New to you a year ago Apr 11 => Has it stood the test of time?
Martin G
United Kingdom
Bristol
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Grimwold's new-to-you geeklists are the highlight of my month on the 'geek. They motivate me to review the new games I've played (and recycle my entries as comments), and they allow me to read the thoughts of some of the most insightful 'geeks on new and classic games.

But the new-to-me list is inevitably full of first impressions. I'm interested in hearing how those games that seemed so great at the time stood up to multiple plays. Did you actually play them that much after the first month? Did a game you dismissed at the time turn out to be better in retrospect?

Add an entry with the same game you chose for the New to you Apr 10 geeklist. Link to your entry in that geeklist, then write down your thoughts on the game you chose a year on. If your impression of some of the other games you wrote up that month have changed, let us know about that too.

The big games that month were Hansa Teutonica (again!) and Innovation - have they stood the test of time?

I'll be starting these lists mid-month, so we don't have to keep up with this list and Grimwold's (and several other monthly ones) all at the same time. You can subscribe to the announcement thread for reminders.
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1. Board Game: China [Average Rating:7.06 Overall Rank:412]
Martin G
United Kingdom
Bristol
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Item for Geeklist "New to you Apr 10 => Best new game you played this month and why"

Well here's a month I got wrong. After my initial back-to-back plays of China in April, I got it in a trade that summer and it's seen 5 plays since. I still think it's a solid game that packs in a lot of decisions to its short span, but it does start to feel a bit samey. On the one hand, maybe I could mix it up a bit with some of the mini-expansions, but on the other that might taint its main virtue of elegance. The other problem is that I've ended up with a lot of games that are great with three, so this is unlikely to be first choice.

But in second place was Cribbage. With 4 plays that month and 48 since, it's safe to say it would be my retrospective pick. The only game that my wife is always up for, and thankfully I love it too. I find it relaxing to play: there are enough meaningful decisions that it doesn't play itself, but you can easily chat and watch TV as you go, or take it to the pub. It's just the right length, has just the right balance of skill and luck, and can give you some delightful surprises (our favourite recently was when Sarah's crib ended up being A-2-3-5 of Hearts, with the cut a 4 of Hearts for a flush, a run and a 15). It's joined my exclusive list of 10s, and of those I think it's the one I'm the most confident of never stopping playing.

The only other replayed game is Dixit. with 4 subsequent plays. I like it more than I thought I did at the time, and am generally happy to play it with a decent-sized group of the right sort of people. But we got it for a present for Sarah's parents, who play a lot of party games, and it didn't go down that well with them. I don't think the scoring system is very non-gamer friendly and the open-ended creativity puts some people off.
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2. Board Game: Roads & Boats [Average Rating:7.73 Overall Rank:181]
United States
Wurtsboro
NY
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April 2010 was a great month for me, with 4 great games. Roads & Boats is one of my tens, and Jaipur, Wits & Wagers Family, and Balloon Cup are all lighter but enjoyable games. I played Balloon Cup with my coworker who enjoys screwage, and have introduced Wits & Wagers Family to friends and family with great success.

My 2010 entry:

http://boardgamegeek.com/geeklist/54287/item/1276265#item127...
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3. Board Game: Kaivai [Average Rating:6.90 Overall Rank:1935]
Dave Peters
United States
Belmont
California
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That's Tim Powers' fictional Samuel Coleridge "quoting" John Milton in _The Anubis Gates_.
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Last year, I wrote that I'd only played two new games: Kaivai and The Climbers.

My relative ranking of the two still stands: despite not having played it again in the intervening months (and also despite my opponents-of-that-play expressing the opinion that they Never Want to Play It Again) Kaivai still has my regard & admiration. It's a very cool game design; one I'm glad to own (if only for the remote chance of getting it again to the table); one I'd be happy to play.

