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Subject: was 2013 one of the worst years for board games? rss

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pete truss
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When I think of the games I have on my various wishlists, the one thing that strikes me is that none of those games were released last year. So I thought that maybe iv been missing out and actually there's highly rated games released last year filling up the top 200 here on bbg. As it happens, aside from caverna and eldritch horror, there's virtually nothing. 10 games in the top 200. Am I missing something? What games released last year do you love? Or was 2013 the poorest, or possibly the sparsest year in memory?
Let me know your thoughts.
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Eddy Sterckx
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You missed Russian Railroads

10 games in the top 200 sounds like just another year, not good but also not bad.
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pete truss
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Were we just spoilt in 2012 then? 15 games in the top 100 and most of those very highly thought of.
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Helmut Hohberger
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Navajo Wars.

Also, I'm convinced The Guns of Gettysburg is awesome too, but I just can't get through the rulebook...
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Eddy Sterckx
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Ratatoskr72 wrote:

Also, I'm convinced The Guns of Gettysburg is awesome too, but I just can't get through the rulebook...


You're not the only one - I've heard the exact same comment from a wargame friend and I'm in the same boat - those arty rules are exception upon exception upon exception. This game, while incredibly innovative, lacks streamlining.
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Kim Williams
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We are loving Pathfinder Adventure Card Game: Rise of the Runelords – Base Set, and have had 79 plays (and we've only just started Adventure deck 5 so we'll make it beyond the 100 game mark by the time we've got all three of our parties through all six adventures decks)

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Eddy Sterckx
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PeteTruss14 wrote:
Were we just spoilt in 2012 then? 15 games in the top 100 and most of those very highly thought of.


Yes. It's as simple as that.
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Ben Kyo
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Tash-Kalar: Arena of Legends

Amazing game, and definitely in my top 10.
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Matt Uhrich
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Looking through my collection, it does seem like there are fewer games from 2013 than 2012 and earlier years, but there were a few stand-out games.

The Hunters: German U-Boats at War, 1939-43
Pathfinder Adventure Card Game: Rise of the Runelords – Base Set

Well... this is awkward. Everything else that I thought was from 2013 in my collection is a later printing of a game from an earlier year, like Terra Mystica, an expansion, or a reprint like Ogre: Designer's Edition.
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chris thatcher
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I only have Glass Road from 2013. It was not a great year i think.
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Ryan King
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Every year seems the same....awesome game after awesome game
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Sandra Dageroth
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Tariff wrote:
It was not a great year i think.


I agree. I never traded away so many games as I did after Essen last year. I only kept a few. Many games felt the same IMO - and when I went through my list of games I wanted to buy 2013 I realized there were at least 5-6 tile-laying games... I narrowed it down to a single one. But from what I've seen so far, this year could be better...
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John Bandettini
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That one not so much
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I did not think there were any outstanding games last year, but lots of solid very good games. After much soul searching I decided that my favourite game of the year was Viticulture
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Daniel Troyano
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I've got four games and one expansion sitting on my shelves from 2013(which is a lot for me) Terror in Meeple City, Ladies & Gentlemen, Mascarade, Pathfinder Adventure Card Game: Rise of the Runelords – Base Set, and Lords of Waterdeep: Scoundrels of Skullport. I think each of those are great games, there's just so many games coming out now it's easy to feel spoiled.
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William Korner
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It was a great year for board games, not a lot came out I wanted so I was able to pick up some old titles and sleeve a bunch of my games. This also resulted in more plays of the games I own instead of lots of new games.
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Michael Debije
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Eindhoven
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Let's Start a Band!
High Frontier Colonization
Russian Railroads
The Mushroom Eaters
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The Guns of Gettysburg
Navajo Wars
L'Aéropostale
Camelot: The Build
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made my collection.

Mushroom Eaters, Navajo Wars, Colonization and Guns of Gettysburg the best ones. Second tier are Promised Land, Russian Rails, L'Aeropostale. The others are at least ok games.
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Daniel Kearns
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eddy_sterckx wrote:
Ratatoskr72 wrote:

Also, I'm convinced The Guns of Gettysburg is awesome too, but I just can't get through the rulebook...


You're not the only one - I've heard the exact same comment from a wargame friend and I'm in the same boat - those arty rules are exception upon exception upon exception. This game, while incredibly innovative, lacks streamlining.


Yep. Guns of Gettysburg: the best game I'll never play.

Pull out the rules, read a few lines of gibberish, hmmm I think I'll go wash the dishes or something.
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So I'd love to see an objective way to look at this. would it be # of top 100 games? top 200 games? 250? and then per year.

So maybe it's 2013 - 10
2012 - 15
2011 - X?

and you start running some averages. If I had time at work I'd look in this ....
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Curt Carpenter
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It takes time for 2013 games to fully make their mark. Some 2013 games are still not available in USA, and the ratings on this site are dominated by USA users (and more ratings = higher ranking). Thus you can't compare rankings between years and a measure to compare them until about two years after the end of the latter year.

