Here’s a list of hottest games for first quarter of 2006 for me. This is based on number of plays, my enjoyment of the game and the novelty value, so new games tend to show up higher on the list.
Einfach Genial — I played quite a lot of this in BSW, where it’s a bit of a staple game for the Finnish folks. And why not? It’s a good game, easy to teach, plays fast, works well with any number of players (though I don’t think I’ll be playing four-player games unless they’re team games) and the BSW implementation is slick. I recently got a copy for myself, though I’m not sure how much I’ll play the game outside BSW (why waste valuable face-to-face gaming time for a game you can play whenever you want at BSW?).
San Juan — Maybe two games face-to-face, rest of it in BSW. I also played quite a lot with Jim’s San Juan on my Mac, but that doesn’t count. Another game which isn’t on top my list for face-to-face games, though I’ll definitely play if someone suggests it. Did I rate this as a 10 already? If I didn’t, I should, it’s that good.
Blue Moon — Two intense sessions and a strong desire to play more, to explore the different decks and the strategies and tactics of the game. Here Knizia has really, really hit gold, I think, the game is brilliant. The basic mechanics are simple enough, yet the expansion decks bring lots of flavour and colour to the game.
Caylus — These were 50/50 on BSW and face-to-face. I found out Caylus is a brilliant two-player game and played good games with three and five, too. The game scales well, that is. The length and slickness of BSW version make me somewhat hesitant to take this to the table, but I’ll definitely play if someone suggests it and might suggest it myself in right circumstances.
Antiquity — Earned it’s 10 rating after two very interesting games. I’m starting to figure out how to survive famine, it doesn’t feel like that big a deal. The original supersaint San Christoforo looks weaker after every game. The length of the game has been pushed to two hours. It really doesn’t get much better than this.
Antike — More games in on this one and I still like it. The correct market and currency are much better than the superpower versions I played earlier. Our very tight game makes me wonder, though, if reducing the victory condition by one would improve the experience… But I’ll wait and see, no changes yet. If the games become more balanced as a general rule, I’ll change it, but not otherwise.
Attribute — This was played few times at the BSW and once face to face. A friend of mine is working to get my Finnish word set online; if that happens, I can see more Attribute games happening. I’m not too keen to play in English, and the Finnish edition I have gets little play for various reasons. This is such a great BSW game anyway.
Mauerbauer — Just two games, but it’s new and I like it. It’s very tactical and the dice certainly bring in some luck, but I like the system, it’s fairly intuitive and great fun. I’m not sure if I’ll get it for me, but I wouldn’t mind playing every now and then.
Scotland Yard — Nothing new about this one, but I wasn’t keeping records when I last played this childhood classic. It’s still pretty good, though as a two-player game. I could consider buying it, actually, but I’m not that sure I’d actually play it a lot. If it’s still around in ten years or so (and why not?), I’ll introduce it to my kid, I think.
Dvonn — I did play bunch of Dvonn with different people (in addition to constant Little Golem games). It’s definitely one of the better games in its genre, and it’s probably the first game of the series I’d introduce to someone.