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Subject: Two-Player Strategy Game (Duel) With Great Replayability Value rss

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Mihael R
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Hi,

I'm looking for a Chess-like game, but not as abstract. Something with no or little luck involved. Could be a miniature war game, card game; fantasy, science-fiction, etc. But something I could really play over and over (with my son or a friend) and could hardly get bored with it. Something that improves one's "strategic" thinking, and where you can get better the more you play. Not mindless dice throwing and where luck plays a large role. Also, something with direct conflict ("ameri-game"). The game should play best with two players, although it can be designed for more. Game shouldn't last more than roughly two hours, and a plus is if it doesn't have much text and complicated rules.


I played Chess, Magic: The Gathering, War of the Ring, Memoir '44, Samurai, Hive, Lord of the Rings: The Confrontation, and Ingenious.

I like Magic: The Gathering, Hive and Samurai the most. Chess is a little bit too deep and cold to me, especially after seeing some chessmasters . Memoir '44 is moderately luck-based.

I'm thinking about getting Summoner Wars, but I'd like a game with figures/miniatures, if possible.

Really looking forward to your suggestions and help.

Thanks!
 
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Shane Larsen
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Earth Reborn
Dungeon Twister 2: Prison

Same designer. They both deliver what you're looking for. ER is on the epic side of the scale. DT2 is medium weight, but also has rules for solo play.

Enjoy!
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James
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I agree with The Decker's suggestions of Earth Reborn and Dungeon Twister, though DT has seemed to some to be very abstract and is often compared to chess (full disclosure: I haven't played it myself but can't wait to do so).

In addition to those selections, if you haven't considered it, I can't recommend Twilight Struggle enough. It's an incredible game that matches your specifications perfectly.It is incredibly strategic with tense decisions throughout. It absolutely grows with you, revealing more depth over your time with it.

Multiple edits: clarity
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jflartner
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If you like Magic, you could check out Warhammer: Invasion.

If you want minis, have you looked into the HeroClix series of games?
There are new Lord of the Rings figures, which it looks like you might enjoy, and there are also hundreds of other figures that are all "compatible" with each other. So, with a moderately sized collection, you and your son or friend, could build different forces each time you played.
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I highly recommend Mr. Jack which is an awesome two-player game with very little luck, but has tons of replayability. The asymmetric nature of the game makes it really challenging and exciting for both sides.
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Tony Chen
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Manoeuvre
Dungeon Twister
Summoners but you'll have to buy more than a couple factions to keep it fresh
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Ian Toltz
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How about Yomi? It has a lot of replayability. The 10 different characters all play quite differently.
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Brad Johnson
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I love to play Lord of the Rings: The Confrontation when I'm looking for a 2-player game. I think it meets most of your criteria.

I also love Innovation as a 2-player game, although it can accomodate up to 4 players (5 with the expansion). This is just a card game, but if you like M:tG, there are some similarities in the feel you would get with this game.

If you're looking for another CCG (LCG, actually) to try, my all-time favorite is Call of Cthulhu: The Card Game. But be warned, to really get the most out of this game, you'll probably want to get a large set of cards and possibly keep up with a near-monthly release schedule of new small sets.

I like your idea about Summoner Wars - I've never played it myself, but it sounds really good. It reminds me a lot of the cancelled game, Dreamblade, which I really enjoyed a lot! If you can find cheap sets of these figures on ebay or something, it would be well worth it. Fits many of your criteria - chesslike, miniatures, themed. It does have a fair amount of dice rolling though.
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Kevin J
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Neuroshima Hex! 3.0 has a luck component in the tile drawing, but the combat is completely deterministic.

Manoeuvre as suggested above feels very chess-like. I can't wait for an iOS version to come along!
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Imp Rovius
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GOSU

Use the tournament rules to minimize any luck influence. The gameplay should have a similar feel to MtG.
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Markus Hagenauer jr.
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Maybe 2 de Mayo is the right game for you.

Or if you prefere something without luck (an abstract) but not abstract (thats why i hate the name of this category), maybe Through the Desert is worth a look at.

