While I am fairly new to the board gaming hobby – at least compared to my mom – I have enough experience with them by now to have developed my own taste in them. My list is 80% different from my mom’s!
Number 10 – Relic
Relic was published in 2013 by Fantasy Flight Games. The game was designed by John Goodenough and has a multitude of artists. The game, set in the Warhammer 40,000 Universe, is a science fiction adventure game in which the players have to fight various bad guys, gather equipment to help them fight and level their characters up to ultimately reach the inner circle and fulfill the end game goal, which is changeable from game to game.
To me, Relic is like World of Warcraft in space. The games share similarities: you level up your characters and you fight monsters. I love the components of Relic, especially the player character busts. I also love the exploding dice mechanic where, if a player or a monster rolls a 6, they get to re-roll that die.
The length of the game can be detrimental as sometimes it drags on. The game is very luck dependent as it is dice driven, so if a player does not like luck in a game, this is probably not a game for them.
Number 9 – Dice Forge
Dice Forge was published in 2017 by Libellud. The designer is Régis Bonnessée with artwork by Biboun. This game features a unique mechanism in which the players can gradually design the dice that they begin the game with to dice that can be tailored to their own strategy. The dice feature removable faces, something that I had never seen in a game before.
I love the changing dice in this game! Everyone of the players can have dice that are different from everyone else’s dice. The play time of this game is not very long, so that is a definite plus. The artwork of the game is beautiful. From someone who blings out games, I have to mention that the insert for this game is extremely well-designed.
The only negative about the game for me is that I would like to see more variety in the gods’ rivals. There is an expansion coming out in 2019 that will hopefully fix that problem.
Number 8 – Dark Gothic
Dark Gothic was published in 2014 by Flying Frog Productions. Its follow up game/expansion, Dark Gothic: Colonial Horror, which is also included here, was published in 2015 by Flying Frog. Both games are deck builders, hearkening back to the game that they are derived from, Flying Frog’s A Touch of Evil. We play this game cooperatively, which is a cool thing, as the game can also be played competitively. I cannot speak to the competitive game experience as we have only ever played the game as a cooperative one.
With both games combined, the game has a huge variety of cards and you never know what is going to appear. At the beginning of the game the “center line” could be full of allies and gear cards, which are helpful to the players, or it could be full of minions that the players must defeat. The theme of the game is one that appeals as well.
Because the game is luck dependent based on the variety of cards and the die rolling involved at the beginning of every round, it is easy to lose this game in mere minutes. The villains are not all revealed at the beginning of the game, so you never know once one is defeated what you are going to need to defeat the next one and your deck may be constructed in such a way that it is pretty useless to defeat that new villain. Yeah, lots of luck in this one!
Number 7 – Legacy: The Testament of Duke de Crecy
Legacy: The Testament of Duke de Crecy was published in 2013 by Portal Games. It was designed by Michiel Hendriks, with artwork provided by Mateusz Bielski, Rafal Szyma, and Barbara Trela-Szyma. The game is a strategy game in which the players are trying to propel their family’s legacy forward by making advantageous marriages, raising a healthy brood, participating in society, laying claim to titles and building mansions.
I love that you are creating families in this game. You can tell a story of the way that your particular family evolves. Does your family start from nothing and build up to being nobility? Are they all artists or craftsmen? I love the way that players can tell their individual families’ stories – there are no two alike. I also enjoy the artwork on the cards, although I do wish that there was more differentiation in the children’s cards, although I understand why there is only one model each for the boy and girl children.
I do not particularly care for the “complication” cards for childbirth. Yes, I realize that any number of children and/or their mothers lost their lives in childbirth at this point in time, but I do not want that kind of reality in my board games. Luckily enough, those cards can easily be removed from the game.
Number 6 – Castle Panic (with the Wizard’s Tower Expansion)
Castle Panic was published in 2009 by Fireside Games. The Wizard’s Tower expansion soon followed in 2011. Both the original game and the expansion were designed by Justin DeWitt. The base game features the artwork of Justin DeWitt. The expansion’s artwork was done by Justin DeWitt, Yoann Boissonnet, Eric Kemphfer, Anne Woods, and James Zuniga. This game is a classic “castle defense” cooperative game, but the base game was a bit too easy. The Wizard’s Tower expansion upped the difficulty level, which is why it is included here. There have been a couple of other expansions as well, but Wizard’s Tower is the one that made this game hit my list.
I like that the game is a good cooperative game for the entire family. The artwork throughout both the base game and the expansion is nice, reflecting that it is a family-style game rather than a serious strategic game.
This game also features luck as the players do not know the order in which the monsters are going to appear or even where they are going to appear. The ability to trade cards with the other players, however, negates some of this luck.
Please be sure and comment about your thoughts on my list. Information about all of these games and thousands more can be found at www.boardgamegeek.com.
Thanks for reading!