[Board Games] THIS THREAD IS DEAD, POST IN THE NEW ONE!

MNC DoverMNC Dover Game Designer/Stay-at-home DadSeattle, WARegistered User regular
edited July 2015 in Critical Failures
Hey there! This thread is about board games. Let me tell you about them!

A different kind of board game is on the rise. Invading pop culture. Invading Target, Barnes and Noble, Toys R Us. Invading Penny Arcade itself.
There are brand-new games about dying in the desert:
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or 20-year old card games getting new life:
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or even family-friendly train games that stir something black in the soul:
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This thread exists to convey one simple message: board games have come a long way since Monopoly and Risk.

Perhaps you’re looking for something for your lunch hour.
Perhaps you’re looking for something to play when you’re just hanging out with friends.
Perhaps you’re looking for something like chess but more fun for newcomers.
Perhaps you’re looking for an all-day simulation of the asymmetrical struggles of Europe during the Protestant Reformation.

No problem, gotcha covered. So without further ado, let me attempt to give you a barely-sketched outline of what is possible in cardboard, wood and plastic.

Oh, and watch out for that pig-flooping.


GREAT GAMES FOR JUST ABOUT ANYONE (especially those new to games):

Ticket to Ride
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Quite possibly one of the best entry-level games. Draw cards into your hands, claim a route between two cities with your train cars by laying down same-color cards that match a route on the board. Simple, intuitive. Kids can grasp it, adults can play it more cut-throat and get into deeper strategies. Many versions have been made; they are pretty much all great, but check to see how many people can play. There’s also plenty of expansion maps, including a highly-rated Asia map for team play up to 6.

Dominion
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This genre-defining game is played entirely with cards. Hey, I thought we were talking about board games! We are, shut up, it’s a problem of semantics, whatever. Anyway, in this game you build up your own personal deck by accumulating money cards (to buy things), action cards (to make cool stuff happen), and victory point cards (which give you points but clog up your deck). Each game has different action cards to buy so every game is different. There are a TON of expansions; good ones are Seaside (adds effects which carry over into later turns), Intrigue (a lot more interaction between players), and Prosperity (adds higher-value money and victory point cards). It plays fast, but some of the expansions slow it down a bit. Don’t buy Village.

Carcassonne
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Another older game, which has aged well because of its short length and wide appeal. Pick up a tile, add it to the tiles already placed so that you match the road, castle, or field. You may optionally “claim” a road, castle, or field with one of your followers or “meeples”, which gives you points. A great, quick game for pretty much all ages, but it is especially good for a younger crowd.

Lords of Waterdeep
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Newer game, but it has really made a splash. It’s a fairly light worker-placement euro that non-gamers (or minimal-gamers) really seem to enjoy. The “worker-placement” part is themed up as sending knights and wizards off to accomplish quests, and there’s even a bit of back-stabbery against the other players.

Forbidden Desert
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An amazing little cooperative game that starts with formula that made Forbidden Island and Pandemic so popular, and then develops and improves that formula into something magical. You must explore and excavate tiles to find pieces of an airship, while a sandstorm moves the tiles around and dumps sand everywhere. Everybody has their own special ability, and they work together in amazing ways. Get all the parts, find the launch pad, GET TO DA CHOPPA, and escape to safety. But you'll probably die of thirst first. Great components, too.

King of Tokyo

Coup

Hanabi


RECENT COOL GAMES THAT MAYBE YOU SHOULD LOOK AT:

Fief

Love Letter

Star Realms

Battlestar Galactica

X-com

Doomtown Reloaded

Kemet

Suburbia

Trains

Caverna

Eldritch Horror

Rampage

Keyflower


HOW ABOUT THESE REALLY GOOD TWO-PLAYER GAMES:

Twilight Struggle
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Probably the best epic 2-player game. Epic because of its length and scope. Intensely confrontational without being a wargame. Imagine a game about the Cold War where the mechanics take, at face value, the rhetoric of both sides. In other words, it’s the USA versus the USSR, and all the other nations in the world are just pawns to be influenced one way or the other. Influence is what you “spend” every round, to control a nation or even cause an uprising in a less-stable nation. Influence tends to spread through a region like a virus. You can use an event card for the event (which is some historical event or concept), or use it for influence, or even put it towards the space race. The only possible downside is that it’s long for a 2-player game, so it may be hard to introduce to a casual gaming group.

Memoir '44
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This is simply the easiest introduction into a whole family of light wargames: Commands & Colors: Ancients, Commands & Colors: Napoleonics, BattleLore, BattleCry. Most can be played within an hour, but can feel suitable epic. The basic idea is that the battlefield is divided into a left, center, and right flank. You play a card that “orders” units in a flank (or flanks), which allows it to move and attack. You attack by rolling dice, which can cause hits or retreats. You win by wiping out a set number of units (and maybe occupying critical points). A brilliant system that each game has a special “spin” on. Memoir is a bit simpler and has a very appealing theme. Ancients is also highly regarded here (and is my favorite); it has a priority on melee attacks and gives additional benefits if your units are lined up.

Summoner Wars
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Think of this as some strange asymmetric chess variant where the pieces are cards. Each player chooses a faction, and your goal is to kill the enemy summoner. Your units are ranged or melee, and have different attack strengths, and different hit points. You attack with dice. You bring new units out of your hand onto the board if you can pay the cost in magic. You gain magic by killing units or by dumping cards from your hand. Each faction plays VERY differently, and in fact every single card has some special ability (like moving extra spaces or attacking in a different way). There are a TON of factions for this game -- I think 16 right now -- and expansions for limited deck construction, and even some alternate summoners, so there’s a lot of stuff to try out.

BattleCON (War of Indines)
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Round 1! Fight! Yes, it’s a "fighting game simulation", where you have a position track and you play attacks simultaneously and try to out-think/out-maneuver your opponent. Your "hand" is made up of a few "styles" (unique to your character) and "bases" (mostly the same for everyone), and one “attack” is the combination of one style and one base. Any attack you do is on "cooldown" and can’t be used for 2 beats (rounds). The game comes with 18 characters, and they are all QUITE different to play. The print-and-play comes with 4 characters and is pretty easy to put together, if you want to try it out.

Android: Netrunner
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Newer asymmetric game that is very geeky and very good. The "corporation" player must defend and score their agendas. The "hacker" player must steal agendas from the "corporation". The agendas are worth points, and first to 7 points wins. What really sets this one apart is that almost everything the corporation does is hidden information (i.e. face-down cards), so there's ample room for bluffing and traps. This is a "Living Card Game", which means that there are numerous expansions, each of which is a fixed number of cards so you know what you're buying. Still allows for spending a lot on the game, but the base game comes with a LOT of stuff to try out (i.e. multiple hacker and corporation "identities").

LotR LCG

X-wing Minis

Sekigahara: the Unification of Japan


WHAT IF YOU'RE EXPECTING LOTS OF COMPANY (6+ players):

Bohnanza
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Great little game of planting, trading, and harvesting beans. The trick is that you can’t rearrange your hand; you must trade in order to plant the beans you want. Once you get enough of a particular type of bean (or when you’re forced to plant another type of bean), harvest it for points. It get special kudos from me because it’s great with kids and adults. Plays up to 7.

Dixit (Odyssey)
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A party game! Well, sort of. In this game everybody is given a hand of imaginative, surreal, and evocative cards. The active player puts a card face down, and give a phrase, word, or noise that goes with it. Everyone else ALSO puts in a card that best goes with that “clue”. They are mixed up, shown, and people get points for picking the active player’s card, or for getting people to choose their card. But if the clue is too obvious or too hard, the active player gets NO points. So there are serious demands made on the imagination of the players -- dull clues or simply half-hearted ones diminish the game experience. But knowing that caveat, it’s a GREAT game. There are a couple of versions of this one, but Odyssey plays up to 12.

