Bad Games You've Played A Lot
Randy Cox
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Clemson
South Carolina
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Please go to the following link (sort of):

http://www.boardgamegeek.com/collection/user/YOURUSERID?
sort=numplays&sortdir=desc&columns=title%7Crating%7Cbggrating%7Cplays
&minbggrating=0&bggrating=6&played=1&ff=1&subtype=boardgame

No, not really that link, as there is no BGG user named YOURUSERID. Just highlight that big link, right click and copy it, and paste it into your url (address) box in your browser. Change the word YOURUSERID to whatever your userID is. Now, if your ID has a space in it, like mine, you have to type %20 in place of the space. (e.g. "Randy%20Cox")

What you'll get is a list of games you've played which are not well liked by BGGers, at least in terms of the "BGG Average" (previously known as the Bayesian Average).

How 'bout telling us about that list of games, or at least the top few. And since many of them may be kid games, also tell us the highest one on your list which is a non-kid game.

See my entry for an example.

I suspect the link will be truncated, so here are the pieces of it so you can tell what it says:

http://www.boardgamegeek.com/collection/user/
YOURUSERID?
sort=numplays&sortdir=desc&
columns=title%7Crating%7Cbggrating%7Cplays&
minbggrating=0&bggrating=6
&played=1&ff=1&subtype=boardgame
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1. Board Game: Guess Who? [Average Rating:4.77 Overall Rank:15420]
Randy Cox
United States
Clemson
South Carolina
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My Top 10 list using this link is almost entirely kid games...

Guess Who (1979) Plays: 58
Hide & Seek Safari (2005) Plays: 54
Crazy Mixed Up Zoo (2006) Plays: 29
Kids On Stage (1993) Plays: 26
Cranium Cariboo (1998) Plays: 21
Hedbanz for Kids Plays: 17
Max (1986) Plays: 14
Into the Forest (1974) Plays: 14
Sports Illustrated Baseball (1972) Plays: 13
Don't Break the Ice (1965) Plays: 13

So, it's obvious that the "bad games of BGG" that I tend to play are kid games. With the lone exception being S.I. Baseball. And that game gets short shrift not because it's rated low, but because so few people have bothered to rate it (86 raters give it a 7.30).

The next "non-kid" game that shows up on my list, with 11 plays, is Nerdy Wordy.

Now, if I get all cute and click the heading "Geek Rating" (twice), I find out that the "best worst BGG game" I've ever played is the aptly named Dog.
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2. Board Game: Cranium Cariboo [Average Rating:6.10 Overall Rank:5359]
Billy McBoatface
United States
Lexington
Massachusetts
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Kids games for me also:

Cranium Cariboo - 150 plays
Monkey Madness - 103 plays
Reinier Knizia's Amazing Flea Circus - 88 plays
Crazy Eights - 65 plays
Hisss - 62 plays

And so on. I've enjoyed every one of these hundreds of plays.

But the first adult game is...ummm...

Double or Nothing - 23 plays. I play this mostly with my daughter, but it isn't meant to be a kid's game, so I'll count it as the first non-kids game that I've played a lot that is low rated. I do think that it is underrated here, it's a really fun little press your luck game.
 
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3. Board Game: Monopoly [Average Rating:4.39 Overall Rank:15441]
Zoe M
Canada
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There was one summer when my sister and I tried to play a game of Monopoly every day. This game gets a bad rap because most people play it wrong, introducing more and more money so that the game never ends.

No, it's not a game that tends to get played now that we've discovered Euros, but I still think it's better than most people make it out to be.

I cheated, though; Monopoly isn't actually on the list. My list of bad games on BGG isn't really reflective of the "bad" games I've played most, because I don't regularly record plays and certainly don't have records of what I played when I was a kid. But for the record, here's the list:

Scrabble Apple
Bridge Troll
Monopoly City
Quivive
Imaginiff
Hummmzinger
Tribond

The most noteworthy one on this list is Bridge Troll. As far as I know it was intended as a serious game that could appeal to real gamers, and it just didn't work.

