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Subject: I love playing steam, what next? rss

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Dale Prather
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I'm fairly new to this great hobby of real board games and I'm still feeling out which kind of games I enjoy and which kind of games my most frequent opponents enjoy. While trying not to blow too much money only to find out xyz game isn't for me. I try before I buy when I can.

Steam is an excellent game, IMO. I love playing and plan on playing it much more. It's probably my favorite at this point.

Therefore, I want to explore some games with similar attributes. I like the interactivity of the game and the high degree of strategy and low degree of luck. It's fairly easy to learn and hard to master. New strategies are popping into my head when I'm not playing. The expandability of new maps is also a great plus.

Things I'm starting to think I may not be too fond of are the multi-player solitaire type games. The interactivity is a great plus.

Anyways, without naming anymore of Steams great qualities, since I'm sure you all know them better than I do, what other games can you point me to based on the likes/dislikes I've mentioned?

Not sure if this is the appropriate place for this post, but I'll see what you all have to say and then move it if necessary.

Thanks.
 
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Joel Gabelman
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Steam is one of my favorites too. Below you'll find a list of other games I think you'll like:

1) Power Grid
2) El Grande
3) Acquire
4) Le Havre
5) Revolution (lightest of the group)
6) Chicago Express
7) Puerto Rico

Note: These are not listed in any particular order.

Good luck, and happy playing.
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Richard Dewsbery
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Steam Barons for the same mechanics but with a major twist (you don't run just one railroad - instead you buy shares in all 6 of them, the current majority shareholder gets to run the company). Oh, and two new maps for Steam (if you're bored of the ones that are already in the box).

Brass for another highly-praised economic game by the same designer. Or the newer, lighter version, Age of Industry. Which gets it's official launch this weekend.

Power Grid is another deeply interactive, deeply strategic game with relatively little luck. I'd recommend that you check it out.
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Douglas Lesavoy
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Never played Steam and I've never played Powergrid but the way you just described Steam is the way all the fanatics describe Powergrid, so I'll add a vote for that.

Edit: I do own and love El Grande though and that definitely fits the description you gave. Lots of interactivity, very little luck. It's truly one of the most elegant games I've played for it's overall simplistic nature while maintaining it's amazing depth.
 
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Dale Prather
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Thanks for your comments. I'm thinking Power Grid for sure and probably El Grande.

I was kind of surprised to see Puerto Rico as a recommendation. I've yet to play it (just got it) but from reading about it, I didn't get a sense that it was a highly interactive game.
 
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J C Lawrence
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Start with Steam's older and more interesting parent: Age of Steam. Then have a look at its older and more interest parent in turn: Lancashire Railways or New England Railways (same game, different maps).

Other games I'd recommend:

- Almost any of the 18xx, but I suggest starting with 1889.
- Chicago Express
- Pampas Railroads
- Preußische Ostbahn
- Genoa
- Clippers
- Lords of the Spanish Main
- Stephensons Rocket
- Kaivai
- Neuland
- Container
- Imperial
- Imperial 2030
- The Bridges of Shangri-La
- In the Shadow of the Emperor
- Confucius
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Snooze Fest
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First, a generic suggestion:
1. play a lot of games
2. rate them here on BGG
3. use Mikko's correlation toolat http://www.lautapeliopas.fi/bgg/correlation.php to find users with similar tastes to yours
4. go back to BGG, and make those users your GeekBuddies
5. check out what other games your GB's rate highly (http://www.boardgamegeek.com/geekbuddy.php3?action=gameratin...)!

But for now: if you're new to the hobby, you may not realize that it is usually a good idea to look at other games by the same designer. In this case, you'd look at Martin Wallace's other games. However, keep in mind that he has 3 broad groups of games, with sometimes little overlap in terms of ratings/game preferences:
- train/economic games
- war(ish) games
- lighter fare

Other games to consider:
- Imperial
- Power Grid
- Indonesia

By the way, are you playing Base Steam, or Standard (with auctions) Steam?
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Dale Prather
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snoozefest wrote:
By the way, are you playing Base Steam, or Standard (with auctions) Steam?


Playing the Base version. Would you recommend the Standard?
 
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Joel Gabelman
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I forgot Imperial 2030 - it's great!

That said, the 18xx games tend to have some problems:

1) LONG LONG LONG
2) Unforgiving
3) LONG
4) Somewhat dry

If the OP has Steam, why play and buy AoS? I don't see how they're different enough to add to his/her collection. The "standard" version of Steam is pretty close to Steam anyway.

Just my $0.02,

JRG
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Dale Prather
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I would agree with your $0.02 on AoS, elmsley4. I'm not looking for another train game with some rule variations, although I appreciate all suggestions. And I'll check out Imperial 2030.

I've been reading up on The Bridges of Shangri-La and that looks promising.

I'll answer my own question with a suggestion for Hansa Teutonica. I've only played it once at a game group and enjoyed it quite a bit. It was more of an abstract, but I liked the interactivity. I don't know about it from a replay-ability standpoint having only played once.
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J C Lawrence
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elmsley4 wrote:
That said, the 18xx games tend to have some problems:


We play 10-16 games of 18xx every month, almost entirely on weekday evenings with work the next day. No, they're not so very long etc.

Quote:
If the OP has Steam, why play and buy AoS?


I believe I've answered that in the Steam fora, and no, I don't consider Steam close enough to AoS.
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J C Lawrence
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dale12 wrote:
I would agree with your $0.02 on AoS, elmsley4. I'm not looking for another train game with some rule variations...


Which is not what you'll find in Age of Steam or any of the other games I mentioned. Even Pampas Railroads and Chicago Express/Wabash Cannonball, which seem remarkably close on the face of it, play little like each other.
 
