Variable player powers among Euro games
Joel Weeks
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Roswell
Georgia
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So, I love variable player powers, but browsing through the list here on BGG, you find that most VPP games are more on the Ameritrash side, which I don't enjoy as much. Here's a list of some of my favorites. Please make recommendations of other games I might like with this mechanic.
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1. Board Game: Small World [Average Rating:7.32 Overall Rank:190] [Average Rating:7.32 Unranked]
Joel Weeks
United States
Roswell
Georgia
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Definitely my favorite of the variable player power games. I really enjoy Small World and the expansions.
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2. Board Game: Carson City [Average Rating:7.28 Overall Rank:343]
 
Joel Weeks
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Roswell
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Love Wild West games and the characters in this one are a lot of fun. I've noticed that there is an expansion with more characters but it doesn't appear to be available in the U.S.
 
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3. Board Game: Age of Gods [Average Rating:6.32 Overall Rank:3293]
Joel Weeks
United States
Roswell
Georgia
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Another fun game with lots of variety in powers.
 
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4. Board Game: Maharaja: The Game of Palace Building in India [Average Rating:7.16 Overall Rank:516]
Joel Weeks
United States
Roswell
Georgia
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Really like this, need to get it to the table more often.
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5. Board Game: Rattus [Average Rating:6.82 Overall Rank:787]
Joel Weeks
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Roswell
Georgia
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A nice simple game with fun characters especially when you add the Pied Piper expansion.
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6. Board Game: Merchants of the Middle Ages [Average Rating:6.79 Overall Rank:1551]
Joel Weeks
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Roswell
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These variable player powers are really a subtext to the game itself but I do love the game.
 
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7. Board Game: Pantheon [Average Rating:6.80 Overall Rank:1361]
Joel Weeks
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Roswell
Georgia
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gods with special powers are nice.
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8. Board Game: Cosmic Eidex [Average Rating:6.90 Overall Rank:2610]
Joel Weeks
United States
Roswell
Georgia
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Variable player power on overdrive.
 
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9. Board Game: Magical Athlete [Average Rating:6.47 Overall Rank:2415]
Joel Weeks
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Roswell
Georgia
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A nice fun short race game that plays fast.
 
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10. Board Game: Das Amulett [Average Rating:6.47 Overall Rank:2766]
Joel Weeks
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Roswell
Georgia
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Auctioning for special powers gives the game a nice twist.
 
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11. Board Game: Control Nut! [Average Rating:6.25 Overall Rank:5498]
Joel Weeks
United States
Roswell
Georgia
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Another card game with VPP, but in this case you choose the special power for each hand.
 
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12. Board Game: Mission: Red Planet [Average Rating:6.93 Overall Rank:733]
Joel Weeks
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Roswell
Georgia
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Very interesting characters in this one.
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13. Board Game: Die Säulen von Venedig [Average Rating:6.60 Overall Rank:2719]
Joel Weeks
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Roswell
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A game you don't see a lot. It has interesting character choices and lots of things going on in the game.
 
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14. Board Game: Cuba [Average Rating:7.16 Overall Rank:416]
Joel Weeks
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Roswell
Georgia
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The characters work well alongside the other game mechanics, much like Carson City.
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15. Board Game: Chronicle [Average Rating:6.83 Overall Rank:1360]
Joel Weeks
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Roswell
Georgia
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Another card game where the cards abilities alter play. I'm thinking of giving a whirl of designing a trick taking game like this.
 
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16. Board Game: Tzolk'in: The Mayan Calendar [Average Rating:7.93 Overall Rank:36]
Mike Young
United States
Sterling
Virginia
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A worker placement game. When you start the game, you draw 4 starting tiles and keep 2. The tiles give you different starting resources, and some give you powers as well.
 
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17. Board Game: 7 Wonders [Average Rating:7.80 Overall Rank:43]
Mike Young
United States
Sterling
Virginia
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Each player starts with a different wonder that gives different resources and a different power when built.
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18. Board Game: Terra Mystica [Average Rating:8.23 Overall Rank:8]
Fabian L
Germany
Berlin
Berlin
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This one needs to be included for sure! I love that it has 14 different factions, which play very differently.
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19. Board Game: The Great Zimbabwe [Average Rating:7.76 Overall Rank:340]
Sicaria Occaeco
United States
Salt Lake City
Utah
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Each player gains unique abilities. As you gain more abilities your victory conditions increase as well.
 
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20. Board Game: Dominant Species [Average Rating:7.84 Overall Rank:56]
Brian Boyle
Australia
Sydney
NSW
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It may be too long for your tastes, it may be too Weuro, but I think this is an amazing game and I am also predominantly a player of short Euro games.

The variable powers given to the species are spot on, and a very important part of how you have to play the game.
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21. Board Game: Eclipse [Average Rating:7.97 Overall Rank:33]
Fernando Robert Yu
Philippines
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Ameritrash or euro? It's more of a hybrid really, but with Small World not also a euro for me I will throw Eclipse.

It's definitely an assymetrical game if you play with the alien races, but heck that's part of the challenge!
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22. Board Game: Kingsburg: To Forge a Realm [Average Rating:7.90 Unranked] [Average Rating:7.90 Unranked]
Andrew
Japan
Tokyo
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The expansion adds (modular) asymmetric buildings and characters.
 
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