I own a copy of The Climbers now too: and while I'm entirely disinclined to play with AP-infested colleagues, it's a really delightful game to play with my children. We've played a couple times in the past year.
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4. Board Game: Yahtzee Hands Down Card Game [Average Rating:5.42 Overall Rank:9643]
Ben Lott
United States
Mason
Michigan
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Here is my original entry to the geeklist: Item for Geeklist "New to you Apr 10 => Best new game you played this month and why"

Here are my updated comments (in the order I ranked them in the original entry):



1 = Yahtzee Hands Down Card Game (Not played since April 2010) - Allow me to reiterate what I said last year when I posted this entry..."April was bad, bad, bad for new gaming!" This was my only new-to-me game in the entire month, and it was a disaster. Put simply, it is a game that should by no means say it plays 2-player, because we tried it and it failed. In fact it failed so miserably that I have had no desire to get it back out on the table. I'm sure there is probably a halfway decent game in the box, but when you give me an experience that bad, recovery is virtually impossible. I'm still contemplating whether I should play this again, but it's still in my collection. I figure no one will pay any decent money for it, so I might as well hang onto it in case I can try it someday.
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5. Board Game: Opera [Average Rating:6.65 Overall Rank:1487]
Henrik Schunk
Germany
Cologne
NRW
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I really enjoyed my first play of Opera at LOB and thanks for John B. for bringing it along that day. Sadly, he has never opted to bring along ever since, at least, not to my knowledge, so it remains a legend and a mystery and firmly settled amongst the other games with only 1 play so far.

It is a Euro at heart but with a lovely theme and great artwork so that makes it more enjoyable for me than your generic build Sumeria or deliver cheese to Mr. Walton.

Would be keen to try it again though (If you read this John, please have mercy) and I even created a microbadge for the game.

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6. Board Game: Claim It! [Average Rating:6.22 Overall Rank:3977]
Jeff Wolfe
United States
Columbus
Ohio
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Zendo fan, Columbus Blue Jackets fan, Dominion Fan. These are 'permanent microbadges' to free up space on my microbadge row
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Item for Geeklist "New to you Apr 10 => Best new game you played this month and why"

Another month of games I haven't played since last year. Aside from Claim It!, there was Thunderstone and Apples to Apples: Bible Edition.

I'm somewhat surprised I didn't manage to get roped into another game of Thunderstone, but not that many people tried to talk me into playing, really.

The themed Apples to Apples is just Apples to Apples, so I suppose I play it again sometime.
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7. Board Game: Red November [Average Rating:6.38 Overall Rank:1134]
Jason Lott
United States
Cheverly
Maryland
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Last year I only had one new-to-me game, which was Red November.

Haven't played it since. A friend in my immediate gaming circle did buy it, however, so I'm sure it will hit the table at some point.

I haven't had any itch to play this game, so if I were to rate the game now I'd downgrade it to a 6.
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8. Board Game: Kingsburg [Average Rating:7.26 Overall Rank:199]
Ingmar Hauge
Norway
No way
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It's cold outside. There's no kind of atmosphere. I'm all alone. More or less. Let me fly. Far away from here. Fun fun fun. In the sun sun sun...
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Dwayne Dibley - The prince of Dork
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April 2010

Kingsburg

One year ago I had my first play of Kingsburg + Expansionand rated it a 9. In one year I have recorded 15 plays which probably is the highest for a game this long. Kingsburg is a great gateway game that I won't have trouble with playing but for the moment I won't suggest it. Kingsburgs downfall is that each game will often develop very similar, even with the expansion. In our games it will often be a race for that 4th die and then build military to fight the intruders before finally going the religious way.

As for now I've downgraded it from a 9 to 7 (7,5 more like it)


Imperial 2030

The Imperials has also taken a step down in the last year. I like the basic ideas of these games work and I like the rondell mechanism but every game of Imperial somehow turns a little boring around midway. So for now it has been downgraded from a 9 to 8.


Macao

Macao on the other hand has remained where it was a year ago and would have been my pick of the month now. Stefan Feld has been hit after hit after Rum and Pirates and I really enjoy the clever use of dice and how the whole game works together. There are lots of choices and planning going on and this game has me thinking after each play about choices I've made throughout.


