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2006 Board Games Gift Guide

Zonk posted more than 7 years ago | from the penguin-jokes dept.

Christmas Cheer 99

SlantyBard writes "As per previous years, the Morning News has published their annual guide to Good Gift Games. You can also always check out BoardGameGeek's gift guide to boardgames or Funagain's all time top bestseller list for great gifts for your family and friends." From the Morning news post: "Occasionally I'll play a new game so elegant in design that I'll come away amazed that it hadn't been thought of before. Hey! That's My Fish! is the most recent example. Sixty small hexagons (each showing one, two, or three fish) are assembled into an ice floe. Players then place their penguins onto the board, and play begins. On a turn, a player moves one of his penguins and then claims the hex the penguin just vacated, scoring points for the fish shown thereon. The ice floe slowly melts as more and more hexes are taken. Eventually there will be no more legal moves, and the person with the most fish wins. It's extremely simple and remarkably strategic."

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Step 1: Get the Wizards of the Coast catalog... (3, Funny)

xxxJonBoyxxx (565205) | more than 7 years ago | (#17290696)

Step 1: Get the Wizards of the Coast catalog
Step 2: Open it to a random page and put your finger down
Step 3: Order that

Re:Step 1: Get the Wizards of the Coast catalog... (1)

Rob T Firefly (844560) | more than 7 years ago | (#17290760)

I would, except it's full of those freaking "Magic: The Crack Addiction" cards.

Re:Step 1: Get the Wizards of the Coast catalog... (1)

creimer (824291) | more than 7 years ago | (#17291398)

I agreed with that. I been clean for 11 years now after being kicked out of the university. ;)

Re:Step 1: Get the Wizards of the Coast catalog... (1)

Wampus Aurelius (627669) | more than 7 years ago | (#17291502)

Ohhh, so you're the guy who keeps ordering Neopets. [wizards.com]

Re:Step 1: Get the Wizards of the Coast catalog... (2, Informative)

WaXHeLL (452463) | more than 7 years ago | (#17291790)

In terms of board games, Wizards of the Coast only a small handful of games. [wizards.com]

Of the 10 that were listed by the Morning News article, only one is made by Wizard's board game division, Avalon Hill.

Wizards does do quite a few card games though.

Fluxx (1)

Shadow Wrought (586631) | more than 7 years ago | (#17290720)

One of the best games for a group that there is. Not strictly a board game, but certainly worth getting.

Re:Fluxx (1, Informative)

Byteme (6617) | more than 7 years ago | (#17291280)

One of the worst, actually. Almost universally hated among gamers.

Re:Fluxx (1)

elphins.son (1021355) | more than 7 years ago | (#17291402)

Except for, you know, every gamer I know and play it with.

Re:Fluxx (1)

Byteme (6617) | more than 7 years ago | (#17291516)

People like Bingo and call that a game too.

http://www.boardgamegeek.com/game/258 [boardgamegeek.com]

Fluxx is way to random, when I same "gamer" I mean someone who likes to be challenged, be competitive, use their brain when playing. Fluxx might be fun for stoners... maybe a one time play for others... but I would not suggest it as a gift for anyone that is into gaming or that you'd like to turn on to the hobby.

Re:Fluxx (1)

Shadow Wrought (586631) | more than 7 years ago | (#17291772)

Well, as always, YMMV. I've found Fluxx to be quite fun and challenging. There is also a certain method to the Strategy, too. While it is possible that someone can draw right into a win, its also possible to deny someone close to winning by changing the rules. Out of curiosity what games do you play that meet your criteria? I find it surprising that you would simultaneously want to interest people in gaming but at the same time come across as such a gaming snob. They seem contradictory, but, again, YMMV.

Re:Fluxx (1)

Byteme (6617) | more than 7 years ago | (#17291894)

I am a gaming snob... I also like to have fun. Fluxx is not a game that I find fun so it would certainly not be a game that I'd introduce people to gaming with... especially when there are about 1,000 better choices. Besides the fun and new gamer factor, I'd say that the "game" is not a game. It is a futile exercise... much like that other Stoner game called Grass, or Uno for that matter. For good suggestions I'd start here:

http://tinyurl.com/snsc9 [tinyurl.com]

Re:Fluxx (2, Interesting)

Shadow Wrought (586631) | more than 7 years ago | (#17292058)

I guess I just don't have the time to be too snobby about gaming. I've played everything from SFB to Silent Death to Dragon Dice to various versions of Warhammer and Warhammer 40k. Most of which require a large investment of time. So Fluxx is nice because it lets you play with people who wouldn't otherwise be doing any type of game and its relatively fast. And, I am still curious as to what games you like and enjoy, especially since you're an admitted snob;-) Not trolling, but genuinely curious because I'm heading down to visit a gaming friend next week. We were going to be playing several of the above, but if there's another one out there that you like and play, then I'd check it out.

