I wasn't going to do a top 10 from 2014...
Mike DiLisio
United States
Indianapolis
Indiana
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...but then I decided to participate in the Golden Geek Awards, so I figured I'd put it down as a geek list. I'll start with my top 10, although they're not in a particular order. I feel that with the games being as new as they are, they need to be played more as a group to see how they shake out for me. I'll also pop in a few of the other categories as well.
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1. Board Game: Abyss [Average Rating:7.31 Overall Rank:324]
Mike DiLisio
United States
Indianapolis
Indiana
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Light, beautiful, elegant set collection and press your luck game. This has been popular with everyone I've introduced it to.
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2. Board Game: Dead of Winter: A Crossroads Game [Average Rating:7.75 Overall Rank:64] [Average Rating:7.75 Unranked]
Mike DiLisio
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Indiana
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Not my typical style. I don't have much use for zombies. I skew Euro. Still...there's something wonderful about this game. I've had some terrific sessions playing this, and there's a lot of scenarios I haven't tried yet.
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3. Board Game: Five Tribes [Average Rating:7.80 Overall Rank:52]
Mike DiLisio
United States
Indianapolis
Indiana
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Brilliant game. I play very instinctively (and so probably poorly), so AP isn't an issue with me. I feel like there are so many possible paths to victory that I don't want to pore over every permutation in a turn. I just go with what my gut tells me. Beautiful production as well.
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4. Board Game: Istanbul [Average Rating:7.62 Overall Rank:91]
Mike DiLisio
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Clever movement and action mechanic. This is really a race game, where the pacing can really ramp up quickly. The variable set up is what will give it the legs it needs to last.
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5. Board Game: Madame Ching [Average Rating:6.53 Overall Rank:2153]
Mike DiLisio
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The most under the radar game of the year. In a year with many Cathala winners (three in my top 10!), this light family game will probably get overlooked. It's a shame, because while very simple, there's a surprising amount of depth to the game play to me. Another beautiful game. Yes, I'm a sucker for beautiful art and components.
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6. Board Game: Pandemic: The Cure [Average Rating:7.38 Overall Rank:259]
Mike DiLisio
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Terrific dice implementation of the classic board game. More tactical and abstract than the big brother, but tons of fun and the level of tension is still there in droves. Also, super quick to set up and play.
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7. Board Game: Progress: Evolution of Technology [Average Rating:6.62 Overall Rank:1621]
Mike DiLisio
United States
Indianapolis
Indiana
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This one surprised me. Very dry and almost abstract, but it just works for me. Gives me the same civ light feeling that 7 Wonders does, but with a bit more meat to the bones. I really enjoy this more than I expected to.
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8. Board Game: Roll for the Galaxy [Average Rating:7.78 Overall Rank:60]
Mike DiLisio
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Indianapolis
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The dice games have stepped up this year, as this is the second of three (!!!) dice games in my top 10 for 2014. So many decisions to be made, but not brain burning. A recent buy for me, so I need to play more, but a great early impression.
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9. Board Game: Temporum [Average Rating:6.46 Overall Rank:2444]
Mike DiLisio
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Indianapolis
Indiana
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Another race game that may appear to be something it's not to some people. It's super quick, and has some really neat card interplay that has gone over really well in my group. While I like the (admittedly thin) theme, I think it's worked against the game, because people are expecting more of a time travel feel.
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10. Board Game: VivaJava: The Coffee Game: The Dice Game [Average Rating:6.80 Overall Rank:1403]
Mike DiLisio
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Indianapolis
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Love this game. This is definitely in my top 5 dice games of all time. So much variety, beautiful art direction, and clever luck mitigation.
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11. Board Game: Orongo [Average Rating:6.58 Overall Rank:3767]
Mike DiLisio
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This would be my #11. A very clever, almost abstract auction game from Knizia.
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12. Board Game: La Isla [Average Rating:6.94 Overall Rank:730]
Mike DiLisio
United States
Indianapolis
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This would be my #12. A quick, light Feld which is exactly the type of Feld I like.
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13. Board Game: Draco Magi [Average Rating:6.54 Overall Rank:2933]
Mike DiLisio
United States
Indianapolis
Indiana
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My top 2-player only game of 2014. Beautiful art. Somewhat clunky feeling mechanics to me, but still fun for what it is.
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14. Board Game: Formula E [Average Rating:6.21 Overall Rank:6883]
Mike DiLisio
United States
Indianapolis
Indiana
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My top family game for 2014 is this ridiculous elephant racing game from Bruno Faidutti (and others). My kids LOVE this one.
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