Time’s Up! (Title Recall)
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Another party game, but you might call this one a “proper” party game. You play in pairs, and you have 30 seconds at a time to make your partner guess what’s on the cards. In the first round, you can use just about any clues, gestures, and noises. In the second round, you are limited to ONE WORD for a clue and one guess. In the third round, NO talking but gestures and noises still allowed. Absolute hilarity ensues. The "Title Recall" version is the best, because even if you don't know the movie/book/song, you can give hints one word at a time (i.e. "Devil With the Blue Dress On" is easier than "Rutherford B. Hayes" if you are unfamiliar with both).

Citadels
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Straight-forward, almost bare-bones game that is also great and plays up to 8. Pass around the role cards, pick one secretly, the king calls out the roles in order. You collect gold and use it to pay for building cards out of your hand. Use your role's special ability to get more gold or cards or to mess with others. Very much a social game. Plays a bit long; I recommend playing to only 7 buildings (instead of 8).

7 Wonders
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30-minute game that is VERY popular game these-a-days for a group of up to 7. You build up a civilization, which really just means you play cards that produce some product, or provide military strength, or give you points directly, or improves your science. So multiple win paths, which is always cool. Each player has a hand, but you only play ONE card before passing your hand to the adjacent player. You can also trade with your neighbors, so overall you are VERY interested in what other players are doing, and you often have to change your strategy to thwart theirs. Highly recommended by this thread.

The Resistance (Avalon)
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You ever play mafia or werewolf? Some smart guy boiled it down into a 5-10 player game that can be played in 30 minutes. Every round someone becomes the leader, who then chooses a team for a mission. Each person on the team secretly contribute a “pass” or “fail” card for that mission. Since there are spies, some missions are going to fail. Incriminations will fall like the rain on the moor. Best 3 out of 5 missions. An elegant and tense social game, but like all social games it is somewhat dependent on the group. Quick enough for multiple games (which will often be stridently demanded). There's also a newer, better version of this game called "Resistance: Avalon", where one character (Merlin) knows who the bad guys are, but the bad guys will win if they identify Merlin.

One Night Ultimate Werewolf

Ca$h & Guns


ESTABLISHED CLASSICS THAT GUFFAW AT THESE PUNK UPSTARTS:

Settlers of Catan
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Ah, the grandfather of what’s called the “euro-game”. Little direct confrontation, trading, grabbing valuable resources or positions before your opponent, a bit abstract, and you win by accumulating the most points. You accumulate and trade to get certain combinations of resources to get cities and roads. Your cities help you gather more resources. It’s a bit grey around the temples these days, and there are probably better expressions of these mechanics, but it has stood the test of time and one huge reason to include it here is that you may have already played it. If you want an expansion, get “Seafarers”.

Puerto Rico
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The premier euro game. Shoot, the premier board game. Rich, deep, and meaty. Grow crops, sell them, buy buildings which give you abilities and benefits, and you need laborers for all this stuff as well. You choose a role which helps you in some way every round. High player interaction, though it's not direct. For such a deep game, it’s not actually that difficult to teach to new players, but there can be a big gulf in player skill. Some people who have played this forever can be a bit hostile to newbies, but that is NOT true of the people in this thread, that I've seen. Playable online -- many people here will help you get started if you ask.

El Grande
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An older euro game, but the daddy of all area control games, and still very highly regarded. You play "caballeros" into regions adjacent to the movable “king” figure, and then you score points in a region by having more of them than the others. There are semi-randomized event cards which drive the action every round, so every game and every round is different. A bit abstract but still pretty approachable.

Agricola
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Farming-themed game of resource management. Sound exciting? It is! You struggle just to get your family fed, and yet you also need to scrabble for resources to improve your farm. One of the most satisfying things is upgrading your wood hut to stone. Fairly easy to teach to others, simply because the theme is so immediately understandable, and the turns are quick, and because at the end of the game, even if you lose, you can admire and show off the farm you made. So I would call it a good introduction to the longer euro games.

Small World
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Choose from the randomized races, spread out, hold key areas, gain points every round. Once you have extended as much as you can, put the race into decline (i.e. you can’t do anything with it but it still gives you points), and choose a new race. You get the good feeling from wiping someone out without as much of the hurt feelings, because they can just get a new race and ethnic-cleanse you in return. Popular, has a bunch of expansions.


WEEKEND-CONSUMING ENDEAVORS (aka games lasting 3+ hours):

Twilight Imperium (3rd edition)
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Ah, the game that defines epic space expansion and warfare. In a nutshell, the hex-based “board” is made up of planetary systems, which can be conquered. You “spend” command tokens to activate a system and move stuff there or build stuff. Then there’s technology research, trading, dice-based warfare, secret objectives, phase selection, a hand of action cards,... and on and on. Pretty intense. Pretty long. But there’s something about the theme that makes it almost irresistible.

Arkham Horror
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In many ways this is on the other end of the spectrum from the sterile spaceships and abstracted planet-conquering of Twilight Imperium or Eclipse. This game is all about the atmosphere, and trying to hold it together while you avoid being devoured by nameless horrors. Those horrors are of the Lovecraftian kind, and the rulebook kind. Seriously, the FAQ has its own FAQ. But if you can pierce through the “rule crust” into the pulsing black heart of the game, you’ll probably... uh... go insane. But madmen are often happy, right? UPDATE: The recently-released Eldritch Horror is apparently Arkham without the rulebook insanity. Highly-recommended alternative by this thread.

Risk: Legacy
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This has consistently been one of the most-talked-about games since it came out. It’s a streamlined version of Risk with a huge twist -- after each game you will permanently alter the board (naming a continent, adding a city), the cards (ripping up(!) one of them), and/or the rule book itself. It comes with packets that you will open after meeting certain criteria. It’s meant to be played over 15 games with the same group of people, producing a totally unique map which is also a testament to each previous battle. Not all groups can make this kind of commitment, but we can dream, can’t we?

Dominant Species
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A grand worker-placement and area-control game, that still very successfully conveys the theme of struggling for survival on a map that’s far too small and environmentally hostile.

War of the Ring
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The definitive LOTR experience in board game form. It’s everybody against the Sauron player, and you have to keep the One Ring out of his hands while also keeping his armies from turning Middle-Earth into a suburb of Mordor. [/quote]

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  • MNC DoverMNC Dover Game Designer/Stay-at-home Dad Seattle, WARegistered User regular
    edited January 2015
    COOPERATION JUST MEANS EVERYBODY GETS DECIMATED AT ONCE (aka co-op):

    Forbidden Desert
    (mentioned above)

    Pandemic
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    This is the most “mainline” of a group of games with similar mechanics. The others are Forbidden Island (search for treasure theme, a bit easier) and Defenders of the Realm (fantasy theme, a bit more involved). You play cooperatively against the game, needed to coordinate and combine your special abilities in order not to die horribly. In Pandemic the theme is fighting disease outbreaks all over the world.

    Space Alert
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    One criticism of standard co-op games is that a knowledgeable player can power-game and boss the other players around. Space Alert seeks to solve this problem by making “that guy” the captain (responsible for any and all failures), and by adding a time restraint. You actually play a track off of a CD, which will give you a certain amount of time to meet each threat. You play cards to “go to this room, press this button” to deal with the threat. After the mission track is over, you go through everyone’s cards and determine whether you succeeded, or (much more likely) you determine which threat caused everyone to die a gruesome death. Super cool but also a much more intense and stressful games than some people enjoy. But those people don’t deserve to be your friends, now, do they?

