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Subject: January Gaming Report rss

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Danny Webb
United States
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I played 25 different games a total of 73 times in January. This was a really good month for me in terms of total number and variety. I set a goal to play at least 100 different games this year and I'm on pace for over 200. My other goal was 500 total plays and I'm currently on pace for over 700. One of the factors really adding to both totals is that two members of my regular game group are attending the college where I teach and have free periods during the day that match mine. Thus, we are getting in a ton of games at a time that I usually would get in very few. Anyway, on to this month.

Rook (11 plays)

This is always one of my most-played trick-taking games. It is a family favorite and I don't really mind it, but I wish there was a bit more room for clever play. I would really prefer to replace all of these with games of Spades, but that seems unlikely to happen anytime soon.

Bounce It-In (7 plays)

This great little dexterity game is getting lots of play in the student lounge and at the regular Southeast Gamers sessions. Lately, we have mostly been playing the "21" variant, at which I am becoming very, very good. Though I'm recording them as 7 games, this actually saw at least 40 rounds of "21" which we usually play as "first-one-to-three-wins" wins.

Time's Up (7 plays)

This fun party game saw lots of play during the holidays but not much since.

Canyon (5 plays)

Another trick-taking game. This one has seen a revival because I finally picked up the Grand Canyon expansion which greatly improves an otherwise bland game.

I'm the Boss (4 plays)

One of my current favorites. Two plays of this were three-player at work. Two plays were game night sessions with six players. I'm not sure which I prefer, but this game is good with any of the numbers that it covers (3 to 6).

Thingamagig (4 plays)

Another party game that saw play during the holidays and has seen little since. I really like this one though, and it is amazingly portable, so I'm sure it will get pulled out enough during the year for it to make my "Dime" list at year's end.

Zendo (3 plays)

I love this game and plan to play it a bunch at work, but I haven't actually added it to my work stash yet, so all these were at Southeast Gamers sessions

Fluxx (6 plays)

I don't actually know why, but likely because Fred keeps a copy in his backpack and it can be played quickly and mindlessly while eating lunch.

Filthy Rich (3 plays)

Yay. I received this in a trade with another Geek. I've been wanting it since my wife demoed it way back in 1998. We benefited from the eight years of playtesting by "early" adopters and played with a couple of house rules: only one "0" a turn causes taxation, and only "active" properties are taxed (luxuries and assets are taxed only if you are otherwise paying taxes this turn). Having yet to play a game with the out-of-the-box rules, I don't know if our version improves the game, but it is a fun game played this way and we are unlikely to play it any differently in our lunchtime sessions. I'll probably play it straight at the first Feb. game night just to see how it compares.

Easy Come, Easy Go (3 plays)

I received a review copy of this game from Out of the Box this month. Three plays isn't enough to do the full review, but I think this will end up being a decent opener/closer/filler dice game. It should certainly be an option for the people who are forced by their families into the occasional Yahtzee game. EC,EG provides much more player interaction and more interesting decisions while remaining light and fluffy. Not a great game, certainly, but possibly a good one with the right group.

Bohnanza (2 plays)

One of my favorites. Both plays were with the family. My two-year old daughter (three in March) continues to love this game and is beginning to really catch on to how to play.

Station Master (2 plays)

I bought this one (requested it as a gift, actually) on the recommendation of Bruno's Ideal Games Library and I really like it. It feels sort of like Titan: The Arena. The art design is blah, but not so bad that it causes the game to tank.

Tichu (2 plays)

This game is great. I can't believe how long I put off buying it. I'm generally unimpressed with the "German" card game designs, but this one really appeals to me. Besides the 2 full games, we played a loose hand here and there throughout the month.

King's Gate (2 plays)

Not only do I like this game, I like it better than the similar, but much more highly thought of Samurai (Gasp!). Why? I have no idea, yet. I simply didn't find Samurai compelling in my lone play many moons ago, and King's Gate was, conversely, a very enjoyable experience. If someone wants to trade me a copy of Samurai, I'll gladly pick up a copy so I can compare them more closely.

Magic:TG (2 plays)

My first two plays in almost three years. My niece's boyfriend is addicted and wanted to play. I pulled out an old school deck and played against new cards I have never seen before. The plays re-enforced two things for me: Why I loved Magic in the first place, and why I began to despise it (at least tournament-style Magic). The good: the card interactions and variety of deck designs are fascinating. The bad: broken decks/overpowered combos.

Single Plays:

The Headlines Game--fun party game
Bang--I'm starting to really hate this one
Outburst Remix--not bad
Betrayal at the House on the Hill--meh
Screen Test--blech!


I finally got to play my mint copy of this game that had been in a file cabinet at work for at least seven years, probably longer. I'll need to play more, but I think this will become popular beer and pretzels fair with my group.

Letterflip--Advanced Hangman
Space Walk--Fun Mancala variant/re-theming
El Grande--a victory for me!

Apples to Apples--I'm so tired of this game. Only Werewolf is more overplayed by my group.

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