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Jesse Dean
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dale12 wrote:

I'll answer my own question with a suggestion for Hansa Teutonica. I've only played it once at a game group and enjoyed it quite a bit. It was more of an abstract, but I liked the interactivity. I don't know about it from a replay-ability standpoint having only played once.


Hansa Teutonica has plenty of replayability. I am already at 40ish plays and still enjoy getting it on the table.

clearclaw's list is also very good.
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Eric Flood
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elmsley4 wrote:
That said, the 18xx games tend to have some problems:

1) LONG LONG LONG
2) Unforgiving
3) LONG
4) Somewhat dry


I had 12-14 year old students playing a game of 18AL a week or two ago. They both loved the experience and understood the game. They managed not to get antsy with the length of the game, but rather remained focused and engaged throughout most of the experience. 3 of the 5 players wanted an immediate second game; sadly, we did not have the time. In all, it took 3-4 hours.

I imagine 20+ year-olds can accomplish similar tasks, when negative assumptions are cast aside. I told the students it would be a difficult, lengthy, but rewarding game. They knew what they were getting into, without any negative assumptions.

Of course, a guiding hand through the first (potentially confusing) play is always a rather helpful factor.
 
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Michael Longdin
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clearclaw wrote:
elmsley4 wrote:
If the OP has Steam, why play and buy AoS?


I believe I've answered that in the Steam fora, and no, I don't consider Steam close enough to AoS.


Steam certainly is close enough to AoS for you to buy the other things listed here first. However, if you could go back and do it all again, you really should have bought AoS and not Steam!
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J C Lawrence
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doubtofbuddha wrote:
clearclaw's list is also very good.


Well, I'd hope so seeing as it is a lightly trimmed copy of the top of my ratings list.
 
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Morgan Dontanville
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All of the previous suggestions are good.

How about:
Airlines
Volldampf
Marracash
Steel Driver
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Snooze Fest
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dale12 wrote:
snoozefest wrote:
By the way, are you playing Base Steam, or Standard (with auctions) Steam?


Playing the Base version. Would you recommend the Standard?

Not necessarily; it's a different game -- worth trying, but not required. I think the Base version is very nice, but others -- I'm sure they'll chime in soon enough -- feel strongly otherwise.
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Dale Prather
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I agree. I've read through the standard game rules and I'm too excited about it. I'm happy to stick with the base. But, after a few more goes at the base game, maybe I'll give it a shot.

Clearclaw, thanks for the suggestions. I've investigated most of your list and the majority sound very interesting. Even some of the train games minus AoS The 18XXs look interesting, although looks like a lot to get into.

I'm quite surprised to see Blokus as possibly your number one game. Interesting.
 
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J C Lawrence
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dale12 wrote:
Clearclaw, thanks for the suggestions.


Welcome.

Quote:
I've investigated most of your list and the majority sound very interesting.


They are all games I rate highly. My profile gives some idea of what I look for in games.

Quote:
The 18XXs look interesting, although looks like a lot to get into.


For many the 18xx become lifestyle games, replacing all other game types and interests, yes. Happily the games can easily support that level of dedicated interest.

Quote:
I'm quite surprised to see Blokus as possibly your number one game. Interesting.


Specifically two player two colour Blokus. I don't find the standard four player game or the smaller two player single colour game nearly as interesting.
 
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Chris Rudram
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dale12 wrote:
I'm fairly new to this great hobby of real board games and I'm still feeling out which kind of games I enjoy and which kind of games my most frequent opponents enjoy. While trying not to blow too much money only to find out xyz game isn't for me. I try before I buy when I can.

Steam is an excellent game, IMO. I love playing and plan on playing it much more. It's probably my favorite at this point.
...
Thanks.


If you like the base game I think you'd like Puerto Rico and Caylus. Both are interactive and head scratchers and have lots of really interesting interactions. I'd recommend Caylus top of any list, but it's one of my all time favourites, so there's some bias there.

Powergrid is interesting, but I personally don't like the hard work of maths in the last couple of turns.

Wabash/Chicago Express is very different in the train game field, but an excellently interactive game, and has things in common with other games like Imperial, 18xx and PR, while being very different, and only being an hour long.

Different again is Homesteaders, with an auction mechanic, different growth paths, and slightly more obtuse interaction.

Le Havre has a similar level of struggle that Steam has that resolves itself into a nice economic engine.

Plus there are more maps for Steam from the AoS strand with more 'Real Steam Brand' ones coming out. I'd avoid Rail Barons, it adds complexity with little reward, in my book.

But Brass is worth a play. I got burnt out on it after a few plays, and don't see the depth that others do, but that's not a good enough recommendation not to at least have a look see.



 
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Michael Werner
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I think that you need to find a club, or a group to try games with. If a budget is the problem, check you local library or game store to find out about groups that provide a chance for you to try before you buy.
I personally like:
Tigris and Euphrates
Agricola
both of this have a little luck.

Best of luck
 
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CW Lumm
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I agree with those who find the 18xx games too long and arduous, but of course, your mileage might vary.

If you're looking for a light game that does a great job of integrating some of the features of Age of Steam and 18xx into a very smooth and quick-playing game, you might give Samarkand: Routes to Riches a shot.

If you have friends who might become interested in Steam or 18xx but are intimidated by the mechanics, it'd make a good introduction to the basic tactics in those games: blocking, shipping just before your opponents, risk vs. reward, etc.
 
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Dale Prather
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After this discussion, Chicago Express will likely be my next purchase once I get it approved by the boss.
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Neil Christiansen
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I would definately suggest Brass or Age of Industry shortly thereafter.
 
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