Re:Fluxx (3, Interesting)

Byteme (6617) | more than 7 years ago | (#17292574)

As of late... Age of Steam, Twilight Struggle (IGA winner 2006), Traders of Genoa, 1830, Power Grid, Friedrich, War of the Ring... mostly interested in economic / stock market simulations and war games (GMT Games, MMP Games). I do play chess, poker and some other lighter fare...

If I was suggesting a gift / newbie games in the ease to teach / pick-up realm that you place Fluxx then I'd suggest For Sale, Bonhanza, Bang!, Coloretto, That's Life. Though I've had success converting people with much deeper games... the ones I list are fun, quick to play, high replay value and easy to teach / learn. You can look them up here: http://www.boardgamegeek.com/ [boardgamegeek.com]

Re:Fluxx (1)

Shadow Wrought (586631) | more than 7 years ago | (#17292834)

Thanks, I'll check some of those out. I'm not a fan of economy based games, so I'll give those a pass, but I will look into the war games.

Re:Fluxx (1)

Godeke (32895) | more than 7 years ago | (#17292760)

All of the games you mention are very to mildly luck (via dice) driven. There are people who play nothing but abstracts (chess, go, twixt, etc.), and there are people who play very low-luck games such as Caylus. Personally, I play all of the above *and* the games on your list, but there are some who are more focused. Fluxx is very, very luck based, so for those who play no to low luck games, it is really annoying.

Check out the highly rated games at boardgamegeek.com for a very diverse group of good games.

Re:Fluxx (1)

Byteme (6617) | more than 7 years ago | (#17293098)

All? 1830? Only to determine starting player, after that...? (same with Caylus I think, there is no random element in that game).

Also, there are abstract games that are random. Tigris and Euphrates is an example with its tile draws.

Random elements are fine... just when things are pure chance or chaotic in nature it loses all appeal as a game. Unless, of course, there is a woman involved.

Re:Fluxx (1)

Shadow Wrought (586631) | more than 7 years ago | (#17293318)

He was responding to my abbreviated list of games and yes, most of them do have a significant amount of luck associated with them. For wahtever reason, I really like games that involve rolling dice. But there is something very appealing about not having absolutes. So even though you may muster the exact right force, and attack at the exact right time, you can still fail. It just seems to make it more "realistic." Abstract absolutes are fine (I like chess for example), but I prefer random chance as playing a factor in the game. (In fact my favorite all time game is still Dragon Dice, so that tells you something!)

Re:Fluxx (1)

Godeke (32895) | more than 7 years ago | (#17296648)

For such a low user ID, your thread reading skills are a bit rusty. Caylus has a random element in the setup, after that it doesn't. I didn't even mention 1830. My comment was directed at the collection of dice heavy games mentioned by the *parent* comment... not your comment. I didn't even *read* your comment.

Re:Fluxx (1)

Byteme (6617) | more than 7 years ago | (#17296800)

Insults? Whatever, dude. You replied to me. Please pay attention.

Re:Fluxx (0)

Godeke (32895) | more than 7 years ago | (#17300600)

Comment 172927690 by "Godeke" has parent 17292058 written by "Shadow Wrought".

Haven't got the hang of threading yet? Unless *any* comment under one of yours magically is a reply to you, I didn't reply to you.

Re:Fluxx (1)

Byteme (6617) | more than 7 years ago | (#17300912)

blah. blah. blah. Please add more value to this conversation, thanks.

Re:Fluxx (1)

Godeke (32895) | more than 7 years ago | (#17301334)

Added to Foes. Reason: Moron.

Re:Fluxx (1)

Byteme (6617) | more than 7 years ago | (#17301466)

Added to Christmas list. Reason: Internet tough-guy.

Re:Fluxx (1)

the dark hero (971268) | more than 7 years ago | (#17293548)

Besides the fun and new gamer factor, I'd say that the "game" is not a game. It is a futile exercise...

Fluxx is best enjoyed with good friends and humourous people. you must not have funny friends because this futile exercise is quite fun. in my experiences its just a laughable easy to play game. mix in drinks and sometimes its just too much fun. i'm a gamer and find this excrutiating task rather enjoyable. easy for anyone to pick up or join on the fly too. :D

Re:Fluxx (2, Insightful)

turtledawn (149719) | more than 7 years ago | (#17291638)

Universally hated by those with endless hours to kill and maybe three like-minded friends, perhaps. When you want something to take maybe an hour, have lots of people who would like to play, want people to be able to drop in and out at will (such as at a holiday party), there's nothing quite as much fun as fluxx. There's next to no learning curve (the rules are all on the table, for crissake) and there can be as much or as little strategy to it as you want. Yeah, you get the odd hand with nothing but lame cards, but I can't think of any game where you don't at least occasionally wind up completely constrained by the contents of whatever it is you have to work with.

Re:Fluxx (1)

ZX-3 (745525) | more than 7 years ago | (#17291864)

Have you tried Drinking Fluxx? The randomness bothers everybody less when they're drinking.

