Outdated Mechanics and Themes
Mikko Ämmälä
Finland
Oulu
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This is a hate list. As years have passed by with this great boardgame hobby I have evolved...the evolution unfortunately has made more and more released "good" games too familiar without any play straight from the scratch. You have seen these things just too many times again and again. And frankly: Some of the most popular mechanics are just outdated.
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1. Board Game: Notre Dame [Average Rating:7.38 Overall Rank:217]
Mikko Ämmälä
Finland
Oulu
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After magnificent Caylus this "add an influence cube to gain something or to setup your game" surely got old fast. Whether it is Pillars of the Earth, Leonardo, Age of Empires III or Notre Dame the mechanic has turn outdated and boring very fast.

The most utterly boring sub-system of the above mechanic is that you have to place WORKERS/SLAVES/APPRENTICES/ETC. These just add the component quantity to the box but not add any enjoyment. See great Brass where industry works fine without needing worker placement.
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2. Board Game: Modern Art [Average Rating:7.34 Overall Rank:226]
Mikko Ämmälä
Finland
Oulu
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No more bidding. This has gone overboard. Closed biddings are incredibly stupid. Open biddings are time consuming. Biddings for starting positions drag games. Biddings are prone to analysis paralysis. The biddings are OK if they just add spice but to make whole game bidfest is just TOO MUCH. Once-a-round bids are ultimately the best choice for biddings the best example of this good bidding mechanism can be found from excellent GOA.
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3. Board Game: The Princes of Florence [Average Rating:7.57 Overall Rank:116]
Mikko Ämmälä
Finland
Oulu
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No more medieval building game which is set in the Europe. The theme has been so outdated for years already. Add the scarce resources and "interesting" aspect that your gaming resembles actual WORKING is just one cup too much. I will pass.
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4. Board Game: Alhambra [Average Rating:7.03 Overall Rank:393]
Mikko Ämmälä
Finland
Oulu
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No more randomish scoring. Even the most excellent setup for good play can be ruined with scoring card releaved at most worst moment. A fine classic Union Pacific is also almost ruined by this.
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5. Board Game: Maharaja: The Game of Palace Building in India [Average Rating:7.15 Overall Rank:505]
Mikko Ämmälä
Finland
Oulu
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I hate too simple winning conditions which most of the time make 1 or 2 final rounds of the game pointless as the winner can be seen too early. Borderline excellent Power Grid also suffers with this syndrome.



 
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6. Board Game: Power Grid [Average Rating:7.92 Overall Rank:28]
Mikko Ämmälä
Finland
Oulu
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Unnecessary maths. I have no problem with this as I am very talented with quick calculations but for most players at some point games start to drag and then you have a classis analysis-paralysis situation as a player starts to go overcomplex with his/her calculations. Add the endless bidfest and there you have an extra hour spent soon for this game.
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7. Board Game: Indonesia [Average Rating:7.81 Overall Rank:189]
Mikko Ämmälä
Finland
Oulu
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Money quality. Two rules. No more plastic and generic coins like in Age of Steam/Brass and please no paper money. There is only one game I know were paper money is all excellent, good and justified and that is Imperial.

Otherwise fantastic Indonesia has really subpar money components...sigh...
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8. Board Game: Hamburgum [Average Rating:7.07 Overall Rank:689]
Mikko Ämmälä
Finland
Oulu
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No Church building. No further comment to this boring "flavour".
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9. Board Game: Reef Encounter [Average Rating:7.16 Overall Rank:487]
Mikko Ämmälä
Finland
Oulu
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No more "cute" themes on games. Some ideas look good or clever on paper (by 3-5year mindset players I suppose) but in reality they are extremely repulsive. For example quite OK game Scepter of Zavandor really suffers from "pottermania" where apprentice wizards look and make cutish things rather than aim for developing a good set of means to curse/fireball/traumatize the opponents.
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10. Board Game: Liberté [Average Rating:7.17 Overall Rank:699]
Mikko Ämmälä
Finland
Oulu
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No more "you can do only one and only thing" at your turn. Usually this mechanic is "play or draw" mechanic. I want to make big things during my turn and one action rarely is enough for that. Ticket to Ride also somewhat suffers with this. See masterpiece Struggle of Empires where scarce looking two actions can actually be a lot more in reality with good infrastructure and with good planning of powerfull actions.

Liberte ain't the best example but only one action/turn is just massive pain when you are stuck with bad cards in your hand and you have only one action/turn to try make things better.

Rondel mechanic (Antike, Imperial, Hamburgum) is very good counter-example of above. At these makes one action/your turn works lovely.
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11. Board Game: 1841 [Average Rating:7.81 Overall Rank:2810]
Nathan Beeler
United States
Seattle
Washington
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Pretty soon, you've been around long enough that you're old.
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No more train games, please! It's a tired theme and it's been done to death. Who could possibly want another train game?
 
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12. Board Game: Heroscape Master Set: Rise of the Valkyrie [Average Rating:7.42 Overall Rank:270] [Average Rating:7.42 Unranked]
Curt Collins
United States
Pittsburgh
Pennsylvania
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Roll these 20 dice to check for damage.

This was outdated when it was first used. I'm sick of games that reward blind luck to this extent.

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13. Board Game: Monopoly [Average Rating:4.39 Overall Rank:15339]
Lindsay Thomas
United Kingdom
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Surely this is the most outdated mechanic?

Roll a dice to move round and round a Monopoly track.

70% of the non-wargames we bought in the '70's used the Monopoly mechanic: Ulcers, Ratrace, Fortune, Trivial Pursuit, Exploration, Totopoly, High Finance, Stockbroker, Masterpiece etc etc etc

Dice should be used for wiping out Russian Infantry in 3:1 attacks in Stalingrad.

Or gathering wood in Settlers of Catan.

Or sinking the US fleet in Victory in the Pacific.

Or for deciding who goes 1st in Puerto Rico.

They shouldn't be used for moving round and round a Monopoly track like a mindless Zombie.


Game design in the '00's is alive and flourishing with a wide range of mechanics compared to the '70's.
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14. Board Game: Magic: The Gathering [Average Rating:7.45 Overall Rank:156] [Average Rating:7.45 Unranked]
Warren Forrest
Canada
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The "collectible" aspect of CCGs

Die. All of you.

Even the good ones would have better if they had not been collectible.
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15. Board Game: Cuba [Average Rating:7.16 Overall Rank:418]
Dave Lartigue
United States
Springfield
Massachusetts
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I am tired of turning resources into goods and then loading goods onto ships to turn into victory points.
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16. Board Game: To Court the King [Average Rating:6.47 Overall Rank:1403]
Dave Lartigue
United States
Springfield
Massachusetts
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This game is pretty sad anyway, but the specific mechanic in it that needs to die is the "X-1 Foozles, Where X = # of Players". It's a lame attempt to add fake interaction into a game, almost as braindead as "How will the players accomplish so-and-so? I know, there will be an AUCTION!"
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