Hummmzinger is also not for kids. It doesn't even have a Geek Rating, so I'm not sure it deserves to be on this list. Anyway, it's not a serious game, but I don't think it's bad either. There's a time and a place for humming oldies and trying to guess what they are; I had a blast the one time I played it. Well worth my $2 at Goodwill.
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4. Board Game: Punch! [Average Rating:6.28 Overall Rank:9577]
Maciek U
United States
Cromwell
Connecticut
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My numbers are low, but here they are:

Punch! Plays: 16
Al Cabohne Plays: 15
Clocktowers Plays: 8
Sunken City Plays: 8
Marco Polo Expedition Plays: 7
Fangfrisch Plays: 5


Punch! is a great game for 2. It's sort of like war, where you simultaneously lay down cards and see who's got the higher value. But that's not all. It's got other cards that match the way a boxing match would go, so it really feels like you're boxing when playing these cards and if you hum the music from Rocky during this, the immersion is incredible. This is such a fun and quick game, I love it. Some strategy, but for the most part outwitting your opponent. Very engrossing I must say.
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5. Board Game: Savannah Tails [Average Rating:6.28 Overall Rank:3610]
Jon
United States
Urbana
Illinois
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My list is:

Savannah Tails - 5 plays

Inotaizu - 3 plays

These are imported games most people don't know about. They aren't bad, just under-appreciated.


Careers - 1 play
Quiddler - 1 play

These are my wife's games. It doesn't matter if they are good or not.



Bandits - 1 play

This is a card game my kids received from their uncle. I'm not even sure it's bad so much as just "meh".
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6. Board Game: Sequence [Average Rating:5.95 Overall Rank:3072]
howl hollow howl
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Oregon
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I don't record plays, so I'm just gonna ignore your intro and address the Geeklist title.

My wife and I played this a ton when I was attending grad school in Wisconsin. I owned about 5 other games at the time, including Entdecker, Mississippi Queen, and Streetcar, all of which saw play, but all of those required clearing out both time and space. Sequence was the lesser game, but we could pull it out when relaxing on the futon, so it got played much more often.

We've since migrated to other staples (Gin, Take It Easy, the Europa Tour family), but I was foolish enough to hang onto this, and now my daughter is into it.
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7. Board Game: Double or Nothing [Average Rating:5.67 Overall Rank:8203]
Chris Ferejohn
United States
Mountain View
California
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Double or Nothing: (Geek/Avg. Rating: 5.64/5.74) 7 plays
An enjoyable, mechanically sound push-your-luck card game that Reiner Knizia designed while in the shower. Thematically and components-wise, it's fairly poor, which probably is responsible for the low rating. One of the Uberplay titles that Tanga was unloading like mad a few years ago (I either got it for $.99 or maybe for the cost of shipping). We've had a fair amount of fun with it as a 10 minute filler.

Stick Around: (Geek/Avg. Rating: NA/5.58) 6 plays
A very simple 2-player abstract somewhat reminiscent of 2-player Blokus. For some reason my wife destroys me at this whenever we play. Again, it's a 10-minute distraction, and it does that just fine. Would be a good candidate to introduce to a kid after they have "solved" tic-tac-toe.

Easter Island: (Geek/Avg. Rating: 5.97/6.57) 6 plays
2 player almost-abstract with a funky theme (Easter Island statues shooting lasers). Only marginally qualifies for the list due to few ratings. Decent enough game, but kind of surprised I decided to buy it in retrospect (I was looking for things my wife would like, and she likes this OK, but not a huge hit).

