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Subject: I need help choosing next solo boardgame rss

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Ian Cthulhu
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Hey everyone

I enjoy boardgaming immensely, and have a few groups I play with, but also like to play occasionaly solo when time permits and company isnt available. I currently own Arkham Horror, Pandemic, and Space Hulk: Death Angel.

Arkham Horror is amazing, have played it about 10 times solo (never played with company yet, unfortunately) and still love it, only gripe is set up and pack up time. For this reason when I cant be bothered with setup or feel like a shorter play time I play Pandemic or Space Hulk: Death Angel.

I am looking to pick up another couple of solo/co-operative board games, possibly Ghost Stories, Bios: Megafauna, or Race for the Galaxy (with single player expansion, Gathering Storm), or Yggdrasil.

Any recommendations??? Or even new suggestions???

Thanks all
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Wil
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Gears of War
D-Day Dice
Mage Knight the board game

All outstanding solo.

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Well, it all depends on what kind of gaming experience you are looking for. Ghost Stories and Yggdrasil are great if you enjoy challenging yourself and you are not interested in exploring, because the board is basically always the same.

I highly recommend Mage Knight Board Game if you like exploration and conquest.

The Dungeons and Dragons board games are good if you enjoy simple dungeon crawls; my favorite is Dungeons & Dragons: Wrath of Ashardalon Board Game, because Castle Ravenloft is too hard (although, it has some great scenarios) and Legend of Drizzt is too easy.

You could also try Defenders of the Realm, because it is similar in feel to Pandemic.

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Brody Lipperman
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I would also consider Lord of the Rings: The Card Game. It plays wonderfully as a solo game, and if you get any of the expansions, there is some extra solo time while you deck build.
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Scott Hill
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Zombicide
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August Larson
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I am facing the exact same dilemma! My biggest debate is between Mage Knight Board Game and Dungeons & Dragons: Wrath of Ashardalon Board Game. Mage Knight looks cooler, and it seems like it has more variability than the DnD games, but one of my friends told me that DnD is better as a solo play because you actually get the story feel out of it, whereas in MKBG solo, it's basically the same game over and over and you just try to get a better score. Has anyone else had the same impressions? I'm really torn right now!
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Vladimir Lehotai
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wgerken wrote:


I haven't played MK yet, but the other two are good choices.
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Wil
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colmustard21 wrote:
I am facing the exact same dilemma! My biggest debate is between Mage Knight Board Game and Dungeons & Dragons: Wrath of Ashardalon Board Game. Mage Knight looks cooler, and it seems like it has more variability than the DnD games, but one of my friends told me that DnD is better as a solo play because you actually get the story feel out of it, whereas in MKBG solo, it's basically the same game over and over and you just try to get a better score. Has anyone else had the same impressions? I'm really torn right now!


The D&D board games really didn't do it for me. I tried both Ravenloft and Wrath of Ashardalon with the hopes of a an immersive story and I ended up going away thinking, well the miniatures are cool but no story here. At least, I never got that out of it.

I think the issue is that the story doesn't develop. You don't gain a bunch of cool stuff and level up, and get to try incredible new combos. Instead you pretty much get chipped away and lose items and get less choices as the monsters just keep on coming. It really isn't precisely solo either as you need to play multiple heroes in most scenarios.

Mage Knight however is solo with one hero and the theme of the game is to level up and gain cool new spells, or artifacts, or reputation, and pick up some followers to help you out. Your choices increase as the game goes on and the battles are often epic consisting of some amazing and exciting card combos. A very satisfying strategic game.

Still neither is really rich with story. In Mage Knight, you remember the epic battles, but it is still thin on telling a tale, it's more about the experience. A more story driven game is something like Arkham Horror or Descent or Tales of the Arabian Knights.

