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Subject: Help - need more light/medium 2+ player games rss

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Have faith
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OK, It's my turn to ask for recommendations. I usually play with my wife, and we're usually too tired, at least on weeknights, for heavy or long games.

Here's what I'm looking for:

- 2 or 2+ players
- light to medium, around 2 to 3 game play weight
- little or no luck (e.g. Ticket to Ride has a little too much luck for us)
- "play nice" games (my wife doesn't like direct confrontation or attacking)
- the more THEME the better, but no horror, gangsters, etc. (think "wife" games)
- lots of replay value

The games in this category that we both enjoy most are Alhambra, St. Petersburg, San Juan, Fjords, and Cartagena. I'm looking for more games like these. One of our all-time favorites is Goa, although that's usually too heavy for our weeknights.

Here's a shortcut link to my collection, sorted by my rating:
http://www.boardgamegeek.com/viewcollection.php3?username=cu...

Many thanks
 
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Eric Knauer
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Although a bit dry, Hansa might be a good choice.
 
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Eric Knauer
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Oops, I missed that you owned Hansa.
 
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Have faith
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No, I don't own it. Just played once. Maybe I should try it again.
 
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Craig Blumer
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My wife and I just played Jambo last night for the first time. We both really liked it. Now it is new to us, and there may be a "gotcha" element that may be of concern. But, for our first blush, it captured both of our interests.
 
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Goo
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You have already rated a few good ones that fit the bill:

Through the Desert
San Juan
Samurai

Ra (actually has a decent 2er varient)
Alhambra

I can't vouch for it personally, but I've heard great things about Jambo, which seems to fit here too.

The only one you are missing that I would suggest is Blue Moon. Your wife might have trouble with the sci-fi/fantasy theme, but if she can see beyond it, it's perfect for what you seek.

As always, I'm just saying.


-goo
 
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Have faith
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JeremiahClayton wrote:
On what planet do you consider Fjords a play nice game?

I guess the short answer is "whatever my wife doesn't mind."


But it's true that lately she's warming up to a little more confrontation, as in Fjords.

The thing she doesn't like is, as in Magic: The Gathering for example, situation where you are directly attacking each other. "You've killed my beloved creatures. And now you are attacking me personally?"
Or some other game where you destroy her city she has built up, take away something she gained, etc. She doesn't enjoy that.

[Oh, I guess he deleted his posting. I'll leave this reply here anyway as added info - in any case, no offense taken or anything, Jeremiah.]
 
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Ryan
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My gf (who also doesn't like confrontational games) and I like playing the following:

Clocktowers: Quick, simple card game. (Might be a litte too simple.)
Ingenious: It's fun, but it's abstract. I didn't think the gf would like it, but she does.
Odin's Ravens: It has the same "race" elements of Cartagena. Plus you can turn the ravens over and make them look like bunnies.
Jambo: Fun game of buying/selling goods at market.

Also, have you looked at the 2-player line of games by Kosmos?
 
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Mark Campo
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you went for castle over the city in carcassone i think you should try a copy of "the city", best carcasssoen in my opions though ive not tryed allthe add-ons for the basic set or the ark set..

i realy liked reading all yoru comments in your game profile, i im much the same boat as you..

i think you've allreayd tryed most i own,

 
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Sue Hemberger

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Odds are that both of these recommendations fail on the "play nice" axis, but take a look at Shazamm! and Roma. Both are highly thematic 2-player games that are of reasonable length (< 45 minutes). Shazamm! is (or can be) luck-free and Roma involves luck (both of the draw and of the die), but since it's a game about fortune and about assembling resources that will get you through a variety of contingencies, the luck involved doesn't feel arbitrary, if that makes any sense.

Both games are, in essence, confrontational but, weirdly enough, that makes the conflict much less objectionable to me. I don't like games where it feels like there's a real choice between being constructive or destructive and where one player works hard to build something while the other just lies in wait, choosing the optimal moment to destroy whatever has been produced. But I do like both of these struggle-for-control games which take the form of extended battles of wit. I think it's because there's nothing but conflict, so the conflict never feels gratuitous.

