pieforteeth's Top 50
Andrew P.
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Because the world needs more lists and I'm genuinely curious about what my fellow BGG users think about my taste in games: here's my top 50 and a quick run down of 51-100.

51 Hamsterolle
52 tak•tak
53 Marco Polo
54 Targi
55 Mafia de Cuba
56 878: Vikings Invasions of England
57 Étoile
58 Onitama
59 1775: Rebellion
60 Alhambra
61 Rummikub
62 Strike
63 Sagrada
64 Kamisado
65 VivaJava: The Coffee Game: The Dice Game
66 Codenames
67 Cockroach Poker
68 Star Wars: Destiny
69 Maze Racers
70 Tobago
71 Abandon Ship
72 Medina
73 Five Tribes
74 By Order of the Queen
75 Wits & Wagers
76 Tonga Bonga
77 Dice Masters
78 Hobbit Tales from the Green Dragon Inn
79 Time Barons
80 Marrakech
81 Polarity
82 Confusion: Espionage and Deception in the Cold War
83 Lost Cities
84 Greedy Greedy Goblins
85 Survive: Escape from Atlantis!
86 Age of War
87 Rolling America
88 Logan Stones
89 Diamonds
90 Colt Express
91 Murder and Deception in Hong Kong
92 Pandemic: The Cure
93 Chess
94 Mice and Mystics
95 Commands & Colors: Ancients
96 Pyramid Poker
97 Star Wars: Empire vs. Rebellion
98 Thief's Market
99 Elder Sign
100 Machi Koro

I'm a big fan of light/family/gateway Euros, and I think they often get overlooked as too simple and not offering enough depth or interesting decisions. I appreciate their ease of entry, but I also think many of them can be played very competitively as players unravel the strategies. It's not on my list, but Ticket to Ride is a great example of this. If a game is needs a lot of rules, I want them to be in favor theme (Mice and Mystics and D&D come to mind here). Heavy games are great and all, and I [think I] understand their appeal, but I just don't get that in to them (with one notable exception in the Top 10).

Anyway... here's the top 50!
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1. Board Game: Shogun [Average Rating:7.56 Overall Rank:128]
Andrew P.
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#50

This one used to be #1, but it's slipped over the years. I still love the streamlined way you use the territory cards to select your actions and the cube tower to decide the outcomes of battles.
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2. Board Game: Rattus [Average Rating:6.82 Overall Rank:768]
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#49

What a great passive aggressive game about plague! I think the balance of grabbing more ability tiles versus becoming more vulnerable to the rat tokens is brilliant.
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3. Board Game: Concept [Average Rating:6.93 Overall Rank:564]
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#48

I borrowed this from a friend, and played it about 100 times with my wife. We kind of developed our own Concept language, and played many a game after work while relaxing with a glass of wine. How come it's so easy to lead someone to a 90's movie title, but "envelope" is maddeningly difficult!?
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4. Board Game: Freedom: The Underground Railroad [Average Rating:7.61 Overall Rank:304]
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#47

Honestly, I might play this even more if the theme were something generic like helping the nice aliens escape from the mean aliens, but I'm glad it exists the way it does. I've learned a lot of history from the cards, and the actual game play is fantastic. I outta pick up the teaching guide that was designed to accompany the game; I'd love to use it to teach my kids about this rotten time in history. Also, I'm in love with the maps and graphic design of Academy Games.
 
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5. Board Game: Through the Desert [Average Rating:7.05 Overall Rank:435]
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#46

Solid abstract strategy game with fun candy camels. I think the real joy of game play comes from prioritizing what you want to accomplish versus blocking your opponents and keeping an eye on how many camels are left.
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6. Board Game: Saint Malo [Average Rating:6.48 Overall Rank:1787]
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#45

Might be a little biased here. I went on a trip to Saint Malo as part of a high school trip, and I was crushing on our tour guide. She would say, "Can you imagine..." over and over as she told us about the history of the beautiful walled city. Anyway, this roll-and-write game gives you some interesting choices to make about which dice to keep and how to organize your town. Just imagine all those points you'll score if the Jester gets placed in the middle of all your townsfolk. Just imagine...
 
