Help me convince my poker group to play board games!
Ben Schomp
United States
Waxhaw
North Carolina
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I run a weekly Poker game of between 6-8 folks in the neighborhood. Its a fun group; we stay up late and run through two or three $10 no-limit tourneys.

Last week I announced that we'll be moving to an every-other-week schedule ... and on the other weeks, we'll be playing board games! "You know, like Risk or Trivial Pursuit: Genus Edition!" whistle

Sure, there was some good natured ribbing and sarcastic comments, but no one said "No." So here's what I'm thinking (at least for the first couple of weeks):

* High fun
* Low complexity
* Light on the geekdom
* Satisfying & engaging experience
* Bonus points if its already in my collection

Down the road I'll be shoving Puerto Rico, Goa and El Grande down their throats ... but my goal here is to hook my already established group. I'm looking for a nice mix of games that play with 6 or 7, and also some with 3, 4 and 5 - this way we can start out as a full group, and then split into two tables of 3 or 4.

I'll start...
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1. Board Game: The Resistance [Average Rating:7.34 Overall Rank:204]
Ben Schomp
United States
Waxhaw
North Carolina
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Its almost team poker, what with all the bluffing going on!

Plays 5-10, sweet spot is right at 7p.
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2. Board Game: Saboteur [Average Rating:6.60 Overall Rank:924] [Average Rating:6.60 Unranked]
Ben Schomp
United States
Waxhaw
North Carolina
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Another bluffing card game that hits that 7-8p sweet spot, this time with a little less abstract and an actual area where you are actually playing some cards.
 
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3. Board Game: Las Vegas [Average Rating:7.11 Overall Rank:480]
Ben Schomp
United States
Waxhaw
North Carolina
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Poker : Vegas :: milk : cereal.

And who doesn't love to throw some dice? Only plays to 4p though so not necessarily the main event.
 
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4. Board Game: King of Tokyo [Average Rating:7.23 Overall Rank:257]
Ben Schomp
United States
Waxhaw
North Carolina
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More dice, some battling and an almost all-in metric, but will the theme fall flat? Who knows. Maxes out at 5p, but that might be all I'm getting.
 
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5. Board Game: Diamant [Average Rating:6.83 Overall Rank:652]
Ben Schomp
United States
Waxhaw
North Carolina
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More of a kids filler to me, but the push-you-luck gamble and high player count makes me think I might give this a shot at some point.
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6. Board Game: 7 Wonders [Average Rating:7.78 Overall Rank:45]
Ben Schomp
United States
Waxhaw
North Carolina
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Strongly considering leading with this.

Accommodates high player counts, is basically a card game, visually striking, and a simple but intriguing mechanic for first timers.

Civ, history, war, conquest theme is more likely to go over better than space, dungeons, or renaissance traders...
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7. Board Game: Citadels [Average Rating:7.10 Overall Rank:353]
Ben Schomp
United States
Waxhaw
North Carolina
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Again, I think staying as close to a card game as possible is a decent goal up front. However, adding in role selection might pique the right people's interest.

This plays up to 7p but hits on all cylinders around 5 or 6. Play time is decent and can be truncated - nothing too crazy to comprehend, and the idea of being able to assassinate and thieve people is certainly close to our normal game.
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8. Board Game: Bohnanza [Average Rating:7.05 Overall Rank:395]
Ben Schomp
United States
Waxhaw
North Carolina
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Very cautious on this one, simply because of the cartoonish theme. But you can play it with 5 or 6 if you're playing with some hustle. Certainly drags if people start counting and planning.

I like the idea of getting this vocal group into a trading mindset with a card game, before trying to drop a Settlers bomb on them.
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9. Board Game: Ticket to Ride [Average Rating:7.45 Overall Rank:139] [Average Rating:7.45 Unranked]
Ben Schomp
United States
Waxhaw
North Carolina
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Classic gateway, plays tight with 5p, better theme (for this group) than Stone Age. I think it would go over well if people buy-in, but who knows.
 
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10. Board Game: 1775: Rebellion [Average Rating:7.73 Overall Rank:286]
Ben Schomp
United States
Waxhaw
North Carolina
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I would love to find out who among the group is up for a wargame. This seems like as good a place to start as any.
 
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11. Board Game: Liar's Dice [Average Rating:6.92 Overall Rank:611]
Patrick Riley
United States
San Jose
California
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Bluffing, player reads, and dice. And you can even add money to it with a cash pot (and even re-buys to get back dice).
 
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12. Board Game: BANG! [Average Rating:6.52 Overall Rank:1124]
Steve McIlhatton
New Zealand
Palmerston North
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Fairly easy game that plays with a good size group.
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13. Board Game: Ca$h 'n Gun$ [Average Rating:6.61 Overall Rank:984]
Steve McIlhatton
New Zealand
Palmerston North
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What's more fun that pointing a gun at your friends?
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14. Board Game: Lords of Vegas [Average Rating:7.32 Overall Rank:371]
Otherworldly Gamer
United States
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15. Board Game: Stone Age [Average Rating:7.60 Overall Rank:84] [Average Rating:7.60 Unranked]
Alex Drazen
United States
Massachusetts
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It's not terribly complicated, and it has a press-your-luck element that may appeal to a group of poker players. There are lots of opportunities to out-maneuver people with worker placements, and the art isn't really "nerdy" at all.
 
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16. Board Game: Perpetual-Motion Machine [Average Rating:6.04 Overall Rank:7289]
Randall Bart
United States
Winnetka
California
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Poker player might appreciate a game based on building poker hands.
 
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17. Board Game: Turn the Tide [Average Rating:6.80 Overall Rank:1008]
Randall Bart
United States
Winnetka
California
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Simple game with some bluff and out think.
 
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18. Board Game: Taj Mahal [Average Rating:7.31 Overall Rank:347]
Bill Eldard
United States
Burke
Virginia
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This game is a great blend of card game with board game. But the key point is that card play is like playing stud poker with the stakes being possible rewards from/on the board.

Imagine playing roll-your-own stud poker, except that when you fold ('withdraw') you may get something back from the pot. and if you do, it may be more than what the other bidders get.

This is my favorite game.
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