Operation Teach Daughter New Games
Ryan Olson
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I realized the other day that due to having a 15 yr old son, I have kind of neglected teaching my daughter some more complex games.

She's 11 right now, but has not been taught many games that my son was able to play at 10. Why? I am guessing it's because that unlike before, I didn't need a 2nd player to play these games.

I decided it's time to remedy this. Partly due to our incoming daughter, due in early January, cutting down on our nightly gaming chances.

She isn't as big a gamer as her brother, and while she enjoys shorter, simpler games she does like several more complex games, so we are just going to play stuff and see what sticks.

I decided to document our progress here. We've only been going for a few days, but it's been fun playing some games that don't seem to hit the table often enough, whether they are successes or not.

Our main group for these games will be Joseph (15), Katlyn (11), and myself (40), but we may include Mom sometimes too, but she works weekday nights, so it will be only occasionally.

We'll play mostly board games, but I have a couple of RPG's to try out too, and she is a very creative kid, and think she'll thrive with those. We'll try to get as many in before baby, but we won't completely stop after she's born, but may slow down.

Edit 11/11/2013: Joseph decided he likes this idea, and will give his thoughts on any new games to him also.
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1. Board Game: Race for the Galaxy [Average Rating:7.76 Overall Rank:47]
Ryan Olson
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11/5/2013

Ok, so I start a bit aggressively. But I know she'll understand how to play (and she does catch on quickly to how things flow.). I do let her know that she can't be expected to understand strategies yet (Heck, I don't understand them all that well.).

Katlyn's Thoughts: Meh. (I'll try to get her to express more, but this is her reaction so far.)

Would she play again? Yes, but probably wouldn't request it.

She finished 3rd, and didn't get any real engine going (which I expected.), but she definitely understood how the game worked, and more often than not picked the role I thought would help her out best. Maybe if she plays it a couple more times, it will grow on her. But I can't force it, so it might be awhile before we get to play again.

 
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2. Board Game: San Juan [Average Rating:7.27 Overall Rank:251]
Ryan Olson
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11/6/2013

I decided to try similar mechanics and style of play.

Katlyn's Thoughts: Another meh.

Play Again? Again, maybe.

Her brother really crushed us in this one, and it didn't seem to flow very well. Maybe another play would feel differently, but she didn't hate it, but didn't seem as high on it as RftG.
 
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3. Board Game: Hansa [Average Rating:6.89 Overall Rank:785]
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11/6/2013

San Juan didn't take very long, so I thought we'd try to get a quick board game in. I hadn't played this in awhile, and really enjoy it, so I thought it was a good one. Neither kid had played it previously.

Katlyn's Thoughts: Seemed bored early, but really enjoyed it in the end. Helped that she finished 2nd, and the simple game play appealed to her.

Joseph's Thoughts: Good game, easy to screw people over with purchasing barrels, making them discard their own. Currents make it interesting on how boat moves.

Play Again: Definitely. Both kids liked this one.

We helped Katlyn through several turns, pointing her to things that might help her score more than what she was thinking, but she caught on quickly.



 
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4. Board Game: Innovation [Average Rating:7.24 Overall Rank:304]
Ryan Olson
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11/7/2013

Another complex card game. I really enjoy these games though, and was hoping one of them will grow on her so we can play them more often...

Katlyn's Thoughts: Loved it. Helped by the fact that she creamed both of us (who had played before.). It was a bit of beginners luck, she had some cards to score (which I didn't until it was too late.), but she did use them to her best advantage. She won while Joe and I had 2 achievements combined.

Play Again? Absolutely. And will be happy to beat us again .
 
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5. Board Game: Keyflower [Average Rating:7.85 Overall Rank:46]
Ryan Olson
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11/8/2013

I had been wanting to play this one for awhile, so I kind of talked her into it. I promised we could try Robo Rally after...

Katlyn's Thoughts: Loved it. Finished 2nd.

Joseph's Thoughts: Really enjoyed it. Gameplay was fun. Mechanics worked really well together.

Play Again? Yep. Had a blast.

I was surprised by how much we all enjoyed it. Fantastic game! Katlyn beat Joe by several points. Joe decided to block me in the final round, and I had too many scoring options to make that possible, I won handily.
 
