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Subject: Really want to buy a new board game! rss

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Jasper Brood
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Well, the holiday mood has done its part, and I'm really itching to buy a new game as soon as possible!

The trouble is, as you might have guessed, that I'm not sure which one.

First things first, my planned budget is around 60E (around 70$), but in case I really like the idea of something, I prolly wont mind expanding the budget, or even buying two games. Next important thing, competitive, player versus player games only, not interested in cooperative, PVE games.

Now, for the gaming history - our main game has been Twilight Imperium 4ed - and we all love the hell out of it. The problem with it, is that it takes really long to finish the game with max players (and we always play with maximum number of players), that you basically have to save a date for it in advance, and cant just decide to play it on a whim.
Another game we all like is Betrayal at the House on the Hill, for its simple rules, fast setup, high number of players and variance in game play (different map each time, different objective) but we majorly dislike its heavy RNG and varying balance of specific Haunts (end game objective) so we've been playing it more as a "braindead fun" type of the game.

So, in essence, I'm a looking for a game that wont last for more than 3 hours, has deep, tactical gameplay and is highly competitive. Nice flavor would be great and more players the merrier. We also love when game board is different each game, like in TI4 or Beyreyal.

The games that have caught my eye for now are these (never tried any of these tho, and I know what I know of them from this sites reviews/ratings) -

Gaia Project - Heard great things about it and its complexity, but at 90$ feels slightly out of my price range - especially considering that only 4 players are the maximum.

Terra Mystica - seems like exactly what i need tbh, priced at 60$ at most places, 5 players which is great, but I've heard that Gaia Project is basically the same game, just updated and better, which is what troubles me.

Photosynthesis - saw this game by chance, and I really love the flavor of it. Sadly, lots of people seem to dislike it, calling it boring, and it doesnt seem to be particular mechanically complex - which is still fine, if those mechanics allow for some high-skilled mastery in competitiveness.

Tzolk'in: The Mayan Calendar - Looks great, mechanicaly deep, cool flavor, and I even like the time puzzle aspect. What I dislike majorly is that I read the build quality is poor, and that stuff breaks easily. We might like mechanically deep stuff, but we are also rather passionate, and all exhibitions of those passions are rather frequent at our table.

Note - I dont mind Photosyntesis and Tzolkin being only for 4 players, because for the price of one Gaia Project, i can get both of those. Bit arbitrary, but eh.

Alchemists - TBH, i just found this in my wishlist, and cant remember what aspect of it caught my eye, probably high complexity rating.

Ofc, recommend me anything that sounds like I might like it.
 
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Hannibal Barca
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Aerris wrote:


So, in essence, I'm a looking for a game that wont last for more than 3 hours, has deep, tactical gameplay and is highly competitive. Nice flavor would be great and more players the merrier. We also love when game board is different each game, like in TI4 or Beyreyal.


Terra Mystica / Gaia Project are good, but based on the above i'd suggest Scythe as well. I think you can find it on sale in your price range too.
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Chris Miller
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Gaia Project is considered a better/improved Tera Mystica from what I've heard, still on my list but I do have a copy of the newest version of Eclipse: Second Dawn for the Galaxy.

I would +1 Scythe, great game for up to 7 with the expansion.

Also Teotihuacan: City of Gods is very fun and is a sort of improved version of Tzok'in that just came out.
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chris thatcher
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Seems like you guys like conflict. Cyclades? or Kemet.

Tzolkin is great. I haven't had an issues with it breaking.


Quote:
Also Teotihuacan: City of Gods is very fun and is a sort of improved version of Tzok'in that just came out.


Ive heard quite a few people saying Tzolkin is still the better game.
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Jasper Brood
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Ty for your answers!

Scythe has been a game I've been eyeing for quit some time, but the problem for it now is that it does not differ from TI4 enough right now - as in, they are both sci-fi, tactical war games.

Not that Im not interested in it, just that I thought I'd add a bit more variety before getting it too.

Any Terra/Gaia experts who would chip in with their experience, any point in having both?
 
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Chris Korfmann
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I have played Terra Mystica a few times, and I struggle with it. It's a fine game and I know a lot of people like it, it's just toward he bottom of my preference list. Since Gaia Project is basically a retheme, I'm doubting I'll like that very much either.

Tzolk'in is a really good game. I quite like it. I've had it for about 3 years now, but haven't played it. It's sitting in a box waiting for my wife to paint the wheels. cry If you enjoy worker placement, this is a good choice.