Witch's Brew

Witch's brew is still a decent and fun little game. I wouldn't try it with 3 as a lot of the interaction would disappear then but with 4 or 5 it is quite good.
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9. Board Game: Ultimate Werewolf: Ultimate Edition [Average Rating:7.34 Overall Rank:369]
Chris Ferejohn
United States
Mountain View
California
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Ultimate Werewolf

I picked up this version for myself and it sees play at occasional large gatherings. My wife really likes it, so it will always stay around. It's really a completely different animal from most games I play, and in the 7-10 player range it's been replaced by The Resistance.

Other games I listed as new this month
Nanuk - The bloom came off this rose pretty quick. The small hand sizes just made it feel a bit arbitrary, and in some groups it could really drag. Sold off.

Blue Moon - Has pretty much been supplanted by Summoner Wars, which my wife likes a lot better. Wouldn't mind playing it again and trying out all the expansion decks I bought and never played with.

Fresco - Haven't played since. At the time I said I needed to play it more to decide if I really liked it, but I never got a around to it. I'd play it given the opportunity, but not going to seek it out.

Shogi - Have not played since. There's some cute game with animals that is basically a simplified Shogi that I'd like to pick up and try with my wife and maybe my friend I always play chess with at work.

Colossal Arena - Have not played since. Now that I have Longshot, suspect I probably won't.

Slide 5 - I break this out as a filler from time to time when we have too many for Coloretto/No Thanks. "Is there any actual skill" is always a popular topic of debate. I should remember to deal out a "dummy" hand that plays randomly to see if they do significantly worse than players who are allegedly trying.

Kingsburg - Haven't played since. Haven't really wanted to. Have the new printing of Alien Frontiers on its way, so probably never will.

Thalatha - May have played it with my wife. I may try it with my 5-year-old niece at some point. Sadly, Just Awesome (the SF board game store that the designer owned) has just closed...for now.

The Isle of Doctor Necreaux - Haven't played it since. Would if asked.

Stix & Stones - Wow. Forgot this one existed. With Telestrations and Identik on my shelf, can't imagine I'd be too interested in this one. It did have great bits though.

Callisto: The Game - Haven't played it since. Probably would if asked.

Yamslam - I think I played a random game of this on a whim as a filler. It's fine for that, but I'm not running out to buy it, except maybe as a gift for kids.











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10. Board Game: Key Harvest [Average Rating:6.82 Overall Rank:896]
Eddy Richards
Scotland
Allanton
Duns
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Last year my favourite new game for April was Key Harvest, which I rated quite highly. It has come out a number of times since on a fairly regular basis, so has certainly stood the test of time well.

The other was De Beer ist los!, one of the Kosmos 2 player series, which we also enjoyed, though found it slightly random. This has also been played a few more times by me and my wife, but has been selected very frequently by son no 2 to play with one of us. He really enjoys the game and is pretty good at it too. Definitely a keeper, there would be large amounts of filial discontent if I got rid of it!
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11. Board Game: Arkham Horror [Average Rating:7.42 Overall Rank:141] [Average Rating:7.42 Unranked]
Albatros
Canada
Victoria
British Columbia
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Arkham Horror very nearly didn't survive that first month nevermind a whole year. I found the first games we played overly long, terribly chaotic, and very nearly pointless. Nevertheless, it kept whispering for another chance and another chance after that.

After a half dozen or so games, I started to appreciate that Arkham Horror is about playing the probabilities; which locations are more likely to have gates open than others (so close them first to stop monster swarms). Which gates being closed will result in which monsters being banished back to the monster bag. Which locations are more likely to have events that result in money or clues or items.

For awhile, I played it at least once a week if not more and always with a CD of Dead Can Dance in the background. I also felt the need to write a review of the game and how my feelings were mixed about it called Lovecraft Ameritrashed. And I've since got two expansions for it: the King in Yellow and the Dunwich Horror.

