My birthday is coming up and my parents don't give gifts. Instead, they give me $200. I'm planning on spending it all on games. I've got a small collection and would like to expand. Here is what we've got.
Catan w/ C&K
Ticket to Ride
Kill Dr. Lucky
Here is your assignment. Build a list of games that will cost under $200 but get the most bang for my buck.
What does that mean? It can mean either number of games, total enjoyment to be had, games that expand genre or game mechanics for the collection, etc. In other words, it means what you want it to mean. Just let us know what it means to you.
Let us know any restrictions or preferences:
For example, # of players you want to play with, length of game, complexity, any specific mechanics you like or don't like, theme importance, component quality, etc.
More information would allow us to better recommend games.
Mrs. Mystery Bob
Here's your collection, with rankings:
Puerto Rico 10
Catan: Cities & Knights 10
Ticket to Ride 9
Memoir '44 8
Kill Doctor Lucky 8
Zombie Fluxx 7.5
The Settlers of Catan 7
Catch Phrase 6.5
Sorry! - Pokémon 4
The Game of Life 4
Cuba ($38) because you like Puerto Rico and Agricola
Catan Card Game ($16, expansion set $16) because of your Catan C&K comments
Your TTR comments, "easy to learn, easy to play... pretty" = Tsuro ($18)
Comments for Kill Dr. Lucky = 13 Dead End Drive (trade or buy cheaply)
You mention needing simple rules/lighter games... perhaps No Thanks! ($6.40), Qwirkle Cubes ($19), or Unnamed Object ($9.95)
How about a coop... Pandemic ($22)
How about an auction/bidding game. If it'll mostly be 2p, Before the Wind ($24). 4 or 5 players, The Princes of Florence ($25ish).
An abstract... ZÈRTZ ($21)
2 player card game that plays like a board game... Jambo ($15)
That's under $200, by quite a long shot.
Well, my wife and I play lots of games as 2-player, but I don't really want to limit it to that. I've done a lot of research into good games for 2-players, so I've got an idea there. We've recently joined a gaming club, so we have a lot more playing partners than we used to.
The only real limitation for my purchasing is that I kill my wife in abstract games, so the chances that I'll get one are low, regardless of how much I'd like some of them (hive, I'm talking about you.)
So I guess I'm struggling with whether I buy 4 games that I'll play each a lot or buying 8-12 games that will get less play each. Or do I go with variety getting a war game, a cooperative game, a deductive game, etc. I guess I'm looking to see how people might organize the decision.
That probably isn't any more help. Sorry
You don't have Power Grid yet. You should get it.
I wear my Halloween costume all year round!
I'd recommend getting more cheaper games rather than just a few expensive ones if you don't really have a sense of what you'd like.
Ticket to Ride: USA 1910 $14.95: It's cheap, and you know it will get played since you already like Ticket to Ride.
Catan: Seafarers $33.60: This one is a bit pricier for an expansion, but again, you know you love Settlers so this one is guaranteed to get played.
Dominion $27.99: This one is in the top 10, it's quick and easy to teach while still being thoroughly satisfying, and it's not at all expensive considering the play time you'll get out if it.
Bohnanza $16.95: Again, this is great value for the price. It's a negotiating game, which I think is a type you're missing. It has a bean-planting theme, which sounds ridiculous but actually works, and it appeals to light gamers while still being satisfying.
Hive $22.50: I'm not actually a big fan of this game, but you said you wanted it, and it's your birthday. It's not too expensive, so you can get a game you want while still buying plenty of games with other people in mind.
Tigris & Euphrates $44: I suggested this one because it's currently my favourite game, and the one that I think offers the most replayability. It's considered an abstract despite having what I consider a satisfying theme, but it's the kind of game that I can enjoy immensely even if I end up losing (which you don't necessarily realize until the end, since victory points are hidden), so I don't think it would be a problem to play with your wife. And there is a little bit of luck involved.
I think that comes to about $150, so you could maybe still choose another pretty significant game, but the extra might just get spent in shipping fees, taxes, or not getting the absolute lowest price on your purchases....
At the least, I'd recommend Ticket to Ride 1910 for the big cards and different variants.
Here's my list:
Ticket to Ride: USA 1910
Total: $190.15 @ GameSurplus.com, who I highly recommend!
I have the same problem, that is, deciding what I want to buy.
My collection is fairly small, so finding a game I don't have is easy. Finding a game I would enjoy for years and years, that's not so easy.
One thing, if you can do it, is try out games before you buy them. If you're part of a gaming group and there are a few games that don't get any play (for whatever reason) request to give them a try.
Go to your FLGS and see if they have any demo games or, at the very least, have a game open so you can see what it looks like, give the rules a read, etc.
The best thing about looking for new games is learning about all the new games. I've done that, and I'm so very excited about playing/buying all kinds of games.
One valuable tool that BGG provides is geekbuddies.
Step 1: rate all the games you've played.
Step 2: go to http://www.lautapeliopas.fi/bgg/correlation.php and type your username in the first window, leaving the second blank.
Step 3: Geekbuddy anyone whose correlation comes up close to 1.
Step 4: go to any game's page at BGG and click "geekbuddy analysis" to see how people who share your tastes feel about the game.
Step 5: Throw in the overall user comments & a couple of reviews, and you should be well on your way to building a collection free of 4s or lower.
All good recommendations so far. So, multi-player and no abstracts.
I'll mention my favorite games which are rarely on any of these lists:
Empire Builder - or others in this series/crayon rails
For lighter fare:
Freight Train - simple, elegant, overlooked IMO
Hey, That's My Fish! - OK, it's an abstract, but multi-player
Piece o' Cake
Cribbage - classic 2-player, very good and fun!
Good luck and let us know what you decide!!
Mrs. Mystery Bob