Re:Fluxx (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#17308936)

Stoner flux is even more amusing! Just, follow the rules. That one rule that trumps them all. Marijuana prohibition.

Re:Fluxx (1)

Kris_J (10111) | more than 7 years ago | (#17294114)

Yes, though Looney Labs' Treehouse is on the boardgamegeek.com list. I've only played one game of it, and that was in Second Life, but it seems fun. My set might hopefully arrive this week.

Re:Fluxx (1)

Macgrrl (762836) | more than 7 years ago | (#17294642)

I've been playing this for years, I think I have a rev 2.0 set (might be a rev 1.0 but I think it has a few additional cards).

The rev 3.0 (I think it is) currently kicking around has a bunch of new rules and cards that makes it just that little bit too complex for teaching novice (non-gamer) users, I'd personally ditch the extras and go back to the rev 2.0 set.

Re:Fluxx (1)

santiago (42242) | more than 7 years ago | (#17296822)

Fluxx isn't a game. It's a random number generator that may be fun when you're drunk and/or stoned (though, not being one to partake of such levels of chemical enhancement, I wouldn't know), but certainly not when you're sober. Get some Treehouse / Icehouse sets and go play Zendo instead. That's actually a neat game from the same publishers, Looney Labs [looneylabs.com] .

monopoly (1)

amazon10x (737466) | more than 7 years ago | (#17290730)

I still play board games when me and my siblings all congregate at a single house. A favorite for a few of us is Monopoly. However, I've been in search of a game similar to this but more complex. The most important thing I'm looking for is the outcome of the game depending more on strategy and less on chance. Anyone know of any such board games?

Re:monopoly (3, Informative)

LordNimon (85072) | more than 7 years ago | (#17290794)

If you haven't tried Settlers of Catan, you should.

Settlers really is great. (1)

orgelspieler (865795) | more than 7 years ago | (#17293152)

Hear, hear! It is one of the best board games I have ever played. It's a little complicated if you're learning by the book (better for somebody to show you how), and it can take a while if you've got indecisive people in the group. I only wish there were a two-player version, so my wife and I could play when there's no company. My in-laws like it, my family likes it, my friends like it, and it's extendable to up to 6 people.

Re:Settlers really is great. (1)

Infinityis (807294) | more than 7 years ago | (#17293806)

I'll nominate Settlers of Catan as well. My parents have it (with the 6 person expansion), as does my sister, and I know my parents are getting it for me for Christmas (at my request). It does have a hefty price tag (I think $40 just for the basic 4 player version), but when you factor in how much it gets played, it's well worth it.

Re:Settlers really is great. (1)

RKThoadan (89437) | more than 7 years ago | (#17295744)

There is a Settlers of Catan card game that is 2-player, my wife and I play frequently. I've never actually played the board game, but it's on my list to acquire some time soon (right below Tigris and Euphrates).

My personal favorite board game is probably Carcassonne.

Re:Settlers really is great. (1)

orgelspieler (865795) | more than 7 years ago | (#17299448)

Thanks. I'll look it up. :-)

Re:Settlers really is great. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#17296590)

Play against the computer...

Re:monopoly (1)

Rob T Firefly (844560) | more than 7 years ago | (#17290806)

Risk. [wikipedia.org]

Re:monopoly (2, Funny)

silentounce (1004459) | more than 7 years ago | (#17291120)

Because there is no chance involved in that one at all.

Re:monopoly (1)

MORTAR_COMBAT! (589963) | more than 7 years ago | (#17291238)

Risk's outcome has some small portion strategy, but a large portion of it is the outcome of head-to-head rolls of the dice. That is very much based on random luck.

Re:monopoly (1)

Homr Zodyssey (905161) | more than 7 years ago | (#17292560)

Maybe a lot of the game depends on "luck"...does that mean it isn't fun? People have been playing Poker, Craps, Backgammon, 21, etc. etc. for a very long time. Since when is something automatically not a "game" just cause it has some element of chance? I think thats why a large class of games are called "Games of Chance". Randomness can be fun.

I post this in response to the "Risk" comment, simply 'cause I want to agree with the parent. :) Risk is the best. Even if it is mostly chance, its a heckuva lot of fun, especially when drinking. Risk Godstorm and Risk 2210AD are even better!

Re:monopoly (1)

Rob T Firefly (844560) | more than 7 years ago | (#17293826)

Sure, a lot of "Risk" is chance, but it's the same level as Monopoly, which the OP mentioned liking. although a lot is linked to the dice rolls, it's not only chance. There's still a decent strategic end of the gameplay as you choose what or whom to go after, what to defend or attack, and so on, just as you have strategic choices of buying, trading, and building in Monopoly.

Re:monopoly (1)

polar red (215081) | more than 7 years ago | (#17290838)

monopoly s*cks big time if you compare it to the new batch of board games.

