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Subject: Designer... rss

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Michael Gonzalez
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For an interesting twist, instead of a particular game, I want you BGG connoisseurs to figure out my next favorite designer.

I've been pretty smitten with Stefan Feld, and that hasn't waned at all, but I'm wondering what (or, more specifically, who) I'm missing out on! I'd love to get hooked on someone again, and play a few great games by a great designer!

A few hints to get your started (then, please feel free to ask any questions):

1) I seem to lean toward Eurogames.
2) Some of my current favorite games are Castles of Burgundy, Viticulture: EE + Tuscany, Among the Stars, Notre Dame, Tokaido, and Mission: Red Planet.
3) I'm pretty open on themes. Even the theme of Agricola seems fine to me, though my group might hesitate a little....

So, who should I be trying out?

Some candidates I'm considering:

Uwe Rosenberg? (I haven't played any yet, but I like the idea of Glass Road and maybe Le Havre)

Kramer and/or Kiesling? (Never tried any of their games)

Ignacy Trzewiczek? (I would have bought Imperial Settlers already, if so many people hadn't said it's only good with 2 players... But I do have First Martians on the way...)

Vlaada Chvátil? (love Codenames! That's about all I've tried...)

Or maybe I should get more from some of my current faves, like Bruno Cathala or Jamey Stegmaier??

What do you think? I'm really looking forward to your advice and ideas!
 
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Michael Gonzalez
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Forgot to mention it, but please feel free to include a couple of games in particular by your designer of choice, if you want.
 
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Derry Salewski
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Mac Gerdts makes a cool style of game. Concordia, Navegador, and Imperial are all permanent parts of my collection.

Richard Breese is one of my favorite euro designers. Keyflower and Key Harvest are two of my favorite games.


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Michael Gonzalez
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scifiantihero wrote:
Mac Gerdts makes a cool style of game. Concordia, Navegador, and Imperial are all permanent parts of my collection.

Richard Breese is one of my favorite euro designers. Keyflower and Key Harvest are two of my favorite games.




Hmm... I had thought about Keyflower, because all the reviewers I like seem to love this game. I might give Breese a try....
 
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Jordan Fraser
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I would recommend taking a look into some of the classic titles from Reiner Knizia and Wolfgang Kramer. There's a reason why they're still so highly regarded decades after they were first released. Simple, clever mechanics and deep strategy.
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Jake Blomquist
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I like this kind of question as I like thinking in terms of designers. It seems like your tastes lean maybe just slightly lighter than mine, but if you want slightly more complex games, I highly recommend Vital Lacerda (Kanban: Driver's Edition, CO₂, Lisboa) or the design duo of Nuno Bizarro Sentieiro and Paulo Soledade (Madeira, Nippon, Panamax).

I'm also starting to get more into the Splotter guys - Jeroen Doumen and Joris Wiersinga (The Great Zimbabwe, Food Chain Magnate) but those are all very much economic focused games. It seems like you may want a more traditional euro.

For someone more in your current wheelhouse I'll agree with the guy above me that Mac Gerdts is a great pick and the three listed games are a strong start. I also like Antike II from him, but not as much as those three already listed.

Another possibility is Simone Luciani (Tzolk'in: The Mayan Calendar, Grand Austria Hotel, Council of Four). He's done most but not all of his stuff with Daniele Tascini. Grand Austria Hotel in particular I think scratches a similar itch to Castles of Burgundy.

Some up and comers that I think are worth watching but who only have a couple of games at this point are J. Alex Kevern, Pierluca Zizzi, and the duo Marco Canetta and Stefania Niccolini.
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Yours Truly,
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There must have been a moment at the beginning, where we could have said no. Somehow we missed it. Well, we'll know better next time.
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Reiner Knizia

If you lean towards Euros - you owe it to yourself to check out some of his classic designs. If you like Feld, there's a very good chance you'll like Knizia's games.

For auction games:
-Ra
-Modern Art

For tile-laying/spatial:
-Through the Desert
-Samurai
-Tigris & Euphrates

Just a few of his masterpieces.
One of my favorites of his is Taj Mahal, which combines poker-style tension with a spatial strategy game. Maybe one of his most Feld-like.
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Michael Gonzalez
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Poserdisposer wrote:
I would recommend taking a look into some of the classic titles from Reiner Knizia and Wolfgang Kramer. There's a reason why they're still so highly regarded decades after they were first released. Simple, clever mechanics and deep strategy.


That's a fair point. Any particular games?
 
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Yours Truly,
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Wolfgang Kramer also has some similarities with Feld, and is up there with the master Euro designers of all time. Especially his collaborations with Kiesling.

El Grande
Would be the first Go-To game to look at. Especially since they have the Big Box edition in print now.

Then there's
-Tikal (area control and set collection)
-Maharaja: The Game of Palace Building in India (similar DNA to Tikal but adds some special role powers)
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Michael Gonzalez
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jblomquist wrote:
I like this kind of question as I like thinking in terms of designers. It seems like your tastes lean maybe just slightly lighter than mine, but if you want slightly more complex games, I highly recommend Vital Lacerda (Kanban: Driver's Edition, CO₂, Lisboa) or the design duo of Nuno Bizarro Sentieiro and Paulo Soledade (Madeira, Nippon, Panamax).