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7. Board Game: PitchCar [Average Rating:7.25 Overall Rank:314]
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#44

A wonderful flicking game. Brings back memories of slot car racing with my brother and cousins minus that weird burning smell. I wish the expansions weren't so dang expensive.
 
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8. Board Game: Liar's Dice [Average Rating:6.92 Overall Rank:562]
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#43

SHAKE SHAKE SHAKE SHAKE BONK! Another one that used to be way higher. It's still a game I'll play pretty much any time. I feel obligated to specify that I like to play with 1) no wilds and 2) you can call the last bid as "exact" and if you're correct, everyone else loses 1 die. I think this solves some of the problems that happen when only two players are left.
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9. Board Game: Floating Market [Average Rating:6.29 Overall Rank:4145]
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#42

First of all, I love the board art from artist John Ariosa (maybe best known for Mice and Mystics). The way the graphic design blends into the river market scene is very pleasing. As for the game play, something about working out the odds, choosing the spots on the board with the best expected outcomes, and having it pay off scratches a very specific gambler itch in my brain. And hey, I can't think of many other non-RPG games where you get to roll a big old handful of polyhedral dice.
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10. Board Game: Pickomino [Average Rating:6.54 Overall Rank:1068]
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#41

This simple push-your-luck game where a little math goes a long way is very pleasing to my tactile and aesthetic sensibilities. The expansion adds even more choices to make (and cute wooden animal tokens) without bogging down the game.
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11. Board Game: Roll Through the Ages: The Bronze Age [Average Rating:6.90 Overall Rank:569]
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#40

Yahtzee kinda dice game with many interesting choices to make and strategies to choose. The fancy shamancy wooden peg board for keeping track of your resources and the wood-burned dice are nice touches that make me love it even more.

Hey, quick side note, I know it would have made the game a lot more expensive, but another of Matt Leacock's dice games, Chariot Race, reaaaalllly would have benefited from similar wooden peg boards.
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12. Board Game: Camel Up [Average Rating:7.09 Overall Rank:379]
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#39

Much simpler than Floating Market, but it scratches that same gambler itch and finds it's audience a little easier. It gets to the table more often, and I have a camel or two more fun.
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13. Board Game: String Railway [Average Rating:6.42 Overall Rank:1902]
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#38

OK so there are some problems with this game, but it's silly fun wrapped around an organically growing map of a town ruled by passive aggressive rail road barons. It's just fun - never mind getting out the magnifying glass to say whether or not the string actually touches the corner of a card.

This game should get a digital version - being able to draw your line over fixed city cards instead of laying a piece of string over city cards that inevitably slide around would be awesome.
 
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14. Board Game: Codenames Duet [Average Rating:7.89 Overall Rank:125] [Average Rating:7.89 Unranked]
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#37

Similarly to Concept, my wife and I have played this bunches-o-times. It's simultaneously fun to figure out ways to link/exclude given words with clever clues while deciphering your partner's pointers. The cooperative twists introduced in "Duet" improve on the already great Codenames formula.
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15. Board Game: Polterfass [Average Rating:6.32 Overall Rank:4084]
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#36

With all of these push-your-luck dice games available, why do so few of them borrow the idea of the other players betting against the roller? That's the genius of this game, players are always involved as they bet against the roller while trying to get a read on what the other players going to bet. There are a lot of satisfying moments as a better or the roller. Kind of a weird one, but it always goes over great.
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16. Board Game: Carcassonne [Average Rating:7.43 Overall Rank:139] [Average Rating:7.43 Unranked]
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#35

Just vanilla Carcassonne. I've only ever played with The River expansion, but this game is just that good. You get the joy of watching your little town grow with the excitement of drawing just the piece you need to finish your road, connect some massive farm land, or force your castle to join your opponent's. It's fun to play easy breezy casually or really sink your teeth into the tactics by paying attention to what tiles are left.
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17. Board Game: Dice Town [Average Rating:6.85 Overall Rank:718]
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#34

This one is still pretty new to me, and I don't normally like games with a lot of "take that", but similar to Colt Express (#90), it's a series of funny reveals as players "tip their hands" as to which actions they're competing for. I also like dice manipulation and push-you-luck, so this game works for me on a bunch of different levels.
 