    Sentinels of the Multiverse

    Ghost Stories

    Pandemic: The Cure (dice version of Pandemic)

    LET’S PLAY SOMETHING WHILE WE WAIT ON THE OTHER GAME TO FINISH BECAUSE HEAVEN FORFEND THAT WE TALK ABOUT ANYTHING OTHER THAN GAMES (aka light/quick/filler):
    7 Wonders
    (mentioned above)

    King of Tokyo
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    A little game by Richard Garfield (i.e. creator of Magic) that is way more fun than it has any right to be. Each player is a giant monster, and you can attack each other by rolling a bunch of dice, but the big points are gained when you go into Tokyo and stay there for as long as you can. While you're there you can be attacked by everybody, so there's a push-your-luck element to it.

    Hey, That's My Fish!
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    Fun game of sliding penguins and claiming fish and blocking opponents, that's ALSO cutthroat enough for adults to play.

    Love Letter
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    This much-loved filler is easy to understand and interesting to play, and consists of only 16 cards and some red cube tokens. A bit of bluffing and a bit of luck will see you through.

    Roll Through the Ages
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    A surprisingly satisfying little civ-building dice-rolling game.

    No Thanks
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    Simple, light bidding (or perhaps anti-bidding) game that everybody enjoys, kids to grandmas. Each player is given chips, which give them the ability to "pass" and avoid taking a card. The chips build up on the card until somebody takes it. Plays in 20 minutes, tops.

    For Sale
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    Simple auction game that everybody likes. In the first phase you bid on properties ranging from cardboard box to space station. In the second phase you blind bid properties to get checks. Count up the checks at the end and the person with the most money wins.

    WHOA EFFICIENCY IS SOOOO EXCITING (aka worker placement):
    Agricola
    (mentioned above)

    Caylus

    Village
    Village is a lovely, pastoral game about bumping off your family members at the most opportune moment. In this worker placement game the workers are your “family”, each of whom you assign a life's work of carpentry, husbandry, government, the clergy, etc. Their children are the next generation of “workers”. As you complete tasks and gather resources in the form of colorful cubes or tiles, you will gather points, but also the years will roll by and the elders of your family will die. Will they be remembered (i.e. give you points) for their contributions to the village? Or will they die on the road and be consigned to a shallow, unmarked graves, never to be thought of again?

    BOARD GAMES IN SPAAAAAAACE (aka space theme):
    Race for the Galaxy
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    Card-based space-exploration/conquest economic game, though the theme isn’t very strong. Players choose a phase simultaneously, and the only phases in the round are the ones that players picked. Has a pretty dense iconography, making it a bit daunting for new players, but it allows for a fleshed-out and satisfying game with multiple paths to victory. Low player interaction. Has a bunch of expansions; I suggest the first one (Gathering Storm), as it improves the base game and adds some optional goals to provide a focus for new players. Good with two players, also.

    Twilight Imperium (3rd edition)
    (mentioned above)

    Eclipse
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    This game LOOKS similar to Twilight Imperium. Sci-fi space exploration with hexes, dice combat, and tech research. However, it is QUITE different in scope and "feel". This is a premier mechanic-centered euro in the same class as Power Grid and Agricola. This means that it’s a bit more indirect than you might expect in the genre; it has been described as “intensely passive-aggressive”. Many of your thoughts are about optimizing your actions or making other people’s actions sub-optimal, rather than "space ship battle pew pew". However, direct conflict has a definite place in this game, and furthermore it has awesome stuff like exploration-produced initial maps, and also customizing your own spacecraft blueprints.

    THERE ARE REALLY A LOT OF TRAIN GAMES (aka route building):

    Ticket to Ride
    (mentioned above)

    Power Grid
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    A meaty, polished, economic game. Not technically trains, but included here because the basic idea of “claiming a route” is the same. Buy a network of cities, bid on power plants to power those cities, profit. You need to supply your power plants with resources (oil, nuclear, etc), but the cost of a resource goes up if everybody needs it. There’s math. LOTS of math. There’s also a bit of fiddling as you decide the turn order (and whether you’re going through it forwards or backwards), refilling resources, knowing when to go to “Step 2/3”, and so on. So not really an introductory-level game, but very satisfying.

    Steam
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    This is the latest incarnation of a very good series of route-building goods-delivery games. This one is great because it has a totally viable "basic" version of the rules, streamlined and appropriate for casual groups, and a "standard" version of the rules, with auctions for everything and a much more demanding economic system. It's almost two games in one. Whenever I play Ticket to Ride (except for the Asia team game), I fantasize about playing this one instead.

    THERE ARE ALSO QUITE A LOT OF DECK-BUILDING GAMES (aka uhhhh, never mind):
    Trains
    (mentioned above)

    Quarriors
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    Dice. Lots of dice. Cool dice. You roll dice and buy things with... ugh... “quiddity” shown on them. You buy monsters that attack other players’ monsters. Doesn’t have a lot of depth, especially when compared to other games with this mechanic (I would lean towards calling it filler), but it’s flashy and quick and good for getting an “Oh, cool!” out of people you introduce it to. There are some "advanced rules" if you want to mix up and/or deepen the gameplay, though it makes the game a bit longer.

    Thunderstone (Advance)
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    This was the next big game after Dominion that used the same mechanic, but it has a real theme! It’s a dungeon crawl. Wait, what? No, seriously! The basic idea is that you alternate between buying adventurers and weapons and stuff in the village to improve your deck, and then trying to defeat monsters in the dungeon, which also get added to your deck, giving you points and other benefits. Has a ton of expansions. There’s a new version of this called “Thunderstone Advance” that is probably your best choice if you’re starting off.

    Ascension
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    PERFECTING THE DECEIVING AND BETRAYING OF THE ONES YOU LOVE (aka negotiation):

    Cosmic Encounter
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    Perhaps a strange entry here, but this is a difficult-to-classify and yet really good group game that I must mention. In this game each player has 5 planets and 20 ships, and to win they need to get at least one ship (a "colony") on 5 foreign worlds. Each player also gets an alien power, and some of them are absurdly powerful and unfair. But that just means that they will find everyone teaming up against them. You don't choose who to attack (the destiny deck decides that), but you CAN choose who to ally with. So it takes the fangs out of the confrontation, and fewer people get their feelings hurt. It's very much a social game that can be played as friendly or as back-stabby as the group wishes. It's not TOO serious or strategic, so it might not be the best for your hardcore wargame group, but it is a lighter game that has aged amazingly well.

    Battlestar Galactica
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    In the description for The Resistance, I called it “tense”. Battestar Galactica redefines the term into something devastating. It’s a game with a strong theme from the TV series, but the game is good enough to be fully enjoyed by people who have who have never seen the show. The goal is to get to Earth, but the ship is faced with environmental threats in deep space, hostile Cylon warships, and internal Cylon traitors. Each player has a hand of cards that is used to meet (or sabotage) these threats. The basic flow is “Jump into terrible location, deal with terrible event after terrible event, deal with an increasingly terrible Cylon armada, and then jump again... if anybody is still alive”. Popular here on the forums as PbP.

    Game of Thrones
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    I LOVE that I'm putting this game after Cosmic Encounter. They could not be more different in tone. CE is ponies and rainbows, and this one is flint knives and broken glass. In other games there is a back-stab mechanic -- in this game it is the driving force of the game. This is because you have your territory to defend, but you simply can’t defend against all threats. You place order tokens face down into different regions on the board, allowing for a surprise on the reveal phase. And even after you reveal, you have opportunities for deception (for example, promising to help defend but then you join the attack). As soon as you reeeeally need someone to support you (or vice versa), that's when they will invade your unprotected flank, undoing what it took you half the game to build up.