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6. Board Game: RoboRally [Average Rating:7.10 Overall Rank:368]
Ryan Olson
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11/8/2013

Hey, she wanted to try it. I personally love it, so I was glad to get it out. We obviously went with a easy board setup.

Katlyn's Thoughts: Lots of fun. We laughed alot, I didn't explode (in fact she only got shot 3 times all game, twice on the 2nd to last turn.). Sadly, she didn't get to the 1st flag (out of 3.Although I think she shot e 3 or 4 times.). But most of it was typical RR newbie issues. Wrong cards played, so you get turned around, or reading a gear or conveyor wrong, and getting turned the wrong way. When she was finally close to the flag, she had no turn cards to go towards it, and ended up racing down the board.

Play Again? Yep.

Even though Joe and I raced through the board, blasting away at each other (mostly me getting shot.), she enjoyed watching how we did. And she saw us making lots of mistakes too, but getting lucky that the conveyor belt didn't mess us up too much (All by plan, Yeah, I planned those. That's the story I'm going to stick to at least.). Joseph was destroyed once, and I had to Power Down, but she saw you can still do well with those issues.
 
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7. Board Game: The Adventurers: The Temple of Chac [Average Rating:6.61 Overall Rank:1203]
Ryan Olson
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11/10/2013

Realized that she hadn't played this one yet, so we tried it. I hadn't played it in a couple of years...

Katlyn's Thoughts: (This will be the first game I am entering these right from her. The previous entries were our discussions afterwards.) Liked it. But the boulder was evil...

Play Again? Yes.

She does like push your luck games, so I thought she'd like this. We all lost though, the boulder moved 8 spaces in the last 2 turns, locking Katlyn and I in the river (I had 9 treasures to her 1, lava got her previously.). Joe had died already. Boulder got him once, lava the next time.
 
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8. Board Game: Mordred [Average Rating:6.17 Overall Rank:4120]
Ryan Olson
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11/11/2013

Joseph wanted to try a game neither of them had played, so he chose Mordred. A simple game, so it fit perfectly with our other choices...

Katlyn's Thoughts: Fun game. Liked the theme, big fan of Arthur legend. Die roll for cash was neat, and the way you filled in Mordred pieces with that table. Liked buying buildings.

Joseph's Thoughts: Hard game. Mordred pieces come out too fast sometimes (We did roll pretty low.). But a very good game. Also a fan of the theme.

Play Again? Yes from both kids.

I screwed up the winning conditions, so I ended the game and lost because of it .
 
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9. Board Game: Boomtown [Average Rating:6.54 Overall Rank:1567]
Ryan Olson
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11/11/2013

I was looking for something to play quickly after Mordred, and I decided to play a game I hadn't brought out in years. Probably one of Katlyn's first money bidding games. Maybe For Sale, but I can't think of many

Katlyn's Opinion: Liked it. Liked the money payouts & the bidding.

Joseph's Opinion: Excellent, really enjoyed the bidding mechanics. The non-mine cards were fun, especially dynamite. But it can get mean, but not really nasty. Enjoyed the mine payouts being random.

Play Again? Absolutely.

I can't figure out why I don't bring this game out more often, almost always well liked and fun.

 
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10. Board Game: No Thanks! [Average Rating:7.04 Overall Rank:414]
Ryan Olson
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11/12/13

Another game I hadn't played in a long time...

Katlyn's Thoughts: It's ok. Didn't grasp a strategy early. Like that it plays quickly.

Joseph's Thoughts: Good for a quick game, but make sure you keep some chips handy.

Play Again? Both say yes, but neither seemed to like it much, didn't want to play it a second time right away.
 
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11. Board Game: Glory to Rome [Average Rating:7.49 Overall Rank:162]
Ryan Olson
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11/13/2013

I decided to complete my group of complicated card games with this one. I had only played it once, so I was excited to get my new version out...

Katlyn's Thoughts: Like it. Not as much as the other games (on further reflection, she decided she really did enjoy San Juan & RftG.). Nothing in particular stood out, just had fun.

Joseph's Thoughts: Really liked it. More interaction than the SJ & RftG. Lots of ways to build up, so multiple ways to win.

Play Again? Yes from both, they were enthusiastic afterwards.

Katlyn really didn't seem to know what to do on her turns, but she was doing better later in the game. Never really got much influence, or anything in the vault, so she did finish 3rd, but she did have fun, and didn't seem to have trouble with the flow, just the basic strategies.
 
