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Subject: Need "party game" recommendation/advice for a picky strategic gamer. rss

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Brook Gentlestream
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I am looking for a party game for me and some friends (both gamers and non-gamers). However, I am not generally a fan of most party games and think of myself as a "strategic gamer".

I dislike games where I have to write stuff down, such as Wits & Wagers and Say Anything. Something about pencil and paper just bothers me. Maybe I had a childhood Yahtzee trauma that I'm repressing. (That could also explain my unusual appetite for six-sided dice.)

A friend recommended Quelf to me, but I didn't like what I saw on the back-of-the-box description. It seemed like it encouraged people to act silly and stupid, make funny noises, make goofy faces, etc, and that just seems far too indignified for me to enjoy with my reserved, analytical (but creative) nature.

I also saw Wits & Wagers at Target and it didn't strike me as creative enough. Writing down numbers and guessing who got the most right number for things nobody cares about? Yeah, that doesn't seem fun, or creative, or witty, or amusing. Writing down non-number answers might be more fun but the game seemed to focus on numbers from what I read. And I dislike writing stuff down anyway.

I have enjoyed "The Resistance", and will be buying 2nd edition and Avalon in-store. I also look forward to retail-purchasing "Off Your Rocker". In general, the answering random "non-personal" questions with creative oddball answers (such as Off Your Rocker and Say Anything) seems fun. Both, however, also have some drawbacks.

While I enjoyed my one play of Apples to Apples, I was really disappointed with the mechanics of it. There didn't seem to be much of a winning strategy to adopt. The judge just picked answers he thought was best, often having no connection to each other. ("Slimy" and "In-laws"! That works, because I've got an in-law that's slimy!) So I really dislike this arbitrary method of judgement, especially if some kind of score is kept as a result.

Dislikes:
* Having a judge vote on his favorite answer with no criteria
* Acting silly, making funny noises, being zany, running around
* Leaving the room or otherwise messing with sitting arrangements
* Sand timers
* Dexterity, agility, strength, or other physical challenges
* Singing or voice impersonation
* Math
* Trivia games
* Writing things down, answer pads, score boards, puzzle sheets
* Having to be drinking for the game to be fun

Likes:
* Storytelling
* Lying and Bluffing
* Negotiating and Trading
* Coming up with creative answers or matches
* Voting
* Boards, cards, dice, chips


Is there a perfect party game out there for me?

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Tiamat
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So you don't want to use personal information or write things down or do other strange things. Dixit ?

I think it's strange that you think it would be fun to answer non-personal questions with creative oddball answers, but you didn't like the fact that "slimy" and "in-laws" could be connected in Apples to Apples. There would be no game in there if the most "accurate" answer always won

(actually, I feel too constrained by that game. I wish I could give stranger answers.)

(we do play that Anne Frank is trump)
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Eric Knauer
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Liar's Dice can be a lot of fun.
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David B
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King of Tokyo
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J H
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+1 to Dixit
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Brook Gentlestream
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Tiamat wrote:
I think it's strange that you think it would be fun to answer non-personal questions with creative oddball answers, but you didn't like the fact that "slimy" and "in-laws" could be connected in Apples to Apples. There would be no game in there if the most "accurate" answer always won


The problem is that there's no criteria. It's not the funniest answer that wins, or the most logical connection that wins, of the won that most resembles a star wars joke, or whatever. The judge just decides a criteria only after answers are put down. "Balls and Aliens! Those sounds like they go together. I'm going for Alien Balls!" I feel that if I just throw cards down randomly, I'll do just as well at the game.
 
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Aaron Chasteen
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Moods - It's like Wits & Wagers, but funnier.
 
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David P
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Two suggestions:

Catacombs
Nanuk

Catacombs is 2-5 players, not exactly a "party" as such, but due to the dexterity component it is a very entertaining game for others watch. It allows for people to trade in and out per room, to take a single shot, or to play some of the monsters for the GM. After a few drinks it ends up being a like a craps game, lots of ooh-ing and ahh-ing as people make excellent shots of fail miserably.

Nanuk is also light on strategy but high on the party side. The scoring mechanic is a little wonky by the bluffing mechanic is excellent.
 
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Brook Gentlestream
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oeste wrote:
Fortunately, I recently made a Geeklist you should like:

http://boardgamegeek.com/geeklist/146132/the-elusive-strateg...


Thanks! Half of those were just added to my wishlist!

Any other recommendation/endorsements?
 
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Tiamat
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lordrahvin wrote:
Tiamat wrote:
I think it's strange that you think it would be fun to answer non-personal questions with creative oddball answers, but you didn't like the fact that "slimy" and "in-laws" could be connected in Apples to Apples. There would be no game in there if the most "accurate" answer always won


The problem is that there's no criteria. It's not the funniest answer that wins, or the most logical connection that wins, of the won that most resembles a star wars joke, or whatever. The judge just decides a criteria only after answers are put down. "Balls and Aliens! Those sounds like they go together. I'm going for Alien Balls!" I feel that if I just throw cards down randomly, I'll do just as well at the game.

It's generally nouns to match an adjective (though admittedly I do use balls as an adjective myself)

The criteria is you play to what the judge likes, you certainly can't win by throwing down random cards.