 
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8. Board Game: Winhard [Average Rating:5.26 Overall Rank:13267]
Joe Huber

Westborough
Massachusetts
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Games ranked #4000 or lower which I've played 10+ times, 1996-present

Winhard* - 25
Pico* - 24
Connect Four - 19
Maestro* - 18
Suppenkasper - 15
Die Schlangen von Delhi* - 13
Zwergen Ziehen - 13
Nodwick* - 12
Indus* - 12
Minister* - 10
Venice Connection - 10
Banana Republic* - 10
Savannah Cafe - 10
Das letzte Paradies - 10
Schwarzarbeit* - 10

* - games currently in my collection
 
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9. Board Game: James Clavell's Shogun Card Game [Average Rating:6.18 Overall Rank:9208]
Mike Spoto
United States
Omaha
Nebraska
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Title My Rating / Geek Rating
======================================= ========= ===========
Escalation! (2007) 9 / 5.624
James Clavell's Shogun Card Game (1983) 9 / 5.594
Infinite City (2009) 7 / 5.950
King's Court (1983) 9 / 5.608
Emira (2006) 9 / 5.857

James Clavell's Shogun Card Game is my most played and highest rated game on the list. I've played it a lot longer than I've been on the geek (and am terrible about logging plays), so all in all I have well over a hundred plays of this one. We played it every week back in high school/college. A great card game to take a break with and really fun to play. King's Court is another great one - UNO on steroids. Funny how the light fun ones keep getting played over the years and the heavy ones drop out.
 
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10. Board Game: Mmm ... Brains! [Average Rating:5.33 Overall Rank:14523]
Ben Lott
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Mason
Michigan
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Mostly lighter games and party games on my list. I don't play many kids games, so they won't be found on my list. It's a shame that these fun games get rated so harshly. In the words of someone I know "For whatever reason, people who pride themselves in being a 'game geek' just can't accept that having fun playing a game is an acceptable result."

Mmm ... Brains!
Tin Soldiers
Rage
Double or Nothing
Cranium Whoonu
Faces
Lo Yo!
True Colors
You Must Be an Idiot!
Combo King
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11. Board Game: Rod Hockey [Average Rating:7.17 Overall Rank:2864]
Dave Peters
United States
Belmont
California
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Here's my first few on that list:

Rod Hockey: 44 plays
Tally Ho!: 34
Cranium Zigity: 28
Animalia: 27
Professor Noggin's Wildlife of North America: 23
Lord of the Rings: 18
Die Honigbären: 17
Arbos: 15

I guess Tally Ho! isn't necessarily a kids game. But all of them are games my children enjoy (or had historically enjoyed. Of the last four, only Arbos has been played recently.)
 
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12. Board Game: Cthulhu Rising [Average Rating:5.16 Overall Rank:14648]
sean johnson
United States
Edinburgh
Indiana
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Cthulhu Rising: 32 plays
Ninja Versus Ninja: 16 plays
Bonnie and Clyde: 12 plays
Arcana: 11 Plays
Robot Masters: 11 plays
Little Italy 10 Plays

With the possible exception of Ninja versus Ninja and Little Italy, none of my most played games that others consider bad are kids games. Cthulhu Rising is a 2 player tile playing game that my wife loves. Robot Masters is similar. No surprise that both are made by Reiner Knizia. Bonnie and Clyde is a good 2 player Rummy game, and this is from some one who really does not like Rummy.

I am surprised that Arcana is ranked so low.

After Cash n Guns, Little Italy is the best light game for six players that I have played. I guess the one thing all of these games have in common is they are lighter games. I don't understand why for some people "light" equals bad
 
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13. Board Game: Fantasy Forest [Average Rating:5.83 Overall Rank:11153]
Tony Rupp
United States
Burlington
Iowa
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Fantasy Forest - 85 plays
Daddy Cool - 43
Don't Wake Daddy - 19
Oi! Dat's My Leg! - 6
Cardcassonne - 1

These are mostly children games. Fantasy Forest is my daughters favorite game.
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14. Board Game: The Secret Door [Average Rating:6.22 Overall Rank:5402]
John Cobb
United States
Conway
Arkansas
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To continue a trend, mostly games I play with my kids but I have to say BGGers have got it wrong. Secret Door and Max are both fun kid games. And yes, while Dread Pirate stinks, Intruder is a blast. I'm not sure why Intruder gets the shaft on here.

