Games that for you MET or EXCEEDED the Hype.
Robert
Kuwait
Seattle
Washington
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I was inspired to create my first ever Geek List by the recent "Games that for you didn't live up to the Hype."

In THIS list, I'd like to ask my fellow geeks to add the games that, for them, met or exceeded all their expectations. Games that they want to show to EVERYONE! Games that they would take into the middle of times square and shout "YOU MUST PLAY THIS GAME!"

But again, it's for YOU. It may not be the greatest thing since sliced bread to anyone else... but when you heard about this game coming out, you just couldn't WAIT for it it hit the stores and then, that magical day when you finally got your copy... it wasn't just all that and a bag of chips, but a full blown foot long sandwich of goodness.

I'll start with my one, please add yours!

-Rob
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1. Board Game: Revolution! [Average Rating:6.75 Overall Rank:751]
Robert
Kuwait
Seattle
Washington
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I was excited to see this game come out since I first heard about it from an ad right here on BGG. Got to play it as a demo at Dragonflight in Seattle and almost convinced the MIB there to let me borrow it for a couple weeks till I could get my own copy. Read the reviews, picked it up this last Friday and spent this entire weekend introducing it to about a dozen people. The game store I bought it at only ordered the one copy for me, but judging from the reactions I got, they could have probably sold at least five more.

I've only just begun playing this game, but it met every expectation I had and I cannot wait to play it again.
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2. Board Game: Tales of the Arabian Nights [Average Rating:7.31 Overall Rank:228]
Bret Clifton
United States
Spokane Valley
Washington
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Top of my wishlist right now. LOVE this game. So much fun whether you're losing terribly and been turned into a snake or winning and carrying a genie in your lamp
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3. Board Game: Last Night on Earth: The Zombie Game [Average Rating:7.10 Overall Rank:351] [Average Rating:7.10 Unranked]
Bret Clifton
United States
Spokane Valley
Washington
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Though the mechanics aren't perfect, they work great and integrated with this theme is just a riot every time I play
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4. Board Game: Stone Age [Average Rating:7.65 Overall Rank:50]
Bret Clifton
United States
Spokane Valley
Washington
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Best intro to worker placement out there IMHO and yet still tons of fun for the rest of us too!
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5. Board Game: Perikles [Average Rating:6.97 Overall Rank:672]
Bret Clifton
United States
Spokane Valley
Washington
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Martin Wallace forgot how to write a rules book for this one but he made one fantastic game. I love the integration of a euro feel for the first two phases and then you dump that and totally go wargame for the 3rd. Probably not too many who like both in one game but I love it
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6. Board Game: Small World [Average Rating:7.42 Overall Rank:110] [Average Rating:7.42 Unranked]
Bret Clifton
United States
Spokane Valley
Washington
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There's a lot of people on both sides of the fence on this one but I thoroughly enjoy it. Love the many possibilities with mixing of races and abilities
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7. Board Game: Hammer of the Scots [Average Rating:7.59 Overall Rank:177]
Bret Clifton
United States
Spokane Valley
Washington
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My first block wargame experience and am a big fan. Had a really exciting first game as the Scots where I fell back to only 3 areas in the far north Highlands and barely got William Wallace away and kept him alive before coming back to take the game in the end. Great mechanics, great board, great bits, great game.
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8. Board Game: Android [Average Rating:6.78 Overall Rank:710]
Gunther Schmidl
Austria
Linz
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It does a lot, and does it all well. I love this game.
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9. Board Game: Star Wars: The Queen's Gambit [Average Rating:7.53 Overall Rank:348]
Jonny Lawless
United States
Bountiful
Utah
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I was really scared after all the time I'd taken to track down a reasonably priced copy of this game that it wouldn't live up to the hype. My fears were in vain. This is an amazingly fun and thematic experience that shouldn't be missed by anyone that can get their hands on a copy.

Really though, don't bump that tower.
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10. Board Game: Agricola [Average Rating:8.12 Overall Rank:6]
Jonny Lawless
United States
Bountiful
Utah
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The number one game! Part of the reason I think this game impressed me was that I was really expecting NOT to like it. A solo play thru to learn it left me pretty cold, but then my first game with others was a hit.

