Mellina Huitema
Canada
flag msg tools
Hi everyone,

New to gaming scene. Got a gift card for Christmas that I plan on spending on a game or game(s).

A few friends and I have gotten really into board games but we've all been doing it for a year or less. We've played the heck out of Catan (have dipped my toes in some expansions as well) and love it but getting a bit tired of it and want something a bit more advanced.

However I also don't want another scenario where we all sit down to play and scratch our heads the whole time figuring out the gameplay and rules and eventually give up. I'm also going a games night in a few weeks with a group of people who are aren't really gamers. I'd like to bring the new game(s) but don't want to overwhelm them.

Games I'm considering:
Carcassonne

Betrayal at House on the Hill (love the idea of the game, but too advanced? Lots of conniving...have heard of this not going over great with a group of newbies)

Forbidden Desert? (it's complexity rating was not as high as I feared...what do you think?)

Any other ideas? Would greatly appreciate the help as I'm currently paralyzed by indecision.
5 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
Des Lee
Australia
Quakers Hill
NSW
flag msg tools
Avatar
mbmbmbmbmb
Any other games you like apart from Catan? It's really not much to go on, and games preferences are very personal so we can make recommendations but you'll still likely have to try some out, or read/watch more about them to work out if they will work for you and your group.

The following are good simple games that are good for beginners, but still offer a bit of strategy for more experienced gamers, I'd be happy to recommend these for any new group:

Beginners (light)
=================
Carcassonne
Pandemic or Forbidden Desert
Ticket to Ride
Dixit
Splendor
Alhambra
Bohnanza
Survive: Escape from Atlantis
Sushi Go
Imhotep
Cacao

Next level stuff (light/medium)
===============================
Stone Age
Lords of Waterdeep
Kingdom Builder
Takenoko
7 Wonders
2 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
John Burt
United States
Portland
Oregon
flag msg tools
Avatar
mbmbmbmb
It's really hard to make an informed rec, since your experience is so limited. I'd suggest that first of all you should definitely attend some game nights so you can sample some different games without having to spend money and find your fancy. If you can't do that, then make sure to research any recommendations people give on your own: use the BGG page for a game to find written and video reviews. Watch play-through videos.

Here are a few great lighter weight euros that you might want to check out:

Ticket to Ride: Europe
Islebound
Istanbul
Isle of Skye: From Chieftain to King
New York 1901

And PS: NEVER ever try to learn a game right before you try to play it. Instead, designate one person (usually the owner) to learn the game before game night, then teach it to the other players. If you do this, things will go much smoother and people will be able to learn and enjoy more complicated games with ease.
2 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
Mellina Huitema
Canada
flag msg tools
That's a fantastic list to work from already, thanks! And yes, sorry, I suppose I didn't give much to go on.

I've played and like:

Catan (basic and Cities and Knights)
Carcassonne
Ticket to Ride (I enjoy it, debating whether it's just a titch on the simple side for my thinking at this point)
Firefly: The Game


Tried the Star Trek deck building game and it was pretty much beyond what me and my usual crew are able to comprehend at this point, without someone more experienced there to teach us.

 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
Annemarie Post
Netherlands
flag msg tools
Avatar
mbmbmbmbmb
If you like Carcassonne and want to try something a bit more advanced, I would suggest Isle of Skye: From Chieftain to King.

If you're looking for new grounds to explore, I would suggest Dominion if you're interested in deckbuilders; and Pandemic if you're interested in co-operative games. Both are fairly easy to get into, but have a lot of replayability, even for more experienced gamers.
 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
Mellina Huitema
Canada
flag msg tools
Thanks, that's a good list already! Yes, I've been going to a board game cafe for a couple months now (there's even a Board Game League!) and that's where I'm gaining a bit more experience and also thinking that that's where I will get my fix of more advanced games since it's a bit tougher to get my regular friends on board.