If you look at This list, you will see that there are a lot of great games, including many that haven't yet made it to USA.
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Joe Huber

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For _me_, 2013 was one of the best years ever. By the metric I use*, it's tied for 2nd best with 1995, just a bit behind 1997. And there are 7 more games from 2013 I enjoy enough to own than from any other year. Specifically:

Russian Railroads
Shephy
Whacky Wit
Lewis & Clark
Welcome to the Dungeon
Topfrosch
Glass Road
Twin Tin Bots
Bruges
Concordia
Kohle & Kolonie
Koryŏ
Sail to India
Zahlen-Mobile
Bluff in Zoo
Café Melange
Nauticus
Spyrium
Strajk! Skok do wolności
String Safari

(And that's without giving any credit to Machi Koro or Eggs of Ostrich, which I discovered in 2013 but which were originally released in 2012.)

I've played each of the 20 games listed above at least six times, so I'm reasonably confident of their position in my collection.

Having said this, the general reaction I saw was more in line with the OP, and a poll I ran rated 2013 as below average (if not bottom-of-the-barrel).

* - My metric for comparing years is based upon average ratings (all games), favorites (games I rate a 9 or 10), games owned, percentage of games played owned, and total happiness.
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Josh
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I don't think it is a sign of the year so much as a sign of where in the life-cycle the hobby is. For a long time(long-timers can attest to this) There weren't many options. Gameplay concepts stagnated, there wasn't an audience for innovation or expensively produced games that wasn't amazingly niche.

Then we hit upon a slow awakening. Settlers-era saw some new concepts explored and tentatively welcomed. Other games came out at that point, but few and with lots of failures. From there though the hobby began to blossom. The internet I believe played a big part in this. It opened up markets and got word out there. New people learned of the hobby(myself included!) and the customer base broadened. More new ideas could be tried, and even mediocre games could survive based on a broad enough audience(still plenty of failures mind you!) the last half decade was an explosion of published games. Like in any industry though an explosion of production does not equate to an explosion of innovation. Ideas still come out, but there are plenty of retreads as well. If you've been a gamer throughout this era your collection most likely does have several redundancies, and you do hit a point of critical mass where 'I've played that.' is the feeling you get from a majority of the new games. The answer is, you have. Not everyone has every game though, and new people are always coming into the hobby. For them, the new games are entirely fresh and interesting, and that's okay You just need to learn as a vet, one of the pitfalls of extensive gaming is seeing what thereis to see. You'll find a new Vista, explore a new valley, or find a treasured favorite from time to time, it just comes less frequently. Take solace in two facts. One, it means you have time to go back and really draw the enjoyment out of games you already own, revisiting old favorites and playing without the acrid intensity of constantly learning new rules. Two, it's a lot cheaper to buy fewer games per year.

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Ubergeek
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Ten from Thirteen- My top 10 favorite games released in 2013

Every year is a great year. It just depends on how restrictive you are in what you play.

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Matt Brown
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curtc wrote:
It takes time for 2013 games to fully make their mark. Some 2013 games are still not available in USA, and the ratings on this site are dominated by USA users (and more ratings = higher ranking). Thus you can't compare rankings between years and a measure to compare them until about two years after the end of the latter year.

If you look at This list, you will see that there are a lot of great games, including many that haven't yet made it to USA.


A lot of those games are available in the US. While yes, a number of those games are far from settled in terms of ranking, I don't see another year changing the overall feel that 2013 was lackluster in terms of standout games and the number of high quality games that were essentially 2.0 versions of other big name games. I do think there will be a number of somewhat under the radar games from that year though. It's just 2012 has those type of games and Tzolk'in, Terra Mystica, etc.
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Jonathan Harrison
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Cuba Libre
Cube Quest
1862: Railway Mania in the Eastern Counties
Band of Brothers: Ghost Panzer
Glass Road
The Guns of Gettysburg
Impulse
Navajo Wars
Patchistory
A Study in Emerald
Tash-Kalar: Arena of Legends
Theseus: The Dark Orbit
Trieste

very good
Canterbury
City of Remnants
Concordia
Council of Verona
The Duke
Lewis and Clark
Nations
Pairs
Patronize
Quantum
Space Cadets Duel
Spyrium

expansions
• BattleCON: Devastation of Indines
• Cyclades/Kemet C3K
• Dominion: Guilds
• Dungeon Petz: Dark Alleys
• High Frontier: Colonization
• Innovation: Figures in the Sand
• Keyflower: The Farmers
• Kingdom Builder: Crossroads
• Machi Koro Plus
• The Manhattan Project: Second Stage
Pixel Tactics 2
Suburbia, Inc.
• Tokaido: Crossroads

And that’s not even touching just-plain-good games.

I thought it was a fine year.
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Pete
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I really like Glass Road and seeing how far it is on everyone else's list of 2013 games makes me think that perhaps it was a pretty good year for games. I tend to lag production by a year or two (I buy the games used when you guys get tired of them) so most of my 2012 games are still in the shrink, but I bet there's a lot of good stuff in 2013 that I simply haven't seen yet.

Pete (has so many games it's hard to keep up)
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