If you are leaning towards the D&D games, I would highly encourage that you also review Gears of War. At first, I thought it wouldn't be for me but it is ultimately a sci-fi dungeon crawl and it is much more edge of your seat exciting then the D&D games. This is mainly due to a smarter and tense AI. The other plus is that you can play each scenario solo. If you like chucking dice, games like Gears of War, Arkham Horror, and Descent are a blast. The D&D games however really only have 1 die so you don't get that out of them, and Mage Knight is pretty much a dice free game (excluding mana generation).


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Wil
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Scorpion0x17 wrote:


How's the replayability on this one? It looks fun, but it also gives me a feel that after you've played a scenario, you might not do it again (unless you lost and are replaying).

 
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Scott Douglass
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+1 D-Day Dice
+1 Mage Knight
+1 Zombicide

Sentinels of the Multiverse (although it can be fairly fiddly to play solo).

While I've enjoyed Ghost Stories so far, I prefer other solo games, and my opinion of it is waning. It's still a good game, but it can be frustrating. Despite all of the decision making in the game, it can feel like the deck/dice just hate you or you have an impossible setup.

I'd advise against playing the solo variant of Race for the Galaxy. While Race is a wonderful game, Keldon's AI is a much better choice for playing it by yourself. It plays exactly as it would against human opponents, and doesn't have a whole AI system you have to hand manage; the computer handles the other player(s) for you. You can play much faster, without having to deal with extra fiddliness, and without changing the structure of the game.
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Scott Douglass
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wgerken wrote:
Scorpion0x17 wrote:


How's the replayability on this one? It looks fun, but it also gives me a feel that after you've played a scenario, you might not do it again (unless you lost and are replaying).



So far I wouldn't mind repeating a scenario multiple times (except the tutorial or scenario 2), but I haven't played enough to really see how I'll feel about playing the same scenario many times. I don't expect to get tired of them, but it could happen. You can also create your own scenarios, and there are extra scenarios on the publisher's website.
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Jason
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Elder Sign springs to mind, I grabbed it to play until we moved and had a big enough table for Arkham Horror. Still can't put it down.

Also recommend Lord of the Rings the LCG, and I've heard some good things about Thunderstone Advance as a solo game, too.

My copy of Mage Knight arrives on monday. I am far too excited about this for a man of my years...
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Mark Riley
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Return of the Heroes
 
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Paul S
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What about the "Leader" BGs e.g.

Phantom Leader

U-Boat Leader

Hornet Leader: Carrier Air Operations

Thunderbolt Apache Leader

Wargames for the non-wargamer, I tend to think. Some great video reviews around for these, too. Highly recommended, and maybe different from the other stuff you've tried.

Also: Yggdrasil is cool. Ghost Stories too, though v tough.
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Leslie Taylor
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If you are not averse to Print and Play, there is a whole world of games you can get into that are designed specifically for solo play. My fave PnP solo game is Airborne in my Pocket which just had a successful kickstarter campaign, but you can still get the files off the BGG page and it's a great filler solo game you can play multiple times in a role without it getting too repetitive.
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Wil
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Beloch wrote:
What about the "Leader" BGs e.g.

Phantom Leader

U-Boat Leader

Hornet Leader: Carrier Air Operations

Thunderbolt Apache Leader

Wargames for the non-wargamer, I tend to think. Some great video reviews around for these, too. Highly recommended, and maybe different from the other stuff you've tried.

Also: Yggdrasil is cool. Ghost Stories too, though v tough.


Thanks for sharing. Which of these do you think is best for a first time try of solo wargaming?

 
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Eren Koyunoglu
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I would go for Thunderbolt Apache leader, which I did and am very happy with my decision.
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Josh Bodah
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I own (and enjoy) all 3 of the games you like. Here are my opinions:

-1 for Ghost Stories. I really dislike this one solo. Too much analysis for what it is. It would be much more fun with more.

-1 for Runebound. This is the most boring solo game I've ever owned. I tried to give it a shot again recently, got through a few turns and gave up.

+1 for RftG with The Gathering Storm. I was really impressed with the robot. It is primitive, but it works! Keldon's AI (computer program) is a little nicer since you don't have to actually do any work.

