2018 "Top of the Stack" list
Brendan Riley
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La Grange
Illinois
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The Podcast of Nonsensical Gamers has a regular feature they call "top of the stack" in which they keep track of games they want to play each month, and then comment on how they did. I'm doing this too in their forums, but I'm going to replicate that here for easier cataloging.
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1. Board Game: Crows Overkill [Average Rating:6.45 Overall Rank:6396]
Board Game: Crows Overkill
Brendan Riley
United States
La Grange
Illinois
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January, 2018
January is the cruelest (busiest) month for me, so I'm putting three small card games on here in hopes that I can squeak these out.

1. Crows Overkill - FAIL
2. Ravenous River - FAIL
3. Twist of Fate - FAIL

Here's hoping y'all stay warm this January.

Played a lot of games this month, but the only knocked one off my shelf of opportunity: Gloomhaven.

First plays (games that I played for the first time) (4):
Donner Dinner Party
Betrayal at Baldur's Gate
Gloomhaven
Pandemic Legacy: Season 2
 
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2. Board Game: Alexandria [Average Rating:5.79 Overall Rank:10798]
Board Game: Alexandria
Brendan Riley
United States
La Grange
Illinois
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FEB 1: February is short and sweet, so here are my three priorities. Two are the same as last month:

1. Alexandria
2. Crows Overkill
3. Ravenous River

Let's hope I do better this time!

FEB 28: Whoo boy -- got NONE of these played.

First plays this month/year (4):
Stuffed Fables
Kingsport Festival: The Card Game
The Grimm Forest
Concordia
= 8 new games tried this year
 
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3. Board Game: Alexandria [Average Rating:5.79 Overall Rank:10798]
Board Game: Alexandria
Brendan Riley
United States
La Grange
Illinois
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MAR 1: I am going to try this again. March looks very busy (life-wise) but I really want to play these games, so I'm putting the same three on the list. Here's hoping.

- Alexandria
- Crows Overkill
- Ravenous River

Mar 31: 0 for 3. Yikes. April will have to include something else!

First plays this month (9):
Potion Explosion
Kingdom Builder
Rex: Final Days of an Empire
Maximum Apocalypse
The Captain Is Dead
Parfum
Bunny Kingdom
Century: Golem Edition
Linkee
= 17 new games tried this year
 
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4. Board Game: Ravenous River [Average Rating:6.00 Overall Rank:9104]
Board Game: Ravenous River
Brendan Riley
United States
La Grange
Illinois
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April 1: I WILL PLAY THIS GAME IF IT KILLS ME.

Also the other two. Also, I've started working toward a 10 for 10.

April top of the stack:
- Ravenous River (played 4/30)
- Alexandria
- Crows Overkill (played 4/13)

10 for 10:
Gloomhaven (9) -> 12
Stuffed Fables (6)
Pandemic: Legacy Sn 2 (5)
Ex Libris (3)
Century: Golem Edition (3) -> 7
Terra Mystica (2) -> 3
Arkham Horror LCG (0)
Mottainai (0)
Roll for the Galaxy (0)
Via Nebula (0)

First plays this month (9):
Crystal Clans
Carnival Zombie
Unearth
Crows Overkill
Not Alone
Sagrada
Axis & Allies Anniversary Edition
Empires of the Void II
Ravenous River
= 26 (17 + 9) games tried so far this year

April 30: Dang it. I had a chance to play Alexandria this month, but I left the dang rulebook at home on my nightstand and thus missed the opportunity to play it. ARGH. At least I got the other two played, so now we've got some new stuff on the stack in May.
 
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5. Board Game: Unreal Estate [Average Rating:6.13 Overall Rank:6378]
Board Game: Unreal Estate
Brendan Riley
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La Grange
Illinois
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May 2018

May 1: The semester ends soon, so I've picked a meaty 2 player game to play with my buddy Paul in celebration.

Top of the stack:
- Alexandria (played 5/20)
- Unreal Estate
- Stronghold (2nd edition) (played 5/30)

The ten for ten is coming along. I've italicized the game(s) that we've made 10 plays of.

10 for 10:
Gloomhaven (12)
Stuffed Fables (6)
Pandemic: Legacy Sn 2 (7)
Ex Libris (3)
Century: Golem Edition (9)
Terra Mystica (3)
Arkham Horror LCG (0)
Mottainai (0)
Roll for the Galaxy (0)
Via Nebula (1)

First plays this month:
Through the Ages: A New Story of Civilization (BGA)
Pulsar 2849
Alexandria
Pot de Vin
Wok on Fire
Zombicide: Black Plague
A Game of Thrones: Hand of the King
Mountains of Madness
Ghostbusters: The Board Game
Blood Rage
King of New York
Santorini
Stronghold (2nd edition)
World's Fair 1893
Through the Ages: A Story of Civilization
= 41 games tried so far this year.
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6. Board Game: Robinson Crusoe: Adventures on the Cursed Island [Average Rating:7.87 Overall Rank:47]
Board Game: Robinson Crusoe: Adventures on the Cursed Island
Brendan Riley
United States
La Grange
Illinois
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June 2018

June 1: The summer is upon us and the time is nigh for fun games galore.

