Emmett Casey
United States
Fayetteville
Arkansas
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My attitude on games is changing. Sure, I still love complex stategy games where I attempt to outhink my oppenents, and 4x space games will always be dear to my heart, but I've learned I actually want to play games instead of searching for eons for someone to play a game with.

On that note, help me please! laugh

Most important factor = easy/quick to teach rules. Most important indeed.
2nd important factor = some chance involved.
3rd important factor = Must be enjoyable for 2 players, but scale up to at least 4, possibly 5. Why have games for 4 if you have trouble finding 1 opponent? But when you have a party, a game for two isn't enough.
And finally, most people enjoy games that aren't too long. So less than 120 minutes. Even less than 60 mins would be nice, as you can always play a game twice, but you may not be able to finish a long game once.

I thought Hive would be the perfect game, as it's quick, enjoyable, and super easy to teach. But without the chance element, people get upset when I beat them every time. It's like chess. So, I've learned I'm too competitive for there not to be chance or people won't play with me. At the same time, too much chance is rather annoying, as it defeats my mentality of attempting to think things through.

One last thing; Settlers of Catan is perfect, except it really is at the very upper limit of what I'm looking for in terms of difficulty to teach. I know it's a casual game, but it still has a learning curve and people tend to resist new games. It's adoption rate into my gaming groups is 100%, though, so it can't be too tough to teach. Just the upper limit.

Edit: Also, it would be nice if the game ended for all players at the same time, so no one ends up getting eliminated and being bored while everyone else has fun.
 
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Rich Shipley
United States
Baltimore
Maryland
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These should all fit that criteria:

Carcassonne
Ingenious
Ticket to Ride
Zooloretto
TransAmerica
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David
Switzerland
Buchs
St. Gallen
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+1 Ticket to Ride

Kingdom Builder
Ubongo - Very easy to teach: "Make those tile fit that shape then you get gems". The distribution of gems is random so even though you have some choice you might not get your ideal set.
San Juan - Might be a bit pushing it but that's for you to decide.

Possibly these (no official two player support):
Mare Balticum - Very easy to teach: There's exactly 4 things you can do: move ships, gather fish, dump fish and unload fish. There's a bit of bookkeeping but thats very simple too. You should be able to play 2p with two colors each.

Bohnanza - Play 1 or 2 cards from hand. Auction off 2 cards from the draw stack and then draw 3 cards. That's essentially it. There's a 2p variant that looked quite interesting.
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Mitch Willis
United States
Kathleen
Georgia
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Thebes - scales very well from 2 to 4, very thematic, plays well under 2 hours (usually around an hour or so)...

Kingsburg - scales well from 2 to 5, depending on the number of players, plays around 60 to 90 minutes...

Thurn and Taxis - scales well from 2 to 4, plays in 'bout an hour...

Stone Age - scales well from 2 to 4, playing time can vary depending on familiarity with rules and number of players, but should play in 2 hours or less...
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Sea
Malaysia
Kuala Lumpur
Wilayah Persekutuan
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From easiest to teach to hardest :

Pergamon
Vikings
Power Grid: The First Sparks
Belfort
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Kevin Shillinglaw
Canada
Kitchener
Ontario
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Tsuro, the upcoming Tsuro of the Seas, Two by Two are ones you should look at.

 
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Kevin Garnica
United States
West Covina
California
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Pergamon
Finca
Infinite City
Citadels
Flash Point: Fire Rescue
Metropolys
Kingdoms
Cartagena
Dominant Species: The Card Game
 
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Kevin B. Smith
United States
Mercer Island
Washington
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It's not my favorite, but Lords of Waterdeep sounds like a great fit, if the theme appeals. It's a good game. Another good game that I only rate a 7, but which seems to fit, would be Dominion.

I really like Thebes, but it will be near your teaching threshold, and your first game with 4 might run over 2 hours. Later games should be faster. Some people say it has too much randomness.

Roll Through the Ages: The Bronze Age has more depth than you might expect from a fairly light dice game.

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Garcian Smith
United States
Northridge
California
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This is the perfect game for you. It's easy to learn and to teach, looks beautiful and plays perfectly from 2-5 players. The BEST part is that I've played this with non gamers as well as hardcore veterans and THEY ALL LOVE IT. Seriously, it's the best game in the world, yet it's not talked about a lot. Try it.
 
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Jon Dockter
United States
Chicago
Illinois
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King of Tokyo Yahtzee style dice rolling with giant "B movie" style monsters smashing Tokyo and each other.
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Josh Bodah
United States
Cambridge
MA
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Pandemic and Dominion come to mind.

