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Subject: Two player coop that fits certain criteria rss

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Jonathan Meltzer
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Greetings! My wife and I are looking for our next two-player co-op game...something that can be played on a weeknight after work when we do not feel like playing Ghost Stories. We love Ghost Stories, and it has the right amount of setup time and play time and challenge. However, I have $65 to spend at our FLGS (gift certificate), so I am looking for advice.

We just got Mage Knight Board Game, but we realize that, though we love it so far (one time through the walk through scenario), it cannot be brought to the table in the 2-hour window that we usually have for a game after work.

We also have Legends of Andor, and though we like it, the setup takes too long in relation to the gameplay, and both together tend to take more than the time we could allot to it.

So, to recap:

1. Co-op (most important) that works well for two players
2. Takes two hours or less to set up, play, and take down
3. No zombies (not a genre that interests us)
4. Not Pandemic, Forbidden Island/Desert, or Hanabi (we own all three, and all three get played - of the three, Hanabi is the favorite)
5. Not Flash Point - we own this too, but never really got into it.

Possible interest in a deck builder, but we are not sure. If the game works well for four players, that is a bonus, but it must work well for two without feeling like we each have to take on more than one role to make it good.

Thoughts/recommendations much appreciated. Defenders of the Realm is a consideration, but it seems too Pandemic-ish. We liked Pandemic for a long time, but are more into fantasy/dungeon crawl than puzzly at the moment.

Thanks,

Mizerak
 
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esin .
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The Lord of the Rings: The Card Game
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Dezza
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I've not played it, but am interested in Pathfinder Adventure Card Game: Rise of the Runelords – Base Set. That might fit the requirements you've listed.
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Moe45673
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Hmmm. Look into:

Darkest Night (First edition)
Dungeons & Dragons: The Legend of Drizzt Board Game

 
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Jonathan Meltzer
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Thank you for the suggestions! Pathfinder we have looked at, and based on reviews and comments in another thread we got Mage Knight instead. Darkest Night looks cool, but perhaps takes too long based on info on the game's page here.

Drizzt is on the radar, though...does it really play in about an hour?

Lord of the Rings Card Game hits the theme jackpot (we both loved the movies, and I enjoyed the books too)...my only concern would be the money involved. I have heard that it can get quite expensive, and for now we need to stay around the $65 I mentioned earlier.

What about something like Legendary: A Marvel Deck Building Game? What do people think about whether that fits our criteria?

Thanks,

Mizerak
 
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esin .
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Mizerak wrote:
Thank you for the suggestions! Pathfinder we have looked at, and based on reviews and comments in another thread we got Mage Knight instead. Darkest Night looks cool, but perhaps takes too long based on info on the game's page here.

Drizzt is on the radar, though...does it really play in about an hour?

Lord of the Rings Card Game hits the theme jackpot (we both loved the movies, and I enjoyed the books too)...my only concern would be the money involved. I have heard that it can get quite expensive, and for now we need to stay around the $65 I mentioned earlier.

What about something like Legendary: A Marvel Deck Building Game? What do people think about whether that fits our criteria?

Thanks,

Mizerak


It's no more expensive than you allow it to be. Base set is $40 and comes with 3 scenarios to play through. Plenty of game there. If it strikes your fancy and if you want more you can choose to buy more decks. They're $15 each. Comes with a few player cards and a new encounter deck. The new scenarios really keep the game fresh. I believe there's also an OCTGN version of the game you could test out for free if you wanted.
 
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J P
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Legendary is good, although a couple cons come to mind:

1) random setup can absolutely kill you quickly, or make the game drag on forever. Conversely, deliberate setup might make it too easy

2) it won't really feel like co-op unless you get the 2nd or 3rd expansion.

3) Just like dominion, setup will take a long time. Longer, even.'

Good luck!
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Michael F
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Legendary is a good one, though I agree with J P's points.

Defenders of the Realm is a great game, but it may push your 2-hour requirement by just a bit.

One I think that would be good is Castle Panic. You should be able to pick up the base game and its expansion for right around $60. The game plays very quickly...it takes about 45 minutes tops for my wife and I to play from setup to take down. The base game tends to be a little easy, but with the expansion it really steps up in difficulty.

If you two don't mind playing multiple characters, Sentinels of the Multiverse is a must.

Also maybe Escape: The Curse of the Temple. Games never take longer than 10 minutes to play, and it can be really tense.
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Shadowrift might work, it's a 2-6 player deckbuilder, although it is a bit fiddly with 2 (several decks to refresh each round), and I would almost suggest banning buying the Priest for 2 players; otherwise the monsters come out really slowly. It definitely works very well with 4 players though.

Elder Sign is really light and very Yahtzee-like and because of that not my cup of tea but it is very popular among my friends. It gets progressively easier with more players, but if you also get the expansion it shouldn't be ridiculously easy with 4 players.