Anyway, if you want to come up with creative oddball answers to something, by what standard do you think the game should judge you? Do you want something that doesn't have winners maybe? (Not sure whether Telestrations picks winners, but I think they you have you draw, so no good for you)
 
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Brook Gentlestream
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Tiamat wrote:
Anyway, if you want to come up with creative oddball answers to something, by what standard do you think the game should judge you? Do you want something that doesn't have winners maybe? (Not sure whether Telestrations picks winners, but I think they you have you draw, so no good for you)


Again, its not being judged that bothers me so much as the lack of criteria. In Wits & Wagers, the criteria is very fixed. There's a right answer and a wrong answer. I don't like that. In Apples to Apples there is no criteria, no answer is either right or wrong when you put it down until a judge decides on the criteria he will use as to whether he likes something. I don't like that. I'd like something in the middle.

To give an example, from what little I saw in the kickstarter video, there is a definite critieria to all the zaniness. Players are trying to portray what's on their cards and the psychologist is trying to guess what it is. Both parties are free to be creative, but neither is without a constraint - the game is directing them. It's not just "do something the judge likes".

I'm not sure how to explain it to you if I haven't already. I'm not really sure what I'm looking for, and haven't seen a game yet that really matches it, though a few like Off Your Rocker and Say Anything have come a little close.
 
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Andy Mills
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I'm a big fan of Once Upon a Time: The Storytelling Card Game, if you can find it.
 
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Tiamat
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Oh I see.

Yes, I like Say Anything, as I see that as fixing my problem with Apples to Apples, but there it still has the single judge to say what was the best answer. I guess it might seem less subjective because the questions are more often personal IIRC.

edit: actually, the single judge is mitigated because the judge does not want to pick something that no one will guess as the right answer.
 
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George Parker
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thumbsup Kill the Overlord

My Kickstarter copy just showed up today. It should be hitting shelves soon!
 
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David Dawson
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I bought Bohnanza recently to vary up times when I normally would bring Bang, and it's been a pretty decent hit so far.

It's definitely cartoony, but there's some solid hand management mechanics and the negotiation is really fun. If you ever played Pit as a kid, this one will probably appeal to you. (Note: there's no time mechanic).
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Robert Beachler
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Even though you say "* Writing things down, answer pads" I think Telestrations is the most fun party game I've ever played.
 
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Stephen G Roy
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Trailer Park Wars, Poo: The Card Game
 
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J.A.H. van de Laak
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Here I go again....

Palastgefluster

I keep recommending this nifty little card game as a great party game. Easy to learn, great nasty 'take that' concept. Its super affordable, try it!

Bluffing etc etc. Its fun.
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You asked for a "party game" ... but you don't say how big of a party.

There are very few games that work well with more than 6 players ... and some of the games mentioned above are for less than 6 players.

The Resistance+1 if there are more than 6 ... along with Werewolves which is maybe the best game for large groups (over 8).
Whats it to ya' (great party game for teams of 2 people up to 10)
Citadels+1 (a great card game that plays up to 8)
Bang! The Bullet! is a great card game that works well for up to 8 (probably drags a bit over that no.)
Chronology is another game that works well up to 8
Dixit+1 (definitely has to be in this group ... lots of fun depending upon the groups imagination ... better than Apples to Apples in my opinion)
Liars Dice (aka Perudo) also plays well up to 8 but you might need to find more dice because most sets only have enough for 6
Long Shot (fun horse racing and betting game up to 8)
Turfmaster the granddaddy of all horse racing games .. plays up to 8 ...but be ready to put some money out to get one of these copies. It might be hard to call this one a party game because there's a fair bit of strategy involved in the game .. and it sure looks pretty.

Other shorter filler games that play well up to 6 that I would recommend include:
Saboteur (with the expansion Saboteur 2 plays 6 or more)
Dice Town (with the expansion plays 6 and works great)
Magical Athlete (quick and under-rated fun game)
Powerboats (my favourite racing game and I have most of them)
King of Tokyo+1 (great mayhem up to 6)
Tumblin' Dice ... if you like shuffleboard you'll like this game ... good for team play ... fast and fun (even if you don't like dexterity?)
King Me (elect the king ... quick & fun)

Good luck!
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Kelly Bass
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Linq is a game where each round all players get one card. Two cards per round have an identical code word on them (e.g."House"), and the rest are blank cards, but they are dealt out randomly and the code word itself is secret.

Clockwise, twice around the table, each player says one word.

The players with the code word are trying to choose a word similar enough to the code word that their partner will realize they are the other partner, but not too obvious that the other players will catch on.

Players with blank cards will probably say words that seem something like other words that have been said so far to try to confuse whoever the two spies are.

Players secretly vote on which two players they believe had the identical cards with the code word. Scoring is based on how successful players are at their goal.
 
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Stephen G Roy
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I would rather choke to death on Candyland pawns than ever play Apples to Apples again.
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Liam
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+1 Dixit

 
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Fractal Reality
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I think Aye, Dark Overlord! The Red Box could be an interesting game for you, if you involve into the storytelling...
Depends if your group likes take-that, fantasy and storytelling or not, though
 
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Simon Quinn
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+1 King of Tokyo!!!
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Fernando Berdichevsky
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Dixit is definitely the best party game for You.
Creative. Hillarious sometimes. Quick to learn.
It's cards. No writing things down. No judges. Replayable even without the expansion. Your mother and your son can play it.

I take it to every party and it almost always get played (ONLY exceptions being lack of time or too Boring attendants)

 
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