You thought we were done with discussing our favourite games? Surprise! We’re not. I also asked my lovely girlfriend to write about her favourite games and she did. A different perspective so to speak. So, here are ten board games that she loves to play.
Shelves full of games and I like to play most of them once in a while. When I was asked to put together a top 10 list of my favourite games I thought it would be easy. Until I started to write them down.
I don’t have an ingenious ranking system and I find it hard to formulate why I like one game over the other, so don’t take this top 10 too serious. I can, however, say with certainty that playing these games makes me really happy.
Dominion was not the only candidate for the number ten position. Why I chose Dominion? Well, I’m often asked ‘Can you recommend some fun games?’ by people who don’t play games as much as we do. Dominion is accessible, the idea of deck-building is pretty easy to understand and there’s enough strategy and tactics to make it interesting. Hopefully this top 10 listing will inspire people to put something other than Catan on the table.
9: Pandemic (& Pandemic LEGACY)
I’m not a fan of cooperative games, but Pandemic is the exception that proves the rule. De map of the world (games that have a map just make me happy) and the tension that the epidemics and the potential outbreaks bring, make this game fun. The LEGACY version that we play with the two of us has more depth, but this game might be a bit too easy when you play it with two players, or maybe we just are too good, or too lucky.
8: 7 Wonders (& 7 Wonders Duel)
Again an accessible game with nice mechanisms, drafting in this case. Every round you pick a card and pass the rest on to your neighbour. You have to think about what you want and need to look at the cards your neighbours have played. Do you play defensively and choose the cards they need, or do you choose cards you need?
The two-player version, 7 Wonders Duel, also offers enough to get it often to the table.
6: Castles of Burgundy
It’s the only game on this list that we do not own ourselves. I have played it several times now and I’m really excited about it. The dice results, for the most part, determine the possibilities you have and I think that every game feels different.
5: Ticket to Ride
Can we already say that Ticket to Ride is a classic? If not, it deserves to be. Both the USA edition, which I play on the iPad, and the Europe edition are easily playable by a wide audience. Because you can only do three things in your turn (take cards, build routes, take tickets), it is a continuous balancing of opportunities and risks. Which routes do I need to complete my tickets? Shall I take extra tickets, although they might be far away from my current routes?
4: The Voyages of Marco Polo
Marco Polo just missed the top three. It’s a game with a map, which you know I like, and it’s worker placement with dice, which I also like. I do put this game in the heavier Euro category, because there are lots of options and the time is limited to five rounds. That means you have to make some tough decisions and that makes a game fun for me.
My personal ambition to promote has been put on hold, but the academic world of Alchemists is a very good replacement. You have to deduce the composition of different ingredients. It’s logical thinking in combination with worker placement. Really fun!
2: Race for the Galaxy
I doubted whether Race should be my number one, but I haven’t played it much lately. I still think it’s a wonderful game. It’s not a game with dozens of baggies and playing pieces. It’s just a deck of cards. Every game feels different and the multiple strategies – just race, go for military, or take the production/ consumption path – all have their charm. Its big brother, Roll for the Galaxy, doesn’t appeal to me as much as this one. I find that in that game there are too many rounds where your option are limited, but maybe I have another opinion next year. It is Rowdy’s number one after all.
1: Tzolk’in: The Mayan Calendar
My number one in my top 10 Favourite Games is Tzolk’in: The Mayan Calendar. Worker placement with an extra dimension; rotating cogs. It’s a game where, because of the timing aspect, you have to carefully consider your choices, think about many elements and, because of the cogs, the game looks nice too.
Sélène made another top 10 list about her favourite games to play with two players.