Top of the stack:
- Robinson Crusoe (played 6/2/18)
- Unreal Estate (played 6/3/18)
- Crazy Karts

The ten for ten is coming along. I've italicized the game(s) that we've made 10 plays of.

10 for 10: (added plays this month)
Gloomhaven (12 → 15) (+3: 6/16, 6/17, 6/28)
Stuffed Fables (6)
Pandemic: Legacy Sn 2 (7)
Ex Libris (3)
Century: Golem Edition (9)
Terra Mystica (3 → 7) (+4: 6/4/18, 6/8/18, 6/21/18, 6/27/18)
Arkham Horror LCG (0)
Mottainai (0 → 3) (+2: 6/1/18, 6/12/18, 6/18/18)
Roll for the Galaxy (0 → 2) (+2: 6/2/18, 6/3/18)
Via Nebula (1 → 2) (+1: 6/19/18)

First plays this month:
Robinson Crusoe: Adventures on the Cursed Island (6/2/18)
Unreal Estate (6/3/18)
Deception: Murder in Hong Kong (6/5/18)
Targi (6/11/18)
Sonar (6/8/18)
Skull (6/10/19)
Panamax (6/12/18)
Love Letter: Batman (6/19/18)
Inoka (6/19/18)
The Prodigals Club (6/23/18)
Apocalypse Chaos (6/23/18)
Through the Ages: A New Story of Civilization (6/24/18)
Legacy of Dragonholt (6/29/18)
= 54 (41+13) games tried so far this year.

Out of the Dust plays this month:
Roll for the Galaxy - 1 year, 5 months, 7 days (12/29/16 → 6/2/18)
The Resistance - 2 years, 5 months, 4 days (1/8/16 → 6/12/18)
Quoridor - 2 years, 7 months, 28 days (10/22/15 → 6/19/18)
Zombie Dice - 2 years, 9 months, 23 days (9/01/15 → 6/24/18)
Trickerion: Legends of Illusion - 1 year, 9 months, 9 days (9/18/16 → 6/27/18)

June 30: Lots of good gaming, but I'm frustrated I didn't find time to get Crazy Karts played. The heavy games, though! So many, and wicked fun.
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7. Board Game: Altiplano [Average Rating:7.55 Overall Rank:280]
Board Game: Altiplano
Brendan Riley
United States
La Grange
Illinois
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July 2018

July 1: Not as much gaming this month, as we'll be traveling some. I still hope to get a few games in here or there, though.
July 13: Back from a trip to Newfoundland. Fun times!
July 31: Overall, a productive month. Looking forward to August.

Final stats: 68 plays of 44 games.

Top of the stack:
- Altiplano (7/18/18)
- Crazy Karts (7/28/18)
- Raptor FAIL

10 for 10:
53 games played so far
Gloomhaven (15 → 17) (+2; 7/25/18; 7/26/18)
Stuffed Fables (6 → 7) (+1; 7/26/18)
Pandemic: Legacy Sn 2 (7 → 8) (7+1; 7/28/18))
Ex Libris (3)
Century: Golem Edition (9)
Terra Mystica (7 → 8) (+1; 7/25/18)
Arkham Horror LCG (0)
Mottainai (3)
Roll for the Galaxy (2)
Via Nebula (2 → 3) (+1; 7/17/18)

First plays this month:
Mystic Vale (yucata)
Castellion
InBetween
Völuspá
Altiplano
Saltlands
Doodle Rush
Santo Domingo
Shear Panic
Crazy Karts
Kokoro: Avenue of the Kodama
Coimbra
63 (54 + 9) new-to-me games tried so far this year.

Out of the Dust plays this month:
Tides of Madness - 1 year, 7 months, 8 days (3 Dec 16 → 7 July 18)
Onirim - 1 year, 1 month, 3 days (9 Jun 17 → 12 July 18)
Guillotine > 3 years, 6 months, 13 days ( pre 01 Jan 15 → 14 Jul 18)
Sentient - 1 year, 28 days (20 Jun 17 → 18 July 18)
 
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8. Board Game: Raptor [Average Rating:7.36 Overall Rank:351]
Board Game: Raptor
Brendan Riley
United States
La Grange
Illinois
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August 2018

August 1: With the school year looming, will I manage to play as many games as I want? I must make progress on my 10 for 10!
August 31: A very productive month, with lots of new games played and really fun playtests of our own games. Fun times!

