Thursday, December 28, 2017

Obligatory Favorite Games 2017 Edition Post Part V: Em’s Top 15 Favorite Game List (Guest Blogger)

***Hey all, this is Aaron.  Taking over the blog for this post is my wife, Em.  Enjoy her top 15 games and her writing as it is 100% better than mine!***

So this year I decided to write a Top 15 list instead of a Top 10 partly because I played a lot more games this year and partly because I didn’t feel like whittling down my list to 10 games. It was stressing me out, so tah dah - my top 15!

#15 - Bohnanza

This little game is one of my favorite go-to small games. The only reason it’s ranked this low on my list is because we can’t play it well with 2 players. I love the trading aspects, the social tension and the weird competitive streak it cultivates while you’re growing beans of all things…”to bean or not to bean”!

#14 - Dice Forge

This might be the only game on my list that Aaron and I don’t actually own (yet). Our friend Josh picked it up and I was immediately hooked. I’m a dice junkie so it really appealed to me from the get-go, not to mention I hadn’t played any game that allowed you to customize your dice before. Lots of fun, and I look forward to many more plays of this dice crafting game in 2018.

#13 - Kanagawa

I win this game a lot. But I swear I’m not including it on the list solely based on my love of winning. It’s a beautiful game, I love the artwork and the mechanics of building a painting. The multiple ways to build your pallet and create your own work of art make it fun to replay regularly.

#12 - Unfair

This might be my brother-in-law’s new favorite game, but aside from that, a card-based game where you build your own amusement park? Sweet. On top of that, the themes are ridiculous in a good way - you could end up with a Robot Ninja Gangster themed park or maybe a Vampire Jungle Pirate theme is what you’re going for. You can play it super mean and sabotage the crap out of each other’s parks or take the mellow route and just enjoy a good build.

This is a game I wish we had gotten to the table more this year and it’s definitely on deck for more plays in 2018. The artwork alone sells it for me, but I love the worker placement mechanic in this context. It’s fun to try to build up an engine to get the most lucrative deal for your mutant weirdo of a pet while trying to keep your goblin workers alive, what more do you need?

Love love LOVE this game. Dice rolling, battling, magic, all the good stuff is there. Plus new decks and expansions are rolling out more regularly now so I plan on playing it even more in 2018. Personally, Rin Northfell might be my favorite deck with Victoria Glassfire as a close second. We’ll see how the new decks stack up!

This might be my favorite dice-based game. I love that there’s literally no downtime while players make their decisions, the tableau building is a lot of fun and you get to roll a freaking TON of dice in your own little cup. #win

This might be the mellowest game on my list, even more mellow than Tokaido where you’re just competing to have the best vacation... it has Patchwork-esque qualities (of course) but I like the point system and the freedom of this tile laying game a little better. Plus it’s pretty and makes me want to just have tea in a garden somewhere.

Kiki’s Delivery Service in board game form anyone? Witches delivering potions all over the map, trying to beat out your competitors and guess which witches and druids they’re using so you don’t end up with a dud of a turn...all good time to me. Plus this pickup and deliver-style game has really fun artwork!

Storytelling games are one of my favorites and this one only seems to improve upon the concept of Above & Below, which I also enjoy. I like the choose your own adventure feel to the game, the way you can customize a character depending on your choices and meet your own goals throughout the game.

#5 - Tokaido

Will I ever not love Tokaido? Unlikely. We have the deluxe edition and can enjoy the mellow tinkling spa-sounding music while we play and compete to have the best vacation. I love the replayability of this game and that it’s fun with 2 or more players. There are so many variables and ways to win, I don’t anticipate it dropping off my list anytime soon.

My favorite 2-player card game by a HUGE margin. I love 7 Wonders, the original, and the adaptation to a 2-player version is fantastic. We added the Pantheon expansion this year and it almost makes it seem like a new game each time we play.

#3 - Seasons

This was one of the first modern board games Aaron introduced me to several years ago and I still love it, if for nothing more than the awesomely chunky dice! Seriously though, the game is excellent, the card-drafting + dice-rolling is a winning combo for me about 99% of the time with board games and with the expansions, Seasons is a game we play over and over.

Don’t even care that it’s a “gateway”’s awesome. I love all the maps (except India which is one I’VE NEVER WON...damn mandalas…) and can’t wait to get my hands on Rails & Sails and France/Old West to round out our options when we bring this game to the table.

Pandemic Legacy Season 1 was high on my list last year and we just started playing Season 2...there really isn’t anything about this game I don’t like. I love the whole legacy concept and the Pandemic Legacy series is so much fun to play. It’s tense, ridiculous, full of strategic options, and again, that fantastic “choose your own adventure” mechanic I love in a storytelling game. Looking forward to many MANY more plays of this game and already anticipating Season 3!

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