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My Top 100 Games: Year Two - The Awards

Joseph Peterson
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2 Player

Gold: #5 - Patchwork
Silver: #11 - Jaipur
Bronze: #18 - Summoner Wars

Abstract

Gold: #5 - Patchwork
Silver: #48 - Tsuro of the Seas
Bronze: #66 - Qwirkle Cubes

Auction

Gold: #30 - Biblios
Silver: #79 - No Thanks!
Bronze: #92 - Dream Factory

Bluffing/Deduction

Gold: #27 - One Night Ultimate Werewolf
Silver: #55 - Coup
Bronze: #63 - Clue FX

Card Game

Gold: #10 - Machi Koro
Silver: #25 - Mystery Rummy: Escape from Alcatraz
Bronze: #50 - Where's Bob's Hat?

Cooperative

Gold: #2 - Pandemic
Silver: #21 - Ghost Fightin' Treasure Hunters
Bronze: #17 - Forbidden Island

Deck Building

Gold: #1 - Legendary: A Marvel Deck Building Game
Silver: #3 - Trains
Bronze: #67 - Flip City

Dexterity

Gold: #23 - Terror in Meeple City
Silver: #58 - Lift it!
Bronze: #68 - Coconuts

Dice Game

Gold: #7 - Escape: The Curse of the Temple
Silver: #15 - Dice Town
Bronze: #26 - King of Tokyo

Drafting

Gold: #24 - Sushi Go!
Silver: #86 - The Little Prince: Make Me a Planet
Bronze: #9 - Ticket to Ride

Economic

Gold: #37 - Speculation
Silver: #19 - Suburbia
Bronze: #76 - Byzanz

Family

Gold: #9 - Ticket to Ride
Silver: #2 - Pandemic
Bronze: #45 - Asara

Fighting

Gold: #18 - Summoner Wars
Silver: #23 - Terror in Meeple City
Bronze: #26 - King of Tokyo

Party

Gold: #44 - Word Whimsy
Silver: #56 - But Wait, There's More!
Bronze: #70 - Telestrations

Push Your Luck

Gold: #8 - Diamant
Silver: #60 - Cloud 9
Bronze: #67 - Flip City

Racing

Gold: #16 - Formula D
Silver: #61 - Camel Up
Bronze: #65 - Lemminge

Roll and Move

Gold: #38 - Rattlebones
Silver: #12 - Marrakech
Bronze: #21 - Ghost Fightin' Treasure Hunters

Route Building

Gold: #9 - Ticket to Ride
Silver: #14 - TransAmerica
Bronze: #48 - Tsuro of the Seas

Strategy

Gold: #4 - Lords of Waterdeep
Silver: #14 - TransAmerica
Bronze: #3 - Trains

Tile Placement

Gold: #6 - Lanterns: The Harvest Festival
Silver: #28 - Gardens
Bronze: #51 - Sanssouci

Trick-taking

Gold: #50 - Where's Bob's Hat?
Silver: #53 - Potato Man
Bronze: #75 - Diamonds
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Fri Dec 4, 2015 6:00 pm
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My Top 100 Games: Year Two - #1

Joseph Peterson
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Legendary: A Marvel Deck Building Game

Board Game: Legendary: A Marvel Deck Building Game
The number one game and winner of the Gold Deck Building award is Legendary: A Marvel Deck Building Game. Deck building is a favorite mechanic of mine and I feel Legendary does it best.

In Legendary, players take on the role of SHIELD agents, hiring on superheroes, trying to create some synergy between them all, and will take out villains like Dr. Doom, Magneto, Loki, etc. Throughout the game, players build up their decks and take down henchmen as well as the super villain, trying to save innocent bystanders, and all before the villains succeed at their evil plan.

My choice might seem strange, or maybe not. I'm not really sure how the community would feel about it being someone's absolute favorite game. I know this much though, I've had the best experience ever in gaming from it. Sitting around the table, my brother, his daughter and me, all taking down Red Skull...and just barely pulling out the win. It was a really amazing time and great gaming moment for me. Aside from that though, I've yet to play a game of it where I was upset or didn't enjoy myself, even when I lost.