The wife loves it which is a major, major plus. The two-player game can be cranked out in under an hour.

I really like this game.
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11. Board Game: Twilight Struggle [Average Rating:8.34 Overall Rank:1]
Jonny Lawless
United States
Bountiful
Utah
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You have to play this one to believe it. The tension is amazing in this game and the decisions are tough, fun and meaningful. Possibly the best experience to be had with two players. A modern classic that I can't say enough good things about.

This should gain even more of a following once the deluxe version with a mounted board comes out, but I'll keep my cardboard+plexi combo thank-you-very-much.
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12. Board Game: Ra [Average Rating:7.48 Overall Rank:95]
Jonny Lawless
United States
Bountiful
Utah
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Possibly my favorite euro, and once again something that I didn't have a lot of expectations about, but ended up being more than pleased on this one.

This game achieves something truly great in that it can create an interesting experience for a long-time veteran and a first-time player in the very same session. There is enough randomness to keep things tactical, interesting and wholly unscripted, yet it manages to retain a very meaningful and important feeling to your decisions.

A true masterpiece.

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13. Board Game: Prince of Chaos: Battle for Tae Orn [Average Rating:6.57 Overall Rank:6372]
Gunther Schmidl
Austria
Linz
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When I walked into my F-not-so-LGS and saw this game on display, and asked what it was about, all the employees started gushing about its greatness. I bought a copy sight unseen after they described the game to me.

I can't praise this game highly enough. Some people complain about the book-keeping fiddliness, but this is pretty much the only wargame that has ever "done it" for me.

Normally when I start reading a wargame rulebook, even if it's something as supposedly accessible as Conflict of Heroes: Awakening the Bear! – Russia 1941-42, my eyes start glazing over sooner rather than later (not least because the topic of WW2 combat is entirely exhausted for me, and I've yet to find an interesting-looking low-complexity war game that's set in some more modern, or otherwise underrepresented, theater of operations).

So, yeah, this may have somewhat fiddly book-keeping initially, but the units and maneuvers are interesting, as are several decisions about how things happen (activation in order of most movement, firing phase timing, etc.) Then there's the magic system, which requires some VERY good strategizing, the traps, the exploration and building, the "epic" weapons... it's new and fresh and full of loving detail and I hate that it doesn't get the attention it deserves. Clearly deserving of a top ten spot for me.
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14. Board Game: Tigris & Euphrates [Average Rating:7.76 Overall Rank:33]
Jonny Lawless
United States
Bountiful
Utah
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Takes a while to get used to for sure, but once you have a clearer understanding of all that's going on here this game is terribly rewarding.

It's a mean game with loads of tension, depth and interactivity. Truly satisfying no matter the outcome.

The BGG interface is a great way to get games going.
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15. Board Game: Samurai [Average Rating:7.44 Overall Rank:129]
Laszlo Molnar
Hungary
Budapest
Hungary
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Well as it's an 1998 game I can't say it was very much hyped in 2008 when I tried it first. But it was certainly well-received and even loved by many. Also many stated it's the greatest design they have ever met.
And I have to agree; I haven't ever played any designers' game better than this one.
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16. Board Game: Puerto Rico [Average Rating:8.14 Overall Rank:5]
marc lecours
Canada
ottawa
ontario
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When this came out I heard a lot of hype. Actually I found BGG trying to find out about this game. This I got it and it was even more brilliant than I had expected. What a great implementation of chaotic luck. (small changes in the order that moves are made can completely change the game.

Now I am a little tired of Puerto Rico but when I got it, it certainly exceeded my expectation.
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17. Board Game: Middle-Earth Quest [Average Rating:7.42 Overall Rank:267]
Dan Poole
United States
Goldsboro
North Carolina
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I just received this yesterday. My wife and I only had time to play half a game, but we both thoroughly enjoyed it. It is a very unique game in many aspects; one of the best adventure games I have played in a long time. sauron
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18. Board Game: Antiquity [Average Rating:7.84 Overall Rank:148]
United States
Wurtsboro
NY
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I'd had it recommended to me over and over. It would be the game that would fit our gaming style, it was the game we were looking for.. Wanted by many, almost impossible to trade for, and very few copies for sale.

