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What did I play at Geewkay 2016?
Ken S
United States
Missouri
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This list is 4 months late. But I promised myself I would write it this year!

Here's a list, with comments, of what I played this year at Geekway 2016. They are listed in the order I remember playing them, but it's hard to say for sure. Also, each game is only listed once, even if I played it multiple times. And, to be honest, I thought there were more games I played, but this is all I have listed...

Here's to hoping next year I write this list in a more timely fashion!
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1. Board Game: Above and Below [Average Rating:7.54 Overall Rank:173] [Average Rating:7.54 Unranked]
Ken S
United States
Missouri
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Pretty sure this was my first game of the weekend. Managed to run into some people trying to play it in the room next door to the library, and I jumped right in.

I remember it as a pretty good game. It was hard to decide whether to go for the high-risk "below" strategy, or just try to make it work "above", which plays more like a standard worker game. You obviously have to go down SOME times...but it's hard to say when, and how.

It was pretty good. I wonder if it would hold up under heavy play, when the cavern you draw will have a huge effect on play. But it seems worth playing every now and then. I kind of wish I had, but I haven't yet.
 
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2. Board Game: Super Motherload [Average Rating:7.49 Overall Rank:502]
Ken S
United States
Missouri
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Luckily I had played this game a week before, so I knew the rules well. I taught this to some folks.

I like it, but it does start to drag on towards the end. Also, I still don't know if the bird people are as strong as they appear. But it's a fun game.
 
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3. Board Game: My Happy Farm [Average Rating:6.51 Overall Rank:3216]
Ken S
United States
Missouri
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Got into a game of this at one point on Friday. It was okay, but it didn't seem like there were a lot of chances to really beat other people. It seemed like everyone was pretty much bunched up the same at the end.

The super-long farm animals were a lot of fun, though.
 
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4. Board Game: Gloobz [Average Rating:6.16 Overall Rank:5300]
Ken S
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Missouri
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Someone pulled this out while were waiting for other people to show up for a game (Isle of Skye, I think). I'm pretty sure I remember who, but I'll keep that to myself.

It's a fast-paced, recognize the pattern quickly and slap kind of game. Not bad, but it's the kind of thing where having your hand in the right position really makes the difference. It's got a little too much dexterity for my taste, is what I'm saying. Still, I did better at it than I usually do at Set.
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5. Board Game: Circular Reasoning: The Well of Power [Average Rating:6.68 Overall Rank:6719]
Ken S
United States
Missouri
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LOVED this game. And there's no reason to; it's a pretty simple game, and there's no randomness so it feels like it should be boring. But! It was an intensely interesting game!

I had a group of four playing, and we all got to the point where we each had our final piece in the final circle. Every turn each player either had to make the move to let them win next turn, or make the move to prevent someone else from winning that turn. Or you would make a move to force someone else to make a move to prevent a third person from winning, which prevented player two from winning NEXT turn. Layers upon layers! The level of analysis was thrilling.

Unfortunately, what happened was that eventually one of the players lost the stamina to keep up the battle of wills, and more or less deliberately made a move to allow someone else to win. Too bad, I would have LOVED to have seen if and how someone would have eventually legitimately won that game.
 
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6. Board Game: Isle of Skye: From Chieftain to King [Average Rating:7.47 Overall Rank:157]
Ken S
United States
Missouri
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This is the problem with writing this list 4 months out. I don't remember a ton about this game. The main thing I remember is that there was someone who kept pricing her tiles REALLY HIGH, with the notion that she could keep them--and then getting mad when I bought them because they were the best things for me. But, you know, that's the game! Buying your own tiles is a sucker's bet!

Anyway, I remember it as a decent game, but I haven't seen it much since then. I would give it another shot.
 
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7. Board Game: The Grizzled [Average Rating:7.29 Overall Rank:295]
Ken S
United States
Missouri
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I really wanted to get a game of this in, so I'm glad I did. And what I learned was, WWI sucked.

We didn't come anywhere close to winning in the two games I played. And it wasn't particularly clear how we screwed up, except that one time we did our support wrong and got nothing. But this is a HARD game.

Still interesting, and I suspect it would make a nice filler/starter game. Cooperative so people don't have to think too hard, and quick.
 
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8. Board Game: La Granja [Average Rating:7.73 Overall Rank:123]
Ken S
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Missouri
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The only game I bought at Geekway, which is partially because it was good and partially because everything else was sold out at the end.