So, at least for this year, that's the end. Thanks to everyone who took this little ride with me through my top 100 games as of 2015. For those interested, I'll put out a list of the awards and which games won Gold, Silver and Bronze.

It's been a great year and already I've played games that will make it onto next year's list. So, until then, thanks again.
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Fri Dec 4, 2015 4:00 pm
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My Top 100 Games: Year Two - #2

Joseph Peterson
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Pandemic

Board Game: Pandemic
Newcomer Pandemic comes on strong and breaks out with a debut at #2. Winner of the Gold Cooperative Game and Silver Family Game awards, Pandemic's really grown on me.

For those of you living on that rock I had been for the past couple years, Pandemic is all about working together to cure, treat and possibly eradicate diseases. Throughout the game, diseases are added to the board just a couple at a time. However, all of a sudden, players will have to deal with an epidemic. Epidemics can completely change the game, causing outbreaks to occur, which spread diseases all across the world.

It's in this "epidemic" mechanic that the game really shines for me. The idea of locations that have already had some disease activity being shuffled back into the top of a deck and having the cards come back out with the possibility of diseases spreading even further, possibly even causing outbreaks, is incredibly enjoyable and heartbreaking all in the same breath. Pandemic should be called, "Pfft, we got this! Oh God no, why?"

Pandemic Legacy: Season 1 has been our weekly treat these past couple of months since its release and may just knock "vanilla" Pandemic off the list altogether. I'm not completely sold on the Legacy format, but it is pretty neat to watch a story unfold throughout play. This all being said, Pandemic is awesome and worthy of this incredibly high spot on the list...

...but there's still one more game that beats it out. And you'll find out what that game is tomorrow! For those who can't wait, here's a little spoiler for you:

Spoiler (click to reveal)
Haha! Made you look. See ya tomorrow!
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Thu Dec 3, 2015 4:00 pm
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My Top 100 Games: Year Two - #3

Joseph Peterson
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Trains

Board Game: Trains
The other game to stay put from last year, Trains returns at the #3 position. It receives the Silver Deck Building and Bronze Strategy awards.

In Trains, players are managing private railway companies and trying to become bigger and better than the competition. Players begin with a small set of cards, building a more effective deck throughout the game, being able to place stations and lay rails over the maps of Osaka or Tokyo. For the players, the trick is to purchase the cards they want to use, then use them as effectively as possible. Many times, players will gain waste for their actions, which can really clog up their deck and make for rough turns in the future. The player who gains enough points from their railways will win and have the most powerful railroad in Japan.

Trains was the game that introduced me to deck building. I've heard it referred to as Dominion with a board, but I wouldn't know since I've never played Dominion. Oh, I know. For shame! I'll get to it. Aside from that, I haven't seen too much hate. It's all about getting an engine built up and dodging those waste cards as you build out your railroad network. Take some trains from another game to add a bit more theme than the cubes do, and you've got some solid gaming.

I still haven't gotten around to Trains: Rising Sun, but it is one I'm hoping to get around to in this next year. I imagine it should keep Trains in the upper echelon of favorite games for years to come.
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Wed Dec 2, 2015 4:00 pm
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My Top 100 Games: Year Two - #4

Joseph Peterson
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Lords of Waterdeep

Board Game: Lords of Waterdeep
Last year's number one has dropped just a couple spots and now sits at #4. It receives the Gold Strategy Game Award.

In Lords of Waterdeep, players take on the role of one of the Lords of Waterdeep, the secret rulers of the city. Through their agents, they recruit adventurers to go on quests, earning rewards and increasing their influence over the city. Players are able to expand the city by purchasing new buildings that open up new actions on the board. Players can also help or hurt the other lords by playing Intrigue cards to enact their carefully laid plans.

During the course of play, players gain points or resources through the completion of quests, constructing buildings, playing intrigue cards or having other players utilize the buildings they have constructed. At the end of 8 rounds of play, the player who has accrued the most points wins the game.