Although it's played much more infrequently now, it's still the most frequently played game in my collection. So, yes, it's stood the test of time.
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12. Board Game: Maharaja: The Game of Palace Building in India [Average Rating:7.20 Overall Rank:324]
Laszlo Molnar
Hungary
Budapest
Hungary
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Item for Geeklist "New to you Apr 10 => Best new game you played this month and why"

Thurn and Taxis
I bought the game for my Ticket to Ride- and map-loving mother for Christmas 2009, and I played it last April. And I have played it some times since then, whenever I visited my mother. Also played it at yucata.de. It's a fine game, even though probably i rate China above it now.
China
A very tricky game, a game with very simple but very tricky rules that provide a really interesting (may I say Knizian?) game. Probably my favorite Schacht.
Jäger und Sammler
Knizia’s big box game is one of the really good Knizia games of 2010 as I wrote in this review. As it's also a family game it got some more plays in 2010; my wife enjoys this one as well.
Balloon Cup
It's still okay with the rule changes (the "only less cubes of the same color than seen on the trophy cards" extra rule and the original "only play cards to your opponent's side when your side is full there" rule which makes a lot more sense than the published rules).
Dixit 2
Part of my Dixit set ever since. It's still great.

No plays since last April:
Raja
I feel bad I still haven't played with my own copy of Raja that I had bought two years ago before I played the game a year ago in the gaming club. Right now my 2-and-a-half-year-old son likes to play with the colorful game pieces (placing them on the board and taking them off) but it still hasn't hit our table.
Tales of the Arabian Nights
I enjoyed this "Fighting Fantasy with a board" game but one play was enough.
Arkadia
I hoped I'm going to play this game more as it really feels like a game that gets better with more plays but no plays since.
Catan Dice Game
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13. Board Game: The World Cup Card Game 2010 [Average Rating:6.34 Overall Rank:3375]
David
United States
DURHAM
North Carolina
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The only new-to-me game from last April was the World Cup Card Game, bought with great anticipation before the feast of kicking-a-ball-about in South Africa last summer.

Sadly, that one play last April remains our only play.

I'm still interested in playing it again, but I'd say my principal opponent is less enamored and the passing by of the actual event means there is less enthusiasm than might otherwise be. A shame, as we had worked out the kinks on that first play (mostly: print out a sheet to record scores and make the game flow better, though there were some rules questions too). I'll keep it around.
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14. Board Game: Telestrations [Average Rating:7.49 Overall Rank:186]
Randy Cox
United States
Clemson
South Carolina
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A year ago, I was at the Gathering (not there this year) and played a lot. Now, before getting to the list, I always say that a year is a very, very short span for playing even a great game again. So, a lot of these games which I haven't played in a year are still super games worthy of anyone's time.

Telestrations x4 - I've played this three times since and it's still great. Get it.

Literati Challenge x2 - Has not hit the table again. Takes a very nichy group to want to play this one, plus it has some scoring issues.

Pressure Point x2 - No.

Backpacks and Blisters x1 - I do wish. This is a perfect example of a great game which still probably won't hit the table but about once a decade.

Creationary x1 - No, and I really don't care for it much.

Dixit 2 x1 - I don't log plays of expansions, which is how I played this game, but I haven't played this or Dixit since. Just not that great of a game.

Get Bit! x1 - No. Not so good.

Imposter! x1 - No. Not so good.

JabberJot x1 - I would like to play again, but it wasn't well received.

Macao x1 - No. Haven't even seen a copy since. Not something I'd seek out.

Mosaix x1 - Great game, but haven't played since.

Mysteries by Vincent: Boogie Woogie Bungle Up x1 - You don't repeat these games, but I haven't played any other murder/mystery party games since, either. Another of the once or twice per decade group of games. Great games, can't play them often.

Pants on Fire x1

It sat on the shelf by my bed for four months after the Gathering when my daughter saw it and wanted to play. We did so in August and it was better than I would have thought.