If you do try Roma, make sure to deal with the Mercator problem -- either limit VPs/turn to 6 or add Spy and Thief to the deck (see game listing for details) -- otherwise you do risk the "I build, you destroy" frustration.
 
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Robert Washington
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cull wrote:
OK, It's my turn to ask for recommendations. I usually play with my wife, and we're usually too tired, at least on weeknights, for heavy or long games.

Here's what I'm looking for:

- 2 or 2+ players
- light to medium, around 2 to 3 game play weight
- little or no luck (e.g. Ticket to Ride has a little too much luck for us)
- "play nice" games (my wife doesn't like direct confrontation or attacking)
- the more THEME the better, but no horror, gangsters, etc. (think "wife" games)
- lots of replay value

The games in this category that we both enjoy most are Alhambra, St. Petersburg, San Juan, Fjords, and Cartagena. I'm looking for more games like these. One of our all-time favorites is Goa, although that's usually too heavy for our weeknights.

Here's a shortcut link to my collection, sorted by my rating:
http://www.boardgamegeek.com/viewcollection.php3?username=cu...

Many thanks


Given those particulars, gotta consider INGENIOUS. The first is abstract but fits every other particular and is quite addictive, the latter's a murder mystery played out as a rummy-style card game - match 3 clues (Weapon, Motive, Time Of Day) in a group and elminate it as a possible for points OR hold on to it and keep others from knowing it's been eliminated - and the middle's also a themeless/abstract card game, but fun.

[EDITED: After reviewing your collection] Just triple my endorsement for INGENIOUS then. IMO, ALIBI is the mystery game for people who hate mystery games, but you'll be hard-pressed to find something less confrontational...also, are "OOP but easily to find on Ebay" games under consideration???
 
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Have faith
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Thanks for all the excellent suggestions so far.

I'm currently looking more closely at many that you have recommended, including Clocktowers, Blue Moon, and Odin's Ravens.

Blue Moon looks great, but I'm afraid my wife will object to some of the artwork (skimpy attire). She complained about the same thing in Magic: The Gathering.

Odin's Ravens I had thought was pretty confrontational - I'll have to give it another look.

Clocktowers looks like a good bet. Yes, it looks light - but light is sometimes good for us.


More suggestions are welcome!
 
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Quote:
are "OOP but easily to find on Ebay" games under consideration???

Yes, definitely! Bring 'em on.
 
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Robert Washington
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cull wrote:
Quote:
are "OOP but easily to find on Ebay" games under consideration???

Yes, definitely! Bring 'em on.


Sorry I didn't get back around sooner, but definitely put MASTER LABYRINTH up. Solidly competitive without being confrontational, and yet a smigin of move and countermove in it. Fairly short play time, I find it reasonably involving, excellent production and bits, and Like INGENIOUS, excellent play with 2,3, or 4, not someting I can say about every game...

Also, on the "in-print" side:

TRANSAMERICA/TRANSEUROPE. Right around TICKET TO RIDE in terms of both complexity and conflict, and shorter in length, but much more strategy and a greatly reduced luck factor.

FLUXX: Excessively nonconfrontational and abstract, but very engaging. can get a bit complex if the wrong cards come up, but generally very approachable.

COUNTING ZZZ'S: Competitive element, but the basic theme (players are laying down cards representing elements of a dream sequence, trying to keep their own "dream" full of happy/positive elements and lay down fitful/negative elements in their opponents dreams to give them nightmares (negative scores) - hard to take personally.

 
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Thee Insidius Doktor Glaze & His Sidekick Donut Boy with the Amazing Monkeytime Dancers Ooh!
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It looks from your ratings that you have hit most of the usual suspects for two-player games. The only ones I can add are:

Cribbage
Ghosts!

