Garrett: Games Addict

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Top 10 "evergreen" Games of 2017

Garrett
United Kingdom
London
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[ev-er-green]
adjective
enduring; retaining its relevance, popularity, usefulness, etc.


This is a sister list to my last blogged list which highlighted my Top 10 "new to me" Games of 2017. In that context, my 'evergreen' games are the ones that were not new to me in 2017 but still managed to find a goodly number of plays despite a large influx of new games. These are actually all members of my permanent collection so I was even more pleased about getting lots of plays of these great titles. Heavily weighted towards tile placement because it's my favourite mechanism!

#10 - Kapitän Wackelpudding [4 plays]

Fun dexterity game where you stack a small wooden ship with various shapes of wooden cargo and then sail around to various ports to load more cargo. If anything falls off the ship on your turn, then you keep it in front of you. At game end the person with the least items wins. Not a game that I want to play all the time mind you, but really good in measured doses and I'm pleased to have it in my collection.

#9 - Qwirkle [6 plays]

Interesting tile placement game where you try to match colours or shapes to others in a row without duplication. Try to make the namesake 'qwirkle' by having 6 in a row of different shapes of the same colour, or the same shape in different colours. We have the smaller travel version which is great for camping but also good for when you want a game with a 10 second setup. Unzip the bag, draw starting tiles and go. It's Qwirkle time!!!

#8 - World Series of Yahtzee [7 plays]

Heart pounding addictive and incredibly fun version of Yahtzee. Roll dice as fast as you can to try to make combos shown on the tiles on the podium. Buzz in first to claim the tile of your choice for its points. Rack up your scores at the end. Feels like being on a TV game show, and so it's always a good time when this hits the table.

#7 - Lost Cities: The Board Game [13 plays]

A tense heart racing game of set collection, hand management and risk taking. Has the option of playing the Express version for only one round, but mostly the three rounds are helpful in evening out the luck of the draw and doesn't even take that much longer with only 2 players. I generally prefer Keltis: Das Orakel because of the cool combos and movement options but I like this for what it offers as well. I also prefer this version to the original Lost Cities card game and Trambahn satisfies nicely as a replacement for that as well, with the added bonus of having multi-use cards. Three great games with three great themes.

#6 - Micropul [12 plays]

A small easy to make fun little Print 'n Play that's light, and just a little bit thinky where, by placing tiles, you are trying to make/expand large groups of micropul, claim them for yourself, and close them off while earning extra tiles or turns by placing tiles. A great time investment as it only took me about 15 mins to make yet we've had dozens of plays over the years. Also makes a really nice solo puzzle.

#5 - Flowerpower [14 plays]

Like Ingenious, but with flowers. A rare Kosmos 2 player tile placement and area control game that can be peaceful or cutthroat. Draw a tile, place the tile, and attempt to get large patches of flowers and score points according to the score table. There is a neutral strip in the middle of the board where flowers can count for you if the majority ends up on your side of the garden. 3 times during the game you have the option of using your tile as weeds to plant in your opponent's garden usually trying to cut them off from expansion. Fight over dominance of the central strip is inevitable at some point. Feels similar to Ingenious but different enough that we are keeping both. The small board and tiny tiles are adorable and portable. Loved it from the first time we played it, still love it today.

#4 - Grand Austria Hotel [7 plays]

A solid mid weight Euro of drafting dice for actions, drafting (guest) cards, and hiring hotel staff by playing cards from your hand in order to serve your guests most efficiently. I love the dice action selection, the fact that there are more cards and tiles than are needed in the game to generate replayability (you never know exactly which cards and tiles will be in the game), the multiple ways to get points, and just the feeling of the game in general. It's a brilliant game design, a drafting game that works great with 2 players and for me scratches the same itch as those time management video games such as Papa's Pizzeria/Wingeria/Donuteria/Freezeria etc.

#3 - Cosmic Cows [7 plays]

Yahtzee tug of war with cross-eyed cows. 2 player only, this is a fun and funny game - just a simple dice chucker with great components and an unusual theme where decisions revolve around choosing which dice to reroll and which cows to aim for. Try to drag at least 3 cows with your space beams into your spaceship before your opponent does! From the first time we played we both really loved it and it's always one of the first games picked when it's in rotation.

#2 - Walnut Grove [6 plays]

A typical light-mid weight Euro tile placement, worker placement, engine building efficiency puzzle fitted nicely into the theme of Little House on the Prairie. It's one of the very few WP that I like and I recommend it on a regular basis. Actions are tight, so it's not for the faint of heart!

#1 - Ingenious: Travel Edition [18 plays]

Light and fun little abstract game of dominoes with colours. We've been playing since 2015 and aren't tired of it yet. It always hits the table regularly when it's in rotation and neither of us will turn down a game. The travel edition is small, cute, and perfect for 2 players.

Needs to see more table time!
Seasons - This is one of our favourite games so I was sad to see it had only gotten 2 plays this year. The problem is that whenever it's out in the rotation it pretty much overshadows everything else because we want to play it all the time and we end up having a backlog of unplayed games. So to be fair to the new and fun looking games it has been boxed away for most of the year. I'd been hunting for a couple of years and finally found a rare copy of the Seasons: Path of Destiny expansion in an obscure shop back in June '16 and haven't even tried it out yet! Definitely will rectify this in 2018!

Ghost Stories - Did not get a chance to play this at all this year. We have so many games now that this has been relegated to the seasonal shelf and only gets played for Hallowe'en. The last couple of Octobers we've been out of the country so it has only been played once in the last 2 years. I've had the White Moon expansion since July '16 and am itching to give it a go, but we'd always need to refresh ourselves on the base game first, and the game just takes so long to play that we just can't seem to make the time for it. Must...do...better!

Revolver 2: Last Stand at Malpaso - One of my favourite games overall and one of the best duelling games out there, but I only had the opportunity to play it once this year. Shame, because I've had its only expansion on my radar for a long time, they finally stocked it at the White Goblin store, got my hands on it pretty soon after in September '16, but yet it still sits unplayed *sigh* Sorry Padre.
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