I'm also starting to get more into the Splotter guys - Jeroen Doumen and Joris Wiersinga (The Great Zimbabwe, Food Chain Magnate) but those are all very much economic focused games. It seems like you may want a more traditional euro.

For someone more in your current wheelhouse I'll agree with the guy above me that Mac Gerdts is a great pick and the three listed games are a strong start. I also like Antike II from him, but not as much as those three already listed.

Another possibility is Simone Luciani (Tzolk'in: The Mayan Calendar, Grand Austria Hotel, Council of Four). He's done most but not all of his stuff with Daniele Tascini. Grand Austria Hotel in particular I think scratches a similar itch to Castles of Burgundy.

Some up and comers that I think are worth watching but who only have a couple of games at this point are J. Alex Kevern, Pierluca Zizzi, and the duo Marco Canetta and Stefania Niccolini.


I really appreciate the suggestions! I have considered Lacerda, but I'm concerned it'll be too heavy or my group (they think Viticulture + Tuscany is on the heavy side; I'd be happy to go heavier, but I'm also happy to stay in the mid-weight world for a while 😊).
 
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Chris Mcpherson
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Feld is my favourite as well but we also love Knizia. Ra is easily in my top 10. Battle line, samurai, and Tigris and Euphrates are all amazing as well.

Honorable mentions:

Alexander pfister - great western trail, broom service, isle of Skye, mombassa

Rudiger dorn - goa, Istanbul, jambo, karuba

Simone luciani - tzolkin, grand Austria hotel, voyages of Marco Polo

Kramer - el grande, palaces of carrera

Mac gerdts - Concordia

Matthias Cramer - Glen more
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Evan
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If Lacerda is too heavy, then I agree with Jake that Luciani and Tascini might do the trick for you. Those games are considerably lighter than Lacerda's, yet still deep and challenging. Luciani's latest concoction is Lorenzo il Magnifico which I am really enjoying after my first couple of plays.
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Eric Gergotz
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One of my new favorite designers is J. Alex Kevern, who recently did Sentient, World's Fair 1893, and Gold West. They're really simple games to learn, but there's a good amount of depth to them.

I will usually take the time to look at games from Antoine Bauza, who did 7 Wonders, Ghost Stories, Oceanos, etc.

Bruno Cathala games are usually easy to learn and hard to master. He made Five Tribes, Kanagawa, Yamatai, and many others.

I also really enjoy Japanese designers' takes on Euro games, of which Hisashi Hayashi is my favorite. He did Yokohama, Trains, and a lot of small filler games. I just recently got his newest big box game, The Emperor's Choice and I can't wait to try it out.

I've also noticed that I really enjoy every Rudiger Dorn game I own - Istanbul, Las Vegas, Karuba.

Hopefully those help a little bit!
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Joshua Starr
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Mentat1231 wrote:
scifiantihero wrote:
Mac Gerdts makes a cool style of game. Concordia, Navegador, and Imperial are all permanent parts of my collection.

Richard Breese is one of my favorite euro designers. Keyflower and Key Harvest are two of my favorite games.




Hmm... I had thought about Keyflower, because all the reviewers I like seem to love this game. I might give Breese a try....


Can't recommend Keyflower enough if you enjoy Euros. It's a elegant blend of worker placement and auction game with a twist on multiple currencies. (which I've yet to see another game do)
 
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Challie Coppel
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Ryan Laukat

Above and Below
Near and Far
Islebound
City of Iron

Vlaada Chvátil

Codenames
Dungeon Lords
Dungeon Petz
Galaxy Trucker
Mage Knight Board Game
Space Alert
Through the Ages: A New Story of Civilization
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Man thinks, the river flows.
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    Kramer. Love his stuff.

    Tetsuya Nakamura if you decide to branch out a bit. Keep that one in your back pocket.
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Michael Debije
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Francis Tresham. The Master.
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Vital Lacerda.
- Gallerist
- Lisboa
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Yours Truly,
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I've seen several recs for Vlaada Chvátil...

If it's really true that you "lean towards Euros," I'd have to disagree on him as a rec for a potential new favorite designer. I've tried some of his designs, and he seems to enjoy rejecting many of the improvements to Euro game design that have evolved over the years.

For example, Euros tend to have no player elimination, shorter play times (remember those 5-hour Risk games as a kid?!), more streamlined and less fiddly rule-sets. The Vlaada games I've played - I feel like he has gone out of his way to do the opposite of these trends in game design. cool

He also tends to like a "real-time" aspect to his games.
If anything, rather than "Euro-inspired," I'd say he's more "video-game"-inspired.

That's not to say you won't like his games. But not because you like Euros, and I find it an odd rec for someone who tends towards Euros and likes Stefan Feld.
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Michael Gonzalez
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JohnnyDollar wrote:
I've seen several recs for Vlaada Chvátil...

