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Subject: Pay Day! What should I get? rss

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Joe Braun
United States
Pawtucket
Rhode Island
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I get paid in a few days. I want to get 2 new games. I currently have:

1. San Juan
2. Carc: The Castle
3. Lost Cities
4. Babel
5. Jambo
6. Ticket to Ride

I'll be getting Caylus Magna Carta if a few days. My wife and I play mostly by ourselves and occasionally have guests who are non-gamers. We would like to get some heavier games, but nothing that is going to take 2 hours to play. We really like Carc: The Castle.

Here's whats on my list of games I want:

1. Arkadia (I'm leaning towards this one)
2. Tigris and Euphrates
3. Carcassonne with Inns/Cathedrals, Abbey/Mayor, and Traders/Builders.
4. Tikal
5. Agricola (probably hold off on this one for awhile).
6. Reef Encounter
7. Carc: The City

Either way, I'll be getting all of these games at some point in the next few months-my wife just puts a spending cap on me every month, so I can only get 2.

Any suggestions? I'll take suggestions from off the list.
 
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M Hellyer
United States
Aurora
Illinois
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Tigris and Euphrates is dry and tense.
Tikal is enjoyable and interesting.
Can't go wrong with the Carcassonne series

You might want to consider:
TransAmerica - very fast, fun, and surprisingly replayable for a simple game
For Sale - fun card game, but is only really good with 4 players
Downfall of Pompeii - if your friends would enjoy tossing you into the volcano
Ticket to Ride Europe - nice variation and good game for 2
Pandemic - work WITH the other players rather than against them to try to win


 
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Randall Barnes
United States
Georgia
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Tikal is Beautiful and fairly thematic game. Good for a fair bit of thought.
Reef Encounter also has an interesting theme, pretty pasted on though, but it is a REALLY deep game.
They are both very different and would be a great combo to add.
 
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Chuck Easterlin
United States
Saint Peters
Missouri
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Seeing what you own, if you're looking for light two player games, I'd suggest;

Hive and Mr. Jack.

A heavier two player game;
1960: The Making of the President.

Fun for groups of non-gamers;
Lifeboats or Ca$h 'n Gun$ (if you have a lively group).
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Philip Manoff
United States
Haymarket
Virginia
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I would second the TransAmerica suggestion. I would also get the Vexation expansion (very cheap) for the game. My wife, parents and son love game. We often play 4-5 games in a sitting with variations that include random 10 cities, 8 cities, etc. It is fun, quick and has some strategy as the game rarely ends in a blowout.

I would also suggest:
Notre Dame
Up Town
Pillars of the Earth
1910: Ticket to Ride
Ticket to Ride Switzerland (more competitive with fewer players)
TransEuropa
10 Days in... (USA, Europe, Africa, Asia)
Loot (a fun easy card game)

Enjoy.
 
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Joe Braun
United States
Pawtucket
Rhode Island
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We tried Mr. Jack and did not like it.
 
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Monika
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1. Arkadia (I'm leaning towards this one) - If you prefer to play non-confrontational, each player will end up playing in their own corner of the map. My teenage son likes playing a 2 player game against me; my hubby would have to be forced to play 2er. As you can see, it can be a hit or miss.

3. Carcassonne with Inns/Cathedrals, Abbey/Mayor, and Traders/Builders.
Just Carc with Inns/Cath is great for 2er. I would also suggest looking into Hunters & Gatheres which would be more accessible to your non-gaming friends.

4. Tikal
Nice classic which would cover the strategy game side of your collection. As with Arkadia, it can be a very solitaire experience with non-confrontational 2 players.

6. Reef Encounter
I have a hunch that this might be way too abstract for the 2 of you. Don't be fooled by the theme!

A few I would toss into your mix:

Thurn and Taxis - some compare it to Ticket to Ride but it has different mechanics and a different feel.

Paris Paris - really enjoyable as a light-medium game when played 2er. With your non-gaming friends it would be even lighter. The theme seems to appeal to non-gamers. This would extend your collection with some completely different mechanics.

Blue Moon City - nice with 2 and more. Very different from what you have. Check out posted images of the cards though to see whether either you or your wife would object to them. Check out this great video review if you are interested at all (I used it to learn the game): http://www.boardgameswithscott.com/?p=52

Maybe you can convince your wife that an expansion doesn't count as a game purchase and toss in Ticket to Ride 1910. devil

Hope this helps!
 
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Nick Bah Doo
Netherlands
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To get the non-gamers to game, I'd suggest:

El Grande
Yspahan
Princes of Florence
 
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Christopher DeFrisco
United States
Ashland
Oregon
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First off... great to hear your payday is burning a hole in your pocket for games!


I play quite a bit with my wife, who is slowly coming around to heavier games. She loves Ticket to Ride, San Marco, Aladdin's Dragons, Princes of Florence, Carcassonne, Coloretto...

Arkadia - I like this one quite a bit, not so much the wife.
Tigris and Euphrates - I LOVE this game, but I've been reluctant to teach Christine. I don't think she would take to it, but I've been surprised in the past.
Carcassonne with Inns/Cathedrals, Abbey/Mayor, and Traders/Builders - You'll get every opinion about the various Carcassonne versions. I've only played a few so far, and so far my favorite is still vanilla.
Tikal - Christine and I both really like this one! Good game.
Agricola - I've pre-ordered this one with fingers crossed that Christine will like it. Probably a good idea to hold off. I would suggest looking for an opportunity to play this one first.
Reef Encounter - This seemed awfully dry to me. Beautiful game... but it didn't have any umph. I'm in the minority on this one though.
Carc: The City - This is probably the next Carc I'm going to pick up. :-)

I'm not a fan of TransAmerica so I can't chime in on recommending that game. Each time I've played it I was thinking that I would much rather have been playing Ticket to Ride.