What keeps Lords of Waterdeep so high on my list is due it simply being a well produced and light medium weight game (a zone I really appreciate for games). I also really enjoy the worker placement mechanic (though I have played very few games of this type). I've yet to play with the expansion (Lords of Waterdeep: Scoundrels of Skullport). Doing so may change my views, however at this time, I'm very happy with "vanilla" Waterdeep and look forward to many more plays over the years.
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Tue Dec 1, 2015 4:00 pm
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My Top 100 Games: Year Two - #5

Joseph Peterson
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Patchwork

Board Game: Patchwork
This seems fitting. I just played a couple more games of this yesterday, and here it lies at number 5 on the top 100. It's one of my most played games and receives two Gold Awards, 2 Player Gold and Abstract Gold.

In Patchwork, players are competing in a 1v1 quilt making contest. On their turn, players are either grabbing up a patch to add to their quilt (an action which costs both time and money) or, they're moving ahead on the time track, collecting one button (money) along the way until they get just ahead of their opponent.

Throughout the game, players will be getting more and more patches, receiving income at times and picking up 1x1 patches if they're first to reach them on the time track, what I love most about the game. I guess I've got a thing for time tracks. That whole thing of possibly being able to make multiple turns, long as you don't overtake your opponent, it's so satisfying. I also like how on this track, income will come at certain intervals. Timing your purchases and trying to collect that income at the right time leads to better purchases for better patches which provide better income.

In short, Patchwork is simplistic and it flows. It's just one of those few games I can pull out, play in 20 or 30 minutes and feel absolutely fulfilled, win or lose, and want to play at least one other time before I put it away. I don't know what else to say. It's just great.
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Mon Nov 30, 2015 4:00 pm
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My Top 100 Games: Year Two - #6

Joseph Peterson
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Lanterns: The Harvest Festival

Board Game: Lanterns: The Harvest Festival
I love me some tile placement games. I now present my favorite, Gold Tile Placement award winner, Lanterns: The Harvest Festival.

In the game, players are trying to earn the most points by making dedications of lanterns during the harvest festival. Throughout the game, players will place lake tiles. This is key to the game as they earn lantern cards which can then be turned in for points at the beginning of their next turn. The neat part of this is even on opponents' turns, players will be receiving lantern cards (if they're available).

When making a dedication, players need a set, four-of-a-kind, three pairs, or all seven of the different colored lantern cards. Players want to get these dedications in as quick as possible as points for a dedication dwindle down as each one is made.

While there's nothing incredibly unique about the game, it's downright gorgeous and the game flows so incredibly well. Seriously though, go look at the game and try not to be amazed by its beauty. Yeah. Simply beautiful. Both in form and function.

That's it for today. Starting tomorrow, we crack into the top 5. No more clues. You'll just have to wait and see what comes next!
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Sun Nov 29, 2015 4:00 pm
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My Top 100 Games: Year Two - #7

Joseph Peterson
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Escape: The Curse of the Temple

Board Game: Escape: The Curse of the Temple
Given yesterday's entry, it may come of little surprise when I say I'm fond of adventure/exploration games. Escape adds to the formula with a whole lot tension, forcing players to well, escape, in a matter of minutes or forever be trapped in the cursed temple.

Escape: The Curse of the Temple receives the Gold Dice Game award. It might also win the "Oh My God! My Heart's About to Explode From This Suspense!" award. And that's really what this game is: suspense. Everybody rolling, trying to avoid black idols, trying to explore and find jewels and then trying to escape to make escape as simple as possible. And all in ten minutes. What better word than suspense? Tension maybe? I don't know, but from all that suspense (and tension) comes a ton of fun.

It really is a blast seeing your friends roll and scream and run and make mistakes and go back and fix those mistakes. I also love how when you lose all your dice, you must depend on your partners to help you out and get your dice back...or you have to burn one dice and lose it for the rest of the game. And that damn soundtrack...forever tempting you into insanity, never quite knowing if you'll make it. And luckily knowing that this torture (incredibly fun torture) will only last ten minutes, no matter what the outcome.

