New interests through gaming
Michelle Zentis
United Kingdom
London
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As I was unwrapping my shiny new Ticket to Ride: Marklin game, I got interested enough in the pictures on the cards to come check out the Marklin website. Now I'm seized by a sudden need to order hundreds of dollars of model train pieces...

Okay, not really, but it did get me thinking about games that introduce gamers to new interests. What games have gotten you interested enough in something to spend time and/or money learning about it or actually doing it? (Note: other games don't count!)
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1. Board Game: Ticket to Ride: Märklin [Average Rating:7.41 Overall Rank:241] [Average Rating:7.41 Unranked]
Michelle Zentis
United Kingdom
London
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Okay, seriously, how cool are those train cars? And they even have a Haribo car on the website! When I win the lotto I'll have to set up a model train.
 
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2. Board Game: Axis & Allies [Average Rating:6.70 Overall Rank:1088]
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Playing Axis & Allies inspired me to check out and subsequently read every book in my library about World War II.
 
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3. Board Game: Volley & Bayonet [Average Rating:7.41 Overall Rank:8145]
Kent Reuber
United States
San Mateo
California
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The Volley and Bayonet rules were what really got me interested in the Civil War and the Revolutionary War. The fact that there are rules for linking up V&B and "House Divided" as a campaign system isn't a bad thing either.
 
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4. Board Game: Days of Knights [Average Rating:6.50 Unranked]
Kent Reuber
United States
San Mateo
California
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Ditto for the War of the Roses. Kingmaker can be used as campaign rules.
 
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5. Board Game: Carcassonne [Average Rating:7.43 Overall Rank:139] [Average Rating:7.43 Unranked]
Jeremy Likens
United States
Cornelius
Oregon
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I looked up information about the actual city of Carcassonne and its history after having played this game a number of times.
 
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6. Board Game: De Bellis Multitudinis [Average Rating:6.53 Overall Rank:4475]
I'd rather be gaming...
Australia
Brisbane
Queensland
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It was the DBM miniatures rules that got me into researching the military and cultural history of various civilisations and nations. You see, the DBM rules cover warfare from 3000BC to 1500AD. There are four associated army list books that go into more detail about the armies fielded by historical nations during those 4500 years. Just flipping through these army books is enough to make me want to go to the library or Google to find out more about them.
- Ozvortex.
 
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7. Board Game: A Game of Thrones (First Edition) [Average Rating:7.26 Overall Rank:334]
Jeremy Likens
United States
Cornelius
Oregon
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I have looked up more information about the books by RR Martin and plan on reading them in the future.
 
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8. Board Game: Formula Dé [Average Rating:6.99 Overall Rank:599]
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Brisbane
Queensland
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It was Formula De that got me interested in Formula 1. So much so that I regulary watch the races on TV and have attended the Melbourne F1 Grand Prix twice. The cool thing is that they guys I go to Melbourne with enjoy gaming so we always go to our favourite pub to play games and drink when we're not at the track.
- Ozvortex.
 
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9. Board Game: Puerto Rico [Average Rating:8.05 Overall Rank:15]
Hunga Dunga
Canada
Coquitlam
British Columbia
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It was Puerto Rico that got me interested in slavetrading.
 
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10. Board Game: Twilight Struggle [Average Rating:8.33 Overall Rank:5]
Philip Thomas
United Kingdom
London
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I bought a book about the Cold War because of this game. I had read about the Cold War before (mainly Henry Kissinger's large tome, Diplomacy which is sadly not a guide to a well-known board game meeple), but this game got me interested again.
 
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11. Board Game: We the People [Average Rating:7.32 Overall Rank:1108]
Mark Casiglio
United States
Ansonia
CT
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Falcon 2018 September 28, 29, 30 in Stamford, CT
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Since playing this game, I'm interested in and looking for a good book on the American Revolution ... especially about the roles of Washington and Benedict Arnold.
 
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12. Board Game: Legend of the Five Rings [Average Rating:7.14 Overall Rank:1073] [Average Rating:7.14 Unranked]
Drew Chappell
United States
Fullerton
California
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This game got me interested in Eastern philosophy and in Japanese culture and history specifically.

The world of Rokugan is that immersive and complex.
 
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13. Board Game: Paths of Glory [Average Rating:8.01 Overall Rank:108]
Matthew Barratt
United Kingdom
Royal Leamington Spa
Warwickshire
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For me it was paths of glory and WWI. I am currently in the middle of the first volume of Hew Strachans inconcievebly massive history of the war
 
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14. Board Game: Lord of the Rings [Average Rating:6.77 Overall Rank:719]
Kane Klenko
United States
Ridgeway
Wisconsin
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It was Knizia's Lord of the Rings game that got me interested in the books and movies. I had seen the FotR movie before playing the game, but it was hard to follow the crazy names and know what people were talking about. After playing the game and knowing the names of the characters and places, I went back and watched the movies and loved them.

I guess Knizia's LotR: The Confrontation had a part in this too.
 
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15. Board Game: Railways of the World [Average Rating:7.69 Overall Rank:96] [Average Rating:7.69 Unranked]
Hermus
United States
Tallahassee
Florida
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This game, along with a chance run-in with the "Workin' on the Railroad" show on DIY, rekindled my interest in model railroading as well as train games in general. Since then I've purchased 18FL (can't wait to try it), as well as a stack of model railroad books & magazines. My wife is rolling her eyes at the thought that my game room may now become my train room. :-)
 
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16. Board Game: Busen Memo [Average Rating:4.79 Overall Rank:15811]
Martin Deslauriers
Canada
Montreal
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no, actually I was interested before.
 
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17. Board Game: En Garde [Average Rating:6.49 Overall Rank:1967]
Michel Fortin
Canada
Montréal
Québec
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I actually took a fencing course because of this game. How crazier can it get? I loved the theory and training aspects of the course but hated the duels! So now, I limit myself to the boardgame...
 
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18. Board Game: Air Superiority [Average Rating:6.72 Overall Rank:3721]
Ethan McKinney
United States
El Segundo
California
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I was a fanboy before this--I liked planes and all, but I bought into so much of the popular press/Discovery BS.

The incredibly knowledgeable people involved with this game taught me a lot, and triggered my reading more and more serious books about air combat, aerodynamics, radar and electronic warfare, and airpower theory, practice, and history.

Pretty much determined what I was doing for grad school.
 
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