Sometimes you play a game that other players like a lot, rave about. You heard good things about it, but after you sat at the table for, lets say, two hours you think: “Say what? How can you..? I don’t understand, I do not like it at all.”
Some games on this list I played once, because why would I play a game more than once when I did not like it the first time. Other games I played more, because, I don’t know, review or trickery or the fact that I really wanted to like it.
I looked at Boardgamegeek and compared the general rating with my rating or experience, so lower on the list are games that being not as highly rated or the difference between my rating and that of the game was not as big as the games closer to number one.
According to BGG these were the games with the largest disparities in ratings: Pocket Battles: Celts vs. Romans, Spank the Monkey, Casting, Halli Galli, Party Animals, Cubo, Confusion, UNO, Black Sheep and White Sheep, Phase 10 and others.
Most of these games I played a long time ago and don’t really fit my current gaming profile. The games below do, apart from the fact that I did not like them as much as other people seem to do.
Here we go!
10: Specter Ops
Played it once, totally fell flat. One player has to complete three missions and then get off the map. The other players, all with their own abilities, try to hunt that player down. Everyone has special abilities, and can move on its own or maybe go to places on the map with a car. When you can see the agent player, who is hidden during most of the game, you can try to shoot it. The agent also has cards he can play and they do stuff that make the hunt more difficult.
It all felt so complicated for what is a very simple cat and mouse game. The abilities never really worked. The theme did not grab me. It seemed hat the whole group was a bit underwhelmed. Me included. Maybe it’s just not my type of game.
9: Family Business
This Mafia game is not very highly regarded. It’s just in the OK category on the geek, but I disliked the one play I had so much that it had to be on the list. It felt so incredibly random, attacks here, attacks there, someone counters an attack, someone dies, it drags on and on then someone is the winner. Did I play badly, did she play well, did he actually do something during the entire game? I don’t know, because it absolutely did not matter.. Bad.
8: Greenland, Neanderthal
These two games are on this list because I really wanted to like them. I watched, read more than a few reviews of Phill Eklunds games and thought they looked complicated, but interesting. In theme and mechanisms. When Greenland came out I thought: “This is my chance to check one of his games out.” You could also play this game solo. Great! Love that. However, Greenland was boredom in a box. Not fun at all. The idea of the game was good, but man, nothing happened during the entire game.
A friend bought Neanderthal. Should have been an improved Greenland. Played it solo one and half time. Still boring.
This hidden role game is quite high regarded. A 6.7 on boardgamegeek. That’s pretty high for a game where hidden is not the right word for the traitor role, because I think most of the time it’s quite obvious whose the bad dwarf. There are so many better hidden role game out there. For me, this is a kids game. You can use it to teach them to lie in your face.
6: The Game
So this game was nominated for the Spiel des Jahres in 2015? What? Play cards that are higher or lower than the cards on the table, just to get rid of all the cards in the game. I get it, it’s an easy concept, easy to sell to families. But it’s mind-numbing, the illustrations are weird and I found it pretty easy to win, so boring and not really challenging. Blegh.
5: You’re Bluffing!
Most of my games of You’re Bluffing date from before my BGG era. However, I tried it again, and for the last time, in 2014. Some people really like this game, at least here in the Netherlands. It’s been called Koehandel around here. I do not like it. I’m not a fan of pure auction games and what I hate about this game is that your game can end earlier than the rest of the player. You sit there while the rest of the players, after all cards have been auctioned off, go on with Koehandelen (“trading cattle” or something like that).
That’s not the only thing. I only like the bidding and the bluffing for the first ten minutes or so, the rest of the game feels like a drag.
4: One Night Ultimate Werewolf
I’m not a werewolf guy. I hate having to sit there watching other people have a good time.
I’m more a Resistance guy. If I have to put myself in a group.
The One Night principle, however, intrigued me. No player elimination. That should solve quite a bit. And it’s quick. Let’s try it.
Well it’s boring. Quick, yes, but over before the fun starts. And it feels pretty random too, because you have to play so fast probably. You quickly discuss, point fingers at each other and try to convince that you are someone, or not. Do you have the time to do so? Maybe, but some discussions will take a bit too long and you did not get a chance to speak. You basically base your decision on a speech of a minute or so.
I’m not ready to decide yet, but OK, if I have to point at someone. It’s you. That’s how I felt at the end. Not fun. And they’re spitting out version after version of the same game. Obviously people like, otherwise it would be pretty stupid, but come on make something original.
3: Pandemic: The Cure
Pandemic is a game I enjoy. It’s a challenge. This game, Pandemic the dice game as you might call it, wasn’t a challenge at all. I played it during Spiel, the game was explained by a someone who wore a shirt with a logo from the publisher, but at the end I felt like that we must have been playing it the wrong way.
We have been rolling our dice, assigned our dice, saved the world and the game was over. Not during a single turn we were close to defeat. Rarely was I so underwhelmed. I checked the rules later to see if we were doing things wrongly. We weren’t.
The number three family game? The number 54 game of all time? What? It’s just flicking disks. I don’t get it. Where are people playing this? I actually seen it been played once. Once! And that was the occasion where I thought: “Lets see what these people on the geek are talking about.”
It’s OK, for one time, but the second time already felt the same and not as fun. It’s not a board game in my opinion. It’s something like darts or snooker or bowling for my part, not a board game. It’s a game of skill and like bowling, darts or snooker just OK to play once in while, not a game that should be in the top 50 or top 100 games of all time.
1: Dead of Winter
This game got so much attention and hype, and still does. It sounded so interesting. New story elements that could be triggered by crossroads cards. There could be a traitor in our midst. All players had different victory conditions, secret goals.
A zombie apocalypse survival game. Some thematic music in the background and we were off that night.
This was one of the most boring games I ever played. The crossroad cards almost never got triggered and the one or two that did were far from interesting. The story did not develop like I expected it to do going into this game. The traitor was exposed in a couple of rounds and the game wasn’t very interesting after that. Without the traitor and the crossroads cards working well, Dead of Winter is just a very middle of the road game and that’s why it’s my number one overrated game.
Do you have a game that you really don’t like and other players seem to love? Do you agree with the games above? Probably not. Tell me in the comments!