However, I'll give a +1 for Scythe. There are lots of interesting choices in this game and I appreciate the multiple paths to victory. The game has much replayability with the various player boards and I've heard nothing but very good things about the Rise of Fenris expansion. I received it as a gift for my birthday early in December and went all out on the expansions for Christmas.
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Jasper Brood
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Tariff wrote:
Seems like you guys like conflict. Cyclades? or Kemet.


Indeed we do!

Not necessarily direct conflict, but competition, oh yeah.

Will check out both of those.
 
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Jasper Brood
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ckorfmann wrote:
If you enjoy worker placement, this is a good choice.


Not that familiar with board games Im afraid (since i presume worker placement is type of a sub-genre of sorts.)) Time to do some research.
 
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R.T. Sloan
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You might want to try History of the World.

It plays with six, has a ton of player interaction, takes only half as long as Twilight Imperium (Fourth Edition), and was just recently re-released. (So it's actually for sale at CoolstuffInc.)

Another neat thing about it is that every turn you start up a new empire as you move forward in history, all while trying to keep old empires alive. So, no matter how badly things are going each turn can be a new beginning.
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Jasper Brood
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sloan66 wrote:
You might want to try History of the World.

It plays with six, has a ton of player interaction, takes only half as long as Twilight Imperium (Fourth Edition), and was just recently re-released. (So it's actually for sale at CoolstuffInc.)

Another neat thing about it is that every turn you start up a new empire as you move forward in history, all while trying to keep old empires alive. So, no matter how badly things are going each turn can be a new beginning.


Ty for your recommendation!

What i should have probably mentioned in the opening post is that i dislike Historical/realistic board games I mean, stuff like Tzolkin which takes specific cultures and adds sort of fantastic feel to it is fine, but "historical historical" games dont do it for me, at least for now
 
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Of the games you mentioned I have only played Tzolkin. It is one of my favorites. It has had lots of plays and so far is holding up just fine.
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Jasper Brood
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Did a bit more research, and Rising Sun also seems like something we might like.

The thing I dislike about Scythe is huge number of promo encounter cards that cant be obtained for reasonable price these days
 
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Chris Korfmann
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Yeah, that is annoying. Meeple source has them all for the cheapest price. They have everything for Scythe. You don't really need them, but being a completionist myself, I understand.
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Darren M
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Terraforming Mars
Terra Mystica
Agricola
Scythe
Great Western Trail
Concordia
Viticulture Essential Edition
A Feast for Odin
Le Havre
Food Chain Magnate



Those are 10 that I'd suggest that should be great for what you are looking for.
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Darren Whitehouse
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How about Through the Ages? ONly 4 players max but very strategic and deep. That said, since I discovered the app the box has remained in pride of place but not used. I’m sure it’ll be a fave for years to come though. Also heard great things about Scythe which is also available on Tabletop Simulator for a small amount if you wanted to try it out (and have access to a PC)

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corum irsei
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Aerris wrote:
So, in essence, I'm a looking for a game that wont last for more than 3 hours, has deep, tactical gameplay and is highly competitive. Nice flavor would be great and more players the merrier. We also love when game board is different each game, like in TI4 or Beyreyal.
How about Clockwork Wars then? It has excellent replayability, fierce and unforgiving competition, and plays up to 4 players - 5 with the expansion.
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Chris Haskins
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Alchemists is a deduction puzzle set within a worker placement. I feel like it really attracts based on its deduction aspect rather than the worker placement.

I will throw in Fury of Dracula which might not fit the bill based on your PVE requirement. Its an asymmetric game with 4(hunters) v 1(dracula). It plays in about 2-3 hours and has the higher player count so maybe just check it out.
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Oliver Kiley
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+1 for Cyclades. Great game for up to 5-players. Lots of interaction through the board play and bidding system, lots of tension + direct conflict/negotiation.

If you're group really likes highly interactive and thematic games (i.e. Twilight Imperium) I'd be cautious about jumping into a big heavy mechanical eurogame like Terra Mystica and the like, as they are going to be a very different experience, more focused on your inward development and expansion with less direct interaction.

A game that's more on the eurogame side of things but is fast to play, has an awesome theme, and is still pretty interactive is Raiders of the North Sea. The expansions each add support for an extra player, so you can play up to 6. This is a solid game.
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Jordan Booth
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I'll support Photosynthesis! It is a joy to look at and manipulate during play. It is thinky, strategic, and cutthroat. It is easy to learn and you can scale the complexity a little bit to your liking.
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Jasper Brood
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Darrenwhitehouse wrote:
How about Through the Ages? ONly 4 players max but very strategic and deep. That said, since I discovered the app the box has remained in pride of place but not used. I’m sure it’ll be a fave for years to come though. Also heard great things about Scythe which is also available on Tabletop Simulator for a small amount if you wanted to try it out (and have access to a PC)



Sadly, I dislike the historical flavor

Hask75 wrote:
I will throw in Fury of Dracula which might not fit the bill based on your PVE requirement. Its an asymmetric game with 4(hunters) v 1(dracula). It plays in about 2-3 hours and has the higher player count so maybe just check it out.



