Couple's List: Top Ten Board Games as of November 2013
Megan Beiswenger
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My husband, Jared, and I decided to rank our ten favorite board games as of November 2013. We only ranked the games in our collection that we both played this past year (27 games). Each of us made a list and assigned the highest number (27) to his/my favorite game and the lowest number (1) to his/my least favorite game. Then, we summed our rankings for each game and ordered the list of sums. Here is the final listing of our ten favorite board games! The games are given below from the number ten game to the number one game.
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1. Board Game: Ra [Average Rating:7.47 Overall Rank:134]
Megan Beiswenger
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Megan and Jared's #10 Game

We enjoy Ra because it is easy to teach to new people. This game also appeals to our girl and guy friends. I like Ra because it is relatively quick and light but it still makes me think. I also enjoy that there is some element of chance in the tiles that I draw. I like accounting for some randomness when I develop my strategy for winning. I also have fun competing with other players for the best tiles.
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2. Board Game: Dixit: Odyssey [Average Rating:7.50 Overall Rank:163] [Average Rating:7.50 Unranked]
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Megan and Jared's #9 Game

Dixit is one of our favorite party games. The artwork on the cards is masterfully done - so unique and creative. The artist weaves many similar elements and themes into the cards so that there are usually several good candidates to match the storyteller's phrase/word. Dixit Odyssey accommodates up to 12 players, which makes it is a good game to bring out even in a larger group. While a good party game that allows conversation, Dixit encourages enough thought that I do not get bored.
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3. Board Game: Fish Cook [Average Rating:6.93 Overall Rank:3169]
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Megan and Jared's #8 Game

Fish Cook is an ingenious and fast-paced economy game that we always enjoy playing. The theme of buying fish and ingredients in the market place and then cooking these items using recipes fits very well with the mechanics of the game. Each player's profit margin after cooking a recipe will vary depending on the prices at which that player was able to buy individual ingredients (the prices increase as the ingredients become more scarce). Because a player's profit margin is not readily apparent when cooking, the leading player is often unknown until the very end of the game. This makes the game competitive and fun. Every dollar counts in this game, and the winner is often decided by a small margin! We highly recommend this game.
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4. Board Game: Court of the Medici [Average Rating:6.60 Overall Rank:2168]
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Megan and Jared's #7 Game

Court of the Medici is a fast, cutthroat, two-player game that always entertains. The strategy becomes deeper with every play. The theme of two rival factions battling for preeminence at the medieval court fits well with the mechanics of the game. Conspiracy and murder abound! Often times, the winning faction is not set until the final moments of the game.
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5. Board Game: King of Tokyo [Average Rating:7.27 Overall Rank:226]
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Megan and Jared's #6 Game

This game is easy to learn and teach and great to play with family and friends of all ages. There are several good, competing strategies for winning the game. This is a fun dice game with cards that provide an extra layer of strategy and complexity.
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6. Board Game: Qwixx [Average Rating:6.90 Overall Rank:683]
Megan Beiswenger
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Jared and Megan's #5 Game

This is a crowd-pleasing game that never gets boring! We recommend this one for family gatherings or other parties with non-gamers. It is light, fast, and fun. We have played Qwixx with so many people and everyone always loves it! It is a dice-rolling game in which a player can also take an optional action on other players' turns.
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7. Board Game: Airlines Europe [Average Rating:7.35 Overall Rank:296]
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Jared and Megan's #4 Game

This is a fairly complex game that is light enough to teach easily to groups of people. We enjoy the strategy involved in efficiently managing stocks to produce a player's income and also increase the value of airline companies in which a player is invested.
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8. Board Game: Twilight Struggle [Average Rating:8.35 Overall Rank:4]
Megan Beiswenger
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Megan and Jared's #3 Game

Twilight Struggle is a heavy, but fun, game that becomes more competitive and interesting with each play. It really brings history to life. There are so many different ways to earn victory points that it can become a real struggle between the Soviet Union and the U.S. to win the Cold War! There are a variety of things going on during each round that make it interesting - a space race, coups, various political events (represented by playing cards), battles for influence in a particular country, military actions, the shifting allegiance of China (represented by the passing of a "China Card"), etc.
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9. Board Game: Trajan [Average Rating:7.80 Overall Rank:71]
Megan Beiswenger
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Megan and Jared's #2 Game

We enjoy this game because every turn involves a high level of strategy, complexity, and thinking and a multitude of choices. There are many competing avenues for winning this game. The Mancala-inspired mechanic for determining a player's action during a round is incredibly clever and entertaining. The leader is difficult to determine until the end of the game, which makes it more competitive and interesting.
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10. Board Game: Dungeon Petz [Average Rating:7.55 Overall Rank:136]
Megan Beiswenger
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Megan and Jared's #1 Game

We play this game very frequently because it is so much fun! The theme of buying and caring for pets and exhibiting them and selling them is a light-hearted and original theme that fits well with the worker-replacement-type mechanics of the game. We like that there are so many choices available during each round, and the hidden bidding mechanic (which determines the order in which the players compete for a set number of available actions) makes the game competitive and suspenseful. The game is fairly complex, and there are many rules, but the game flows smoothly once players become familiar with it. There is little waiting in the game (players are always actively playing or planning), which also makes it more fun.
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