Powerboats x1 - No. And no desire.

Samarkand: Routes to Riches x1 - See Powerboats.

The Speicherstadt x1 - See Samarkand 2010

StreetSoccer x1 - Apparently not. I should play with the kids, who enjoy real soccer (go figure).

Survive! x1 - No, but I should bring it out in the next couple of years or so.

Ubongo Extreme x1 - I don't own it, but if I did, I would be recommending it so that I'd get another play in.

Vasco da Gama x1 - I forgot I played this. No need to again.

Word Thief x1 - Doubt it'll ever see the light of day again. Scrabble Scoring Anagrams is so much better.
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15. Board Game: Claustrophobia [Average Rating:7.68 Overall Rank:99]
Bryan Maxwell
United States
Burtchville
Michigan
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My New-to-you April 2010 entry.

My order of preference last April was as follows:

Claustrophobia
Through the Desert
Roads & Boats
Carcassonne: Abbey & Mayor
Carson City
Day & Night
Tobago
Bucket King
Tom Clancy's Politika
Trivial Pursuit DVD: LotR edition

This was a somewhat mediocre month in retrospect. Claustrophobia is pretty fun, but it hasn't seen play in over 6 months; Through the Desert is likewise fun, but rarely sees play. I've sold Roads & Boats, Tobago and Day & Night (none were bad, but I found all to be good - not great). I need to explore Carson City further (I only played it 2 player that month and haven;t played it since). I'm not planning on it, but I could probably get rid of Claustrophobia, Carson City and Through the Desert without missing them.
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16. Board Game: Tichu [Average Rating:7.65 Overall Rank:65]
Andrew
United States
San Francisco
California
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Not many repeats this month.

Decent Now
I first played Tichu a year ago, after being curious enough to ask friends to teach me. Despite the time that's elapsed, I've only just made it to a fourth (stretching it a bit) play, but I can see myself playing it into the future. Like many traditional or abstract card games, the nuances don't hit you immediately but there's a slight addictive element. I love strategising how to shed my hand of cards; Tichu is considered fairly deep so there's more to learn, especially the partnership aspect (another element I enjoy).

I've been up and down with Innovation: I preordered the game but sold it off in the end. My initial plays were a bit underwhelming; after experiencing the crazy combos of Glory to Rome, Innovation's special powers were simple and non-synergistic by comparison (though I liked the puzzle feeling of thinking through your many options each turn). The scalability was also inferior, with 4p not working very well. It didn't help that I was poor at the game, frequently teaching someone only to get smacked down by them in their first play.

Others felt the game was random, swingy, and somewhat silly (one friend won or almost won every single game he played using the Era 1 card Agriculture throughout the game). I didn't agree but when a friend argued that we needed to play the game regularly to get over these issues, it made me consider whether that would actually happen. In the end I decided that while Innovation is a decent game, I'd rather play the more polished Race for the Galaxy (in art, gameplay and scalability) and Dominion in this niche.

Indifferent Now

Wars of the Roses: Lancaster vs. York is amazingly, beautifully produced (publisher of Homesteaders please take note of the player screens!) but the game wasn't my style originally, and not much has changed. I'm not into the period, and the blind bidding, area majority, slow accumulation of points, and game length aren't for me.

Blue Moon City is an unremarkable Knizia Euro that didn't move much in my esteem; an AT-loving member of a game group repeatedly suggests it because of the fantasy setting.

Unplayed Positive
* I'm the Boss! - I consider this a distillation of nasty negotiation superior to most other offerings with this mechanic.
* Greed Incorporated - The design is brilliant in the way it integrates satire into the game mechanics. I prefer it to Wealth of Nations (which I recently played) but it's still a bit long for me.