You're definitely right about learning a game well in advance of playing, we learned that lesson with Firefly: The Game, which we now thankfully enjoy . I'm just not great at teaching and don't have a ton of opportunities to really learn even for myself, so that's why I'm trying to progress into advanced games with ones that are more in between.
 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
Joe H
msg tools
Avatar
mbmbmbmbmb
quill65 wrote:
It's really hard to make an informed rec, since your experience is so limited. I'd suggest that first of all you should definitely attend some game nights so you can sample some different games without having to spend money and find your fancy. If you can't do that, then make sure to research any recommendations people give on your own: use the BGG page for a game to find written and video reviews. Watch play-through videos.

Here are a few great lighter weight euros that you might want to check out:

Ticket to Ride: Europe
Islebound
Istanbul
Isle of Skye: From Chieftain to King
New York 1901

And PS: NEVER ever try to learn a game right before you try to play it. Instead, designate one person (usually the owner) to learn the game before game night, then teach it to the other players. If you do this, things will go much smoother and people will be able to learn and enjoy more complicated games with ease.


This is a great list of next steps.

A couple of more I might add for your consideration are:
Automania
Airlines Europe
Saint Petersburg (second edition)
 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
Mellina Huitema
Canada
flag msg tools
Hmmm, love the idea of Isle of Sky - I like games that are highly thematic and especially if it's a medieval or agrarian type of theme!
1 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
Dan
New Zealand
Auckland
flag msg tools
Avatar
mbmbmbmbmb
Stone Age
Castles of Mad King Ludwig
Alhambra
Diamant

Here's a good list to read:
http://boardgamegeek.com/wiki/page/Board_Game_Gift_Guide_201...

2 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
K Ng
msg tools
losfp wrote:
Any other games you like apart from Catan? It's really not much to go on, and games preferences are very personal so we can make recommendations but you'll still likely have to try some out, or read/watch more about them to work out if they will work for you and your group.

The following are good simple games that are good for beginners, but still offer a bit of strategy for more experienced gamers, I'd be happy to recommend these for any new group:

Beginners (light)
=================
Carcassonne
Pandemic or Forbidden Desert
Ticket to Ride
Dixit
Splendor
Alhambra
Bohnanza
Survive: Escape from Atlantis
Sushi Go
Imhotep
Cacao

Next level stuff (light/medium)
===============================
Stone Age
Lords of Waterdeep
Kingdom Builder
Takenoko
7 Wonders


+1 to this list.

Ticket to Ride and Splendor have easy rules and are good games to pick up next for Beginners.

Only thing I would add would be some deck builders like a Dominion or Marvel Legendary.
 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
Don Brookins
United States
Pennsylvania
flag msg tools
Avatar
mbmbmbmbmb
If you think you might enjoy a light stock market game, I highly recommend Stockpile.
1 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
Mike Czerniewski
United States
Overland Park
Kansas
flag msg tools
mbmbmbmbmb
mhuitema wrote:

Games I'm considering:
Carcassonne

Betrayal at House on the Hill (love the idea of the game, but too advanced? Lots of conniving...have heard of this not going over great with a group of newbies)

Forbidden Desert? (it's complexity rating was not as high as I feared...what do you think?)


All three of these games are great introductory games.

Carcassonne (which is the only one of the three I actually own) is a great Euro-style game that's easy to teach to new gamers.

Betrayal is a good game as well. The thing with this is that you'll likely have a new haunt scenario every game, and the scenarios play very differently. Not as much backstabbing as you'd think (unless, of course, you're the traitor).

Forbidden Desert is okay but can be complex. For new gamers, I'd recommend a couple of Leacock's other co-op games, namely Pandemic or Forbidden Island.

Other games to consider:

Since I really enjoy this game and am doing a 100 game challenge with it: Smash Up. It's fun and easy to teach - and keeps getting better with all of the expansions.

Lords of Waterdeep is another great game, and a great introduction to worker placement games.