To sum it up, Escape is a great way of adding suspense to simple dice rolling. Putting the players in situations where they must rush through the temple, collect jewels and try to find the exit, is suspenseful, stressful, but mostly just plain fun.

That's it for today! Tomorrow, onto another great game. In the meantime, I leave you with this clue:

From gallery of joeincolorado
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Sat Nov 28, 2015 4:00 pm
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My Top 100 Games: Year Two - #8

Joseph Peterson
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Diamant

Board Game: Diamant
I hope you all had a great Thanksgiving. If you didn't celebrate it, I hope you had a good Thursday. In either case, it's time for number eight on the list, what I consider the best "push your luck" game I own (it even received the Gold Push Your Luck Award), Incan Gold.

After my first play of Incan Gold, it was a top five contender, and while it didn't hold onto a top five spot, it's settled quite nicely here. In Incan Gold, players are exploring temples, trying to get treasure and artifacts back to their tent before being taken out by the hazards that await them. Simple game. Each player has a tent and two cards. The tent keeps their jewels and the cards tell everyone whether they're going further into the temple or if they're heading out, grabbing treasure on their way to the exit.

Players have to be careful though. Hazards are possible to come up at any time. The first time a hazard shows, players are okay to continue if they wish, but if a hazard shows up twice, it's time to escape...and you're not going to get anything from your expedition.

Players also need to be aware of their opponents. Players divvy out treasure equally and any leftovers remain on the card. Should a player exit on his own, he gets to grab up all the leftover loot for himself, which can make for a big payout. However, should multiple players decide to leave at the same time, once again, players will have to divvy up the leftovers. So deciding when to leave is just as important as deciding whether to go further.

I have to admit, this is one of the few games where every time I play I get completely sucked into the theme. I'm nearly shaking with each flip of the cards when I choose to continue on after having already come across four or five. I've also had times where I've gone back to the camp since there were loads of leftover jewels, only to sit and watch my opponents collect 40 more jewels as they decided to carry on. And then I had the last laugh and cheered when they got hit by a second hazard of the same kind and lost all of those jewels. It's such an awesome game.

That's it for today! Tomorrow, we carry on with another excellent game. In the meantime, I leave you with this clue:

From gallery of joeincolorado
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Fri Nov 27, 2015 4:00 pm
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My Top 100 Games: Year Two - #9

Joseph Peterson
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Ticket to Ride

Board Game: Ticket to Ride
She's got a ticket to ride, but she don't care. Well, I do. Next up on the list is my ninth favorite game, Ticket to Ride, down 5 spots from last year. Ticket to Ride is the only game on the list this year to receive three awards: Bronze Drafting, Gold Family and Gold Route Building.

Ticket to Ride is one of the few games I played digitally before I played it in tabletop form. After playing the app, I didn't think it was anything amazing, but I enjoyed it and figured I might as well pick it up in physical form if I had the opportunity. Opportunity came, grabbed it, and it sat on my shelf for almost a year. Hehe, oops.

Anyways, once I eventually got it to the table, I fell in love with it. There's something about the digital version that doesn't bring out the heart and joy of the game, playing cards, putting trains on the board, blocking other players from getting their routes...seeing their reactions! It's just all so great in its physical form.

I think what also makes me love the game so much is that it's so simple to grasp the concept. I've introduced it to several non-gamers and they all have been able to jump right in, know what they need to do and really enjoy themselves in the process.

Now, I must admit, I've yet to play any of the big box expansions (so far only tried Ticket to Ride: Alvin & Dexter and didn't like it), though that's a goal of mine somewhere down the road. They all look fascinating to me and I can only imagine how much fun I will have with them. In the meantime, I'll be happy with my vanilla Ticket to Ride until perhaps another opportunity comes and I can grab some. Though I doubt the expansions will sit on the shelf as long as the base game did.

That's it for today! Tomorrow, more gaming goodness. And in the meantime, I leave you with this:

From gallery of joeincolorado





My baby don't care.
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Thu Nov 26, 2015 4:00 pm
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