We actually played this! Second edition, I think. Was sorta an average experience - had good amount of fun, but never craved to play it again. Perhaps it was due to the older edition.

Mezmorki wrote:
If you're group really likes highly interactive and thematic games (i.e. Twilight Imperium) I'd be cautious about jumping into a big heavy mechanical eurogame like Terra Mystica and the like, as they are going to be a very different experience, more focused on your inward development and expansion with less direct interaction.



Yeah, Im aware of the differences between the two, which is why I found Gaia Project so interesting - I def want to try out something new, and less interaction doesnt seem like a necessary bad thing, unless we are basically playing 4 player solitaire, lol!


Thank you all for your replies! Lots of interesting suggestions all around, is my wishlist going to expand, lol. Sadly, local game shops dont seem to have most of these games open for a test run, so Ill have to blind-buy them. From what Ive seen, Scythe and Alchemists seem to be the winner of this (first) round of buying. Ill admit it, their good placement on the overall BGG list (both in top 100, Scythe even in top 10) also affected the decision, lol.

Another two interesting games that I found out on my own are Root and Feudum. Feudum looks really interesting, bu itss really badly ranked

Also, sorta offtopic question - how often do the new reprints of older games include promos? Upon researching Kemet, I found out that two promos are now automatically included in newer prints of the game. What are the chances of that happening to, say, Tzolkin?
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Nona de Koning
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Do you have any gaming club nearby? Shops tend to not have big expensige games open for testing, but gaming clubs do.

In my experience Gaia Project improved a lot on Terra Mystica, once you own both and know how to play both I don't think you'd ever play Terra Mystica again. Gaia Project is better balanced, added interesting options to the tracks instead of just being end game victory points, has a modular board so that it works well at all player counts, has a great solo mode and is less fiddly than Terra Mystica. It also includes enough components for all 7 faction boards including extra resource tokens so you could technically try playing it with more than 4 people, but building would become troublesome as there aren't any additional main boards to make the galaxy bigger. It is one of the best heavier games I ever played so it would be my top recommendation.

I think you'd also love Lewis & Clark. Easy to learn but lots of depth and a ton of replayability in every game. Plays up to 5 players, almost zero RNG and is very competitive. Another I think you'll adore is Chimera Station, but that only goes up to 4 players. These two and Gaia Project would be my top picks.

Alchemists is definitely something you need to ask your group about first. The deduction part is something some people hate or are just so much worse at than other players that it can unbalance the game. Some people also don't want to use an app during a game as they want to get away from screens when playing boardgames. That being said, if you think it suits your player group then it's a great game. I really love it, but I sadly have a hard time getting it to the table hence the warning.
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Jasper Brood
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YourLoveOnly wrote:
Do you have any gaming club nearby? Shops tend to not have big expensige games open for testing, but gaming clubs do.


Yeah, both of those were clubs They only have Scythe actually, but thats the one I'm most confident for, so blind buy isnt a problem, lol. Gonna contact a third club later this eve.

YourLoveOnly wrote:
Alchemists is definitely something you need to ask your group about first. The deduction part is something some people hate or are just so much worse at than other players that it can unbalance the game. Some people also don't want to use an app during a game as they want to get away from screens when playing boardgames. That being said, if you think it suits your player group then it's a great game. I really love it, but I sadly have a hard time getting it to the table hence the warning.


This sold the game to me. I'm pretty much sure most of the group is gonna love it (couple of them confirmed it), and even if they dont, its a fairly large group.


I'm fairly disappointed about Gaia Project purely outclassing Terra Mystica. I love the fantasy flavour far more, and box art is way prettier. Oh well
 
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Dan
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Dominant Species 4 to 6 players is ideal. Allow 3-4 hours.

Concordia is a good one for 2 to 5 players. Should be able to knock out in 2 hours or less.

Another idea if you like interactivity is Cosmic Encounter
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Jason J
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If it wasn't out of the price range, the obvious choice would seem to be Food Chain Magnate.

It is Deep, Tactical, Strategic, Competitive, Thematic, Variable Board Setup and has variable playing lengths.
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Darren M
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Terra Mystica is an excellent game... I wouldn't let the fact that Gaia Project is also excellent be a factor in saying that Terra Mystica is somehow a poor game now and not worth playing because it absolutely is still great.
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