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Kyle

Favorite Board Games

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Thanks for reviving the thread!

In the past year, I've shifted much of my hobby focus to board games. I think I finally got Dominion...I owned it a played it a few times, but some friends and I finally got to a point where we could blaze through an intense, knuckle-biting game in 15 minutes. I only own the Alchemy expansion, but enjoy it a lot.

I finally got to play the Battlestar Galactica game, after having owned it for a year. Wow. It's fantastic — all of the players work together to survive until they make it to Kobol (win the game, basically), but one of the players might be a Cylon traitor. That my non-BSG fan, non-gamer wife enjoyed the game...that's something!

We also played Wits and Wagers a good bit New Years Eve. It's a great party game, especially when you approach it from a crafty, flubbing angle.

In the past few months, I also picked up: 1960 - the Making of a President; Twilight Struggle; Louis XIV; Forbidden Island and some expansions for other games. Anyone play any of these?

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More card game than board games, but we got BOHNANZA (trading and planting beans) and BANG! (an Italian Spaghetti Western card game) for Christmas. Good fun.

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More card game than board games, but we got BOHNANZA (trading and planting beans) and BANG! (an Italian Spaghetti Western card game) for Christmas. Good fun.

Bonhanza is one of my favorites. I actually wrote a review about it here. (That's not me in the photo.) Bang! used to be one of my favorites — quite easy to suffer from Bang! burnout. (I actually just traded my big bullet edition for Twilight Struggle.)

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Looks like someone at Paste has been paying attention to the new board game hotness. I haven't played Quarriors, but I've heard from many people that — like Dominion — it's easy to burn out quickly and lose interest. And also like Dominion, it seems like there's a fairly simple, unbeatable strategy that bypasses most of the game's flavor.

Glad they included A Few Acres of Snow, which looks really neat. Board Game Geek announced their annual Golden Geek award winners not too long ago. (link) You have to scroll down a little to see the list. A Few Acres is on there, as is 7 Wonders (which I enjoy a lot) and a few other interesting games.

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Netrunner, the critically acclaimed card game by Magic designer Richard Garfield, is getting a reprint.

This is big news in the gaming world. Netrunner might not have the broad popularity that Magic had, but it has both a great reputation and a devoted fanbase. Sets of the old game still go for hundreds of bucks on eBay. Yesterday's announcement has been met with a ton of attention (most of it rapturous). If anything, I'm interested in it because Fantasy Flight is folding the game into its own Android setting, which I adore. If you like cyberpunk and future noir themes, and you like card games, it might be worth checking out.

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My kids and I are loving the Munchkin card game series. For those not familiar with it, it's sorta like D&D in a deck of cards, with monsters and player enhancers (and accompanying illustrations) that are often hilarious: battling a Gummi Golem with the Cheese Grater of Peace, for instance. Games are relatively short (1-2 hours), so it's perfect for a lazy weekend afternoon or weekday evening.

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My kids and I are loving the Munchkin card game series. For those not familiar with it, it's sorta like D&D in a deck of cards, with monsters and player enhancers (and accompanying illustrations) that are often hilarious: battling a Gummi Golem with the Cheese Grater of Peace, for instance. Games are relatively short (1-2 hours), so it's perfect for a lazy weekend afternoon or weekday evening.

Wil Wheaton's TableTop show actually covered Munchkin a few weeks ago. Felicia Day and Steve Jackson (who designed the game, among many, many others) are playing with Wheaton. Here's the video:

Edited by Jason Panella

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Thanks for sharing that, Jason - it was most entertaining. My boys watched it with me, and pointed out that they broke 2 rules between the 13:00 and 15:00 minute marks. Steve Jackson, for shame!

Meanwhile, the kids and I bought the Space Munchkin set, so we're now mixing monsters and space aliens for even more fun!

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I must admit that I have appreciated the two episodes of Tabletop I've seen ("Settlers of Cataan" and "Gloom") for introducing the basic principles of each game and being quite entertaining at the same time. That said, they do skim over the fine points, I'm sure, mostly for time considerations.

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I must admit that I have appreciated the two episodes of Tabletop I've seen ("Settlers of Cataan" and "Gloom") for introducing the basic principles of each game and being quite entertaining at the same time. That said, they do skim over the fine points, I'm sure, mostly for time considerations.

I've liked Tabletop so far, but I'm still waiting for them to get into something beyond "gateway" games. I'm realizing the format doesn't work well with something ridiculous (like, say, Twilight Imperium, which often can take a whole day). But I am hoping they cover something a little more meaty.

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A few new faves:

Snake Oil (4 - 9 players)(more of a party game than a "board" game) - Similar to Apples to Apples, in that you choose word-cards from your hand and are trying to get your selection chosen by the player who is "it" this round, but instead of just needing to have the card(s) fit the indicated theme, you are trying to sell a new product to the "it" person who is given a role. They might be a dictator or a priest or Santa Claus and you make your selection based on what that character might buy. So if the "It" is a Cave Man, from my hand of Finger, Hell, Gas, Future, Shield, Urge, Soap, I might choose to sell him a product called "Soap Urge," which I might define as some pharmaceutical that promotes impulses toward cleanliness, "Because soap is useless, if you don't want to use it." The Cave Man (or whatever) would hear the pitches from all the players and then choose from among them whom to award the point. There is definitely a performative element, so it's not a game that will work with all crowds but with the right people it can be hilarious.

Repello (2 - 4 players) - My wife and I are always on the lookout for games that are good with 2 players. Bonus points if we can play it over dinner. This one fits the bill. It's still fairly new to us so we'll see if it has staying power but so far so good. Quick to learn but leaves plenty of room to improve. I believe it's Mensa endorsed, which is usually a really good sign for abstract strategy games (some other favorites are Blokus and Quarto)

7 Wonders (2 - 7 players) - I've only played it once but I loved it. Won a bunch of big awards.

Love Letter (2 - 4 players) - Super simple to learn, quick to play, lots of fun.

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