Final stats: 64 plays of 37 different games.
Rattlebox Playtests: 5

Top of the stack:
- Raptor (played 8/27/18)
- Buffy the Vampire Slayer: The Board Game OR Buffy the Vampire Slayer: The Game
- Rampage! (played 8/31/18)

10 for 10:
53 games played as of August 1
Gloomhaven (17)
Terra Mystica (8 → 10) (+2: 8/22/18, 8/25/18)
Stuffed Fables (7)
Pandemic: Legacy Sn 2 (8)
Ex Libris (3)
Century: Golem Edition (9)
Arkham Horror LCG (0 → 7) (+7: 8/4/18, 8/7/18, 8/9/18, 8/12/18 x2, 8/18/18, 8/19/18)
Mottainai (3)
Roll for the Galaxy (2 → 3) (+1; 8/11/18)
Via Nebula (3)
63 plays as of the end of August

First plays this month:
(63 new to me games as of August 1)
Werewords (8/5/18)
Gunkimono (8/7/18)
Ninjitsu! (8/11/18)
A Few Acres of Snow (8/22/18)
The Castles of Burgundy (8/25/18)
Azul (8/26/18)
Raids (8/26/18)
Raptor (8/27/18)
Rampage (8/31/18)
72 new-to-me games tried so far this year.

Out of the Dust plays this month:
Arkham Horror LCG, (7/7/17 → 8/4/18) 1 year, 1 month, 1 day
Onitama, (4/15/2017 → 8/11/2018) 1 year, 3 months, 27 days
A Study in Emerald, (9/4/14 → 8/11/18), 3 years, 11 months, 7 days
Hostage Negotiator, (4/24/17 → 8/06/18), 1 year, 3 months, 13 days
 
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9. Board Game: Shipyard [Average Rating:7.37 Overall Rank:541]
Board Game: Shipyard
Brendan Riley
United States
La Grange
Illinois
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September 2018

September 1: My school schedule precludes my weekly Tuesday night game night. What will this mean for my plays? My progress? My sanity?!

Sept 30: Back to school means a lot fewer games, alas.

Final stats: 34 plays
Rattlebox Games Playtests:
10

Top of the stack:
- Shipyard - FAIL
- SYNOD - FAIL
- Scotland Yard YES (9/29/18)
REPEAT - Buffy the Vampire Slayer: The Board Game OR Buffy the Vampire Slayer: The Game - FAIL

10 for 10:
63 games played as of September 1
Gloomhaven (17 → 18) (9/16/17)
Arkham Horror LCG (7 → 13) (9/9/18, 9/13/18, 9/15/19, 9/16/18, 9/20/18, 9/27/18)
Terra Mystica (10 → 11) (9/27/17))
Century: Golem Edition (9 → 10) (9/2/18)
Stuffed Fables (7)
Pandemic: Legacy Sn 2 (8)
Ex Libris (3)
Mottainai (3 → 4) (9/7/18)
Roll for the Galaxy (3 → 5) (9/3/18, 9/24/18)
Via Nebula (3)
70 plays as of the end of September

First plays this month:
(73 new to me games as of September 1)
Colony (played 9/1/18)
Nightmare (played 9/9/18)
Scotland Yard (played 9/27/18)
76 new-to-me games tried so far this year.

Out of the Dust plays this month:
None
 
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10. Board Game: Student Bodies [Average Rating:6.50 Overall Rank:6625]
Board Game: Student Bodies
Brendan Riley
United States
La Grange
Illinois
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October 2018

October 1: September threw off my gaming rhythm, but October is sure to bring it back in line. Am I right? Wait and see.

October 31: I had a really good month of gaming, but did NOT accomplish my top of the stack. Major error? Picking too many games I wouldn't play with my family.

Final stats: 70 plays
Rattlebox Games Playtests:
0

Top of the stack:
- Student Bodies - FAIL
- Moa - FAIL
- The Expanse - played 10/14, 10/17
REPEAT - Gearseed / Synod- played 10/17, 10/19

10 for 10:
70 games played as of October 1
Gloomhaven (18 → 19) (10/28)
Arkham Horror LCG (13 → 16) (10/18, 10/21, 10/28)
Terra Mystica (11 → 13) (10/08, 10/31)
Century: Golem Edition (10)
Stuffed Fables (7)
Pandemic: Legacy Sn 2 (8)
Ex Libris (3)
Mottainai (4)
Roll for the Galaxy (5 → 6) (10/08)
Via Nebula (3)
XX plays as of the end of October

First plays this month:
(76 new to me games as of October 1)
Welcome To... (10/04)
The Mind (10/04)
Carcassonne (10/07)
Dice Forge (10/13)
Innovation (10/13)
The Expanse (10/14)
Smile (10/14)
Gearseed (10/17)
Pocket Mars (10/17)
Synod (10/19)
Favor of the Pharaoh (10/27)
Tyrus (10/29)
88 new-to-me games tried so far this year.