Dominion can be taught in 2 minutes, but has a lot more going on in terms of strategy. Pandemic takes a little longer to teach, but it's worth it (I've hooked everyone I've played with so far). I've had a harder time hooking people with Dominion due to its lack of a theme.

Also, if you don't mind getting a solely 2 player game, I highly recommend Battle Line. Rules are simple, but the strategy is deep (relatively speaking). Was able to play this with my mom who doesn't play any games
 
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Moe45673
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Toronto
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You're going to disregard this if you've never looked into it, but 1812: The Invasion of Canada is what you want.

It's a 3vs2 team game that scales well at all levels. It looks like a dry wargame but the rules are extremely simple.

-Easy card movement for armies
- battles are resolved by rolling specialized dice (each faction has their own)
-nturn order decided by pulling cubes out of a bag
- adding new armies to the map ("muster" or reinforcement) is as simple as placing the number of cubes in the territory(s) that the map specifically tells you to
- games end in 2 hours, tops, 90 minutes with experienced
- winner is whoever is controlling more of the opponents territories (easily deduced by large colorful counters of the occupiers flag)

It's really a lot of fun and has been a hit with everyone, except my friends who absolutely adore classic Risk ("Why can't I keep moving and conquering?" "Why can't I choose how many dice to roll?" "I've already run out of cubes, this is stupid, I should be able to add more", etc)

Still unsure? See:

Is this really a wargame? (wargamer worries it's too light)

A Female Old Fart tries her First Wargame

This review: http://thegaminggang.com/2012/02/oh-canada-1812-the-invasion...

 
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Emmett Casey
United States
Fayetteville
Arkansas
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Wow, thank you for all the replies everyone!

I haven't had a chance to make it through all of them yet, but out of the ones I have made it through, I'm leaning towards pandemic or ticket to ride. I like that pandemic is co-op b/c it will balance out catan, but I'm worried about its replay value. Ticket to ride sounds awesome, but I think co-op would be a better supplement to what I already own.

Samarkand looks amazing, but I don't really care for the theme. I'll keep it in mind, though.

And there's still many more recommendations! You guys are great. (Ps, I have my eye on 1812: the invasion of canada, but that one will have to wait for a while.)
 
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Chris Hay
New Zealand
Dunedin
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It's a fraction harder to teach than Settlers, but Last Will might be the game you are looking for. It plays in just over an hour, scales from 2-5 well, has a great theme, and has been a hit with the non-gamers I have taught it to.
 
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Witek Wasilewski
Poland
Warsaw
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Alhambra is the game you're looking for:

Quote:

Most important factor = easy/quick to teach rules. Most important indeed.


Rules take just 1 double sided A4 page, most of which are pictures. It is very easy to learn and teach.

Quote:

2nd important factor = some chance involved.


Tiles in Alhambra are drawn randomly, yet are purchased by those who are best prepared.

Quote:

3rd important factor = Must be enjoyable for 2 players, but scale up to at least 4, possibly 5. Why have games for 4 if you have trouble finding 1 opponent? But when you have a party, a game for two isn't enough.


Is great with 2, scales well up to 6 players.

Quote:

And finally, most people enjoy games that aren't too long. So less than 120 minutes. Even less than 60 mins would be nice, as you can always play a game twice, but you may not be able to finish a long game once.


It takes around 45-60 minutes.


EDIT (just noticed your edit) :

Quote:

Edit: Also, it would be nice if the game ended for all players at the same time, so no one ends up getting eliminated and being bored while everyone else has fun.


Game ends for everyone with end of tiles to draw.

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Brian White
United States
Chicago
Illinois
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After playing a few rounds of it a couple weeks back, I'd highly recommend Skull. Pretty much literally a beer and pretzels game (the components are coasters!), it takes all of two minutes to teach. Everyone has a skull card and some rose cards, lays them face down one at a time until someone makes a wager that they can flip X number of coasters without revealing a skull. First person to do so successfully twice wins. Only caveat is that it doesn't play with 2, but it plays with 3 and up.
 
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Agent J
United States
Coldwater
Michigan
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He's looking real sharp in his 1940's fedora. He's got nerves of steel, an iron will, and several other metal-themed attributes. His fur is water tight and he's always up for a fight.
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Wings of War: Famous Aces - now Wings of Glory - is a great game for 2-4 players, and with more sets, can play unlimited numbers together, which is important. For example, the 11 player game I had last year went very well.

Half an hour for a small game, up to 2 hours on a first game or when you're dealing with 8+ planes... also the scenario can change this. If you have a long table, make sure you start in the middle. That took a LONG time.
 
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