And if a football (I mean soccer) theme is OK for you too, I´d recommend 11. Is quite abstract and great to fight a duel.
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Brian Davis
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Dunno how you'd feel about the theme but 1960: The Making of the President is a GREAT 2 player game that seems to fit your requirements

edit** I just checked to see what country you are from... You may not be interested in a game about the United States electoral system lol
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Yours Truly,
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There must have been a moment at the beginning, where we could have said no. Somehow we missed it. Well, we'll know better next time.
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Twilight Struggle
Talk about an epic 2-player duel with awesome replayability and direct conflict!

I also strongly second/third/etc the above nods towards
Dungeon Twister 2: Prison
and
Manoeuvre

You can't pack much more replayability in a box than in the above 3 games.
(And while I see what people are saying when they say the latter 2 are somewhat "chess-like", I have played a lot of chess and they do feel very different.)
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Mitch Willis
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A couple of card games you might want to check out, The Battle for Hill 218 and perhaps
Court of the Medici...

You might also want to take a look at Arimaa, but that might be more abstract than what you're looking for...

One other game that might fit the bill would be Stronghold Games' updated edition of Confusion: Espionage and Deception in the Cold War...
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Dan Cassar
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I think John Clowdus' Omen: A Reign of War is a perfect fit for your requirements. It scratches the MtG itch quite nicely, including killer combos and a drafting version with personal decks. The game's second edition is on Kickstarter right now.
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Mihael R
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Wow,

thanks for all the suggestions. There are really many of them .

I forgot to mention that a game that wouldn't last more than roughly two hours would be best, and not having much text and complicated rules is a plus.

I will certainly check all the suggestions out and am really looking forward to exploring these games.

Thanks again! laugh

PS. other suggestions are welcome, too
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Mercedes (Mandy)
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Definitely agree with Dungeon twister 2, & what about Confusion the new Stronghold resorting? Those 2 are gems.
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Jim Wilde
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Sounds to me like you are already on the right track with Summoner Wars. Okay, so it lacks miniatures, but all the other elements are there already. If you move up a step to miniatures, you add a whole extra level of complexity.

I used to play Warmachine and Hordes. These are fairly straightforward tabletop miniature battles where you have to assemble and paint your miniatures, then fight with them. I never had time for assembly and painting, so I switched to Summoner Wars and have never looked back. By the way, Summoner Wars: Master Set came out recently, and comes with 6 factions; a good deal in my opinion.

There are also a couple of recent games that may do the trick. They are Battleship Galaxies and Star Trek: Fleet Captains. Both are combat games with space ship miniatures. I am not very familiar with gameplay of them, but you did list science fiction among your choices, and these are both fairly recent additions to the boardgame universe. Maybe check out the reviews.

Hope this helps.
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Pau Simo
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Eugene
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Twilight Struggle
Netrunner
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benji
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I think you should check out Shazamm!. Not the latest hype, but a very cool two player game that clearly gets better with repeated plays.
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Chang Lin
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For something in the more Euro vein, there's King of Siam or the card game equivalent, Triumvirate. If you're looking for an abstract that's not chess, you can't go wrong with the GIPF series (Yinsh is usually recommended as a starter).
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David
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The game for you is Heroscape Master Set: Rise of the Valkyrie.

That is, if you can find it and not get heavily into it since there are so many units.

My second suggestion would be Summoner Wars, there are no mini's, but that also saves you A LOT of money.
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Matthew Jones
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You should check out Fealty. You know how world class chess players say they can see the areas of influence of the pieces? Well Fealty actually plays off that idea and runs with it. The pieces you place lay claim to portions of the map and the person with the most claim tokens on the maps win.

It has definite replayability with several maps, has cards that control the order of initiative in a turn, has perfect and open information and is a blast to play. I would consider it to be a step up from chess.

I do not know when the market version will come out, the Kickstarter versions are being shipped as we speak. You can check out the gamepage for more info.
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Martin Plourde
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Horus Heresy (2010) ninja my fav game, longish rulebook but evruthing make sense after 2 games
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