For 3 or 4 players, here are some ones that my spouse and I have around that you may want to check out. Oddly, a lot of these happen to work really well with 3:

Africa http://www.boardgamegeek.com/game/1315
Around the World in 80 Days http://www.boardgamegeek.com/game/12005
Daytona 500 http://www.boardgamegeek.com/game/631
Loco! http://www.boardgamegeek.com/game/398
Marco Polo Expedition http://www.boardgamegeek.com/game/9139
Wildlife Adventure http://www.boardgamegeek.com/game/156

Good Luck. Have Fun!
 
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Jon Dockter
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cull wrote:
Thanks for all the excellent suggestions so far.

I'm currently looking more closely at many that you have recommended, including Clocktowers, Blue Moon, and Odin's Ravens.

Blue Moon looks great, but I'm afraid my wife will object to some of the artwork (skimpy attire). She complained about the same thing in Magic: The Gathering.

Odin's Ravens I had thought was pretty confrontational - I'll have to give it another look.

Clocktowers looks like a good bet. Yes, it looks light - but light is sometimes good for us.


More suggestions are welcome!


Blue Moon is one of my alltime favorite games. Plays quickly and there's just enough strategy to keep things interesting. Your wife should enjoy the artwork in the base set, Flit, Aqua, Pillar, and Kind. I would stay away from Terra, and definitely Mimix. Your wife might find the art bit risque. You can see all the artwork on the official site. http://www.blue-moon-games.com/us/spiel/spielidee.html
 
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Sir Cumference
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Some other possibilities:

Ta Yu (boards and bits has it)
Metro (you already have it?)
Can't Stop (luck, but fun and easy when your energy level low)
Dynasties (just got this and Carolus Magnus myself so don't know how good)

avoid: da vinci's challenge (too much work and kind of boring)
 
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Sir Cumference
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Also loco, hive, tutankhamen
 
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Jon Greisz
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I'd recommend the 10 days in USA, Africa, or Europe.
 
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Try Odin's Ravens. My wife loves it, and I like it better than Battle Line, though I'd always rather play San Juan. Its not confrontational at all. You can affect the other Raven in only two or three ways. You can place a blocker in the path requiring your opponent to pay double to advance, you can make the path longer or alter the card order, and you can move the opponent's raven back one space. None of this really affects the other player too much.

I'd also recommend trying Maharaja with two. The confrontation there is pretty limited. You can affect the other player by doing something unexpected and making their action choices less effective than they planned, but you can't really hurt the other player directly.
 
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Sue Hemberger

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A couple comments on comments. Loco! sucks with 2 (although it's great with 3). Odin's Ravens has always struck me as a kinder, gentler, more thematic Phoenix -- which is a good thing, at least it this context. Doesn't have the same kill-or-be-killed feel that Phoenix does, so I don't think confrontation will be an issue. I was underwhelmed by 10 Days in the US with 2 (although I liked it with 3). On initial play, 10 Days in Europe seemed to be a better 2-player game, though I can't tell you why and part of the reason may have been the challenge of remembering the map!

FWIW, Roma and Shazamm! are the two-Blue Moon alternatives that appeal to both the Blue Moon and non-Blue Moon fans in my household. Fewer unique cards to remember (shared deck in Roma; identical decks in Shazamm!) was the key. No skimpy outfits, either -- except maybe the guys in Roma, LOL! But how does Blue Moon fit the non-confrontational criterion?
 
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Sir Cumference
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Another possibility would be to pick up a 9x9/13x13 reversible Go board and some stones (or even just print out a board on paper and get some cheap glass stones or use pente stones; you don't need that many stones for 9x9). There's a lot to this game and you'd probably want to pick up a book or two or maybe get something from the library. But the basic idea is fairly simple so one of you could read up and then the two of you could just jump into some casual 9x9 games. In the beginning you have little idea what you're doing but gradually you start to see some strategies and patterns. Don't even think about the full size boards to start.
 
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Sir Cumference
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The other route I've tried for two-person is to pick up Reiner Knizia's book on dice games (I was able to get it from a British bookstore which is an Amazon affiliate) and a book on card games such as Sackson's book, or Parlett has some good books. This is very cheap and there are scads of games.
 
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