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Subject: Similar to The Voyages of Marco Polo? rss

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Henry DeYoung
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One of my brother's all-time favorite games is The Voyages of Marco Polo -- he says it is because the game offers "a lot of choices without being complicated." Another all-time favorite is Istanbul, once again because there is a variety of choices despite simple, modular rules.

I'm looking to begin researching a game to give him as a Christmas gift. Can you recommend any games that are similar to these two, especially Marco Polo, keeping in mind the following?

1 He says that he likes games that offer "a lot of choices without being complicated".
2 Our highest weight games are 1960: The Making of the President, Carson City, and The Voyages of Marco Polo -- all at 3.2. My brother is not a fan of Carson City, however.
3 Other all-time favorites include 7 Wonders, Finca, Tikal, Sushi Go!, and The Little Prince: Make Me a Planet.
4 Since he is not a member of the "Cult of the New", it's okay to recommend out of print or older games.
 
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Andy Matthews
United States
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Some options:

- Isle of Skye
- Yokohama (out before Christmas)
- Yspahan (one of my all time favorites)
--- includes a dice placement aspect like Marco Polo
- Grand Austria Hotel
--- includes a dice placement aspect like Marco Polo
- Power Grid (great game. Not sure if it fits your criteria)

I have reviews for Yspahan and Isle of Skye that might help you decide:

http://www.meeplemountain.com/reviews/2016/02/yspahan-by-seb...

http://www.meeplemountain.com/reviews/isle-of-skye-from-chie...
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Greg Strobel
United States
Kentucky
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My Village
The Castles of Burgundy
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foldedcard
United States
Virginia
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What about Concordia? Lots of hoice, elegant play. Signorie is similar to Voyages of Marco Polo.
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Geoffrey Burrell
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Cedar Rapids
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Lewis & Clark
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Chris M
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Manhattan Project- lighter worker placement with good engine building

Alien Frontiers- dice place with some back stabbery

Bruges- multi use card mechanic with great choices where you want to do everything but alas you can only choose one

Yedo- heavier tha lords of water deep with better theme. This one is definitely over looked

All of these are "older" games now. By older I mean in the last four or five years.
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Jill Pearon
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Potsdam
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More votes for
Signorie
The Castles of Burgundy
Concordia
Grand Austria Hotel
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Antonia Browne
Chile
Santiago
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Grand Austria Hotel Is your game! Is even from the same designers as Marco Polo.
+ 1 The Castles of Burgundy
+ 1 Concordia because it is such a great game. And has some similarities in the colonist aspect. One of my favourites.
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Jason Brown
United States
Colorado Springs
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Mokka coffee wrote:
Grand Austria Hotel Is your game! Is even from the same designers as Marco Polo.
+ 1 The Castles of Burgundy
+ 1 Concordia because it is such a great game. And has some similarities in the colonist aspect. One of my favourites.

Castles of Burgundy and Concordia are great suggestions. Might I also add Viticulture Essential Edition to the mix? It's an outstanding game at any player count, easy to pick up and play, with tons of choices and multiple paths to victory.
 
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D Hall
United States
McDonough
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Another incredibly overlooked game is:

Walnut Grove

It combines worker placement (some say Agricola) with a tile placement (some say Carcassonne) mechanic. However I find it to be more fun and engaging than both!

It makes my brain burn and almost always ends just before I am able to pull of my coup de grâce


 
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Joe Salamone
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Billerica
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Aggravating people worldwide since 1964
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Troyes
Kingsburg
Alea Iacta Est
 
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Chris Mcpherson
Canada
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I def agree with all the votes for Concordia, grand Austria, and castles of burgundy.

Glen more might be a winner as well and offers great choices and paths to victory in the shortest time frame.
 
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Markus Pfefferle
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Maybe it's just me, but I feel that Bora Bora from Stefan Feld is the closest thing to Voyages of Marco Polo. To present my evidence:

a) It's got a very similar dice-placement mechanic
b) You get to gather villagers for actions that are "exclusive" to you
c) You have to fulfill tasks/conditions for VP.
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Drew
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Dallas
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+1 for both Concordia and Viticulture
 
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Tomáš Sládek
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I don't necessarily think picking something too close like Kingsburgor El Gaucho is a good idea. Variety is king! Though there are people who will play the same game 500x so ymmv. But Marco Polo is hard to beat in its category, the only contender come to mind is:
+1 to Castles of Burgundy for decent use of dice and many ways to victory point salad. It is helluva ugly, though. yuk

---

+1 Isle of Skye, awesome entry-level game that fires Carcassonne right out the window

+1 Viticulture, although that's kind of pricey and might be bordering on weight ( because you defo want it along with the expansion, Tuscany, which adds to complexity)

I'd recommend
Village for an interesting euro with multiple paths to take and a novel mechanism of time limited workers (+ Village Inn for even more variety)

And lastly, for a little something different that I find myself recommending in every other thread these days, because it's such a unique mix:
Scythe - also on the pricey side, but well worth it. Don't let the looks fool you, it's mostly a euro about various ways to harvest resources and optimize your actions to efficiency, with only a side of cold war and combat. BGG says it's weight is 3.3, subjectively it seems like there's more to it than in Marco Polo but once you know the rules they flow real easy (seriously, this game is very good at reminding players rules).



 
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Guillaume
Canada
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Orleans. It offers lots of choices but the game itself is not too complicated. It can feel similar to Marco Polo in that each turn you draw workers (dice in Marco Polo) at random and you have multiple options of what to do with them.
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Henry DeYoung
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Thanks to everyone for the suggestions!

I have looked at Concordia a few times before. It does look quite elegant in terms of rules complexity, but still offering lots of choices through the cards. It seems to be almost a perfect match for my criteria! However, my brother strongly disliked the only other Mac Gerdts game he's played -- Antike. Are these two different enough such that his dislike of Antike won't be an issue?

Grand Austria Hotel also looks very interesting, especially a unique theme. It looks to be more of a dice drafting mechanism than dice placement, so it's probably different enough from The Voyages of Marco Polo so as not to feel too same-y. Do you find that it plays quickly? From video reviews, I get the sense that each turn is fairly short (which is a good thing).

Several people also recommended Isle of Skye: From Chieftain to King. I like that it is not too heavy. I'll have to look into it some more!

Orléans also deserves a closer look. Would you say that it is no heavier than The Voyages of Marco Polo?

Thanks for suggesting a bunch of dice placement games: Yspahan, My Village, Signorie, The Castles of Burgundy, Alien Frontiers, Troyes, Kingsburg, Alea Iacta Est, Bora Bora, and El Gaucho! I've not heard of some of these before and I've never played any of them, so knowing that you would recommend them based on The Voyages of Marco Polo is very helpful. Would you say that any are "too heavy" if Marco Polo is the upper limit on the game weight he enjoys? I think right now I'm leaning toward something other than dice placement because, as Tomáš said, "Variety is king!"

Yokohama looks intriguing, but I think the board would make his eyes glaze over! Maybe it becomes second-nature after multiple plays, but at first glance it looks much more complex than what we are used to.

Thanks again, everyone, for the suggestions! Keep 'em coming if you have others!
 
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Andy Matthews
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Of the games I recommended Isle of Skye is probably the lightest weight and shortest length of time. A 5p game can be finished in under an hour. That's not to mean that it's a "light" game though.
 
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John Prewitt
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Granada Hills
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Nippon
 
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