Games that famous reviewers have gotten wrong for you
Paul McKenzie
United States
Ashburn
Virginia
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I love Tom Vasel's reviews, and read as many of them as I can. That having been said, I have found several of his negative reviews have made the games he describes sound so intriguing to me that I have intentionally given them a second or third look, and in several cases have bought them to discover:

1. They are now among my favorite games, or
2. They aren't a favorite but I still like them a lot, or
3. I'm not crazy about them but I don't regret purchasing them.

Are there any games you've found either because of or in spite of a famous reviewer's thumbs-down that you've discovered to be a good game for you?
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1. Board Game: Bombay [Average Rating:6.37 Overall Rank:2117]
Paul McKenzie
United States
Ashburn
Virginia
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This game has become one of my favorite pick-up-and-deliver games. The market system and the balance of things you can do to earn VP makes this a great play whenever I get the chance with casual and semi-serious gamers. I've never failed to beat the "welfare strategy" that kind of ruined the game for Tom (and others, no doubt), but for me it gave me a good gauge for how sub-optimal I was playing. (My first game I scored 8 points! The second I scored 24, and from then on I've never scored at or below the "welfare strategy" score.
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2. Board Game: Fredericus [Average Rating:5.36 Overall Rank:13886]
Paul McKenzie
United States
Ashburn
Virginia
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I'm not sure if this is fair, but I entirely agree with Tom about this game with the rules as written, particularly how the goal cards are randomly distributed. I use a house rule that has cards face-up in an array from which you can choose it somewhat akin to TTR(gm me if you'd like the details). With this change, and without using the optional betting option of betting on a player rather than a tower, this game has become one of my favorites.
 
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3. Board Game: Tuchulcha [Average Rating:5.19 Overall Rank:14201]
Paul McKenzie
United States
Ashburn
Virginia
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I agree with Tom that the language and terms used to refer to the pawns and goals and bases in the game rules makes reading them very difficult. However, I'm a big backgammon fan, and when I simply thought of it in those terms, the game became a great and very quick and fun 3-4p backgammon with two additional role and variable powers.
 
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4. Board Game: Bison: Thunder on the Prairie [Average Rating:6.35 Overall Rank:2363]
Paul McKenzie
United States
Ashburn
Virginia
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I have to agree with Tom on this one that rarely have I seen a theme more mismatched with the mechanics. I love the tiles, though, and have been considering a retheme (terraforming robots?) that works better. Love the mechanics, but tell everyone I play with to ignore the theme.
 
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5. Board Game: King's Forge [Average Rating:7.03 Overall Rank:1406]
Luke Wunderlin
United States
Sylvania
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Tom and Sam said this game was Ok. Not good, not great, ok. Sam said he'd play it, but that he wouldn't go out of his way to play this. Tom was disappointed that the dice weren't rolled more, and that the game wasn't very innovative.

I find this game fantastic; fun, strategic, tactical, and a very beautiful game to place on your table.

To each their own, I guess. meeple
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6. Board Game: Hawaii [Average Rating:7.21 Overall Rank:529]
Toms Leikums
Latvia
Jelgava
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Almost everyone knows Tom Vasel destructive (literally) review about Hawaii. I for one find it a very nice game with interesting mechanics, and decent theme. Fortunately I watched the review after game was already bought.
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7. Board Game: Elevenses [Average Rating:6.31 Overall Rank:2827]
Paul McKenzie
United States
Ashburn
Virginia
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Much much better game than Tom's video suggests, particularly as he liked Love Letter which, while I like it fine, has an even goofier theme and much less compelling gameplay. No nuance about taste here, Tom just got this one wrong.
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