Game BGG Rating
The Secret Door 5.666 Plays: 5
Max 5.895 Plays: 5
Caves & Claws 5.541 Plays: 4
Dread Pirate: Buccaneer's Revenge 5.630 Plays: 3
Marrakesh 5.750 Plays: 3
Intruder 5.829 Plays: 3
Cranium Zooreka! 5.413 Plays: 2
Munchkin 5.849 Plays: 2
Jenga 5.390 Plays: 2
Mouse Trap 4.379 Plays: 2
Mille Bornes 5.607 Plays: 1
 
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15. Board Game: Stonehenge: An Anthology Board Game [Average Rating:5.41 Unranked] [Average Rating:5.41 Unranked]
Thomas Taylor
United States
Castro Valley
California
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I played it once. Which was WAY too much.

I think I might have been at a con once where someone played it. Again. Way too much.

Never Forget.
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16. Board Game: Straw [Average Rating:6.20 Overall Rank:3169]
Todd N.
United States
Medford
Oregon
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I only listed the ones with 10 or more plays, so here is the list:

Straw: 25
Sumo!: 20
Flippin' Frogs: 17
Army of Frogs: 13
Infinite City: 13
Aquarius: 12
Knights: 10

We actually honestly like all these games, the only one that falls under the kid game excuse is Flipping Frogs, but me and my wife actually enjoy that one too. Though I do believe the play total for Sumo! in reality is probably three times higher than whats recorded, I always forget to record my sessions of that game and end up making a really low ballpark figure. Yep, you got it; I like to play a game that has little cards and hideous looking fat guy pawns wearing diapers. Sometimes I like to use the one in the blue diaper as the robber in Catan.
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17. Board Game: Dragonheart [Average Rating:6.59 Overall Rank:1319]
Steve K
United Kingdom
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Dragonheart Plays: 26
Parade Plays: 17
Pinguin-Party Plays: 15
Ziegen Kriegen Plays: 14
Trader Plays: 11
Fluxx Plays: 10

No kids games. All relatively light card games, and 5 of those 6 relatively rare, so "bad game" probably means "not played by many on bgg". OK. Maybe Fluxx is a little different, but it's still OK.

I've only listed games I've played 10 or more times.

 
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Russ Williams
Poland
Wrocław
Dolny Śląsk
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I don't really buy the idea that games with a rating up to 6 are "bad". I'd consider 3 or 4 to be "bad". But whatever.

The top 10 I get are all abstract (or very lightly themed) games, so I'm not surprised they're not more highly rated at BGG, where Euros, AT, and wargames seem more popular.

#1 (Quads) is a very nice earlier game from Kris "GIPF" Burm.

Format : Title my-current-rating BGG-current-rating my-current-plays

Quads 8 5.767 Plays: 51
Inside 8 5.664 Plays: 44
Kogworks 7 5.685 Plays: 36
Army of Frogs 7 5.904 Plays: 33
Quinamid 7 5.895 Plays: 32
Catchup 7 N/A Plays: 28
Axiom 7 5.975 Plays: 28
Logan Stones 7 5.532 Plays: 23
Glik 7 5.800 Plays: 19
Tara: Ireland's Royal Board Game 7 5.785 Plays: 19

Finally the 11th game is highly themed, a Polish zombie card game that I have found to be better and more atmospheric than other zombie games:

Zombiaki 7 5.808 Plays: 18
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19. Board Game: Geister & Gespenster [Average Rating:5.48 Overall Rank:12589]
Caleb
United States
Seminole
Florida
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It appears that the list also shows games that I have rated much LOWER than the BGG average. But for games where I'm higher, here they are:


Geister und Gespenster 24 plays
Blink 12 plays
Snail's Pace Race 10 plays
My Word! 8 plays
Quicksand 6 plays
Caves & Claws 6 plays
Hisss 5 plays
The Secret Door 5 plays
Candy Land: Dora the Explorer Edition 5 plays
Victory: The Blocks of War 4 plays



As others have observed, most are kids' games. But I'm surprised to see Victory on there. It just doesn't get much love.