    PLAYING RISK WITH A BUNCH OF PACIFISTS (aka area control):
    El Grande
    (mentioned above)

    Chaos in the Old World
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    Area control meets Warhammer fantasy chaos gods. Not exactly child-safe content (“Rain of Pus”, et al), but a strong theme meeting a solid euro mechanic. Encourages some deliciously evil role-playing and temporary alliances. The characters play out VERY differently in how they score points and manage their hand -- kudos for the (mostly) balanced asymmetrical play. Popular here as PbP.

    Age of Empires III: Age of Discovery
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    A bit of genre-crossing while colonizing the new world. You place colonists to establish control of an area, but you’re also putting down buildings to get benefits and points, and doing some worker-placement to make stuff happen. “Stuff” can be over-generalized as discovery, trading, and colonizing, each of which is a valid path to victory. A nice way to scratch that civilization-building itch in just a couple of hours.

    DICK DASTARDLY AND MUTTLEY ARE MY HEROES (aka racing):
    RoboRally
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    Programmable robots! You choose 5 instruction cards out of your hand to move your robot on a board filled with hazards. Cards are revealed simultaneously, keeping the action moving along. You need to land on flags in order, which are scattered across the board. If you bump another robot, that robot continues its instructions for that round, potentially driving it into a pit or missing the flag. Hugely customizable -- it’s almost a game system in its own right, allowing and encouraging variants like “blocker” robots and team-based capture-the-flag.

    Galaxy Trucker
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    Racing game? Well, yeah, but the most fun is the time-limited and frenzied ship-building phase. Or maybe the most fun is watching your friend’s ship get sawn in half by an errant meteor. Anyway, you get points for bringing home cargo ahead of your competitors, but there’s a good chance that nobody even makes it to the finish line. And nobody seems to mind!

    Formula D
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    An attractive Formula 1 racing game. There are some flaws here, such as a runaway-leader problem and player elimination, but it plays quickly so it doesn’t matter TOO much. You want to get into the higher gears to move faster, but it has a contrary push-your-luck mechanic in that you have to stop X number of times in a corner. It also has drafting, customizable car stats, and fiery crashes. It plays a LOT of people, too -- up to 10.

    GIVING YOUR MIND A BREAK AND YOUR FINGERS CRAMPS (aka dexterity):
    Crokinole
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    Dexterity games are not mentioned much here, but they are still worth a look. Crokinole is a classic where the gameplay revolves around flicking disks into certain areas of a circular board. It’s also about letting your teammates down, after being set up for the perfect shot. This is an expensive game, but it can also be a beautiful conversation-starting display game.

    Rampage
    (mentioned above)

    Sorry! Sliders
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    This is a cheap, readily available dexterity game that kids seem to love. You slide pieces down a track to score points on a concentric-ring target. The track can be made longer for a more “adult” difficulty.

    Pitchcar
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    A modern dexterity classic where you race around a track by flicking your car. There’s also a version of Sorry! Sliders (Cars 2?) with this mechanic that might be easier to find.

    PLAYING WITH FIGURINES THE MANLY WAY (aka tactical miniatures):
    X-Wing Miniatures Game
    pic1574101_md.jpg
    This is probably one of the biggest wallet-smacking games in this thread, but it’s irresistible. It’s a fairly quick and easy system to send a handful of TIE fighters against a couple of X-Wings and see what happens. Oh, but there’s also Y-Wings. And TIE Interceptors. And A-Wings. And the Millenium Falcon and Slave 1. And they all look pretty great. You can also choose pilots like Luke and Vader and Biggs, and add mech droids like good ol’ R2-D2. But for a proper game you’ll probably want 2 core sets, 1 X-Wing and 1 TIE (for the extra pilots), a couple of Interceptors, a couple more rebel ships to taste.... yeah. But it’s Star Wars! So queue up the John Williams on your MP3 player and get started.

    Descent 2.0
    pic1370522_md.jpg
    Looking for an old-fashioned fantasy RPG with an epic campaign, packaged into bite-sized scenarios? You might try this one. This new version has really boiled it down to it’s best parts, and there’s already expansions in the works, so there’s no better time to jump into it.

    D&D games
    pic1120716_md.jpg
    This is not a single game, but a whole family of light dungeon-crawl skirmish games (Wrath of Ashardalon, Legend of Drizzt, Castle Ravenloft), which are all compatible with each other and have some pretty cool looking monsters.

    TAKE THIS THEME AND SHOVE IT (aka abstracts):
    Battle Line
    pic1170_md.jpg
    This SOUNDS like another combat game, but it’s not. It’s an abstract game where you’ve got 9 flags in a row, and you take turns playing one card in front of a flag. You need a better “set” of three cards in front of a flag to “claim” that flag as yours. Get 5 total flags or 3 adjacent flags to win. It’s a game where you’re working through the odds of finishing a “set”, against a bit of guessing as to what your opponent is holding onto in his hand.

    Ingenious
    pic40424_md.jpg
    Great, intuitive abstract that scales well from 2-4. Place a tile on the hexagonal board to score points for matching icons. You need to score well in EVERY icon type, because only your WORST icon score is your actual score. Get it? Part of the appeal of this game is the excellent component quality. Chunky plastic tiles, fabric bag, and solid cardboard.

    Hive
    pic155724_md.jpg
    This is an abstract game where the entire game is 22 hexagon pieces of bakelite. There’s not even a board. The pieces are bugs, each of which moves in a particular way. The winner is the one that surrounds the enemy queen. It looks pretty nice as the game plays itself out, too.

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  • MNC DoverMNC Dover Game Designer/Stay-at-home Dad Seattle, WARegistered User regular
    AND INTRODUCING SOME REGULARS TO THE THREAD :

    Jergarmar
    I feel like my biases are on display here anyway, but I tend to gravitate towards the very best in older games:

    Crokinole: The best dexterity game. YOU NEED ONE. A bit pricey, but save your game money for a month or two and bite the bullet. You won't be sorry. It also looks great as a display game and conversation starter.

    Commands and Colors: Ancients: Another 2-player game, but this one is more of a skirmish game. You have to manage your hand of combat cards, using them to keep your troops lined up (making them less likely to retreat) and driving them into enemy formations. Oh, and elephants. Such a fun game.

    El Grande: The 20-year-old game that feels fresh and new.

    But a lot of my favorites are recent games, too:

    Archipelago: A messy and glorious fusion of euro and negotiation and exploration. Semi-cooperative, though that really just means one person wins unless everyone loses. Beautiful to behold.

    Dungeon Petz: A recent acquisition, but this is euro done RIGHT. Great theme (growing monster pets to sell to strange clients), meaty decisions, attractive to look at.

    Earth Reborn: The tactical squad game to rule them all. Modular board, scenario-generating system, and funny characters and backstory.

    Polis: Fight for the Hegemony: It's Athens vs Sparta, as they try to gain trade dominance in the Aegean, while scrambling to keep everyone fed. Brilliant but less-known 2-player game. It's resource management, mixed with some very light combat, with a bit of area control.

    Forbidden Desert: A co-op so good, it broke through my antipathy towards the genre. Amazing game.

    JonBob
    JonBob

    Short, filler games
    No Thanks! - This game is basically perfect. A very small set of rules leads to very interesting emergent behavior.
    For Sale - What No Thanks! does for push-your-luck games, For Sale does for auctions. Simple, quick, easy to teach.
    King of Tokyo - Roar! Monsters! Everyone can get into the theme here, and it's hard to take it too seriously. Power Up! is a great expansion, but it does make the game longer.

    Light, Gateway games
    Ticket to Ride is a classic for good reason. The base game is greatly improved by 1910, and Team Asia is also fantastic.
    Pandemic remains my favorite co-op, especially revitalized with On the Brink.
    San Juan... I honestly prefer it to papa Puerto Rico or twin brother Race for the Galaxy] in most ways. I'm in the minority.