Re:monopoly (1)

oldwindways (934421) | more than 7 years ago | (#17290894)

The problem with Monopoly seems to be that every time my family sits down to play a game, it ends in someone flipping over the board and storming off. Mind you the youngest is in her mid-teens and the oldest is in her mid seventies.

Do people still play Monopoly? (1)

mcvos (645701) | more than 7 years ago | (#17298790)

The problem with Monopoly seems to be that every time my family sits down to play a game, it ends in someone flipping over the board and storming off. Mind you the youngest is in her mid-teens and the oldest is in her mid seventies.

Do people really still play Monopoly? I liked it when I was a kid and there was nothing better around, but the last 15 years have given us a multitude of far superior games. Monopoly and Risk are obsolete.

Re:monopoly (1)

silentounce (1004459) | more than 7 years ago | (#17290950)

Acquire [amazon.com] , hands down. You can google "acquire game" for more reviews.

Re:monopoly (1)

Ingolfke (515826) | more than 7 years ago | (#17291036)

Oh yeah! Acquire is a lot of fun. If you like it I think you might like Ticket to Ride.

When YOU win, it's "strategy"; when I win it's... (1)

xxxJonBoyxxx (565205) | more than 7 years ago | (#17290964)

Oh, I get it now. When YOU win, it's "good strategy"; when I win it's "luck". Shut up and roll. 11? Oh good, that's Illinois Avenue and I have three houses on it.

Re:monopoly (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#17291418)

I don't know if it is still avalible but my family loves Survive by Parker Brothers. You have to get as many people off a disentigrating island to a safe island at the edge of the board, all the time dodgeing whirlpools, whales, sharks and sea monsters which other players can use against you and you against them. There is a slight element of chance. There are numbers on the bottom of the people and you don't know what they are until the end of the game when you add up all the numbers of the people you saved and whoever has the highest number wins.

Re:monopoly (1)

Quill_28 (553921) | more than 7 years ago | (#17299886)

Survive is a great game. Board gamers actually say it was a little before it's time.

You can find it on Ebay, though not always cheap, and if you are lucky at a garage sale.

Re:monopoly (3, Informative)

KDR_11k (778916) | more than 7 years ago | (#17291792)

Puerto Rico [boardgamegeek.com] . The only randomness in that game is the plantation availability and that is a relatively minor factor (especially when compared to e.g. the ressource rolls in a Settlers game).

Re:monopoly (4, Interesting)

meringuoid (568297) | more than 7 years ago | (#17291824)

A favorite for a few of us is Monopoly. However, I've been in search of a game similar to this but more complex. The most important thing I'm looking for is the outcome of the game depending more on strategy and less on chance. Anyone know of any such board games?

Monopoly-by-the-book.

First and foremost, this means no money gets put in the middle for Free Parking, ever; it goes to the bank where it belongs. You CAN buy on your first time round. If you choose not to buy unowned property when you have the chance, the property goes up for auction, and you can bid for it even if you turned it down at the list price. There is no double salary for landing exactly on Go. If there are no houses left in the box and somebody wants to build, too bad, they can wait till some houses get freed up, and if some bastard hogs all the houses by refusing to upgrade to hotels, that's his right and he deserves everything he gets if he gets the Make General Repairs card.

Nobody plays Monopoly by the rules, but the Free Parking Jackpot kills the game stone dead, and auctions (a) get all the properties owned much more quickly and cheaply, and (b) raise the backstabbing factor by about a billion.

Re:monopoly (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#17292234)

landing on go doubles your salary??

we always played you get $200. Unless you landed on "Go directly to Jail" .. then you do not pass go, you do not collect $200, no, no, no.

Re:monopoly (1)

Sparr0 (451780) | more than 7 years ago | (#17294098)

By WHICH book? That is the question. Most of the rules are consistent, but some very much aren't. The most notable one being the rule about auctions, which is present about 50% of the time I have seen different Monopoly editions. I made that up as a house rule early on, to add more strategy to the game, and was surprised to find it in a different set of Monopoly rules years later.

Re:monopoly (1)

ShadowsHawk (916454) | more than 7 years ago | (#17299530)

Drunken Monopoly is a favorite past when the guys get together. We do play with a few custom rules to keep things interesting (and backstabbing is fun!).

1. Everything other than rent or property purchases goes into Free Parking along with $500.
2. The $500 is replaced as soon as Free Parking is hit.
3. You can buy on your first time around.
4. Double cash for landing on Go.
5. No auctions.
6. If there is an equal number of players and property, there is a vote on divvying it up.
7. You buy whatever property you're given at face price.

Re:monopoly (1)

Pope (17780) | more than 7 years ago | (#17302664)

Thanks. I can't fucking stand all the stupid "Free Parking" rules that everyone besides my family seems to play by. We learned by reading the rules that came with the game, all this made-up shit about putting money in the middle is annoying.

