Games in which my ratings differ significantly from the Geeks'
Yehuda Berlinger
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Like Chris Farrell, I don't believe in hyping games without being critical. I think half of the games that I have purchased had heaps of praise on them but were significantly flawed or just uninteresting. Luckily I have been able to trade these games to other people who actually liked them.

On the other hand, there are some games that people seem to have dismissed that I find enjoyable. Here they are.

By definition, most people will be disagreeing with me here, so fire away.

For games that I rate 9 or above, or 3 or below, the difference between my rating and the Geek's will usually be at least two points, since no games are higher than about 8.5 or lower than about 3. But generally, about a 2 point difference or higher is where I'm looking at.

Some things you should know:

- I don't really enjoy wargames, although I recognize that they can be good. The mechanic of maximizing your odds against a series of die rolls doesn't appeal to me, and neither does the fact that most games are basically won or lost and then continue to drag on until they're done. So I will ignore wargames, here.

- I am not one for highly lucky games, with some exceptions.

- A 'game' that has been solved, or is easily solved, is not a game for me; it is a puzzle.
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1. Board Game: Goa [Average Rating:7.62 Overall Rank:107]
Yehuda Berlinger
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MR: 6

I have flip flopped around about this one. I started out liking it a lot. Then, as I lost game after game due to bad flips trying to found colonies, I got sick of it. After eliminating the colony flip, it's now playable for me.

Still, it doesn't sing the way other people seem to think it does. Aside from the preeminance of cards, all of the rest of the paths to victory not only seem to be about equal in strength - therefore, irrelevant, which means little tension or competition for resources - but they even seem thematically equal.

The game could have used some boats like Puerto Rico, and a few other nicer bits to make you feel something. As it is, it feels like you're moving bingo markers.

I also think the 3 player auctions are imbalanced. 2 player seems to work best.
 
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2. Board Game: For Sale [Average Rating:7.22 Overall Rank:261]
Yehuda Berlinger
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MR: 6

My rating isn't that different from the Geek's, but my comments sure are. This game, like 6 Nimmt, is stripped down to a single game mechanic and loses gameplay value because of it. With so few actions and so few rounds, the luck of the blind bidding is essentially: did you guess right? Yes, you win; no, you didn't. A light game should have more suitable mechanics to make you feel that you have accomplished something.
 
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3. Board Game: Citadels [Average Rating:7.12 Overall Rank:316]
Yehuda Berlinger
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MR: 4

Sorry, Bruno. I think you're great, but this game is twenty years too late for me. After playing Magic, San Juan, and other games where all the buildings also have unique powers, a game where most buildings are worth nothing more than their cost just doesn't do it for me. The purple buildings are not interesting enough.

Added to this is the Assassin which makes the game boring if you are hit often enough; not that I mind bluffing games, but this is too random and too devestating for me. And the runaway winner problem.
 
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4. Board Game: Bohnanza [Average Rating:7.06 Overall Rank:367]
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MR: 4

Maybe it is just our group, but after numerous plays this never reached adult interest for me. Give away beans. A certain amount of haggling went on, but not enough. It feels more like a pastime than a game.
 
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5. Board Game: 6 nimmt! [Average Rating:6.89 Overall Rank:574]
Yehuda Berlinger
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MR: 6

Geek seems to think this is a nice filler. I think it is so-so.

The game gives you choices, but no real control. And the little control that there is is slight and repetitive.
 
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6. Board Game: Catan Card Game [Average Rating:6.76 Overall Rank:737]
Yehuda Berlinger
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MR: 4

I really tried to like this. I find this game too fiddly, and kind of unengaging. Each game you have access to all the cards, which means few surprises.
 
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7. Board Game: Kingdoms [Average Rating:6.64 Overall Rank:1045]
Yehuda Berlinger
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MR: 4

Another game that substitutes randomness for strategy. You place big cards on your castles, and little cards on theirs. Ayup. Anything else?
 
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8. Board Game: Scotland Yard [Average Rating:6.51 Overall Rank:1061]
Yehuda Berlinger
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MR: 4

I assume people rate this highly for nostalgia. Maybe I just have problems in general with co-oprative games. I haven't played many others. This one seems like a two player game to me. If the police could win in teams or individually, that would be interesting.

In any case, as a two player deduction game, I believe it is more of a puzzle than a game.
 
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9. Board Game: Werewolf [Average Rating:6.61 Overall Rank:1165]
Yehuda Berlinger
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MR: 4

Too much personality based guesswork. Too much player elimination. Alexfrog's post on Gone Gaming may cause me to reassess if this may still be playable if each player has a unique power. I doubt it, however, as it still comes down to personalities and guesswork without any real clues.
 
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10. Board Game: Once Upon a Time: The Storytelling Card Game [Average Rating:6.46 Overall Rank:1278]
Yehuda Berlinger
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MR: 1

A nice idea, a terrible game. If it's about story telling, then the cards drag down the story telling with hokey cliche elements. If it's a game, the object is to interrupt someone? That's not a game. Can you really feel good about winning a game about interupting stories?

If you want to tell stories, tell stories. If you want to play a game, this isn't it.
 
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11. Board Game: Boggle [Average Rating:6.19 Overall Rank:1959]
Yehuda Berlinger
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MR: 7

This game is superior to Scrabble in many ways - it is shorter, there is less need to memorize the dictionary, and there are a few different strategies. Ultimately, Scrabble is more of a lifetime challenge, but you can't really be good at Scrabble without being good at Boggle.
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12. Board Game: Rat-a-Tat Cat [Average Rating:6.19 Overall Rank:2452]
Yehuda Berlinger
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MR: 4

Like Gin Rummy but not as structured. There has to be a penalty for trying to go out. I guess people like the cat pictures.
 
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13. Board Game: Apples to Apples [Average Rating:5.90 Overall Rank:3149] [Average Rating:5.90 Unranked]
Yehuda Berlinger
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MR: 5

This is a game that scores higher the first few times you play, but after that is no longer interesting.

The exception seems to be teenagers, who have an enormously good time saying how the adjectives they won describe their personalities.
 
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14. Board Game: Mastermind [Average Rating:5.49 Overall Rank:14314]
Yehuda Berlinger
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MR: 1

This is solvable guys, solvable. And it's a puzzle, not a game.
 
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15. Board Game: Dominoes [Average Rating:5.44 Overall Rank:14955]
Yehuda Berlinger
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MR: 2

There must be an enjoyable way to play this that I don't know about. Usually, one person picks and the other one wins.
 
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16. Board Game: Chinese Checkers [Average Rating:5.08 Overall Rank:15271]
Yehuda Berlinger
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MR: 7

Another game that I think most people feel is too simple.

Unlike Checkers, this game I usually win through some nifty long term planning. If this game has been solved, however, I don't know about it.
 
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17. Board Game: Checkers [Average Rating:4.86 Overall Rank:15307]
Yehuda Berlinger
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MR: 7

This game is (almost) all about the single piece advantage.

The small board gives the feeling that it is should be simple enough. I don't feel that way, yet. I haven't mastered it, and until I do, I can't see giving it a lower rating.
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18. Board Game: Catan: Cities & Knights – 5-6 Player Extension [Average Rating:7.14 Unranked] [Average Rating:7.14 Unranked]
Yehuda Berlinger
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MR: 4

Can't understand why this one is so high. 4 hours, man.
 
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