    Light, but not really gateway, games
    Dominion is still probably the best basic deckbuilding game mechanically, if it is thematically dry. Try Prosperity first if you want to expand it.
    7 Wonders is short, but can be fairly deep. You won't understand what decisions are good ones the first time, which is why I don't put it in "gateway." The second time and thereafter, it's a blast. Best with the Leaders expansion.
    Kingdom Builder is dry, but the variable setup lends a lot of variety. It's basically an abstract, and I think refines ideas from classics like Through the Desert very well.

    An oddball suggestion
    Zendo is my favorite board game, bar none. I barely ever get to play it.

    Trynant
    My preferred ratio of playtime to depth of the game is ridiculously in favor of depth. Throw those ridiculously thinky games at me, dawg.
    I write and sometimes podcast about board games here. My boardgamegeek collection best sums up my preferences.

    FAVORITE GAMES
    Earth Reborn - Best (two-player) tactical minis game out there. It's crazy deep almost to the point of simulation, but slowly eases you into it. I cannot recommend this game enough.
    Archipelago - While its freewheeling semi-cooperative element can be off-putting, I heartily recommend this game. It takes worker placement as you know it and turns the genre on its head in the best ways.
    BattleCON - The smartest character-driven dueling card game out there. It's a game like Street Fighter transformed into a rich, tactical experience. The content here is mind-blowing.
    Splotter Spellen games - Great Zimbabwe, Roads & Boats & etcetera, Indonesia, Antiquity, Greed Inc.: If you can get your hands on one (or more) of these rare and pricey titles, do so. They're the richest "euro-style" games around.
    Space Alert - The best coop. As red shirts on an unwieldy space vessel, you try to fend off alien attacks, ship hazards, and more; but all this is done with an excrutiating 10-minute timer. Great, hilarious stuff.
    Dominant Species - Imagine a worker-placement given with a cutthroat, competitive edge. That's his game. It's really a territorial war game with worker placement elements.

    MOST HATED GAMES
    Fluxx - A joke about random combinations that made the mistake of trying to be a game. Fluxx falls apart when what should be five minutes or less of filler drags on for up to half an hour. Play the We Didn't Playtest This... card games instead.
    Munchkin - This screw-your-neighbor game suffers from a horrendously drawn out endgame mixed with all-too-nerdy references that alienate more than bring the table together. The jokes and "humor" of being a misanthropic RPG gamer fall flat, leaving an unbalanced and poorly paced card game as a result.
    Titan - Bleugh. This weird fantasy battle game combines some of the most loathed game mechanics in table-top gaming and infuses them into a mess of broken design. Player elimination, roll-and-move chance, and horrific downtime destroy what fun there could be had in Titan.
    Horus Heresy - Fuck this game. It is the worst case of "Fantasy Flight syndrome," where a labyrinthine rulebook fails to explain what is a bloated, broken piece of overproduced trash.

    Namrok
    My favorite games lately are Commands & Colors: Ancients and Napoleonics. Their fluid, quick gameplay really captures the feel of the battles for me, but stays relatively rules light. After that there is Chaos in the Old World, one of my favorite blends of European and American styles, and an exemplary case of asymmetric gameplay. I've also been completely enamored by X-Wing lately. The pilot skill system creates this fantastic sliding scale of partial knowledge as you take your turn. Plus individual actions resolve incredibly fast for a miniatures game. On the lighter side I've finally discovered Roll Through the Ages, and adore it. It's amazing how well this game captures civilization building in a 20 minute dice game that doesn't just feel like Yahtzee or shameless push your luck.

    ArcticLancer
    Core Worlds is still probably my favourite game. Even without Galactic Orders, it doesn't play out the same twice. Even when you don't win, you still have fun along the way. It's not an overly complex game, and it tends to work pretty well at damn near any player count. Overall, Core Worlds is full of genuinely meaningful decisions. Since drafting and actions happen interchangably, you have to make some tough choices, and it combines a strong tactical element (What is my priority right now? Is someone else going to take the card/world I want before I take another turn?) with a strong strategic element as you aim to take your final worlds.
    Everything syncs up remarkably well, and is supported with nicely flowing gameplay and gorgeous artwork.

    Inquisitor
    Favorite games:

    A Few Acres of Snow, Chaos in the Old World (sans expansion), GOSU, Citadels, Puerto Rico, Ghost Stories (favorite co-op), Twilight Struggle. Ascension (strictly as a portable, play by post, iOS experience).

    Games I dislike that other people like:

    Arkham Horror, Space Alert, Galaxy Trucker, Dominion

    jakobagger
    All-time favourites:
    A Game of Thrones: the Board Game
    Battlestar Galactica
    Blood Bowl
    Chaos in the Old World
    Civilization (2010)
    Dominion
    Dune
    Magic: the Gathering
    Puerto Rico
    Through the Ages
    Twilight Struggle

    Currently playing (apart from favourites):
    7 Wonders
    A Few Acres of Snow
    Blood Bowl Team Manager
    Citadels
    Horus Heresy
    Infiltration
    Innovation
    Lords of Waterdeep

    Want to get into/play more:
    Andean Abyss
    Android: Netrunner
    Republic of Rome

    Games I was less into:
    Ideology: the War of Ideas
    Junta
    Monopoly
    Outpost
    Power Grid: Factory Manager
    Zombies!!!

    I like: strong theme combined with tight/elegant mechanics, asymmetry/variable player powers, moving dudes around on a map, some amount of luck to ensure variation and re-playability (Cards over dice), breaking up turns to remove or minimize downtime.

    Dislike: overly dry or pasted-on theme, abstracts, games with perfect information and no luck (games that feel solvable I guess?), games with too much randomness or unpredictability, games that are longer than their depth can justify.

    Vyolynce
    I write about board games. A lot. Like, every other week for the last five years and counting. And I play more than that, thanks to a great weekly group at my FLGS that has been meeting for over six years now.

    As a Magic Judge, I'm predisposed to liking card-based games and have a definite bias against randomness (read: dice) affecting strategy*. As such, some of my favorite games are Race for the Galaxy, Sentinels of the Multiverse, and Ascension. You can see my full Top 10 (and collection) on BGG. I'm also a big fan of abstracts, but those don't usually get talked about as much since they're typically dry two-player affairs. Sadly, I don't get to play as many "epic" games as I would like due to my Board Game Night happening in the middle of the work week.

    *Games where dice drive strategy (Castles of Burgundy, Alien Frontiers) are usually ok.

    cpugeek13
    top five games as of March 2014:
    1. Keyflower - Bidding, worker placement, and tile placement all in one spiffy package. Most fun euro game I've ever played.
    2. Android Netrunner - Awesome bluffing cyberpunk card game. This will probably be #1 if my fiancee ever gets tired of her Scorched Earth deck.
    3. Race for the Galaxy - Building star empires one card at a time.
    4. Village - Delightful grim reaper simulator.
    5. Manhattan Project - Why are we building these atom bombs, you may ask? Who cares.

    Good places to play games online:

    Boite a Jeux
    -- Agricola
    -- Alhambra
    -- Castles of Burgundy
    -- Dixit
    -- Trajan

    OCTGN
    -- THE place to play Android: Netrunner

    Yucata
    -- A Few Acres of Snow
    -- Roll Through the Ages
    -- El Grande
    -- Fearsome Floors
    -- Hawaii
    -- Stone Age

    Board Game Arena
    -- Race for the Galaxy
    -- Seasons
    -- Puerto Rico
    -- Libertalia
    -- Troyes
    -- Caylus

    BrettspielWelt
    -- ton of games but daunting


    Good places to find out more about games:

    BoardGameGeek
    The definitive site for all things board game. Forums, reviews, pictures, marketplace, you name it. Also complex and daunting at first. If you want to start using it, just start with looking up games you're interested in.