Unplayed Indifferent
* Blokus Trigon - I didn't think much of it at the time, but I'm more open to abstracts nowadays.
* Indonesia - I had a miserable first experience with complaining AP-prone players that put me off this game. The merger mechanic was interesting, but not enough to make me want to try it again.
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17. Board Game: Claustrophobia [Average Rating:7.68 Overall Rank:99]
Steve Bauer
United States
Gilbert
Arizona
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Claustrophobia Rating then 7, rating now 8
2 plays that month, 3 more since.
Enjoyed it very much but have not played it since May, just don't get in very many 2 player games.

Magic Realm Rating then 6.5, rating now 6.
6 plays that month, none since. Played it once with a group and 5 times solo on realmspeak. It is an interesting monster of the game but to long and complex for a type of game that is not my favorite.

Mü & Lots More Rating then and now 4.
Plays 1 then, none since.
Did not go over well.

Mystery of the Abbey Rating then and now 5.5.
Plays 1 then, none since.
It is an interesting game but I would rather play Mystery Express.

Railways of the World Rating then and now 7.5.
Plays 1 then, none since.
Very good game but have not gotten a chance to play it again.

Wizard Rating then and now 6.
Plays 1 then, 1 since.
A fine trick taking game.

Smarty Party! Expansion Set Rathing then and now 6.5.
Plays 1 then, none since.
Does not change the base game at all just new questions, still one of my favorite trivia games.

Lots of games I never played again.
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18. Board Game: Outside the Scope of BGG [Average Rating:6.78 Overall Rank:1723]
I am on a Journey...
Australia
Lavington
New South Wales
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...to explore and discover games of all shapes and sizes regardless of colour, condition or creed
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New to Me April '10

April 2010 was a bit of a dog month in terms of new titles. We had a beach holiday so we were only taking light filler type stuff to play between the fun in the waves and fishing.

The contenders were -

Bocce
Turbo Taxi
Oregon
Snail Race
Control Nut
Hands Up

3 of the 6 are filler rubbish at best. Oregon is probably ok but it didn't grab me or my wife/friends.

Control Nut is actually a pretty decent team trick taking game but it doesn't outdo Tichu.

That leaves Bocce, which isn't the best outdoor dexterity game of all time but it is fun with the right people.

I have not touched any of these games since last April. Bocce is good enough but it is a situational experience and I now have KLOPP, which is a more engaging outdoor dexterity game experience.
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19. Board Game: German Railways [Average Rating:6.97 Overall Rank:1313]
Tom O'Keefe
United States
Richmond
Virginia
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I played Preußische Ostbahn for the first time last April, and have since played it 5 more times. It has only got better and better for me in that time, and I consider it a top 10 game. Hopefully the new German Railways release will introduce this to a wider audience.

My honorable mention last April was Blokus Duo, which I have played something like 40 or 50 times since, so I think I can safely say that it was also a hit. My wife loved it. Super short game, though, so those numbers are deceiving.
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20. Board Game: Carcassonne [Average Rating:7.44 Overall Rank:107] [Average Rating:7.44 Unranked]
Alex V
Australia
Yokine
Western Australia
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April 2010 was really my first month in the hobby. I managed to play quite a few different, popular games.

Carcassonne
Plays in April 2010: 28
Plays since: 77
Rating in April 2010:
Rating now:
I have played this over 100 times. I LOVE it two player. My 100th game was played in Carcassonne, France. I had only heard of the city because of the game. A truly remarkable journey from first playing the game in April 2010 to a weekend of January 2011 spent in Carcassonne.

1960: The Making of the President
Plays in April 2010: 1
Plays since: 10
Rating in April 2010:
Rating now:
My favourite longer two player game. The theme integration is wonderful, the history is well implemented in the cards, and it's just a lot of fun.

Pandemic
Plays in April 2010: 3
Plays since: 15
Rating in April 2010:
Rating now:
Pandemic I'm not sure about. I think it may be the best way to get my family into some level of gaming, but I don't particularly enjoy it myself anymore. So in my collection it stays.

Alhambra
Plays in April 2010: 1
Plays since: 6
Rating in April 2010:
Rating now:
I don't love Alhambra, but am happy to play it.