Out of the Dust plays this month:
A Touch of Evil (12/18/2016 → 10/28/2018) 1 year, 10 months, 10 days
 
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11. Board Game: 1960: The Making of the President [Average Rating:7.60 Overall Rank:193]
Board Game: 1960: The Making of the President
Brendan Riley
United States
La Grange
Illinois
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November 2018

November 1: It's looking to be a busy month, so I picked a couple smaller games from the collection that need trying. Here's hoping we can get these going.

November 30: I got a practice play of MOA in, but no real play. ARGH. 1960 looks like it won't get played until the next election season, so the roll over will be MOA again.

Final stats: 56 plays of 37 games
Rattlebox Games Playtests:
0
Most played game, 4 way tie:
- One Night Ultimate Werewolf (4)
- Werewords (4)
- The Mind (4)
- Welcome To... (4)

Top of the stack:
- 1960: The Making of the President FAIL
- Kingsport Festival (played 11/27/18)
- Gone Fishing! (played 11/12/18)
REPEAT - Moa FAILish

10 for 10:
71 games played as of November 1
Gloomhaven (20)
Arkham Horror LCG (16 → 17) (11/3/18)
Terra Mystica (13 → 14) (11/12/18)
Century: Golem Edition (10 → 11) (11/22/18)
Stuffed Fables (7)
Pandemic: Legacy Sn 2 (8)
Ex Libris (3 → 4) (11/24/18)
Mottainai (4)
Roll for the Galaxy (6 → 7) (11/22/18)
Via Nebula (3)
73 plays as of the end of November

First plays this month:
(88 new to me games as of November 1)
Auztralia
Gone Fishing!
RobotLab
DropMix
Kingsport Festival
93 new-to-me games tried so far this year.

Out of the Dust plays this month:
Castle Panic, 1 play (1 year, 3 months, 30 days)
Epic Resort, 2 plays (1 year, 7 months, 17 days)
Bring Out Yer Dead, 1 play (1 year, 7 months, 24 days)
Space Hulk: Death Angel, 2 plays (2 years, 3 months, 28 days)
Gravwell, 1 play (1 year, 1 month, 3 days)
 
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12. Board Game: Cerebria: The Inside World [Average Rating:7.85 Overall Rank:832]
Board Game: Cerebria: The Inside World
Brendan Riley
United States
La Grange
Illinois
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December 2018

December 1: Feels like a bit of a cheat to pick Cerebria, as I already have plans to play it. But it is definitely at the top of my stack as well. The other two new games will be light ones I'm trying to get tried and played/sold/given away to cut down my shelf of opportunity before the holiday deluge of new games arrives.

Final stats: 110 plays of 53 games
Rattlebox Games Playtests:
1
Most played game: Castellion, Codenames: Harry Potter (x7 each)

Top of the stack:
- Cerebria: The Inside World (played 12/7/18)
- Canal Grande X
- Kings of Air and Steam (played 12/7/18, 12/14/18)
TWO-PEAT - Moa X

10 for 10:
73 games played as of November 30
Gloomhaven (20)
Arkham Horror LCG (17)
Terra Mystica (14))
Century: Golem Edition (11 → 12) (12/14/18)
Pandemic: Legacy Sn 2 (8 → 10) (12/31/18, 12/31/18)
Stuffed Fables (7 → 8)
Ex Libris (4 → 5) (12/15/18)
Mottainai (4 → 5) (12/23/18)
Roll for the Galaxy (7 → 8) (12/20/18)
Via Nebula (3 → 5) (12/8/18, 12/9/18)
81 plays as of the end of December. Missed by almost 20%. Youch.

First plays this month:
(93 new to me games as of December 1)
Sherlock Holmes: Jack the Ripper and West End Adventures
Cerebria: The Inside World
Forbidden Sky
Kings of Air and Steam
Ganz schön clever
1960: The Making of a President
Codenames: Harry Potter
MacGyver: The Escape Room Game
Space Base
Crypt
Gizmos
Expedition: The Roleplaying Card Game
Rainbow Knights
106 new-to-me games tried this year.

Out of the Dust plays this month:
Beyond Baker Street x2 (last play 11/11/17 → 12/14/18, 1 year, 1 month, 3 days)
Pocket Imperium (last play 07/15/15 → 12/27/18, 3 years, 5 months, 12 days)

 
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