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Board Games I’ve Been Enjoying Lately

Any other board gamers on Sput? Relatively new hobby for me, or at least to this extent. Traditionally I’ve only played things like Catan and its expansions, Risk, Clue, etc. Over the last year or so I’ve started trying to dive into weightier games and it has been a fun journey so far. Here are some recent favorites.
Long Season


Great card drafting game, but you really need to have more than two people. It’s “playable” with two, but since you’ll just be passing the same two hands back and forth, it really causes a lot of the best gameplay elements (namely the first-pass risk of taking a Sashimi or Wasabi card) to become truncated and the guesswork becomes limited. A third player develops things exponentially, and four+ becomes a full-blown riot (most I’ve played with is six). The central Menu Board is nice for newbies to have something to reference when playing and many of the cards and their powers are self-explanatory and well understood after a practice round or two. (Only thing that trips some people up is the dessert, esp. the fruit. But they eventually get the hang of it.) Wouldn’t mind another expansion or two with some new cards, but this is a great “party” game to bring along with groups of people.
4Jane Siberry
The Walking


So quaint, so simple, and so much fun. The one board game that I’ve successfully pitched to my wife, my mother, and many other friends. Addicting gameplay style with a tetris-esque packaging aspect that everyone can easily understand but provides a lot of challenging decisions based on the available tiles and other considerations like cost and time. There’s a ton of intricacy in this little package, and the fact that it can be setup, played, and put away in under 30 minutes means you won’t need to block off an entire evening just to get a game in.
3Iron Maiden


The worst and only negative part about this game is the scorekeeping. It can be a bit cumbersome to calculate how much you might owe for a specific card based on yours and your opponent’s buildings, and I’m sure I’ve overlooked certain costs several times without realizing it. (This is alleviated by digital implementations of the game, which handle all the math automatically, obviously.) That aside, this is one of my favorite two-player games with a great card-drafting mechanic that will find you making selections based not only on what will benefit you the most, but also screw your opponent over equally as much if possible. Fairly simple to teach while including exponential depth in the number of core strategies available (will you win by Scientific superiority? Victory points? Military supremacy? Resource hoarding?) and if you’re playing without someone who knows the game, it can be relatively quick, upping the replay value.
2Rare Bird
Rare Bird


This game gets a lot of attention and praise and it’s evident why – it’s a great engine-builder that includes a massive number of unique cards and goals while retaining a fundamental, turn-based system that makes learning very simple. Boiled down to its essence, you have only four options on your turn. It’s optimizing those available turns by selecting the most rewarding and fruitful options that presents the challenge of the game. Whenever introducing non-gamer people into games beyond MONOPOLY and SCATTERGORIES, this is typically the one with which I start. It introduces a bunch of contemporary concepts and requires careful consideration without becoming too overwhelming. I only have the EUROPEAN expansion thus far but am eyeing up the OCEANIA one right now.
1Pink Floyd

ARK NOVA 🌕🌕🌕🌕🌕

Absolutely in love with this game right now. It borrows some mechanics from previously established games like TERRAFORMING MARS, BRASS, WINGSPAN, and EVERDELL, and combines them with a few fresh ideas and an amazing milieu. There’s something about the building of a world-class zoo that I find both relaxing and appealing, a sentiment that perhaps won’t be shared by everyone. (It is for similarly opposite reasons I find BRASS somewhat boring.) From a distance, it’s a complex game with a ton of minutiae of which to keep track, but the core gameplay is quite simple, making it surprisingly approachable for a heavy board game. One-player variants are awesome, too, since I can never find anyone willing to play! (My wife likes looking at the animal cards but can’t be bothered to learn that game, alas.)
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