Takenoko and Tokaido (both Bauza titles) are great, thematic games that are easy to pick up quickly.
 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
Dave H
United Kingdom
flag msg tools
I'd be wary about Betrayal at House on the Hill. Some people like it but for others like myself the exploration and storytelling is good but the gameplay is really weak. The haunt that comes out at the end is really imbalanced meaning the winner is more or less dictated randomly depending on which haunt happens, in some the betrayer is massively overpowered, in others the betrayer is massively underpowered. It's great idea on paper, but the reality is quite lacklustre and having to learn a new bunch of rules 2/3 of the way through kills the pace.

The one game in my experience that has wowed everyone (some of them go out and buy it the next day) is Lords of Waterdeep. It's complex but not complicated. Everyone understands the rules within the first 2 turns of the game.

Another game my group is currently enamoured with is Tiny Epic Western. Don't be deceived by the small footprint of the box, it's a pretty solid game and easily accessible.

I would also highly recommend Roll for the Galaxy and Five Tribes as fun games that are pretty beginner friendly.
2 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
Mellina Huitema
Canada
flag msg tools
Thanks everyone, I didn't expect so many responses. Really appreciate the help. Looking into all the suggestions.
1 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
Chris Mcpherson
Canada
Ontario
flag msg tools
Avatar
mbmbmbmbmb
100% second the Isle of Skye suggestion. A little bit of carcassonne mixed with auction and constantly changing scoring opportunities.

I also strongly agree with Alhambra. To me this game is carcassonne mashed with ticket to ride and add in any majority scoring mechanism.
 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
Mindy Basi
United States
Urbana
Illinois
flag msg tools
Avatar
mbmbmbmbmb
Some great recommendations here.

Another game that just came out is Citadels 2016, a remake of a classic that we really enjoy. Has some specific set-ups too so it's not so confusing.

At this point, there are so many "how to play" videos that you can watch you don't have to just read the rules for a lot of games. That can be a help for those, like myself, who can't learn from reading the rules alone very easily.

 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
Daniel B
Sweden
Umeå
flag msg tools
badge
Avatar
mbmbmbmbmb
Small World
Mission: Red Planet (Second Edition)
 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
maf man
United States
endeavor
Wisconsin
flag msg tools
mbmbmbmbmb
So Betrayal at House on the Hill. Its not that its too advanced but its just got a lot of rules on a game that should be taken lightly. I'm a fan of the game but all the players have to be in the right mood for it. This is one game where one experienced player teaches the rest slowly through the game. Trying to teach combat and such up front just is a waste (that was one of my memorable mistakes)

I highly recommend carcassonne, I was one of my first new era games and its stuck around. Easy to learn and as everyone gets better, stays competitive. Also plenty of expansions to inject freshness.

Sushi go and 7 wonders are basically the same good game. Its just choosing between a light quicker game of sushi go or a deeper gaming experience that 7 wonders will give you.

One game I like that is not often recommended is Revolution!. Its a light game but still feels like more than a light game. Easy rules that are nearly all fit on the little player board. Players blind bid to get points or *money* to blind bid with next turn.

I shy away from coop games with new gamers as its all to easy for them to sit back and not really get included.

Small world is another recommendation I'd support. The game rules are fairly basic; the fun and complexity come from the unique powers which throws a lot of little rules in but they are easy to understand.

Alhambra, stone age are both great suggestions too of games I love. I think id take stone age over alhambra, but if your group liked ticket to ride I see a connection to alhambra where your actions are picking cards to then buy something to build yourself better than the other players. I think alhambra is way above ticket to ride because your concerned with value rather than just color and building is on your own. It just feels like an all around better game.

King of Tokyo may also be worth checking out. It is a light game but you can get players going fast as you can explain it as yahtzee with a theme. Also a game I like but my group got past this one quick so might be too light for you too.

Lewis & Clark also might be worth looking into, it was recommended to me (I have yet to get it) because I guess its similar to stone age.
 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
Front Page | Welcome | Contact | Privacy Policy | Terms of Service | Advertise | Support BGG | Feeds RSS
Geekdo, BoardGameGeek, the Geekdo logo, and the BoardGameGeek logo are trademarks of BoardGameGeek, LLC.