Steckman's Top 5 Games of 2012
Stephen Eckman
United States
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There are only a few criteria to qualify as one of my Top 5 Games of the Year:
1 BGG lists the game as published this year and it is not a reprint.
2 I have played the game and rated it at least a 6.5.
3 It is a full game (not an expansion).

I obviously haven't played every game published this year, so this list may change in the future. Potential list disruptors are listed at the end.

See my other "Top" lists: Steckman's "Top" Geeklists
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1. Board Game: Tokaido [Average Rating:7.06 Overall Rank:436]
Stephen Eckman
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#5


A beautiful game with interesting choices that never seem to bog down play. It can be played as a light game or with cutthroat strategy. As a bonus, I haven't really played another game like this. Again, I wish it supported 6 players, but that would probably just lock out too many choices.
 
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2. Board Game: Expedite [Average Rating:7.23 Overall Rank:7328]
Stephen Eckman
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#4


I don't think I have seen much mention of this game outside of the original Kickstarter campaign, but it really is a lot of fun. We take out the magic, purple "steal a city" cards which probably makes the game longer but makes it feel more strategic. This is a good gateway game along the lines of Ticket to Ride, but I would probably rather play Expedite!

Bonus: I am happy to have Kickstarted this!
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3. Board Game: Robinson Crusoe: Adventures on the Cursed Island [Average Rating:7.96 Overall Rank:36]
Stephen Eckman
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#3


There are only two negative things I can say about this game:
1) I wish it supported more players
2) I wish the manual was better

When those are the only bad things you can say about a game, you know you have something special. I didn't think I could like a punishing, Co-operative game this much, but Robinson Crusoe just seems to be a different kind of beast. The variety of scenarios that Ignacy Trzewiczek keeps churning out is just icing on the cake.
 
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4. Board Game: Libertalia [Average Rating:7.23 Overall Rank:299]
Stephen Eckman
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#2


I love the action selection mechanism in this game. It really creates a meta-game where you have to guess what your opponents are going to do. Everyone knows this, so usually the obvious choice isn't the best choice. Really the same thing I love about Citadels, but this game is different enough to stand on its own.
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5. Board Game: Keyflower [Average Rating:7.89 Overall Rank:43]
Stephen Eckman
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#1


This is both my favorite Worker Placement and Auction game. It also happens to be one of my favorite games of all time and has a prominent spot on my Ideal Game Shelf. I even like the theme. When you think to yourself: "I just don't get to play this game often enough," you know you have a winner.
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6. Board Game: Disruptus [Average Rating:5.12 Unranked]
Stephen Eckman
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I haven't played every game published in 2012 (who has?!), but I recognize that there are some titles that have a good shot at earning a spot in my Top 5 and disrupting the list. The most promising candidates currently are:

Terra Mystica
Tzolk'in: The Mayan Calendar
Freedom: The Underground Railroad

Special Note
I have excluded The Resistance: Avalon. I think it is a fantastic game and would certainly be in the Top 5, but it is too similar to The Resistance to stand on its own.
 
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