Anyway, "Ticket To Ride" is definitely one of the best games I've played recently. Haven't play it enough to tackle the tunnel, station, and ferry rules on the Europe board, but that just means there's more to play once the main rules are learned.

Re:monopoly (1)

scheme (19778) | more than 7 years ago | (#17291904)

I still play board games when me and my siblings all congregate at a single house. A favorite for a few of us is Monopoly. However, I've been in search of a game similar to this but more complex.

You can make monopoly much more complicated fairly easily. Allow players to negotiate and sell options for purchasing properties, portions of future revenues from properties they may or may not have at the present, etc. A smart player and good negotiator can easily pick win and you can intelligently hedge your risks making it less likely that landing on a boardwalk with a hotel wipes you out.

Illuminopoly (1)

dreamer-of-rules (794070) | more than 7 years ago | (#17293280)

Illuminopoly [speakeasy.org] is played on a normal Monopoly board, but set in a universe where mind-control devices are routinely installed in the apartments.

The default victory condition is to own or control at least 1/2 of the property values once all properties are owned. Each piece has alternate victory conditions and special powers. In addition, properties can be razed/rezoned with the appropriate graft. Bribery and backstabbing are expected, and even cheating is allowed, with a mandatory Go To Jail if caught; though we usually don't allow cheating in our games.

A work crew was upgrading the electrical system of a run-down property on Baltic when Sal found the Thingy. It was some kind of computerized property on Baltic when Sal found the Thingy. It was some kind of computerized device hooked into the electrical lines, kinda like a phone tap or sumthin. Anyway, Sal he took it to th' foreman, who told him to fergit about it. That was about a week before Sal was in that train wreck....

Running the world used to involve control of secret societies and political candidates. But that was before someone discovered how to use subsonics generated in electrical wiring along with chemicals in the water softeners to influence the minds of people living in apartment complexes and subdivisions. Soon the secret was 'common knowledge' among the factions vying for world domination, and they scrambled to buy up real estate in order to create their own armies of voting public.

Owning the utilities allows you to subvert huge masses of unclaimed territory, but less reliably (hence the random roll for Rent). Owning the rails lets you tamper with consumer goods delivered on trains, and with the minds of the Light Rail passengers. Monopoly on a certain area is highly sought after, since it allows the owners to renovate the properties extensively while adding even more complex mind control devices and attracting a richer (and more powerful) class of slave. Illuminopoly is the story of the struggle for dominance of one particular city, as several factions vie to gain total control....


Rereading your request.. this isn't necessarily less chancy, but it is more strategic. And definitely more advanced.

The two I suggest (1)

dmomo (256005) | more than 7 years ago | (#17296366)

Are Ticket to Ride and Carcassonne. Both have yet to fail me. I have brought these games to people who are used to Monopoly and Scrabble. They fall in love each and every time.

I third Settlers (1)

Prien715 (251944) | more than 7 years ago | (#17296670)

A few of my friends used to play monopoly every night, until we discovered Settlers.

In Monopoly, we found people largely traded once, built up, and crossed their fingers. If you made out in the deal-making frenzy you won, if not, it's a long slow ride to death.

In contrast, in Settlers, trades were made almost every turn and the last five minutes of the game are usually very close. In a race to 10 points, it wasn't uncommon to have 2 people with 8, one with 7 and one with 9 and have the 7 point person win on his/her next turn. Since the object is no longer to bankrupt anyone, trades are seen as mutually beneficial and a little less cut-throat.

Our group has since played one game of Monopoly. (For the record, I find settlers less complicated than Monopoly...the rules are certainly shorter.)

Re:monopoly (1)

Diss Champ (934796) | more than 7 years ago | (#17300178)

For a completely non-random economics, the 18xx series of railroad games is a blast. The main drawback with them is that one person who knows what they are doing with a bunch of newbies will toast them- but then, that's natural for when strategy matters. 1830 was the first one to sell a lot in the US; of hobby-created ones there are at least 100 out there. The most recent well-distributed commercial distribution is 1861, which is fairly friendly to new players. 1870 from Mayfair includes rules for a beginners variant that helps ease new players into running a company before adding the investment side of the game. Be aware that most 18xx games take 4-6 hours- just like a cutthroat monopoly game played with proper rules can.

Age of Steam and Powergrid are other good economic games, there is some randomness but they are much better than monopoly in that regard and deeper.

If you're looking for something really light and pretty short with some economic component, High Society might be enjoyable. In increasing complexity from there, other short games include Settlers of Catan, San Juan, Bohnanza. I'd recommend Puerto Rico as well, but it's apparently temporarily unavailable- it sold out for the season already and they won't have more made until next year. You might get lucky and see one in an out-of-the-way games store.

Re:monopoly (1)

valathax (916966) | more than 7 years ago | (#17302152)

Elfenland is the best family game that has a low amount of luck that game strategy is easily understood by younger players. Hare & Tortoise has a nice self balancing mechanism that gives an advantage to people in last place, it is an easy game to play with very few luck elements.