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12. Board Game: Fleet [Average Rating:6.96 Overall Rank:772]
Ryan Olson
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11/14/2013

Finally got this game played. I bought it originally during the Kickstarter campaign, mainly because my friend Eric J. Carter did the wonderful art. But I heard many good things about the game, just hadn't managed to get it played yet...

Katlyn's Thoughts: I like it. I enjoyed the fish meeples, and the auction. Kind of the middle of card game preferences, better than some, not as good as others.

Joseph's Thoughts: Liked it. Also liked fish meeples. Enjoyed it in general, nothing particularly special jumped out at me.

Play Again? Yes from both. And me too .

A good game. Now I need to go read the rules again and the forums to see what all we screwed up .
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13. Board Game: Winner's Circle [Average Rating:6.97 Overall Rank:716]
Ryan Olson
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11/18/2013

Another oldie but a goodie that I don't play often enough...

Katlyn's Thoughts: Liked the theme, horse racing is cool. Bidding is fun too.

Play Again: Yes

Fun simple racing game. I surprisingly got into 2nd place, but was really far behind going into the last round, so I had to bid for some less obvious horses. I think it plays better with more than 3...
 
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14. Board Game: Puerto Rico [Average Rating:8.04 Overall Rank:20]
Ryan Olson
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11/25/2013

I decided to step it up tonight and play a heavier game. I gave her several choices, and she chose Puerto Rico...

Katlyn's Thoughts: I like how it felt like San Juan, because I really liked that game. I like how the plantations & buildings work together. I also enjoyed the bits. I like choosing roles.

Play Again? For sure.

She didn't do too well, because I started screwing them both out of goods by choosing captain right after they chose craftsman (I was scoring 5 points to their 1 or 2, there was only one fully open ship. And I had a large warehouse to avoid the same issue.). They stopped producing after that (The learned what NOT to let me do ). Joe did play well after that though (I only won by 5), Katlyn wasn't paying enough attention to how the purple buildings could help her (I'm not experienced enough to be able to advise much in that respect.).

I was glad she liked it even without doing real well. We may have to break this out with Mom.
 
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15. Board Game: Tribune: Primus Inter Pares [Average Rating:7.23 Overall Rank:528]
Ryan Olson
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11/27/2013

Another favorite that I rarely get to play, but another complicated game to teach.

Katlyn's Thoughts: The mechanics as a whole worked well. Nothing jumped out at me as great, but they were fun together.

Play Again? Yes

She had some issues with winning factions. She won the Praetorians early, but never managed to win another one, mainly because she only seemed to try the same ones her brother was targeting, and he had a better plan to win them. She also kind of misunderstood the chariot, but didn't say anything, until she bid almost all her money the first round . She also thought there was an endgame scoring, instead of the goals being met, so she only had the 3 legions completed. I snuck up on them and had all 5. Joe would have made it if it would have lasted one more turn, but he only had 3 complete.
 
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16. Board Game: The Castles of Burgundy [Average Rating:8.13 Overall Rank:13]
Ryan Olson
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12/1/2013

A game I had only played once before, but we got it at a really good price at Barnes & Noble, so we decided to break it out.

Katlyn was being a bit whiny about not wanting to play in the first place, but Mom & I talked her into it...

Katlyn's Thoughts: Liked it. Almost as much as Innovation. Like the Take it Easy! style board.

Joseph's Thoughts: Good. Liked the whole thing in general.

Play Again? Definitely. They both really enojyed it, even with Katlyn being crabby she was really enjoying it by the 2nd phase.
 
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17. Board Game: Sluff Off! [Average Rating:6.88 Overall Rank:1170]
Ryan Olson
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12/4/2013

A trick taking game to play quickly. Hadn't played it in 5 years, but remembered it fondly...

Katlyn's Thoughts: Felt kind of like UNO. Liked the bidding aspect. Enjoyed the game.

Play Again? Yep.

My memory was right. I'm usually bad at trick taking games but this one clicked nicely for me, albeit with just three players. It was alot of fun.

Katlyn avoided last place both games, with Joe having at least one terrible round each game that he couldn't recover from.
 
