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The battle of mechanisms

Igor Larchenko
Moscow region
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It's interesting to look at changing of game mechanisms popularity over years. I used not subjective opinions (games rankings or ratings), but real plays statistics. I added annual numbers of unique players for all games with every mechanisms, using these data. There are winners and losers: I mean mechanisms which gained greatest/fewest number of players during these 13 years. I used 2016/2004 players ratio as measure of mechanisms success:

The next games have made the greatest contribution to the success of their mechanisms in various years. You also can look at detailed data in this GeekList.

Acting: Spyfall, Mysterium, Tajemnicze Domostwo, Time's Up!, Time's Up! Title Recall!
Action / Movement Programming: RoboRally, Star Wars: X-Wing Miniatures Game, Colt Express, Space Alert, Dungeon Lords
Action Point Allowance System: Pandemic, Twilight Struggle, Forbidden Island, Dead of Winter: A Crossroads Game, Through the Ages: A Story of Civilization, Survive: Escape from Atlantis!
Area Control / Area Influence: Carcassonne, Small World, Twilight Struggle, Memoir '44, El Grande
Area Enclosure: Agricola, Terra Mystica, Hey! That's My Fish!, Kingdom Builder, Blokus
Area Movement: Battlestar Galactica, Dead of Winter: A Crossroads Game, Ghost Stories, Dominant Species, Cyclades, Scotland Yard
Area-Impulse: Twilight Imperium (third edition), Hammer of the Scots, Fire in the Lake, After the Flood, Liberty or Death: The American Insurrection
Auction/Bidding: Power Grid, For Sale, No Thanks!, Ra, El Grande
Betting/Wagering: Liar's Dice, Tichu, Camel Up, Wits & Wagers, Colossal Arena
Campaign / Battle Card Driven: Twilight Struggle, Memoir '44, Castle Panic, Kemet, Commands & Colors: Ancients
Card Drafting: 7 Wonders, Dominion, Agricola, Ticket to Ride, King of Tokyo
Commodity Speculation: Modern Art, Glen More, Finca, Navegador, Manila
Co-operative Play: Pandemic, Hanabi, Arkham Horror, Forbidden Island, Betrayal at House on the Hill
Crayon Rail System: Empire Builder, Eurorails, Iron Dragon, Martian Rails, British Rails
Deck / Pool Building: Dominion, Star Realms, Dominion: Intrigue, Roll for the Galaxy, Mage Knight Board Game
Dice Rolling: Catan, King of Tokyo, Small World, Stone Age, The Castles of Burgundy
Grid Movement: Forbidden Island, Hey! That's My Fish!, Takenoko, Hive, Memoir '44
Hand Management: Dominion, Pandemic, Agricola, Catan, Ticket to Ride
Hex-and-Counter: Twilight Imperium (third edition), Neuroshima Hex!, Commands & Colors: Ancients, Combat Commander: Europe, Conflict of Heroes: Awakening the Bear! - Russia 1941-1942
Line Drawing: Telestrations, Loony Quest, Roads & Boats, Pictomania, Saint Malo
Memory: Codenames, Hanabi, Coup, Coloretto, Colt Express
Modular Board: Catan, Forbidden Island, Betrayal at House on the Hill, Hey! That's My Fish!, Takenoko
Paper-and-Pencil: Wits & Wagers, Telestrations, Mystery of the Abbey, Say Anything, Yahtzee
Partnerships: Codenames, Battlestar Galactica, The Resistance, Betrayal at House on the Hill, RoboRally
Pattern Building: Takenoko, Ingenious, Qwirkle, Ora et Labora, Ubongo
Pattern Recognition: Codenames, Mysterium, Spot It!, Jungle Speed, Set
Pick-up and Deliver: Flash Point: Fire Rescue, Istanbul, Keyflower, Railways of the World, Steam
Player Elimination: King of Tokyo, Love Letter, Coup, Betrayal at House on the Hill, Tsuro
Point to Point Movement: Pandemic, Arkham Horror, Notre Dame, Eldritch Horror, Pandemic Legacy: Season 1
Press Your Luck: Codenames, Ra, Can't Stop, Roll Through the Ages: The Bronze Age, Zombie Dice
Role Playing: Battlestar Galactica, Arkham Horror, Betrayal at House on the Hill, Elder Sign, Mage Knight Board Game
Roll / Spin and Move: Camel Up, Formula D, Last Night on Earth: The Zombie Game, Colosseum, Talisman (revised 4th edition), Winner's Circle
Route/Network Building: Catan, Ticket to Ride, Power Grid, Ticket to Ride: Europe, Tsuro
Secret Unit Deployment: El Grande, Survive: Escape from Atlantis!, Android: Netrunner, Evolution, Letters from Whitechapel
Set Collection: 7 Wonders, Pandemic, Ticket to Ride, Stone Age, Citadels
Simulation: Memoir '44, Flash Point: Fire Rescue, Formula D, Formula Dé, Combat Commander: Europe
Simultaneous Action Selection: 7 Wonders, Race for the Galaxy, Dixit, The Resistance, Twilight Struggle
Stock Holding: Acquire, Chicago Express, Imperial, Airlines Europe, Arkadia
Storytelling: Dixit, Mice and Mystics, Tales of the Arabian Nights, Telestrations, Dixit Odyssey
Take That: Coup, Star Realms, Colt Express, Ca$h 'n Guns (second edition), Kahuna
Tile Placement: Carcassonne, The Castles of Burgundy, Alhambra, Galaxy Trucker, Takenoko
Time Track: Patchwork, Tokaido, Thebes, Glen More, Around the World in 80 Days
Trading: Catan, Bohnanza, Pandemic Legacy: Season 1, Tikal, Castle Panic
Trick-taking: Tichu, Wizard, Diamonds, Haggis, Frank's Zoo
Variable Phase Order: Puerto Rico, Race for the Galaxy, San Juan, El Grande, Glory to Rome
Variable Player Powers: 7 Wonders, Pandemic, Race for the Galaxy, Small World, Citadels
Voting: Dixit, The Resistance, Dead of Winter: A Crossroads Game, The Resistance: Avalon, Werewolf
Worker Placement: Agricola, Stone Age, Lords of Waterdeep, Caylus, Kingsburg

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