Keep in mind that there are 3 elements to every board game: Luck, strategy and interpersonal interaction. For example Monopoly is primarily based on luck, then secondly based on interaction then finally has a small amount of strategy.

Settlers of Catan is a good game to start with as well because most gaming stores in North America stock it, however this is just one good game out of hundreds of newer ones that have been developed.

Other good games that families can enjoy that have a greater level of strategy include:
- Ticket to Ride: Märklin (Don't get Ticket to Ride regular edition)
- Puerto Rico

Other good candidates depending on the age level you are playing with:
- Carcassone (Cheap game)

If you like fake money then my personal favorite is Power Grid, the game rules are simple for the players to understand but you need one competent person to manage the game because there are lots of maintenance procedures to handle.

I have a few hundred games, typically you can go wrong purchasing any game that has won the Spiel Des Jahres, you can find this list off of the funagain website. Any game published by Rio Grand is also usually very good and has good rules and game quality.

Games re-released by Hasbro under Wizard of the Coast I would avoid if possible, for example the new Cosmic Encounter was utterly destroyed because of the dumbing down of the game; if you can get an older edition it is much more fun. I also own Aquire which is a pretty mindless game that has too much money handling, I find it rather bland and boring.

Link to "Hey! That's my fish" game (3, Informative)

Programmer_In_Traini (566499) | more than 7 years ago | (#17290860)

since the article didn't offer one :

Its from Mayfair games :
http://www.mayfairgames.com/ [mayfairgames.com]

and they use friggin frames so this is the best link i can give. using the main page you can find it in the a-z listing.

http://www.mayfairgames.com/shop/product/phalanx/p ages/pha6017.htm [mayfairgames.com]

Risk and/or Monopoly (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#17290900)

These two are mandatory for any board game collection.

Re:Risk and/or Monopoly (1)

meowsqueak (599208) | more than 7 years ago | (#17296400)

Only as examples of the bottom of the barrel.

Risk and/or Monopoly? Not anymore (2, Insightful)

mcvos (645701) | more than 7 years ago | (#17298852)

These two are mandatory for any board game collection.

They were 20 years ago, but not anymore. They suck in comparison to just about any game that has been released since.

"Anymore"? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#17302676)

If I had to name two must-have board games, they'd be Go and Chess.

Interestingly, both predate Risk and Monopoly by a couple years.

Cartagena (2, Interesting)

Roy van Rijn (919696) | more than 7 years ago | (#17290912)

I usually don't like boardgames that take hours to read the rules. I just want to sit down and play it once in a while.
When I was at some friends house this weekend we played Cartagena [panix.com] , a very simple but intresting game!
Has anybody else played it?

Re:Cartagena (1)

phantomvortex (866667) | more than 7 years ago | (#17293672)

Yes, I have; in fact, I own a copy of it. It's a light to medium game in terms of strategy. I was intrigued by the "move backward in order to move forward" mechanic. It's a good game when you have a lot of people (will play up to 6) and don't want to spend more than an hour or so on a game. Check out http://www.boardgamegeek.com/ [boardgamegeek.com] for more information on this game and others similar to it.

pwned for following the link? (4, Informative)

AcidLacedPenguiN (835552) | more than 7 years ago | (#17290932)

Hello visitor from Slashdot! You are seeing this message because you've clicked on a link from Slashdot directly to our site. We have chosen to put this message up instead because last year our site was taken down by the "Slashdot Effect", and we simply couldn't afford to have a repeat during the busy Holiday shopping season. However, we welcome your visit and if you'd like to explore our site you can bypass this little warning by going to your address bar and typing "www.funagain.com", or, if you like, type "Funagain" into Google. Another option is to use the Coral Cache version of our site (particularly if you are just looking for information) by just clicking on this link: http://www.funagain.com.nyud.net:8090/ [nyud.net] If you're new to board games in general (or at least the only ones you're familiar with are Monopoly, Candy Land, and The Game of Life) you're in for a treat. To get started, check out any one of our "Beginner's Guide to Games", our "Shopper's Guide", our bestseller list, or our customer favorites list. You can also see a list of award winning games (including the annual Games 100 award list) by clicking on the "Award Winning Games" link under the "Funagain's Lists" section of the home page. Happy Gaming, Funagain Games

OT: Why do coral cache links (1)

ben there... (946946) | more than 7 years ago | (#17298444)

Another option is to use the Coral Cache version of our site (particularly if you are just looking for information) by just clicking on this link: http://www.funagain.com.nyud.net:8090/ [nyud.net]

Ha, if you click that link from here you still get the slashdot message.

Then you can click it within the message. ;-)

My favorites in no particular order... (2, Informative)

Ingolfke (515826) | more than 7 years ago | (#17290980)

Ticket to Ride - Outstanding quality and very fun to play.
Acquire - Great fun
Nuclear War - A simple and wonderfully addictive card game.