Agree completely with J P's opinion of Legendary.

I am actually looking for similar games as you right now and currently I have my eye especially on Mice and Mystics. Although I have never played it before it might also be worth it for you to look into.
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Jacovis
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I'd obviously suggest Legendary, but I want to point out that once you get used to Legendary, especially for two players only and using a web Randomizer, setup doesn't take that long at all, especially if you are organized.

I can set up a game of Legendary in about 6 minutes, and faster if both players shuffle different decks, and putting it away takes about the same amount of time. I don't think I'm super-humanly organized or fast at putting the game out or away, I just don't dink around when I do it. It is literally just cards, and if you keep them sorted into appropriate groups it is no problem.

Also, you can play two games, especially two player, in two hours no problem, even switching out a hero or two, or a scheme or a mastermind or whatever between games. Legendary definitely has a lot of replayability, exponentially increasing with each expansion.

It is also my wife's favorite coop game.

That said, Drizzt really has a long setup and break down time just because it has so many different bits. You'll be lucky to get a game done in 2 hours with setup and breakdown excepting some extremely bad luck in the dungeons.

Cheers!
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Marc Asselman
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Gláucio Reis
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Although they are better with more players, Witch of Salem and Star Trek: Expeditions fit your criteria.
 
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Mizerak wrote:
Lord of the Rings Card Game hits the theme jackpot (we both loved the movies, and I enjoyed the books too)...my only concern would be the money involved. I have heard that it can get quite expensive, and for now we need to stay around the $65 I mentioned earlier.

All you need is the box set to play and it's only $28 online. Don't let the amount of expansion product available intimidate you. In fact, you don't even want to add any of that until you're comfortable with 99% of the base card set. If it happens you enjoy the game then do what the rest of us did and buy an expansion or two every couple months and add them in at a pace you're comfortable with.

For couples co-op this is our #1 all-time favorite (tied with Arkham Horror which does not fit in your timeframe). It seems to be one of those love it or hate it games so I suggest watching some videos or etc.
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Whups, I forgot about the gift certificate aspect. Still, it's on the cheap side. And I didn't think of this until now but the number of Ghost Stories plays we've had since we've been into LotR equals zero FWIW.
 
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Byron Campbell
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Space Alert is the quickest playing co-op I know of, and it plays well enough with 2 that I would strongly suggest it if you are not averse to the real-time aspect. Somebody already mentioned Escape: The Curse of the Temple as well. If real time is not your thing, I would third Lord of the Rings Card Game. Base set and one of the Saga expansions should set you up nicely for a while.
 
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Jonathan Meltzer
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esin wrote:
Mizerak wrote:
Thank you for the suggestions! Pathfinder we have looked at, and based on reviews and comments in another thread we got Mage Knight instead. Darkest Night looks cool, but perhaps takes too long based on info on the game's page here.

Drizzt is on the radar, though...does it really play in about an hour?

Lord of the Rings Card Game hits the theme jackpot (we both loved the movies, and I enjoyed the books too)...my only concern would be the money involved. I have heard that it can get quite expensive, and for now we need to stay around the $65 I mentioned earlier.

What about something like Legendary: A Marvel Deck Building Game? What do people think about whether that fits our criteria?

Thanks,

Mizerak


It's no more expensive than you allow it to be. Base set is $40 and comes with 3 scenarios to play through. Plenty of game there. If it strikes your fancy and if you want more you can choose to buy more decks. They're $15 each. Comes with a few player cards and a new encounter deck. The new scenarios really keep the game fresh. I believe there's also an OCTGN version of the game you could test out for free if you wanted.


Forgive my ignorance...what is OCTGN?

Thank you all for the comments and suggestions! Here are my thoughts based on what everyone has said:

1. We actually have Castle Panic w/ Wizard's Tower, and it is fun, but we save that one for playing with larger groups.
2. We like to play Elder Sign on the iPad very much...but having that AND the board game seems like a bit much when there is so much out there to try.
3. If Legendary does not feel like co-op without expansions then it is out. I appreciate that insight. Mage Knight already has a bit of that, and one game of parallel play instead of active co-op is enough.
4. Real time games like Space Alert and Escape are a possibility. We tried one (break the safe) a while back and did not get into it, but that may have been more related to that specific game.
5. Robinson Crusoe has a fiddly setup, I think. We played it once as part of a four player game, and I loved it, but the theme was not one that my wife got into. It may become part of the collection at some point, but does not fill the niche we are looking for.
6. I am not familiar with Shadowrift or the Star Trek game...I will check them out. Witch of Salem I looked into a while ago, but I was not intrigued enough to look too deeply.
7. Remembering that I am going to pay FLGS prices...LoTR might win out. Still thinking...

