BC Indy's 2017 Gen Con Top Ten
Brian Current
United States
Carmel
IN - Indiana
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Here is a list of my favorite games from Gen Con. I couldn't play them all and it is obviously subjective. Let me know your thoughts!
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1. Board Game: Merlin [Average Rating:7.16 Overall Rank:1143]
Brian Current
United States
Carmel
IN - Indiana
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#1
Played a two round demo of this but it was enough to let me know that it was great.

Based loosely on Arthurian Legend (King Arthur and the knights of the round table), it is very Feld-ian (in a good way) with lots of differing ways to score. The main mechanism is a roundel (the round table) with knights and Merlin that move around it (based on your dice roles) to select actions. It seems to be tighter and more stream lined than many of his games.

Stephan Feld - you are forgiven and once again are in our good graces.
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2. Board Game: Tulip Bubble [Average Rating:7.20 Overall Rank:2547]
Brian Current
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Carmel
IN - Indiana
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#2
This was game that was barely on my radar but after a play ended up being an insta-buy. Based on the speculative tulip bulb market crash of 1637, players buy and sell tulips trying to generate a profit and not get stuck with them when it does crash. A very tight auction game with an interesting mechanic that encourages you to bid up your opponents (you get the difference between their bid and market price).
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3. Board Game: The Godfather: Corleone's Empire [Average Rating:7.69 Overall Rank:407]
Brian Current
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Carmel
IN - Indiana
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#3
So this is bit of a stretch since many people have this already but I did get my first play of it at GenCon and loved it. Completely different than a game like Bloodrage, it is more 'Euro'-style game. Players place henchmen and family members, complete missions and collect money. Look forward to more plays of this.
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4. Board Game: Whistle Stop [Average Rating:7.29 Overall Rank:1059]
Brian Current
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Carmel
IN - Indiana
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#4
This is also a bit of cheat because I played this at Origins and thought it was the game of the show there. This is a unique game in which you are building your routes (which other players can use), blocking other players, timing your deliveries, and managing your resources all while keeping an eye on what everyone else is doing. This one should have high replayability.
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5. Board Game: Agra [Average Rating:7.47 Overall Rank:1086]
Brian Current
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Carmel
IN - Indiana
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#5
This was the heavy Euro I was interested in, even though it was not for sale (Essen release). Demoed it and felt like I was just scratching the surface. An immense worker-placement game with lots of moving parts. It is beautifully illustrated by Michael Menzel and designed by Michael Keller (La Granja). The only thing I don't look forward to is trying to teach the game. (Note to self - convince Denise to teach it)
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6. Board Game: Ex Libris [Average Rating:7.35 Overall Rank:794]
Brian Current
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Carmel
IN - Indiana
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#6
Had to "run" to get a copy of this and still almost did not get it. A good worker-placement game with variable actions and setup where you are trying to build a well organized library and achieve both public and secret objectives.
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7. Board Game: Rising Sun [Average Rating:8.25 Overall Rank:64]
Brian Current
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Carmel
IN - Indiana
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#7
I have Kickstarted this and wanted to get a play in. Demoed one round and got a slight sense of the game. Really need more plays to get fully understand the intricacies of the game but I do like it.
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8. Board Game: Spires [Average Rating:7.00 Overall Rank:4673]
Brian Current
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Carmel
IN - Indiana
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#8
Bryan Fischer is a friend but that did not affect my rating of this game. A trick taking game that lets you stick-it to your opponents. In a field of many this year, it was the best trick taking game released. I have a feeling that this will get more plays from me than any of the other GenCon 2017 games.
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9. Board Game: Codenames Duet [Average Rating:7.89 Overall Rank:124] [Average Rating:7.89 Unranked]
Brian Current
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Carmel
IN - Indiana
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#9
It is amazing that this simple game has as much game as it does. It is a lot like the original Codenames but is co-operative and turn-timed. This is a terrible description - just go play it.
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10. Board Game: This War of Mine: The Board Game [Average Rating:8.10 Overall Rank:181]
Brian Current
United States
Carmel
IN - Indiana
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#10
Played a little of this and it was very good. A group (or solo) game in which you collectively make decisions for characters that are civilians trying to survive in the midst of a war-torn country. Very deep and dark (characters die or commit suicide frequently) - it is not one I would own but would play again.
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11. Board Game: Deadline [Average Rating:7.00 Overall Rank:3275]
Brian Current
United States
Carmel
IN - Indiana
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Honorable mentions:

Deadline - played prototype long ago but did not play final version - otherwise it would have made it

Downforce - #11 on my list

Mini Rails - same publisher as Tulip Bubble - it looks great but only got an explanation - no playthrough

OK Play - was not on my radar but surprisingly good - won a copy

Kaiju Crush - fun with kids

Mole Rats in Space - more fun with kids

Sentient - also looks great but only got an explanation - no playthrough
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