It is a wonderful game for us. If you didn't do something or can't do something, it is because you planned wrong or chose wrong, not because someone else took the space you needed - you have your own buildings, and are in control. You choose where to place your first city, and you choose what to do, step by step, throughout the game, trying to succeed before the other player.

The different winning conditions and the variable game board give a new challenge every time. It's hard to imagine another game doing what this one does, better.

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19. Board Game: Dominion [Average Rating:7.77 Overall Rank:30] [Average Rating:7.77 Unranked]
Ian Klinck
Canada
Toronto
Ontario
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I heard all the hype for the game when it first came out, but I thought "can it really be that good?" A friend brought a copy out to our games night, and after we'd played it for an evening, I begged to borrow his copy for a couple weeks. My wife and I got quite a few plays in before he had to take it back, then we had to wait for it to come back in print! It's our second-most played game, but only because we've had Race for the Galaxy longer...
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20. Board Game: Chicago Express [Average Rating:7.25 Overall Rank:260]
Heath Gray
United States
Greenfield
Ohio
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My group had been looking to add a train game to our collection. We looked at Age of steam, Steam, and Railroad tycoon. Now we are still looking for a train game, because Chicago Express is not one. Chicago Express is how ever a great stock market game. This game exceeded ever expectation I had for it. It plays fast ( 6 players in about one hour), it is easy, it has lots of strategy and the theme fits pretty well.,I love playing this game.
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21. Board Game: Unpublished Prototype [Average Rating:7.02 Overall Rank:1554]
 
Chris Hansen
United States
Salt Lake City
UT
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I don't know if the hype is overwhelming for this game on BGG in general, but in certain circles, people are pretty jazzed for it (though maybe this post will add to the BGG hype a little) . It's not published yet, but I've been able to playtest it a few times and even with the "near-final" rules, I was sort of blown away by how much fun it was. The game is incredibly tense and really captures that WWII feel for me.

One of my favorite mechanics is the hidden injury. Damage chits are hidden from opponents until they are close enough to see how bad the injury is for themselves (though you still have to abide by the rules for that injury). If you get to close, you risk picking up a few more of those injury chits for yourself though...

I think when this game is released it will draw a lot of comparisons to Conflict of Heroes: Awakening the Bear! – Russia 1941-42 and Combat Commander: Europe but it is, in my mind, far superior to either.
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22. Board Game: Manoeuvre [Average Rating:7.32 Overall Rank:422]
Chris Hansen
United States
Salt Lake City
UT
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I can recall this one getting hyped to no end after its initial print run. I made the leap after hearing the review on the Point to Point podcast and was not disappointed in the least. A terrific game.
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23. Board Game: Diplomacy [Average Rating:7.09 Overall Rank:362]
Chris Hansen
United States
Salt Lake City
UT
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To say that this game exceeded the hype would be a great understatement. This game lived up to its promise and more. I've played five or six games with coworkers (one move per day) and I've seen it all. Coworkers have stopped (temporarily at least) speaking with one another over backstabs in the game and a few meetings have run long because people were negotiating after the business was taken care of (though one of those things was done with far more emotion than the other). The game can be viscous but its always fun.
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24. Board Game: Sorry! Sliders [Average Rating:6.49 Overall Rank:1067]
Chris Hansen
United States
Salt Lake City
UT
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It's rare that I go to Wal-Mart to buy a game, but I heard a lot of good things about this game and decided I wanted it for my birthday. I played a few rounds with my brother and before long I had my mom, dad, and grandpa flicking pieces around. It's incredibly simple but strangely addictive. I've never played Crokinole so I can't really compare the two, but I can say this is much cheaper and did live up to the hype behind it.
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25. Board Game: Acquire [Average Rating:7.38 Overall Rank:149]
Chris Hansen
United States
Salt Lake City
UT
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This game get praised up and down on the geek and deservedly so. This game is interesting and despite the random luck of the draw on tiles, is always full of interesting decisions.
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