+1 for Agricola. Another one that I was really impressed with. It would be more fun with more people, but it was great solo.

+1 for Friday. If you like deckbuilding games, this is a solo deckbuilding game. I like this more than dominion because of the theme and the increased challenge. I still haven't been able to get to the end boss.

+1 for Onirim. Awesome value for the price. The base game has a small footprint and is light, but still challenging. It comes with 3 expansions which adds a whole lot to the game. There's a lot going on when you play with all 3.
 
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Dan Beckler
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I'll second the recommendation for Defenders of the Realm. I recently bought it and have played it solo several times and have really enjoyed it. There's plenty of juicy decisions to make throughout the game and there is pressure, but also some room for error - you don't have to make every turn perfect to win. And, the setup/teardown time is very quick, compared to Arkham (which I also love). Plus, it's by the same designer as the Fantasy Flight edition of Arkham Horror.

Another vote also for Lord of the Rings: The Living Card Game. I've really enjoyed that this past year, although there is some confusing cards and text that requires some research in the forums.

I've played Yggdrasil a few times at a friend's, and I'm a little less inclined to recommend it, as I felt there was no tolerance for error in that game. In my sessions, you had little-to-no freedom to try out an idea or alternate strategy, because you were always on the verge of losing the game and always had to take the last-ditch action to prevent the loss. Too much of a puzzle that has only one solution, it seems to me. But it is a beautiful game, with some cool mechanisms and awesome theme.
 
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Chris Iagallo
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Red November is a fun solo game

"Red November is a cooperative game in a gnomish attack submarine where everything is going wrong. The sub is descending and the water pressure increasing, the nuclear reactor is overheating, the nuclear missile launchers are pre-igniting, fires and water leaks are everywhere, there's a giant Kraken looming nearby and there’s very little oxygen and vodka left. While the storyline feels more and more like a disaster movie, the players must get organized to solve the problems, divide the tasks among themselves to minimize the risks, and sometimes accept to sacrifice themselves for the common cause."
 
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Luis da Ponte Alayza
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+1 to Friday. Im enjoying it very much. Fast and fun.
You can try also At the Gates of Loyang works wonderful as a solo and it can be played with more too.
 
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Scott Hill
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wgerken wrote:
Scorpion0x17 wrote:


How's the replayability on this one? It looks fun, but it also gives me a feel that after you've played a scenario, you might not do it again (unless you lost and are replaying).


Not played it enough to be sure, but, given the random elements of the game, I think the replayability should be reasonably high. Particular given, as another poster pointed out, that one can create ones own scenarios (or customise the official ones), there's a new Campaign up on the Guillotine Games website, and people are putting up custom scenarios in these and other forums. Also GG announced a permanent, on going, Scenario competition, so I'd guess that they'll be making the winning entries available on their website.
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Kevin M
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I'm throwing my hat in the ring for Mage Knight Board Game as well.

It's really fun solo and with the recently announced Mage Knight Board Game: The Lost Legion Expansion, the possibility to expand the base game gives this a lot of life too. Although, with the amount or variability to Mage Knight, it should be more than enough game for a long time.
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roger cox
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I usually don't like co=operative games (except rpgs) but being solo kinda makes it seem logical, so I suggest Star Trek Expeditions. But the best ever is Dawn of the Dead. the old SPI game.
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Paul S
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wgerken wrote:
Beloch wrote:
What about the "Leader" BGs e.g.

Phantom Leader

U-Boat Leader

Hornet Leader: Carrier Air Operations

Thunderbolt Apache Leader

Wargames for the non-wargamer, I tend to think. Some great video reviews around for these, too. Highly recommended, and maybe different from the other stuff you've tried.

Also: Yggdrasil is cool. Ghost Stories too, though v tough.


Thanks for sharing. Which of these do you think is best for a first time try of solo wargaming?



Probably TAL or, if you are interested in the Vietnam era, PL which has an interesting political dimension. PL was the one that got me into the series. I would definitely look at Marco's video reviews before buying, these won't be to everyone's tastes.
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