    The Dice Tower (also has The Dice Tower podcast)
    Very good podcast that is also an umbrella for a bunch of gaming podcasts and reviewers. Tom Vasel himself is a pretty good reviewer, but not so interested in the heavier euro games, especially those with threadbare themes.

    Shut Up and Sit Down
    Paul and Quinns are very funny reviewers of board games. The videos are great, but I think their blog reviews can be even better.

    Critical Failures PbP Gaming Index
    A repository of PbP games. Quite an assortment. Especially successful are Battlestar Galactica and Chaos in the Old World.

    Kickstarter Tabletop Games
    NEVER GO HERE. You'll end up paying some ridiculous amount for a miniatures game that won't ship for like 6 months because of the meticulously crafted minis and numerous stretch goals that they add-- hey! Didn't I just tell you not to go there?


    And finally, here are some previous incarnations of this thread (newest to oldest):
    -- Meeples, minis, dice, cards, and tokens galore
    --
    Running all your nets, winging all your exes
    -- Saving the world...
    -- Wil Wheaton's cardboard nerd-cred...
    --
    Risk Legacy is Neat...
    -- Space Alert Owns...
    -- Citadels For > 5 People...

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  • InkSplatInkSplat 100%ed Bad Rats. Registered User regular
    So, reading about the Kickstarter Amazon Payments change.. I'm kind of baffled. Apparently KS used to use something called "Amazon Flexible Payment Service" and to date (as of January 6th of this year) had processed over $1 billion in Pledges. And if I'm not mistaken, they got 5% of that.. which if I'm also not mistaken, equals $50 million dollars. You'd think that would be enough income to keep that program running, at least just for Kickstarter, if no one else.

    That is crazy that apparently that much money means jack shit to Amazon.

    Origin for Dragon Age: Inquisition Shenanigans: Inksplat776
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  • MNC DoverMNC Dover Game Designer/Stay-at-home Dad Seattle, WARegistered User regular
    Taking suggestions on updates to the OP.

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  • InkSplatInkSplat 100%ed Bad Rats. Registered User regular
    MNC Dover wrote: »
    Taking suggestions on updates to the OP.

    Pandemic: The Cure is honestly one of my favorite games of last year. If a few other people agree, it'd make a nice addition to the co-op section, as it is light, fast, and it has pretty much replaced Forbidden Desert for my wife and I.

    Origin for Dragon Age: Inquisition Shenanigans: Inksplat776
    ChaosHatTheSmacker
  • InquisitorInquisitor Registered User regular
    I played Xia Legends of a Drift System for the first time tonight.

    It was definitely interesting, not sure entirely how I feel about it. Definitely want to try it with a random set up, more than 3 players, and the NPCs added before I pass any kind of final judgement. The game seems really variable in terms of planet placement and what missions people get and it seems like things can skew kind of hard off of that. There are a lot of dice involved, maybe too many. Combat seemed kind of ineffectual but maybe we haven't figured out how to kit out our ships well enough yet.

    Over all I enjoyed being a space trucker though.

  • SokpuppetSokpuppet You only yoyo once Registered User regular
    MNC Dover wrote: »
    Taking suggestions on updates to the OP.

    Anyone:
    King of Tokyo
    Coup
    Hanabi

    Recent hotness:
    Fief
    Love Letter
    Star Realms
    Battlestar Galactica
    X-com?
    Doomtown Reloaded

    2 players:
    LotR LCG
    X-wing Minis
    Sekigahara: the Unification of Japan

    Group:
    One Night Ultimate Werewolf
    Ca$h & Guns

    Places to play stuff online:
    Vassal



    Just off the top of my head.
    It has been a busy, busy year in board games.

    crimsoncoyoteElvenshae
  • mere_immortalmere_immortal So tasty!Registered User regular
    edited January 2015
    A record 22 people were at our group last night! Someone even mentioned they came along because of a Reddit recommendation, which even with the strong online presence of board games felt kind of weird for a game group in a little Northern English town. Neat though!

    Second game of The Cave got played, which I'm really enjoying. Bought it off a friend after not really enjoying K2 but everyone has a great time when they've played it. Also played Quilt Show, a game about making Quilts! After the initial piss taking we actually all really enjoyed it, enables lots of ridiculous quilt based chat whilst it's going, which is the most ridiculous sentence.

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  • Mojo_JojoMojo_Jojo Like a bad lobster in a dark cellar Registered User regular
    I keep seeing forbidden desert and forbidden island in their lovely tin boxes. I'm concerned that the game is trivial though. Somebody sell me the idea

    Homogeneous distribution of your varieties of amuse-gueule
  • BogartBogart Streetwise Hercules Fighting The Rising Odds Registered User, Moderator mod
    MNC Dover wrote: »
    Taking suggestions on updates to the OP.

    The Bored With Life youtube channel is worth mentioning. Let's plays, professional-looking sketches and news/reviews.

  • WingedWeaselWingedWeasel Registered User regular
    Finally got my kickstarter copy of Nightlight. Although apparently all the kickstarter rewards for the tier I was at are coming later, such as the custom cards and stuff. Gamecrafter apparently had a shortage of supplies or something. unfortunately won't likely get to be played for another week, would've been much better timing if it had released sooner (like it was supposed to), but oh well.

    Anyone else back this one?

  • jergarmarjergarmar hollow man crew goes pew pew pewRegistered User regular
    Mojo_Jojo wrote: »
    I keep seeing forbidden desert and forbidden island in their lovely tin boxes. I'm concerned that the game is trivial though. Somebody sell me the idea

    Forbidden Desert is simply the better of the two (except if playing with young kids), and is certainly NOT trivial. It is a cooperative game that is not too long, is simple to learn, is a pleasure to manipulate the bits, a pleasure to look at, has interesting and meaningful roles to choose from, and is cheap.

    When I was a child, I had a fever...
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  • crimsoncoyotecrimsoncoyote Registered User regular
    jergarmar wrote: »
    Mojo_Jojo wrote: »
    I keep seeing forbidden desert and forbidden island in their lovely tin boxes. I'm concerned that the game is trivial though. Somebody sell me the idea

    Forbidden Desert is simply the better of the two (except if playing with young kids), and is certainly NOT trivial. It is a cooperative game that is not too long, is simple to learn, is a pleasure to manipulate the bits, a pleasure to look at, has interesting and meaningful roles to choose from, and is cheap.

    If you find it too easy, there is also a scalable difficulty option. It's quick and fun and different every time.

    jergarmar
  • jergarmarjergarmar hollow man crew goes pew pew pewRegistered User regular
    edited January 2015
    Oh, changes to the OP?

    - The "recent cool games" section should have a bunch of different items. From what the thread has been discussing, the first that spring to mind are Fief, Imperial Assault, Doomtown, and Roll Through the Galaxy.
    - X-Wing Miniatures is not mentioned in the 2-player section and I don't know why and I'm sorry.
    - I also agree that One Night Ultimate Werewolf and Cash N Guns are great group games that probably should be added.
    - King of Tokyo to the "everyone" section? Yeah, good idea. But I would add Coup to the "filler" section.

    EDIT: KoT is already in the "filler" section. It can simply be moved to the "everybody" section.

    EDIT2: Am I the only one who still reads "KoT" as "King of Town"?

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  • ToxTox I kill threads Punch DimensionRegistered User regular
    So is there a "dice-building" that does it better than Quarriors?

    Is there another dice-building game out there? I liked Dominion somewhat okay, but I enjoy the dice rolling way more.

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  • CaptainPeacockCaptainPeacock Board Game Hoarder Top o' the LakeRegistered User regular
    If you're enchanted by lovely tin boxes, give Timeline a try. It's elagently simple to learn and play, modular in it's many expansions and is easy to grab and go for play anywhere with a smallish table.