If it's really true that you "lean towards Euros," I'd have to disagree on him as a rec for a potential new favorite designer. I've tried some of his designs, and he seems to enjoy rejecting many of the improvements to Euro game design that have evolved over the years.

For example, Euros tend to have no player elimination, shorter play times (remember those 5-hour Risk games as a kid?!), more streamlined and less fiddly rule-sets. The Vlaada games I've played - I feel like he has gone out of his way to do the opposite of these trends in game design. cool

He also tends to like a "real-time" aspect to his games.
If anything, rather than "Euro-inspired," I'd say he's more "video-game"-inspired.

That's not to say you won't like his games. But not because you like Euros, and I find it an odd rec for someone who tends towards Euros and likes Stefan Feld.


Thanks for the warning!
 
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Mentat1231 wrote:
JohnnyDollar wrote:
I've seen several recs for Vlaada Chvátil...

If it's really true that you "lean towards Euros," I'd have to disagree on him as a rec for a potential new favorite designer. I've tried some of his designs, and he seems to enjoy rejecting many of the improvements to Euro game design that have evolved over the years.

For example, Euros tend to have no player elimination, shorter play times (remember those 5-hour Risk games as a kid?!), more streamlined and less fiddly rule-sets. The Vlaada games I've played - I feel like he has gone out of his way to do the opposite of these trends in game design. cool

He also tends to like a "real-time" aspect to his games.
If anything, rather than "Euro-inspired," I'd say he's more "video-game"-inspired.

That's not to say you won't like his games. But not because you like Euros, and I find it an odd rec for someone who tends towards Euros and likes Stefan Feld.


Thanks for the warning!


I think Dungeon Petz is one of his more "Euro-y" games.
Not sure about Dungeon Lords.

But yeah just a heads up about his others.

i.e.

Through the Ages: A Story of Civilization
Has player elimination, is very long, and very fiddly (I've heard it described as a "cardboard abacus")

Galaxy Trucker
Essentially has player elimination on the "race" portion of each of the three races. I have seen first-hand ships getting destroyed on the first move of a given race, and the builder just sits there for the rest of the race...

Mage Knight Board Game
I have not played but I've *seen* it played at other tables and man is it a looong game!
 
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Village Idiot
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Feld is my favorite designer. I, like you, lean twd medium weight euros.

Here are my other favorite designers with some games I love by them:

Bruno Cathala - Five Tribes, Abyss,
Yamataï

Alexander Pfister - Mombasa, Great Western Trail, Isle of Skye: From Chieftain to King

Simone Luciani - Grand Austria Hotel, The Voyages of Marco Polo, Lorenzo il Magnifico

Michael Kiesling - Vikings, The Palaces of Carrara, Coal Baron

Uwe Rosenberg - Glass Road, Agricola, Patchwork

Hisashi Hayashi - Yokohama, Minerva, Trains

Matthias Cramer - Kraftwagen, Lancaster, Rococo

Rüdiger Dorn - Steam Time, Istanbul, Goa

Paolo Mori - Vasco da Gama, Libertalia, Ethnos

Xavier Georges - Troyes, Carson City, Royal Palace

Ryan Laukat - Islebound, Above and Below, Near and Far

Phil Walker-Harding - Imhotep, Bärenpark, Cacao

Inka Brand - Village, Murano, My Village

Vladimír Suchý - The Prodigals Club, Shipyard, Last Will

Stefan Dorra - Milestones, Meduris: Der Ruf der Götter, Pergamon

Jeffrey D. Allers - New Amsterdam, Order of the Gilded Compass, Citrus

Mac Gerdts - Concordia, The Princes of Machu Picchu, Navegador

Helmut Ohley - First Class: All Aboard the Orient Express!, Trambahn, Russian Railroads

Andrea Chiarvesio - Kingsburg, Signorie, Hyperborea


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Michael Gonzalez
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wreadsiii wrote:


Awesome! Thank you so much. Is this list in any particular order (either the order of the designers down the list or the order of games next to each designer)?
 
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Village Idiot
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Mentat1231 wrote:


Roughly, lol. The first 5 are my next 5 favorite designers after Feld. After that, they're all kind of tied.

The 3 games after each are my favorite games in loose order.
 
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Shaun Morris
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My two favorites right now are:

Ryan Laukat and Gil Hova

Gil's a bit eclectic in terms of the types of board games he designs. By that, I mean he doesn't seem to design just one specific genre. He's got a party game (Bad Medicine), an economic game (The Networks), and most recently a word game (Wordsy). He's got a couple of others that were distributed under a different publisher, Prolix being one of them. All of his games are really well designed, with The Networks actually spending 6 years in development.

The bulk of Ryan's games have already been mentioned, but I'm a really big fan of Above and Below and Near and Far.

You might also give Phil Eklund a try.

He's got a bunch of games that vary from scientific to historical and they're intended to be fairly accurate in terms of what they're trying to represent.

Pax Porfiriana
Pax Renaissance
Pax Pamir
Bios: Megafauna
Bios: Genesis
BIOS: Origins
High Frontier

I will say, if you're going to play a Phil Eklund game, you're in for a 2+ hour game, but it's highly enjoyable, or at least I think so.
 
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