My Top 15 Table-top games Jan 2013
Marshall LaFleur
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Burlington
Washington
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It hasn't been 3 months since my last top ## list but their is a significant change. For the most part their is only one new game on the list. The orders of others have change though. In some cases quite a bit. As always I added one position to the list. Only 85 more of these lists and I'll be at a top 100. Actually if I ever reach 50 I'll probably stop it there.

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1. Board Game: Mage Wars Arena [Average Rating:7.73 Overall Rank:148] [Average Rating:7.73 Unranked]
Marshall LaFleur
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Burlington
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New Item!

Here is the reason for the new list. I was wondering if any game would ever beat Heroscape for my #1 spot. Mage Wars is simply an awesome game. I simply cannot find any problems with it. It is obvious that they put a lot of thought and play-testing into this game. If I were pressed to find one problem with the game it would be the grid based board. It really isn't though if you picture a pillar in each corner of each square. I've only played with the core set so far but I can tell that expansions are just going to make it that much more awesome.
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2. Family: Heroscape
Marshall LaFleur
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Previously 1st

I have to ask again, why is this out of print? Seriously Hasbro/WotC is so dumb about this. Hasbro is such a great company and horrible one at the same time. A bit more on the horrible side. They make things I love like Heroscape and Ponies and find ways to take that love of that product and turn it into hatred by discontinuing the great game or in the case of MLP, making it very difficult for me to carry while giving great deals to mega-corporate chain stores. I wish they would grow some ethics.
 
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3. Board Game: Middle-Earth Quest [Average Rating:7.38 Overall Rank:441]
Marshall LaFleur
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Previously 2nd

Having no expansions and an unchanging map might make this fall a bit someday, but it hasn't happened yet. The variety of quests and events keep the game varied enough to make it feel different each time.
 
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4. Board Game: Descent: Journeys in the Dark (Second Edition) [Average Rating:7.75 Overall Rank:78]
Marshall LaFleur
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Previously 3rd

For anyone that has played 1st editon and haven' upgraded to 2nd edition, just do it. The 2nd edition is just so much better. 1st edition was good too of course. If it were still that edition It would be somewhere around 6th or 7th place on this list. Once again it is dropped a bit because of the grid based movement. I'm probably always going to deduct a bit from any game that uses grid based movement. The esception here is Mage Wars. Another example would be Summoner wars. It would probably be on this list if it had hex movement instead of grid. Game developers: Grid movement is almost always better and worth paying more for.
 
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5. Board Game: Battletech Introductory Box Set [Average Rating:7.65 Overall Rank:1200]
Marshall LaFleur
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Previously 6th

Battletech jumped back up a bit for a few things I didn't really consider in my previous list. The complete customization and expandability of the game. I was focused before on the one or two problems with the game instead of what the game really has to offer. It is truely a game that has stood the test of time and is still very popular. One of my best sellers at the store. You can make it as in depth or simple as you want. Well actually it can't be very simple as even in its most basic form it is a complicated game. I was playing it when I was 13 though with another kid that was 11 and we loved making our own mechs. I could say that this was my first true gamers game.
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6. Board Game: Runewars [Average Rating:7.68 Overall Rank:153]
Marshall LaFleur
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Previously 4th

I haven't had a chance to play this since my previous list. Even with that I've only played it twice. I'd like to play it again with expansions of course.
 
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7. Board Game: Twilight Imperium (Third Edition) [Average Rating:7.89 Overall Rank:51]
 
Marshall LaFleur
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Previously 8th

This one jumped up a bit because I've recently added The Shattered Empire expansion to it. That expansion has so much to it that I can't imagine it ever getting old. Especially since it is so hard to get a game of this going. I've never been able to play more than 5 players. I've also only been able to get one game finished. The difficulty in getting people to play it is what keeps it out of my top 5.
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8. Board Game: Dungeon Lords [Average Rating:7.43 Overall Rank:188]
Marshall LaFleur
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Previously 9th

This went up a bit because I discovered that there was one thing that I had been doing wrong in previous games. It was a minor detail but now that we are playing it correctly it seems much better. It also isn't too hard to get people to play. Who doesn't want to own their own dungeon?
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9. Board Game: World of Warcraft: The Boardgame [Average Rating:6.63 Overall Rank:1182]
Marshall LaFleur
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Previously 10th

Really it hasn't gone up much. It really is about a tie with the next one down. I haven't played this game in over a year. I still have never played the MMO and I doubt I ever will. It doesn't hurt my ability to enjoy the board game at all.
 
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10. Board Game: Battlestar Galactica: The Board Game [Average Rating:7.75 Overall Rank:62]
Marshall LaFleur
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Previously 7th

I guess this game is starting to get a bit old to me. It is still a great game and if it is picked on a game night I won't turn it down. It just doesn't have the excitement it used to. Each game now I just feel like I've seen it all before. Around here the humans actually win more than the Cylons.
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11. Board Game: Risk Legacy [Average Rating:7.50 Overall Rank:237]
Marshall LaFleur
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Previously 5th

I really can't justify having this ranked as high as I used to. It is still great and I look forward to being able to play this with the same group to unlock more secrets. The problem here is that it can be hard to bring new people in to an established group. Especially if they are only playing one time.

The fact that this is on my list shows that I'm not really taking the manufacturer of the game into consideration and this list is purely based on how much I like the game. On the business side of things I no longer carry this game. I'm not sure if it is even still available. I simply cannot justify promoting the product of an unethical company that hates small business and is very greedy with their share of the profits. In order to make any money off of this or any other Hasbro game I'd have to charge way above retail. Previously I was willing to do that but I made changes in my business plan that I would carry more products of good game companies that support games stores either through demo's, prizes, or better prices. Hasbro does none of this.
 
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12. Board Game: Dominion [Average Rating:7.66 Overall Rank:72] [Average Rating:7.66 Unranked]
Marshall LaFleur
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Previously 14th

I think Hinterland and Cornicopia had a lot to do with bumping this back up. It is still the best deck-building game in my book. I'm more of a board gamer and so a pure card game just isn't likely to win me over so this rank is a big accomplishment.
 
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13. Board Game: Ad Astra [Average Rating:6.89 Overall Rank:920]
Marshall LaFleur
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Previously 12th

This is the best version of Catan. Leave it to FFG to make a similar game even better. I like how the dice are eliminated and the players have control over all the aspect. The only real randomness is the selection of the planets. I think this game could really use an expansion though. I have a few ideas of what would be good to add to it.
 
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14. Board Game: Small World [Average Rating:7.32 Overall Rank:190] [Average Rating:7.32 Unranked]
Marshall LaFleur
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Previously bumped off list, roughly 17th place. Before that it was 8th place.

I actually go a bit deeper in my top lists and keep games that got bumped off in consideration for future lists. This is an example why. I doubt it will ever make it back into the top 10 but expect it to remain on the low end or just barely not making future lists.
 
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15. Board Game: Agricola [Average Rating:8.02 Overall Rank:18]
Marshall LaFleur
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Previously 11th

I've only played with the core game. This could get bumped up when I play with an expansion. Admittedly part of what keeps this game from being higher is the boring game componenents. Also I think the price is a bit high for this game. For roughly the same price you can get some FFG awesomeness.
 
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