Games That Are Rip-offs of Other Games
Drew Spencer
United States
Tucson
Arizona
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Working in a game shop, I try out nearly every new game that comes through the door, and pretty soon I started realizing that I could explain half of them with "It's just like X, except..." This list is about those games where the 'except' part is very short.

NOTE: This does not mean the game is either good or bad. Usually they tend to be about as good or slightly better than the original.
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1. Board Game: Hearts & Spades [Average Rating:5.74 Unranked]
Drew Spencer
United States
Tucson
Arizona
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Reading the rules I found myself muttering, "Okay, just like Skip-bo... also just like Skip-bo... again, just like Skip-bo..." Basically the only difference is that two of the sequential piles are hearts only and the other two are spades only.
 
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2. Board Game: Grass [Average Rating:5.95 Overall Rank:4300]
Drew Spencer
United States
Tucson
Arizona
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If you like Milles Bournes but find car racing less exciting than selling illegal drugs, this game might be for you. Actually the modifications make it slightly more interesting than Milles Bournes, since it adds trading.
 
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3. Board Game: The Spoils [Average Rating:6.93 Overall Rank:2854] [Average Rating:6.93 Unranked]
Drew Spencer
United States
Tucson
Arizona
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Exactly like Magic: the Gathering, with only a few minor improvements. Even the keywords are basically MtG mechanics. Still, I have to admit I love the theme and the artwork.
 
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4. Board Game: The Curse of the Ruby Rhino [Average Rating:3.85 Overall Rank:15014]
Drew Spencer
United States
Tucson
Arizona
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There are actually a lot of games that, for god knows what reason, are just rip-offs of LCR. No further proof of divine abandonment is needed.
 
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5. Board Game: Morgan's Revenge [Average Rating:4.40 Overall Rank:14385]
Drew Spencer
United States
Tucson
Arizona
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All I can say is that it takes some serious eggs to rip off DREIDEL.
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6. Board Game: Bull Craps [Average Rating:3.00 Unranked]
Drew Spencer
United States
Tucson
Arizona
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Transcript of a very short meeting at Endless Games:

Suit#1: Pass the Pigs has been very successful. People love those little pigs, but we need something new!
Suit#2: How about rolling some other farm mammal? Maybe bulls?
Suit#1: Sure, sounds great. But instead of just copying the rules to Pass the Pigs, we should come up with something really original!
Suit#2: Why?
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7. Board Game: Aquädukt [Average Rating:6.42 Overall Rank:1937]
Dvonn Yinsh
Canada
Etobicoke
Ontario
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The first one that came to mind for me was Aquadukt ripping off Santiago, with Aquadukt being far inferior.
 
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8. Board Game: Killer Bunnies and the Quest for the Magic Carrot [Average Rating:5.49 Overall Rank:15085] [Average Rating:5.49 Unranked]
VETRHUS of Rogaland
United States
Milwaukee
Wisconsin
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An ash I know, Yggdrasil its name. With water white is the great tree wet; thence come the dews that fall in the dales. Green by Urth's well does it ever grow.
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Killer Bunnies: It is just like Nuclear War, except for the lottery to determine the winner at the end.
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9. Board Game: UNO [Average Rating:5.35 Overall Rank:15235]
Chris Ferejohn
United States
Mountain View
California
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Pitying fools as hard as I can...
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Crazy Eights, obviously, though its been so ingrained in the culture, I guess its kind of its own thing.
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10. Board Game: Amazing Space Venture [Average Rating:5.72 Overall Rank:11691]
Confusion Under Fire
United Kingdom
Warrington
Cheshire
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Its been described as Carcassonne in space, space stations that get points for every tile that is placed around them, space routes that you earn points from for every tile in the route and points gleaned for every galaxy that is connected to another galaxy, theres more to it than that but after reading the initial rules it just shouted "Carcossonne in space" (done in the manner of "pigs in space" from the muppet show).
 
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11. Board Game: Race for the Galaxy [Average Rating:7.77 Overall Rank:49]
Drew Spencer
United States
Tucson
Arizona
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I'll probably get some flak for including this one. It is a great game, but you gotta admit it's not far off from San Juan in space.
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12. Board Game: Grand Master [Average Rating:6.24 Overall Rank:10905]
Trencher for Life
United States
Slidell
Louisiana
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Mille Bornes with a combat mechanic slapped on.
 
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13. Board Game: Monopoly: NASCAR [Average Rating:4.80 Overall Rank:14145]
John Morgan
United States
Tucson
Arizona
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OWG, This is JUST LIKE Monopoly but with NASCAR slapped on, NASCAR can you believe it. Don't even get me started on Barbie or Olympic Monopoly!

OK, Just kidding but I had to do it!
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14. Board Game: The Challenge [Average Rating:5.83 Overall Rank:11413]
Steffan O'Sullivan
United States
Plymouth
NH
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Only slightly modified version of Encounters with not even a hint of credit to the original game, designer or publisher anywhere in the rules or on the box. yuk
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15. Board Game: Hi Ho! Cherry-O [Average Rating:3.58 Overall Rank:15328]
Mark Hamburg
United States
Tacoma
Washington
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Here's one that surprised me this Christmas. My daughter got this as a present (not from me!) and I discovered that the new version of the game is a ripoff of HABA's Orchard. It now includes cooperative rules where the players try to gather the fruit before a puzzle is finished. The only real difference is that it uses a spinner rather than a die.

This isn't a bad thing, Hi Ho! Cherry-O by the original rules is abysmal and I'm glad that Hasbro is trying to improve the quality of their games for kids.
 
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