    Cluck cluck, gibber gibber, my old man's a mushroom, etc.
    Endaro
  • jergarmarjergarmar hollow man crew goes pew pew pewRegistered User regular
    Tox wrote: »
    So is there a "dice-building" that does it better than Quarriors?

    Is there another dice-building game out there? I liked Dominion somewhat okay, but I enjoy the dice rolling way more.

    The answer is Marvel Dice Masters, which probably should be in the OP also. It's VERY good, but collectible. It's pretty wallet-friendly for a collectible game, but still collectible. To get started, I recommend the Uncanny X-Men starter (~$15 in stores, ~$12 online) and 20 boosters ($1.00 in stores, ~$0.80 online).

    When I was a child, I had a fever...
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  • Professor PhobosProfessor Phobos Registered User regular
    I would like to submit One Night Ultimate Werewolf. Over the holidays I introduced it to three separate groups and it was a smash hit every time. People said things like "This game is great!" and "That's a keeper!|" and "MORE!" and "Again! Let's play it again!"

    It's better than the Resistance.

    crimsoncoyoteZombie HeroInfidelmysticjuicer
  • ToxTox I kill threads Punch DimensionRegistered User regular
    jergarmar wrote: »
    Tox wrote: »
    So is there a "dice-building" that does it better than Quarriors?

    Is there another dice-building game out there? I liked Dominion somewhat okay, but I enjoy the dice rolling way more.

    The answer is Marvel Dice Masters, which probably should be in the OP also. It's VERY good, but collectible. It's pretty wallet-friendly for a collectible game, but still collectible. To get started, I recommend the Uncanny X-Men starter (~$15 in stores, ~$12 online) and 20 boosters ($1.00 in stores, ~$0.80 online).

    That one's only two player though, right?

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    jergarmar
  • ChaosHatChaosHat Trick of the lightRegistered User regular
    InkSplat wrote: »
    MNC Dover wrote: »
    Taking suggestions on updates to the OP.

    Pandemic: The Cure is honestly one of my favorite games of last year. If a few other people agree, it'd make a nice addition to the co-op section, as it is light, fast, and it has pretty much replaced Forbidden Desert for my wife and I.

    Pandemic: the Cure is awesome. Highly recommend it.

  • ArcticLancerArcticLancer Best served chilled. Registered User regular
    edited January 2015
    For the record, the only way I've ever had a game of Risk: Legacy last more than 3 hours is that you'll play 3 games in one sitting. An hour is definitely on the long end of things, and in the beginning a game can easily be 20 minutes ...

    it's also criminal that Core Worlds is in neither the deckbuilder or Space Theme sections.
    Hmmm ... I think need an evening to seriously put together some suggestions for the OP.

    ArcticLancer on
  • jergarmarjergarmar hollow man crew goes pew pew pewRegistered User regular
    For the record, the only way I've ever had a game of Risk: Legacy last more than 3 hours is that you'll play 3 games in one sitting. An hour is definitely on the long end of things, and in the beginning a game can easily be 20 minutes ...

    My intent was the scope of the game, but that definitely didn't come across in the blurb. I think at one time the title was "Epic in scope and/or length".

    When I was a child, I had a fever...
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  • Ah_PookAh_Pook Registered User regular
    InkSplat wrote: »
    So, reading about the Kickstarter Amazon Payments change.. I'm kind of baffled. Apparently KS used to use something called "Amazon Flexible Payment Service" and to date (as of January 6th of this year) had processed over $1 billion in Pledges. And if I'm not mistaken, they got 5% of that.. which if I'm also not mistaken, equals $50 million dollars. You'd think that would be enough income to keep that program running, at least just for Kickstarter, if no one else.

    That is crazy that apparently that much money means jack shit to Amazon.

    I don't know the specifics or anything, but amazing is changing over from Amazon Flexible Payment System to a new thing called Login and Pay with Amazon. I would assume that the change makes sense on Amazon's end, and the choice to use something else makes sense on Kickstarters end.

    Pancho needs your prayers it's true
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  • DrascinDrascin Registered User regular
    So, last time Dominion was mentioned in this thread, I mentioned that I played Dominion twice and was so thoroughly bored by it that I instantly refused to even look at any game that said it had a deckbuilding component ever since. A lot of people told me that that was a terrible idea there are a lot of other deckbuilding games that are more fun.

    And you know what, I'm willing to believe you guys, so I'm going to ask for suggestions. What could be some games with deckbuilding for someone who found Dominion to feel like five-person solitaire?

    Steam ID: Right here.
  • Mikey CTSMikey CTS Registered User regular
    Arctic Scavegers or Marvel Legendary are both excellent and have a lot of interaction. I hear Legendary Encounters is pretty good and it seemed like this thread was obsessed with Star Realms for a shortwhile.

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    VisskarDrascin
  • Magic PinkMagic Pink Tur-Boner-Fed Registered User regular
    Well, I got Cthulhu Wars. Sadly, while the shipping box was fine, the game inside is smashed all to hell. A good 60% of the minis are broken and all the cardboard is dented or bent. Even the super sturdy storage tray inside is shattered. I'm pretty dang disappointed.

  • mere_immortalmere_immortal So tasty!Registered User regular
    Eminent Domain has a decent bit of interaction with how the follow/dissent mechanic works. When an opponent takes their move you choose to follow them, playing the same card as they do and boosting it if you can, or dissenting and drawing a card from your own deck.

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  • Ah_PookAh_Pook Registered User regular
    Drascin wrote: »
    So, last time Dominion was mentioned in this thread, I mentioned that I played Dominion twice and was so thoroughly bored by it that I instantly refused to even look at any game that said it had a deckbuilding component ever since. A lot of people told me that that was a terrible idea there are a lot of other deckbuilding games that are more fun.

    And you know what, I'm willing to believe you guys, so I'm going to ask for suggestions. What could be some games with deckbuilding for someone who found Dominion to feel like five-person solitaire?

    Well I think first off people would tell you not to play Dominion 5p. But I'd say give Star Realms a try. It's cheap, it's fast, and it's a ton of fun (IMO).


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  • ArcSynArcSyn Registered User regular
    Magic Pink wrote: »
    Well, I got Cthulhu Wars. Sadly, while the shipping box was fine, the game inside is smashed all to hell. A good 60% of the minis are broken and all the cardboard is dented or bent. Even the super sturdy storage tray inside is shattered. I'm pretty dang disappointed.

    Wow. That's terrible. :( I hope they make it up to you quickly.

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  • ArcticLancerArcticLancer Best served chilled. Registered User regular
    Drascin wrote: »
    So, last time Dominion was mentioned in this thread, I mentioned that I played Dominion twice and was so thoroughly bored by it that I instantly refused to even look at any game that said it had a deckbuilding component ever since. A lot of people told me that that was a terrible idea there are a lot of other deckbuilding games that are more fun.

    And you know what, I'm willing to believe you guys, so I'm going to ask for suggestions. What could be some games with deckbuilding for someone who found Dominion to feel like five-person solitaire?
    Do you have an idea what it was you didn't like, or was it explicitly the lack of player interaction?

    Geth
  • InkSplatInkSplat 100%ed Bad Rats. Registered User regular
    edited January 2015
    Drascin wrote: »
    So, last time Dominion was mentioned in this thread, I mentioned that I played Dominion twice and was so thoroughly bored by it that I instantly refused to even look at any game that said it had a deckbuilding component ever since. A lot of people told me that that was a terrible idea there are a lot of other deckbuilding games that are more fun.

    And you know what, I'm willing to believe you guys, so I'm going to ask for suggestions. What could be some games with deckbuilding for someone who found Dominion to feel like five-person solitaire?