Power Grid
Plays in April 2010: 1
Plays since: 1
Rating in April 2010:
Rating now:
Only two plays still, but I do enjoy it. I don't think I'll ever be able to get it out very often, but probably holds a spot in my collection for the once every six months I can play it.
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21. Board Game: Jaipur [Average Rating:7.54 Overall Rank:90]
Chris
Netherlands
's-Hertogenbosch
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Rating: 7
Plays in its first month: 8
Plays since: 8

Competition: A Game of Thrones: A Storm of Swords Expansion, Saboteur, Ziegen Kriegen

My initial impression:
Jaipur is a quick 2-player card game, with some similarities to Lost Cities. This game is not about expeditions but trading six types of goods. Like Lost Cities there is a card pool in the middle of the table to take cards from and to trade cards with. Also, in both games timing is of the essence; whereas in Lost Cities it's best not to start your expeditions too soon, in Jaipur it's best to trade as soon as possible when the prices are highest. So you want to be the first to trade in a type of goods to get the higher prices, but you'll also want to trade a lot of goods at the same time, to get some extra cash. This creates a really nice push-your-luck tension. There are also camel cards; these are great since they don't count towards your hand limit and can come in handy to make large trades with the card pool. Timing the use of the camels is another great mechanic in this game. Turns are really quick but there are still a lot of tough decisions. It's plays fast and it's a lot of fun. The rules are the best I've ever seen! They're really clear to begin with, but on top of that it's colour coded as well and it even ends with a short summary and some things to think about when playing the game for the first time. The artwork is great, the game is really colourful. The production is of top quality. All in all a great 2-player card game well worth it's price and I can highly recommend it!

What I think of it now:
My initial impression hasn't changed much. Then again, it's already based on 8 plays. I didn't discover a lot of new things after these 8 plays, it is a light card game after all. But, it's a very good light card game and one I like to play.

Was it the right decision of New to me Game of the Month?
I'm not sure, A Game of Thrones, with the A Storm of Swords expansion for 4 players is another very good game, but this one is really hard to get to the table. I've rated it higher, but really, how do you compare a easy-going quick-playing accessible card game with a rules heavy, enormous eurogame/wargame hybrid? I'm going on my instinct and stand by my decision that Jaipur is my favorite game of this month.

Prediction for the future:
It's too bad my girlfriend burned out on this game pretty quickly and dismissed it like another version of Lost Cities. It's a different game and I like it. Gaming with my friends has been focussing more and more on multiplayer games, lately. I don't get the chance to play it much anymore, but I don't think I'd easily turn down a game of Jaipur.
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22. Board Game: Sherwood [Average Rating:6.42 Overall Rank:4185]
Mike B
Netherlands
Utrecht
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In april 2010 Vlaada Chvail's Robin de Bois (the French edition of Merry Men of Sherwoord) was my new-to-me game of the month. Nice game, but no top 10 material for me. There wasn't that much competition that month.

I've only played it once more since then, but I think my opinion is still the same: it's a nice 'family style' game with a big amount of bluffing.
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23. Board Game: Vasco da Gama [Average Rating:7.35 Overall Rank:277]
Richard Rutten
Netherlands
Nijmegen
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You can find my original entry over here.

My original thoughts on Vasco were:
Quote:
Vasco da Gama thumbsupthumbsup
Thinky (might be too thinky for casual gamers) worker placement game with a twist. Not only do you have to choose the right actions, you also have to make sure you plan them in the right order and are able to pay for them. The action selection mechanics and the navigation rules make this a very original game. Good planning and some risk management are the prerequisites to do wel at this game. Only bad thing that sticks out is that it seems there are very few strategies leading to victory. This might result in less replayability. For now I'm giving it the benefit of the doubt with regard to replay value. Theme is pretty pasted on, allthough it did not annoy me as much as it does with other themeless Euros. Solid Euro with some very nice new ideas. Highly recommended.