Really appreciate all of the suggestions...the Geek has never let us down.

Thanks,

Mizerak
 
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Clinton Sattler
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I'm late to the party here, but would suggest you take a look at Freedom: The Underground Railroad
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Gertrude McFuzz

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I thought Defenders of the Realm would be too much like Pandemic, but it feels very different to me. The theme is really strong, and while the rules will feel intuitive because of your experience with Pandemic, there are plenty of differences ( quest cards, the way the bad guys move, etc.) to make it an immersive and very different game experience. I think with two you will want to control two heros each, though, and you may not want to do that.
 
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Jim Wilde
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How about Mice and Mystics?
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Jonathan Meltzer
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ContainerJones wrote:
I'm late to the party here, but would suggest you take a look at Freedom: The Underground Railroad


Not late at all! We have not headed to the store yet. That is a good suggestion...does it play well with two?

Mice and Mystics we looked at, but did not really get into the theme.

Appreciate the comments on DoTR, but if we need to control two chars each then that is likely out.

Still wondering what OCTGN is..some sort of Gaming Network?

Thanks,

Mizerak
 
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Luth Dawg
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Have you ever taken a look at Sherlock Holmes Consulting Detective: The Thames Murders & Other Cases?

The setup time is minimal, you put the map on the table, grab a pen and paper, and then start reading. Play time is as long as you want it to be -- you could rush through a case fairly easily, but we prefer to take our time and break for a walk (filled with much discussion over 'who did it'), dinner, work, etc. If you take 'reasonable' notes and pay attention to what's going on, it's really not hard to jump back into (though I'd hesitate to recommend it if all you have is an hour per week)

Replayability is low, if we ever did go back and revisit a case it would be to explore the odd sub-plot that we might have missed. However, there are expansion cases if you get through them all (the new and old editions of the game are compatible, as well, for added variety).

Think 'choose-your-own-adventure' meets sleuthing. It works really well with two, and could be played with more if everyone likes to spout their own theories (though I think I'd always prefer it with 2).
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Jonathan Meltzer
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Luth wrote:
Have you ever taken a look at Sherlock Holmes Consulting Detective: The Thames Murders & Other Cases?

The setup time is minimal, you put the map on the table, grab a pen and paper, and then start reading. Play time is as long as you want it to be -- you could rush through a case fairly easily, but we prefer to take our time and break for a walk (filled with much discussion over 'who did it'), dinner, work, etc. If you take 'reasonable' notes and pay attention to what's going on, it's really not hard to jump back into (though I'd hesitate to recommend it if all you have is an hour per week)

Replayability is low, if we ever did go back and revisit a case it would be to explore the odd sub-plot that we might have missed. However, there are expansion cases if you get through them all (the new and old editions of the game are compatible, as well, for added variety).

Think 'choose-your-own-adventure' meets sleuthing. It works really well with two, and could be played with more if everyone likes to spout their own theories (though I think I'd always prefer it with 2).


Interesting suggestion! I looked into this one quite a bit not long ago, as a possibility for our four-player group. The one drawback I have seen is that people reveal the solution and say that they had no chance to find it...very frustrating. Did that happen to you?
 
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Luth Dawg
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Oh not at all -- what usually happens to *us* is that we traipse about until we have a fairly good idea of what happened and who did what, only to be confronted with one question in the end-of-case rules that says "Who killed X?" and we go "Who the ... was X?"

The questions at the end focus on both the main case and a little bit of the sub-cases -- so when we get those, we "house-rule" it that we can go back and pursue those sub-cases and find out what happened! (Can't miss out on stuff, after all!)

We have the old edition, and have only done the first 6 cases so far, but they've all been fairly sensible. And when you see which points Holmes goes to (in, of course, a minimal number of moves) it does make sense for why he went from one to the other. We shake our heads at him and mutter an "Oh Holmes... you speedy fool", though, because he misses out on so many other little things and is the much poorer sleuth for it.
 
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Zoe M
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Not a new game suggestion, but have you tried playing Flash Point with three firefighters? My fiancé and I weren't super enthusiastic when we played it with two, but somehow adding in one extra firefighter that we controlled together made all the difference.
 
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Mizerak wrote:
2. We like to play Elder Sign on the iPad very much...but having that AND the board game seems like a bit much when there is so much out there to try.

I get your point here as you feel it is "nothing new", but still: ouch.

Having a game like Elder Sign on the table can never compare to a digital version: the theme is too thick plus the production quality is too great. The haptic experience with such games is one big aspect why board games can be so great.

Just looking at table and game on display makes the air around you vibrate with atmosphere. Just saying.


Almost any game I could recommend has already been mentioned, so I just have to add:

Police Precinct

There is a second edition on its way, in case you are interested.

Good luck finding the right game !
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