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18. Board Game: Agricola: All Creatures Big and Small [Average Rating:7.43 Overall Rank:209]
Ryan Olson
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12/06/2013

One of my gifts from my BGG Secret Santa, and I was excited to play. I was going to teach Katlyn Agricola at some point, and thought this would help with her learning...

Katlyn's Thoughts: Liked it. Farming theme was neat. Liked the worker placement. Liked the Animeeples.

Play Again? Yes!

My beating her was mainly due to my experience with the normal Agricola scoring, so I think she'd do better in the future.
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19. Board Game: Trains [Average Rating:7.20 Overall Rank:409] [Average Rating:7.20 Unranked]
Ryan Olson
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12/08/13

Another Secret Santa gift, but one I had played, and enjoyed before.

Katlyn's Thoughts: Liked it. Liked the train theme. I enjoy deck building games, so it was cool.

Joseph's Thoughts: Like deck building games in general. Like the train theme.

Play Again? Yeah, liked it alot.
 
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20. Board Game: 12 Days [Average Rating:6.55 Overall Rank:2303]
Ryan Olson
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12/11/13

I had heard this was going to be on Tabletop, so I checked it out. Sounded like a fun little game, so I grabbed it from the local game sellers...

Katlyn's Thoughts: Liked it. Like the theme & game play. Art is good.

Joseph's Thoughts: Good game. Good art. Liked the strategy.

Play Again? Yep, they both liked it.

Had more interesting choices than I expected in a simple card game. Passing a card can be tough, and deciding which cards to hold on to can be difficult too.
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21. Board Game: Gang of Four [Average Rating:6.61 Overall Rank:1651]
Ryan Olson
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12/15/2013

A game I really enjoy, but stink at it. Hadn't played it in a long time.

Katlyn's Thoughts: Really good 4 player game. Wouldn't work for 3 very well. Liked the dragons & phoenixes.

Play Again? Yes
 
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22. Board Game: Guillotine [Average Rating:6.54 Overall Rank:1055]
Ryan Olson
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12/16/2013

Another older game that I hadn't played in a long time...

Katlyn's Thoughts: Liked the French Revolution theme. Game play was fun. Scoring the nobles was neat. Liked the screw your neighbor parts.

Joseph's Thoughts: Also liked the theme. Liked the strategic thoughts with the action cards and manipulating the line. And the screw your neighbor was fun too.

Play Again? Yes!

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23. Board Game: Rise of Augustus [Average Rating:6.76 Overall Rank:843]
Ryan Olson
United States
Auburn
Kansas
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12/23/2013

My Christmas gifts showed up a day earlier than expected, and seeing how quickly this plays, decided to try it with the kids before supper...

Katlyn's Thoughts: Liked the drawing out of the bag and placing the legions based on it.

Joseph's Thoughts: Liked the Roman theme. Good game. Liked that it was pretty much glorified Bingo.

Play Again? Yes.

An enjoyable game. Luck is obviously a huge part of it, and it helped decide our game, but it was quick and fun. Katlyn fell in love with just trying to score 1 card at a time, so she fell way behind waiting for the perfect tile to come out...
 
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24. Board Game: The Speicherstadt [Average Rating:7.05 Overall Rank:654]
Ryan Olson
United States
Auburn
Kansas
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12/25/2013

Another Christmas gift to myself. Another one I had heard good stuff about but had never played.

Katlyn's Thoughts: Liked it, probably not as much as many on this list, but it was fun. Liked the bidding mechanic.

Joseph's Thoughts: Liked the bidding mechanic. Enjoyed the card art.

Play Again? Yep, but would likely not suggest it.

We all took a bit to figure out the best way to manage the unique bidding mechanic. I think the rest of us got a little more vicious than Katlyn, but she seemed to get it by the end. Mom also played this with us.
 
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25. Board Game: New York [Average Rating:6.64 Overall Rank:3209]
Ryan Olson
United States
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Kansas
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12/30/2013

Alhambra clone. We used to have the base game, but sold it when cash was low. A friend got this at BGG.con and didn't want it...

Katlyn's Thoughts: Like it, much better then the card game. Like the money system, and how you buy tiles. Tile laying is fun in general.

Joseph's Thoughts: Good game, but nothing in particular stood out. Fun though.

Play Again? Yep, both enjoyed it.

Kaltyn did beat her brother, so she understood how to play fairly well, although tile placement seemed to be confusing her. Joe and I frequently had to make suggestions to her...
 
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