1910 Expansion - If you like Ticket to Ride. Pick this expansion up. Well worth it.

Christine and I enjoyed, but burned out on Balloon Cup and Lost Cities. You might consider Odin's Ravens... another good Kosmos 2-player.

Keythedral has been a hit with both of us as well.

Edit...Reread all of the other suggestions and I'll give a thumbs up to these as well:
El Grande
Hive
For Sale
The Downfall of Pompeii
 
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Håkan König
Sweden
Linköping
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devilMost importantly: you should avoid Pay Day! sauron

Seriously, with only two players the original Carcassonne with all expansions is probably overkill. Save that for when you have more players (i.e. 3 or 4). Carcassonne: The City is a better choice for two. Agricola is not available yet so save that one for later. I have not played neither Arkadia nor Tikal, but from what I've read they are both good solid games and I don't think you'll regret either.
Finally, my two favourites on this list are Tigris & Euphrates and Reef Encounter. Both good games, quite heavy (about as heavy as a euro can get) and both on my top 20 list. They do have some similarities so I would not recommend to buy these two at the same time either, so my final recommendation would be Reef Encounter and Arkadia
 
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Darren M
Canada
Fort Vermilion
AB
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Out of your seven picks (which are all good games)... I'd suggest them in this order:

1. Tigris and Euphrates - Classic meaty Euro - a good choice
2. Carcassonne with Inns/Cathedrals and Traders/Builders - Great game with more tactical/strategic play than its given credit for.
3. Tikal - Nice looking game, midweight - definitely recommended
4. Arkadia - Good midweight Euro
5. Reef Encounter - Deep Euro, actually nicely themed and a lot to think about.
6. Agricola (wait for the English release in 1-2 months)
7. Carc: The City - Not really needed if you get Carcassonne with expansions but this is a nice option INSTEAD of regular Carc.


Others I'd recommend looking into...

Puerto Rico - Have to try this. Best with 3 or 4 but decent with 2.

Power Grid - Probably my favorite Euro. Best with 3 or 4.

Ra - Good with 2+ players

Samurai -Scales well from 2-4

Ingenious - Simple but great abstract for 2-4

Thurn and Taxis - Somewhat like TtR... but different enough to make it worth trying.
 
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Jackson Pope
United Kingdom
Newcastle upon Tyne
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I second Thurn and Taxis and also recommend Hey, That's My Fish! and Race for the Galaxy - The Wife and I love it.

Cheers,

Jack
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Laurence Parsons
United Kingdom
Bristol
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Harry Plopper wrote:
1. Arkadia (I'm leaning towards this one)
2. Tigris and Euphrates
3. Carcassonne with Inns/Cathedrals, Abbey/Mayor, and Traders/Builders.
4. Tikal
5. Agricola (probably hold off on this one for awhile).
6. Reef Encounter
7. Carc: The City


You could "try before you buy" a few of these:
Tigris - available online here at the Geek (turn-based)
Carcassonne - available online at BSW (real-time)
Tikal & Reef - available online at Spielbyweb (turn-based)

Of the ones I know:
Carcassonne is probably most "accessible", especially as you already have a version. On the other hand, maybe you'd prefer something new.
Tikal is probably next lightest and is generally well liked.
The same can be said for Tigris, as befits two games of their age. They are both well known now, and deserving of their popularity and longevity.

Reef is probably the "hardest" and deepest game of these. There is a lot more to the game than is immediately apparent, even after several plays. It can be a brain burner, but it rewards deep thought. It is similar to Chess in this respect - you can play the game by moving the pieces about, and you will get a good game with someone of similar ability, but if you come up against a "player" you will get taken apart, and you may not even understand how it happened. Reef is deeper than it looks. I've played hundreds of games and am still learning. I highly recommend the game! (It's also a very attractive-looking game)

I can't comment on the others at all, as I haven't played them.

Of the games that others have mentioned, I'd pick Thurn & Taxis.
 
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Eric
Canada
Gatineau
Quebec
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One of my first games was Tikal, and we enjoyed it very much. Actually, you're reminding me to play it again.

I'm not sure about Reef Encounter, even though I liked it, it's a bit heavier than what you already have. I wish I could recommand Arkadia, but I haven't played it yet, but to me it looks interresting.

I would suggest also Cleopatra and the Society of Architects which is a very nice light game. You can't go wrong with Days of Wonders!

Other suggestions:
Alhambra There is a variant for 2 players, but better with more
Oasis Although a 3-5 players (I don't know of a variant for 2 players), it was a hit around me, gamers and non-gamers alike.
 
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Christopher DeFrisco
United States
Ashland
Oregon
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Ah, negative. I am a meat popsicle.
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LMAO

And English is my native language.
shake

generalpf wrote:
cdefrisco wrote:
Arkadia - I like this one quite a bit, not so much the wife.

Anyone else read this the same way I did?
 
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Chip Crawford
United States
Aubrey
Texas
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By all means, if you don't have Carrcasonne, get it and start loving it.
 
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M Hellyer
United States
Aurora
Illinois
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Thebes would be a nice light game with good theme elements, too.

Formula De' is a gas for a light race car game -- watch out, though -- if you like it they have many other race tracks and you might want to play them and have a tournament over time. (I think I read they might be coming out with a new version of Formula De' this year.)
 
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