Great Game (IQ 75+ mandatory) (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#17291092)

Great game to make you think - www.perplexcity.com - They have a board game out, but I cant find the link from work unfortunately. Anyone care to google-linkage for me?

Thanks

Buy Board Games That Encourage Cooperation (2, Interesting)

DeepCerulean (741098) | more than 7 years ago | (#17291264)

There's enough crap out there that encourages everyone to "go for the win". If you're buying board games, especially for kids, I'd suggest looking into some cooperative games (check out Family Pastimes [familypastimes.com] ). I've been trying to get into these for a while, but unfortunately my friends have never been into them (they refer to "Our Town" as "Communist Monopoly"). But whatever, it's worth a look.

Re:Buy Board Games That Encourage Cooperation (4, Funny)

spun (1352) | more than 7 years ago | (#17291422)

Dude, cooperation is the devil. Don't you listen to the capitalists and libertarians? Only pinko commie socialists cooperate. Everyone else tries their damndest to kill or fuck over everything else on the planet. That's the American way.

Re:Buy Board Games That Encourage Cooperation (2, Informative)

bigdavex (155746) | more than 7 years ago | (#17292004)

I've had fun with Lord or the Rings [boardgamegeek.com] .

There's an individual component as well, but we've always ignored that aspect.

Re:Buy Board Games That Encourage Cooperation (1)

way2slo (151122) | more than 7 years ago | (#17300254)

While I enjoy playing Lord of the Rings, it is not for everyone. Before giving it as a gift to someone, I would run down this quick checklist.

A) Have they read the books more than once? - This may be the best indicator if they will enjoy the game. If they enjoyed the books enough to re-read, then there is a good chance they will enjoy the game and give it a chance.

B) Do they handle losing well? - It is double tough to win this game, especially with the expansions. If they don't like games they only have a small chance of winning then this game may not be for them.

I have played it a few times and have never won. We made it to Mordor once.....once. Actually, I shouldn't say "we" because the fellowship was down to only Sam, who promptly died after his first turn in Mordor. In my opinion, you need to have extreme good fortune to win. However, when you do win, you'll talk about it for months.

Re:Buy Board Games That Encourage Cooperation (3, Funny)

xero314 (722674) | more than 7 years ago | (#17292284)

they refer to "Our Town" as "Communist Monopoly"
As opposed to "Monopoly" where everyone starts with the same resources, earns the same income and can be jailed for no fault of their own.

Re:Buy Board Games That Encourage Cooperation (1)

Neflyte_Zero (866396) | more than 7 years ago | (#17297562)

If you're looking for a cooperative game then why not try Arkham Horror [fantasyflightgames.com] from Fantasy Flight Games? It's your group versus the game itself and you all need to pool your energy and resources to stop the Great Old One from manifesting itself and destroying Arkham (and by extension the world). It's based on the Lovecraft mythos and is ridiculously fun to play. A bit of a challenge to learn but once you've played it a couple times you'll get the hang of a truly amazing game.

Re:Buy Board Games That Encourage Cooperation (1)

Katmando911 (1039906) | more than 7 years ago | (#17300378)

My favorite game that depends on cooperation is I'm the Boss [boardgamegeek.com] It still ends with one player winning but to get there they pretty much have to be able to cooperate and negotiate the best with the other players...or have insanely good luck.

Blast from the past (2, Interesting)

silentounce (1004459) | more than 7 years ago | (#17291274)

I didn't even know they still made that Scotland Yard game. I had a lot of fun with that when I was a kid. I'd also recommend CAG [cheapass.com] . Plus if you love strategy and have some hours to kill I'd highly recommend Advanced Civilization or Diplomacy. In my opinion Diplomacy surpasses Risk because the only element of chance involved is your opponent.

Re:Blast from the past (1)

RKThoadan (89437) | more than 7 years ago | (#17295808)

Scotland yard, that game brings back lots of fun memories. I think I've been afraid to try it again because I'm afraid it won't be as good as I remember. I just checked some reviews and it sounds like it's still just as fun. I don't know if I can find many people who will be interested in it though.

Re:Blast from the past (1)

WhyCause (179039) | more than 7 years ago | (#17297006)

I looove the games I've gotten from Cheapass. Half the fun, for me at least, is the fact that there is 'assembly required'

Since you have to supply your own pieces, and the games come in envelopes (generally), it gives me projects to work on, including building boxes to hold all the cool pieces I've built.

The two Cheapass Games I have are 'Captain Treasure Boots' and 'Steam Tunnel'. For the former, I built little ships to use as pawns, and I used Mardi Gras Doubloons as the treasures. For the latter, I built a pipe-shaped box to hold all the parts. My friends and I have a weekly game night, and we've had a lot of fun with both of those.

Currently, I have my eye on 'Enemy Chocolatier' [cheapass.com] as a hopeful Christmas gift.