Since then I've only played it once more. Not because I didn't want to play it more, but mostly because all my efforts to get it to the table weren't met with great enthousiasm. I'm not sure why this game is not very popular in my gaming circles. For me it still is a solid game of which I enjoyed both plays very much.

My original thought on Finca were:
Quote:
Finca thumbsup
Fairly light tactical set collection game. A real abstract at it's heart but fun nonetheless. The token collection mechanic with the weel is original and works really wel. The variable setup ensures enough replayability for a lot of fun plays. Good family game.

After repeated plays (12 in total) it has lost a lot of its appeal for me. Not really sure where the problem lies but most games seem a bit samey. That and the fact that luck plays a larger role than I would like have lowered my enjoyement of the game.
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24. Board Game: Hansa Teutonica [Average Rating:7.64 Overall Rank:76]
Zack Stackurski
United States
Mankato
Minnesota
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I love almost all games, play Boardgames with my wife, have three kids, generally enjoy cats and understand and like those bumper stickers with the little fishies sprouting legs.
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This was number one on my list last year "This jumped to a must have on my wishlist around turn 4" and has since become one of the few games I rate a 10 and is the #1 game on my top ten. For most of the intervening year I didn't have a copy to play on... but have 10 plays since October when my Z-Man version made its way to my FLGS. It finally jumped to my #1 game in February when I had a chance to play 3 times in three days at a local con and came home just wanting to play more...

What is it about HT that I love? Its hard to put my finger on any one thing... perhaps that's why. Too much good stuff. A pleasingly abstract/confrontational feel, progressing your abilities, rewards for long term planning combined with many tactical decisions along the way. Mostly people I have found that don't like the game get hung up on the abstract/confrontational bit... but if that sounds like something you might enjoy when tied to a Euro scoring system you should really check this out.

Unfortunately I haven't had a chance to play any of the other games I tried last year (Brass... Endeavor... Tribune...) I've been to busy playing Hansa Teutonica laugh
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25. Board Game: StarCraft: The Board Game [Average Rating:7.35 Overall Rank:239]
Corey Allen
United States
Humble
Texas
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For April 2010, my opinions have definitely changed based on the passage of time and the thoughts/discussions of the games since.

Starcraft: The Board Game would still be my #1 pick for April 2010, and I really want to play it again soon! I haven't thrown in the Brood War expansion yet, which I hear adds a lot to the game, so that is a must. The only thing I didn't really like about the game at first was how it could end so abruptly with a player earning his/her special objective. As an area control tech-based space combat game, it feels a little like Twlight Imperium, but the feel of Starcraft from the video game comes gushing out of the box to completely cover the comparisons to TI.

Mental Note: get my Starcraft 2 video game buds together for a SC:TBG romp!

The next 2 games on my list, Summoner Wars & Thunderstone have completely changed in my opinion. Summoner Wars appeal died out with multiple plays, as the strategies seemed over-simplistic, and few difficult decisions. My wife didn't like it from the start, so maybe her opinion is rubbing off on me, though! Thunderstone I was excited about because it was one of the first Dominion clones, and I love Dominion. With multiple plays, it become apparent that Thunderstone doesn't have near the variety of strategies as Dominion does. Also, when setting up random combinations of cards (my preferred method for all games) you can end up with some really dreadful games of Thunderstone where the town is magic light and the monsters are physically immune, or some sort. For some reason, Thunderstone just doesn't feel as strategic as Dominion, so I think I'll be sticking to that. I have already played Ascension & Puzzle Strike, and purchased (but haven't played) Resident Evil Deckbuilding & Nightfall, so I am still searching for something to top Dominion, but I haven't found it yet!


As for the games I wasn't that impressed with back in April 2010, which include: Endeavor, Red Planet & Vasco Da Gama, my opinion hasn't changed. They aren't bad games, they just aren't good ones, which means with limited gaming time and plenty of gaming choices, they will probably not be played again.
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