Marco Auer
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I recently rediscovered playing boardgames after having a pause for several years. My favourite game right now is Mage Knight and I'm planning to buy another big thematic boardgame. It has to play well for two players as well as one player.

Browsing through the forum I found many posts recommending Arkham Horror. It's thematic, tells a great story and works well as a solo game. I'm just worried about playing time and complexity. Another H.P. Lovecraft game recommendet is Elder Sign, which seems to be a lot quicker and simplier to play. However, some of the review I read were rather negative (simple dice game without any theme, etc.).

I also discovered Ghost Stories, which doesn't play in the H.P. Lovecraft world, but would be worth considering.

Also, if I'm going to buy Arkham Horror, should I buy any of the expansions or would that be just to much for a beginner?
 
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Paul DeStefano
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Elder Sign is fairly simplistic. Arkham is HUGE.

There's no comfortable middle ground right now.

That said, I really enjoy Elder Sign a lot.
 
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rob cavallo
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i love all three games you mentioned.

Arkham Horror - big big big game. long set up. long play time. great game, but i dont get to play it much since none of my friends like to play it with me. can be a bit too "fiddly"

Elder Sign - lots of fun. almost like arkham yahtzee. easy set up and breakdown.

Ghost Stories - both a favorite of me & the mrs. i find the easiest way to describe it is a "tower defense" boardgame. can get very hectic.

if you have an ipad, both Elder Sign and Ghost Stories are available in the app store.
 
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Chris Leigh
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I'd go Mansions of Madness it doesnt work with two players, but its awesome for theme.

I find Arkham Horror less thematic, and even in a big group its like 5 people are playing solitaire games alongside each other. That said lots of people love it!
 
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Lawcomic
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Elder Signs: It's a good game. It really doesn't capture the "feel" of Lovecraft, but has elements plugged in. It's the easiest of the Lovecraft boardgames by FFG. It's good and relatively quick.

Mansions of Madness does the best job of capturing the "feel" of a Lovecraftian story. Most scenarios are very good and it is a tense game. It's the middle ground game in both complexity and time to play.

Arkham Horror: It really is a pasted on theme, but well executed. A great game that gives the players a sense of accomplishment when completing it. By far the most complex and time consuming game of the three...and with a ludicrous number of components. Still, an excellent gaming experience.
 
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Victoria Osborne
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elder sign is the easiest and if you are just starting go for it.

however, Mansions of Madness is a good game and yes it can be played with 2 people for theme and feel it has a strong strong story telling. one can be the bad guy one can be the good guy.

Arkham horror is HUGE with a huge amount of replayability and seemingly endless combinations once you get all of the expansions but it is very tough.

you might also look at call of cthulu LCG for 2 players it has theme and works against the deck and each other. And does present some great options

ghost story is NOT hp lovecraft and can have the slpha gamer feel to it.
 
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Greg S
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I suggest taking a look at Enrico's (calandale) video playthroughs of Arkham Horror and Mansions of Madness.

They'll give you a great feeling for the gameplay, and perhaps help you make a decision.

Whatever you decide, enjoy!

GregS
 
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Marco Auer
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Many thanks for all those helpful replies.

I think I'll buy Arkham Horror, because I'm looking for something special and not just another ordinary boardgame. Especially after managing Mage Knight, I believe to be ready for Arkham Horror :-)

Would it be wise to buy one of the many expansions, such as "The Curse of the Dark Pharaoh", or should I better wait?

If I'll order the base game together with an expansion I'll get free postage.
 
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rob cavallo
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totally forgot about mansions of madness.
the hardest part of that game is being the keeper.

if you make it interesting, everyone has a good time.

i love tricking new players into opening the freezer.
 
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Peter Neely
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I just recently acquired my first expansion (Dunwich Horror) and have to say that I enjoy that one immensely. It adds some extra 'flavor' to your characters and gives you a few more options in the game. It's a bigger expansion, meaning that the game board becomes even larger. I would recommend it, but I would suggest playing the base game first and then playing with the expansion once you have the gist of the game.
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James
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Arkham Horror is the right purchase, definitely. I am really surprised that anyone would suggest any of the alternatives given that you like games with the gravity of Mage Knight.

As far as expansions go, you don't have to purchase any immediately. After a few games, though, you will want one to open the base game's strategies. There are scores of threads on this on the game page (a Google search would find most of them) but most agree that Arkham Horror: Dunwich Horror Expansion is probably the one to get as soon as you're ready. It adds injury and madness cards, a bunch of new investigators, and, most importantly, gate bursts (you'll see). You could elect to purchase it with the base game if you want.

If you wanted a small box expansion, then Arkham Horror: The Lurker at the Threshold Expansion is justifiably popular for what it adds to the game. You could have years of play just using these expansions alone (when you get masochistic, get Arkham Horror: Innsmouth Horror Expansion!). Have fun!

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