By the way, Geister und Gespenster is a GREAT kids game!
 
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20. Board Game: Chinese Checkers [Average Rating:5.07 Overall Rank:15385]
Ian Klinck
Canada
Toronto
Ontario
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Chinese Checkers: 13
Things...: 8
Fluxx: 6
The Market at Kos: 3

Chinese Checkers is an old favourite of my wife's (and she's pretty good at it). I don't mind it, so we picked up a set, and we play it once in a while.

My wife likes "Things..." as a party game. I'm not real fond of it, but I'll play.

I've played "Fluxx" more times than listed here, from before I started logging plays, but we've grown tired of it, and it's on my trade list now.

"The Market at Kos" should really be rated much higher. It's a print-and-play, so it just doesn't have enough ratings.
 
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21. Board Game: N-Tropy [Average Rating:5.79 Overall Rank:9801]
Kyle
United States
Up Nort' Der
Wisconsin
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We must move forward, not backward, upward, not forward, and always twirling, twirling, twirling towards freedom!
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http://www.boardgamegeek.com/collection/user/woelf?sort=nump...

N-Tropy (2004) - 5.566 - 57 Plays
Bounce It-In Game (1984) - 5.702 - 31 Plays
Pirates of the Spanish Main (2004) - 5.826 - 9 Plays
Vanished! (1990) - 5.602 - 7 Plays
MechWarrior: Age of Destruction (2002) - 5.855 - 7 Plays
Sorry! Express (2007) - 5.331 - 7 Plays

My most-played "bad" game is one I found in Ireland two summers ago, and I have almost three times as many plays of that than anyone else on BGG. I think the relatively low rating is due largely to the bias there seems to be against dexterity games, and the fact that few people seem to know about the game (it's not available in the U.S. as far as I know). It does rate higher than Jenga at least, since it is a much better game.

The oddly hyphenated Bounce It-In Game is the most-played "kids" game on the list. It's another dexterity game, but instead of stacking pieces of wood it involved bouncing plastic balls into a target. Essentially, it's a kid-friendly version of beer pong.

PotSM is my most-played non-dexterity game in the list, but it rates low largely because there is so much hatred for collectible games in general. Granted, it did have its share of rules issues early on, but those have all long since been ironed out (largely in part to my own efforts). The fact that the company that produced it has been out of business for almost two years doesn't help either. I actually have many more plays of the game than what is shown here, but the majority came before I started recording them.
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22. Board Game: WWE Raw Deal [Average Rating:6.83 Overall Rank:4791]
Rauli Kettunen
Finland
Oulu
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WWE Raw Deal: 1838 plays (and keeping to a steady 60 plays/month average these days)
Spellfire: 91 plays (plus triple-digits in my pre-logging days)
Warmaster: 69 plays (same deal as Spellfire)
Spider-Man: 48 plays (all this year)
Conan Collectible Card Game: 43 plays

Three CCGs and a filler among them. All oozing with theme, just the way I like my games. Also, no lack of conflict/PvP in these games.
 
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23. Board Game: Thunder Road [Average Rating:6.61 Overall Rank:2431]
Professor of Pain
United States
St. Joseph
Minnesota
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Thunder Road; GR* 5.966; 19 Plays
Killer Bunnies; GR 5.641; 15 plays
Othello; GR 5.943; 15 Plays

and just one play each for Rage and Quiddler - these five games are the only ones that showed up for me.

Almost all of the plays for the three games first mentioned were before I learned of BGG and before I learned about "good" board games. I used to love Killer Bunnies, but have since learned better, although my spouse won't let me get rid of it...

There are a couple of important lessons here. One, a rating of 6 (or 5.966) cannot truly be indicative of a "bad" game because Thunder Road kicks ass, even if it is horribly simple, lacking in strategic depth, and otherwise insipid. Two, I apparently just don't play bad games, suggesting either my taste is excellent, or thoroughly mainstream (w/in the BGG worldview, that is).


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