    @Drascin

    As someone who also hated Dominion, I'd offer the following suggestions :

    Trains: Rising Sun (or just Trains if you can find it cheaper) - Trains has a board, which in my opinion changes everything. It allows players to interact and impede each other even when attack cards aren't being played. If looking for two players, definitely go with Rising Sun. For 3-4, original Trains may be the better option, as Rising Sun has 2 two player boards in place of a second 4 player board.

    Paperback - a deckbuilder and scrabble got busy, and this awesome little game is the result.

    Arctic Scavengers - this one has lots of interaction, as there are skirmishes at the end of each round. However it can be divisive due to the game having a more gambling feel and less direct strategy than some other deckbuilders. Wouldn't recommend for two players.

    InkSplat on
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  • crimsoncoyotecrimsoncoyote Registered User regular
    Drascin wrote: »
    So, last time Dominion was mentioned in this thread, I mentioned that I played Dominion twice and was so thoroughly bored by it that I instantly refused to even look at any game that said it had a deckbuilding component ever since. A lot of people told me that that was a terrible idea there are a lot of other deckbuilding games that are more fun.

    And you know what, I'm willing to believe you guys, so I'm going to ask for suggestions. What could be some games with deckbuilding for someone who found Dominion to feel like five-person solitaire?
    Do you have an idea what it was you didn't like, or was it explicitly the lack of player interaction?
    I think the lack of player interaction is felt more with more people. Especially with 5. There is so long between your turns, I can easily see how it would feel like you're not even playing a game with anyone else.

    I personally like playing with 3 total in Dominion, though 2 is pretty good too. I'd rather not play with 4, and 5+ is simply not supported/suggested. It's been said before, but the Intrigue expansion (which can also be standalone) helps a lot with player interaction.

    Anyway, aside from that, I would also say give Star Realms a shot. You can even download the digital version for free and play against some AI to give it a try before you buy the physical game (or unlock the rest of the digital stuff)

  • Magic PinkMagic Pink Tur-Boner-Fed Registered User regular
    ArcSyn wrote: »
    Magic Pink wrote: »
    Well, I got Cthulhu Wars. Sadly, while the shipping box was fine, the game inside is smashed all to hell. A good 60% of the minis are broken and all the cardboard is dented or bent. Even the super sturdy storage tray inside is shattered. I'm pretty dang disappointed.

    Wow. That's terrible. :( I hope they make it up to you quickly.

    Well, the trouble is it's not really their fault. I can fix most of the pieces I think except one and for that I've asked for a replacement. The rest of it is usable (except for the tray) but just ugly as hell now. I've asked if I can buy another box and tray and we'll see what they answer.

  • ArcSynArcSyn Registered User regular
    Magic Pink wrote: »
    ArcSyn wrote: »
    Magic Pink wrote: »
    Well, I got Cthulhu Wars. Sadly, while the shipping box was fine, the game inside is smashed all to hell. A good 60% of the minis are broken and all the cardboard is dented or bent. Even the super sturdy storage tray inside is shattered. I'm pretty dang disappointed.

    Wow. That's terrible. :( I hope they make it up to you quickly.

    Well, the trouble is it's not really their fault. I can fix most of the pieces I think except one and for that I've asked for a replacement. The rest of it is usable (except for the tray) but just ugly as hell now. I've asked if I can buy another box and tray and we'll see what they answer.

    It may not be their fault, but they can get insurance from the shipping company to cover loss. I would ask for a complete replacement. It may have happened in the warehouse, or while shipped to them, or whatever, but you shouldn't end up with a terrible looking game as a result.

    It's not your fault either.

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  • jergarmarjergarmar hollow man crew goes pew pew pewRegistered User regular
    edited January 2015
    Drascin wrote: »
    So, last time Dominion was mentioned in this thread, I mentioned that I played Dominion twice and was so thoroughly bored by it that I instantly refused to even look at any game that said it had a deckbuilding component ever since. A lot of people told me that that was a terrible idea there are a lot of other deckbuilding games that are more fun.

    And you know what, I'm willing to believe you guys, so I'm going to ask for suggestions. What could be some games with deckbuilding for someone who found Dominion to feel like five-person solitaire?

    When this question comes up, I usually recommend Rune Age (with the Oath and Anvil expansion). But these days, there are so many great deckbuilders out that I don't think there is only one answer. Rune Age does have a bunch of different modes of play (like co-op, all-vs-one, last-man-standing, among others), and a LOT of interaction (i.e. directly attacking other players), and there are several people in this thread who will tell you it's great, so it's probably still a GOOD choice.

    Trains, though, is the game that I will sometimes hear as a "replacement" for Dominion, though I've never played.

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  • Ah_PookAh_Pook Registered User regular
    Magic Pink wrote: »
    ArcSyn wrote: »
    Magic Pink wrote: »
    Well, I got Cthulhu Wars. Sadly, while the shipping box was fine, the game inside is smashed all to hell. A good 60% of the minis are broken and all the cardboard is dented or bent. Even the super sturdy storage tray inside is shattered. I'm pretty dang disappointed.

    Wow. That's terrible. :( I hope they make it up to you quickly.

    Well, the trouble is it's not really their fault. I can fix most of the pieces I think except one and for that I've asked for a replacement. The rest of it is usable (except for the tray) but just ugly as hell now. I've asked if I can buy another box and tray and we'll see what they answer.

    They should definitely replace the whole shebang, contact them and see what's up. Sorry man, hopefully it works out.

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    But save a few for Lefty too
  • ArcSynArcSyn Registered User regular
    Oh my goodness, I'm trying to be helpful on BGG for Fief, but these guys are ridiculous.
    Can we cede control of a village during an election, after the votes have been cast but before they actually take the title off the board?

    How inane do you really want to get with these rules? Sure, it could happen I guess that two players could share a village during the election round, and maybe they'd want to change the result. Too bad, the votes have been cast. Stop trying to nitpick all these specialty situations!

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  • ElvenshaeElvenshae Registered User regular
    jergarmar wrote: »
    EDIT2: Am I the only one who still reads "KoT" as "King of Town"?

    I always read it as "Knights of the ...", expecting an "Old Republic" or "Dinner Table" or something there.

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  • InquisitorInquisitor Registered User regular
    edited January 2015
    For the record, the only way I've ever had a game of Risk: Legacy last more than 3 hours is that you'll play 3 games in one sitting. An hour is definitely on the long end of things, and in the beginning a game can easily be 20 minutes ...

    it's also criminal that Core Worlds is in neither the deckbuilder or Space Theme sections.
    Hmmm ... I think need an evening to seriously put together some suggestions for the OP.

    Yeah Risk: Legacy games can go very, very quickly.

    I am somewhat infamous in my play group for winning our first game of risk legacy on the second turn of the game.

    Later on I topped that by managing to win on the first turn of the game.

    I enjoy risk legacy, but, it is a deeply silly game.

    Inquisitor on
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  • InquisitorInquisitor Registered User regular
    Drascin wrote: »
    So, last time Dominion was mentioned in this thread, I mentioned that I played Dominion twice and was so thoroughly bored by it that I instantly refused to even look at any game that said it had a deckbuilding component ever since. A lot of people told me that that was a terrible idea there are a lot of other deckbuilding games that are more fun.

    And you know what, I'm willing to believe you guys, so I'm going to ask for suggestions. What could be some games with deckbuilding for someone who found Dominion to feel like five-person solitaire?

    Everyone else in the thread has given really solid suggestions so far, but I'd also like to toss in A Few Acres of Snow and A Study in Emerald if you might want to try a game where deck building is a component of the strategy but not the entire game. A Few Acres being for 1v1 gaming, and A Study in Emerald being for 3-5 players. You can technically play Emerald 1v1 but I don't see the point, the more the merrier with that game for sure.

    Endaro
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