Re:Blast from the past (1)

ShadowsHawk (916454) | more than 7 years ago | (#17299576)

Agreed, Scotland Yard was a blast. I'm not sure it would hold the same depth as it once did though.

Apples to Apples (2, Interesting)

wuie (884711) | more than 7 years ago | (#17291642)

I've played the game Apples to Apples many times, and what I love the most about it is that you have enough cards for practically everyone at the party to play, especially if you have all the special sets combined into one large set. There have been times where we've had 10+ people in a circle, all playing the most absurd things that they have in their hand. Plus, I love how if you are the judge, you can choose *any* criteria you want for voting the best one.

There's one house rule that we always use, and this always makes for more entertainment: we play two descriptor cards instead of just one. Trying to match one thing is ho-hum, but trying to match two adjectives makes the game much more interesting.

Go (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#17291658)

There's also Go [wikipedia.org] , one of the oldest and coolest board games in existence.

Lots of places [xmp.net] sell equipment.

Fish game (1)

Threni (635302) | more than 7 years ago | (#17291660)

It sounds strangely derivative of a game called Isolation.

http://www.boardgamegeek.com/game/1875 [boardgamegeek.com]
http://i7.ebayimg.com/01/i/000/7d/d9/edec_1.JPG [ebayimg.com]

Re:Fish game (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#17292724)

Except it's deeper, fun and easier to get people to play it.

Twilight Struggle (1)

jamesdterry (854977) | more than 7 years ago | (#17291812)

This is the best game I've ever played: http://www.boardgamegeek.com/game/12333 [boardgamegeek.com] It's a two player recreation of the Cold War. Remember Chris Crawford's "Balance of Power"? It was kind of the inspiration for this game, but this is much more fun than that game ever was. (Still no reward if you blow up the world though :-) ). You won't be sorry if you get a chance to check it out - I'm addicted myself.

Re:Twilight Struggle (1)

Byteme (6617) | more than 7 years ago | (#17292668)

Dude... I'll play you online in the Java client. Best game ever? Hmmm... I do like it. Best new game that I have tried in a long while.

Instructions for online found here:

http://www.boardgamegeek.com/article/1224164 [boardgamegeek.com]

Re:Twilight Struggle (1)

jamesdterry (854977) | more than 7 years ago | (#17293474)

Yes, I use it all the time, great App. Drop me an email [mailto] or look for me on line. I'll be there tonight around 8 or 9 Eastern.

My Favs (3, Informative)

BlackIcejane (1004346) | more than 7 years ago | (#17292238)

1. Chez Geek/Goth
2. Apples to Apples
3. Killer bunnies
4. Things
5. Munchkin (any)
6. Settlers
7. Illuminati
8. Hacker Deluxe Edition
9. Ninja Burger
10. Maharaja

I own more but this is what gets played the most!

Time's Up (1)

messerman (446251) | more than 7 years ago | (#17293848)

Time's Up [boardgamegeek.com] is my current favorite board game (although, I guess, it's really more of a card game). Great for large groups and lots of fun. The only real problem I have with it is that it requires an even number of people (it's teams of two). Great fun.

War on Terror the board game (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#17294978)

War on Terror the board game: a satirical board game from Terror Bull Games: http://www.waronterrortheboardgame.com/ [waronterro...rdgame.com]

From the FAQ:
Q: But isn't it a bit tasteless?
A: That depends on your taste. Personally, we think the actual "War on Terror" is in pretty bad taste. This is
just a board game.

Bang! (1)

masterzora (871343) | more than 7 years ago | (#17298136)

It's a card game, not a board game, but Bang! is definitely a lot of fun, quick to set up and clean up, and fairly easy to catch on.

The New Stuff (1)

parliboy (233658) | more than 7 years ago | (#17298498)

If you're looking to buy something that was made this year, I can't recommend Yspahan enough. Wonderful game with plenty of strategy and narrow decision-making to curb those who are prone to analysis paralysis.

Scrabble... (1)

krzysztof (684977) | more than 7 years ago | (#17299646)

...although the fact that I play competitively makes me biased.

Carcassone, Settlers of Catan, and Ticket to Ride (1)

Is0m0rph (819726) | more than 7 years ago | (#17300976)

Those three would be great choices to get introduce people to boardgaming. Heroscape, crack for boys and their fathers.

The Spiel's 2006 Holiday Game Gift Guide (1)

thespiel (1041918) | more than 7 years ago | (#17309600)

Episode #18 of The Spiel, our podcast about board games, is a Holiday Gift Guide.

Over 50 recommendations for gamers of all ages and games of all flavors. From games less than $10 to budget busters, we've got you covered.

Download directly from our site [thespiel.net] or via RSS [thespiel.net] or iTunes [apple.com] .

Comments, questions, or suggestions are always welcome: stephen@thespiel.net

Happy holidays!

Stephen
co-host and creator of The Spiel
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