, they would say “HIT!” Then you’d guess around that coordinate until you filled all those holes/spaces and sunk the ship (at which time your opponent would say “HIT and SUNK!”.

Then you’d move on and try to find the other ships so you could sink them with precisely-fired shots from your “torpedo” guesses across the grid.

If you’ve never played and like the idea,  someone who knows the ropes can show you how to play in a couple minutes. For the simplest version of the game, you could simply print out a basic game board grid from the image printable on this webpage. We can even send you the 3-page game instructions you can also print out if you want (just let us know via email or contact form).

If you did play in the past, I hope this brief story maybe:

  • Persuaded you to try playing with that special person with whom you’ve chosen to sail the seas of life on a ship built for two.

  •  Kindled some nostalgia to try something again today that was fun when you were younger (no matter how old you may be today!).

For me, personally, playing Battleship was fun in my teens, 20s and 30s, too. I reckon it’ll probably still be fun when I’m in my 70s.

Either way, new player or nostalgia player, why not go ahead and take some time this week to buy or make the game board? 

While the Milton Bradley board game is pretty inexpensive-- and can easily be found and ordered online at Amazon or bought used at a U.S. thrift store for a few dollars-- you can even make your own board for free in a half hour or less. To make it even easier than the lady in that video shows with hand-drawn grid lines, if you have a printer you can simply print out the printable image on this blog re-sized to whatever size grid you want.

(If you do make your own board, email us and we’ll send you a 3-page PDF of the instructions if you need them.)
Why did we include a reco to play couple’s Battleship, specifically, as part of our Romance Corner? 

Three reasons:

1. Because relationships should be fun, and we like to share ideas of fun things for couples to do together.

2. Because in real life, it seems that most married men and women hit ONE ship, they sink it, and then just keep firing torpedoes at that same ship. Over and over and over again. We keep trying to show and tell the same thing to the same person over and over.

  • How was your day? Same as yesterday. 
  • What should we do for fun on Tuesday? Same thing we did on Monday. 

The number one key to achieving life goals may very well be consistency, but consistency is also the key to relationship boredom. And it's supposed to be til death do you part, not til boredom do you part!

3. Because marriage has missiles and we ought to laugh about it. The next time you feel adrift in a sea of marriage missiles, trying to get through a tough day of he-said / she-said verbal torpedoes fired back and forth over some dumb argument, be courageous enough to whip that game out and suggest a game with your significant other. He/she may just relish the opportunity to fire mercilessly and sink your ship.

-- Mr. Cubic Zirconia