It was a good game. I actually haven't gotten it back to the table, due to my own laziness. But there was a lot of complexity, and a lot to deal with. I enjoyed it, though, because I like these long management games.

It didn't help, though, that we played it wrong (I think we forgot to score things when we were supposed to).
 
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9. Board Game: Dark Moon [Average Rating:7.08 Overall Rank:793]
Ken S
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Missouri
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OK, this was interesting to me. I enjoy Battlestar Galactica, but I was interested in something that could replace it while being more meaty--and giving more to ponder than "did he say a word weirdly"--than Resistance.

Dark Moon filled that for me. I really enjoyed it. The dice mechanic, the trusting and betrayal...it all worked for me. I think I would advocate for this over Battlestar, especially if my players didn't already know BSG.
 
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10. Board Game: Orléans [Average Rating:8.08 Overall Rank:26]
Ken S
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Missouri
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I was able to get in a game of this, and I'm glad I did. Lots going on, but lots to do, and it was fun.

It was one of those games where you think you'll only be able to go down one path, and then you find out you built an engine strong enough to go down most paths. Still, a lot of fun.

Not sure about replay; I'm worried that some of the buildings are too powerful, though I'm sure the community knows better than me and the one time I played it. Still, a fine game.
 
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11. Board Game: Viceroy [Average Rating:6.92 Overall Rank:765]
Ken S
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Missouri
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There was a lot of buzz behind this game. I wanted to get a game of it in. It was...okay, as I recall. The whole thing kind of went on too long, as I recall. It was fine.

The biggest problem was probably that the guy who taught it REALLY knew what he was doing, and thus more or less slaughtered me and the other person playing. Not his fault, but it didn't make me long to get it back on the table.
 
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12. Board Game: Cat Tower [Average Rating:6.01 Overall Rank:4473]
Ken S
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Missouri
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The first time I played this...and I've played it more since then.

It's Jenga, with cards. Wait, you say--isn't that Rhino Hero? Yes. But this is that too. And honestly, this is better. Rhino Hero ends too quickly. Nobody can keep that tower going, or at least, no one does.

The problem with Cat Tower is that the rules are really weird, and it's not clear what's supposed to happen at any particular point. You can make it through by just guessing what makes sense and muddling through, but the rulebook could use a rework. Still, a good game for what it is. And better than Rhino Hero, I'll say it.
 
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13. Board Game: Wonky [Average Rating:6.42 Overall Rank:5352]
Ken S
United States
Missouri
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More dexterity-based stacking games, which is what you are supposed to be playing at 1am after the bar has closed.

It was an interesting game. It didn't seem entirely fair; the cards you got would really determine whether you had a chance of victory. And being the person AFTER someone knocked over the tower really was a bonus. Still, it was alright, for a Jenga-like.

I still prefer Cat Tower.
 
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14. Board Game: Codenames [Average Rating:7.74 Overall Rank:54] [Average Rating:7.74 Unranked]
Ken S
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Missouri
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Well, of course this was going to get played. Actually, I was surprised it wasn't more prevalent.

A friend of mine REALLY wanted to try it, so we jumped in on a game. It was pretty epic, actually. We won twice on final, do or die rounds--including one where we had to get four clues in one turn! Amazing. And that wasn't even my favorite game--I really liked the game where I used the clue "Fest" to point to "Point", and my teammates got it! Shout out to St. Louis!
 
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15. Board Game: Mombasa [Average Rating:7.94 Overall Rank:66]
Ken S
United States
Missouri
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So if there was one game I really wanted to play at Geekway, it was Scythe. But that train had sailed--the line to play the copy was HUGE. Mombasa was a close second, however, and it did not disappoint.

There's so much going on in this game, but it's not overwhelming. And there's a lot of difference depending on the initial setup. I thought it was going to be a deck-building game, and in some ways it is, but it really isn't, because thinning your deck doesn't really help.

I've played it a few times since Geekway and I like it. I'm not intensely attached to it like other games I've played, but I'll jump in on Mombasa at any time.
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16. Board Game: Shakespeare [Average Rating:7.47 Overall Rank:445]
Ken S
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Missouri
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So I really wanted to get this one in, so I jumped in. It was fun, but I don't think we really understood what cards were powerful. I liked it though; I was able to win (IIRC) by building up my stage early, instead of focusing on feathers and performers. I would really be interested in trying this one again.
 
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