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18. Board Game: Star Wars: Rebellion [Average Rating:8.49 Overall Rank:6]
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#33

Liking Star Wars certainly helps, but the cat and mouse game play wrapped around whatever Original Trilogy remix unfolds is always a joy whether I win or lose. After every game, my opponent and I will rehash all the tense moments that, had they gone one way or the other, would have tipped the... equilibrium in our favor.

Also, what's up with people saying the battles slow down the game? Even my most epic plastic-spaceship-filled battles only last a few minutes, and they're almost always pivotal moments with both players heavily invested in the outcome.
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19. Board Game: Jarl: The Vikings Tile-Laying Game [Average Rating:7.06 Overall Rank:3168] [Average Rating:7.06 Unranked]
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#32

Maybe this should have shared a spot higher on the list with
Spoiler (click to reveal)
isn't it obvious?
, but they're different enough that I would choose to play one or the other depending on the outcome of various Viking rituals I performed earlier in the day.
 
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20. Board Game: Dice Forge [Average Rating:7.40 Overall Rank:352]
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#31

Pretty simple, but I think it really delivers on its concept of "dice building" and it plays quickly and smoothly with many opportunities to roll your dice and get stuff. I hope there are expansions for this game; all the strategies I've tried seem viable, but I'd love to see way more options for changing up the dice.
 
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21. Board Game: Waggle Dance [Average Rating:7.07 Overall Rank:1354]
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#30

Seems like this one isn't very well known or easy to get a copy of, but that's a shame because it's a fantastic worker placement game with dice. Most worker placement games operate around the idea of prioritizing the timing of actions, but this one amps it up as all the players try to hold off placing workers until their opponents commit to an action. You can get A LOT of workers in this game, but the number available spaces to place them stays constant, so it becomes a real puzzle to use them efficiently. Great art and you gotta love the hexagonal pips on the custom dice.
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22. Board Game: Dungeons & Dragons Roleplaying Game Starter Set [Average Rating:7.19 Overall Rank:5684]
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#29

This entry is meant to be D&D 5th Edition. It can be such a different experience than a regular board game, and it's hard to say where exactly on the list it should be, but I had a wonderful time during my year-long campaign investigating evil dudes and mysterious places, slicing up monsters with my daggers, and attempting to enlist nearly everyone we met, good or evil, into our happy band of adventurers. I had never played any sort of traditional RPG before, but I can't wait to start a new adventure with D&D 5th Edition or some other system - for me, it's mostly about the collaborative story telling which reappears more than once later on in this list.
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23. Board Game: Lords of Xidit [Average Rating:7.22 Overall Rank:521]
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#28

Oh man, this game can be so frustrating when those IDIOTS to your right didn't do what they were SUPPOSED to do, and now your whole turn is ruined! ARRARGAG! Deep breath deep breath.

I always imagine my hero atop his/her bizarre steed rolling into town ready to save the day, and the people there have erected some dummy's magic tower and are singing some new hit song all about him, and they're like, "Oh. Hey man, thanks but so and so was here a few months ago and took care of the problem."

The programming is so smooth and brain burning, and the unique scoring system leaves players in the mix even if they're doing poorly in one or two of the three scoring possibilities.
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24. Board Game: Pandemic [Average Rating:7.66 Overall Rank:73]
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#27

Buttery smooth game play, and it always feels like you're just a turn away from winning or losing. Certainly helps that my wife loves this game.

Side note - My wife and I played through all of Pandemic Legacy Season 1, and neither of us really dug it. We felt the story was a kind of predictable, and at least 3/4ths of the reveals felt like rehashes from the first and second expansions. Something we enjoy about Pandemic is that we're so familiar with the game that we can jump right in and play a game to completion in less than 45 minutes. As Legacy began to leave us less than amazed, it began to feel like a slog.
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25. Board Game: Jaipur [Average Rating:7.53 Overall Rank:106]
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#26

Excellent card game for two. The game rewards you with handfuls of tokens while making your decisions feel meaningful and strategic - Should you scoop up all those leather cards and try to get the big bonus chips? Or should your dump them to make room for more gems? Seems like the skill ceiling could be very high, but it's very enjoyable as a casual, relaxing game too.
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