2012 has been a crazy year for me, both personally and in the board game hobby. I have never purchased, played or traded more games than I have this year. Because everyone seems to be doing a Top 10 of 2012 list, I will be doing something a little different. I will be ranking the 17 2012 games that I’ve played, since we really won’t be able to know which are the “best” for a few years. Here goes!
I have played other LCGs from Fantasy Flight and they all seemed very dull to me. That is until I saw the core Netrunner set on Amazon for $20 and decided, with my friend, to take a shot at it. Boy was that a great decision. I’ve played multiple games as both the Runner and the Corporation sides. I’ve even started to deck-build, which is not something I’ve ever really done before. Magic: The Gather was not something I was into when I was younger. Luckily this form of deck-building is a much cheaper alternative to that. This is the best, most enjoyable game of 2012.
- Escape: The Curse of the Temple
Great way to spend 10 minutes…that is if you can only play a single game at a time. I have yet to only play 1 game because it’s so easy to reshuffle the tiles and go again!
- Legendary: A Marvel Deck Building Game
A wonderful Christmas present from my wife. Played many times solo and multiplayer. Even though it can sometimes be easy, I enjoy the theme and the artwork enough to keep trying different combination.
Descent: Journeys in the Dark (second edition)
Our group started a campaign and had a lot of fun. I’ve also played a one-off mission as the Overload and it works very well in both settings.
- Lords of Waterdeep
Hands down the intro worker placement game, now. I don’t really care about the theme, the game just flows so smoothly.
- Merchant of Venus (second edition)
Played the classic game a while ago, but the new version feels a lot more modern. Very much enjoyed the reprint. Looking forward to playing the reprinted, classic edition now.
This was pretty high on my wishlist all year. Although it didn’t exceed my expectation, it was still a solid game with one of my favorite mechanics: role selection.
Have only played it once and it felt like it required at least a couple plays to “get it.” I could see the potential of a nice, quick auction/engine building game.
Solid little 2-player game. Would fit perfectly in the Kosmos line of games.
Empires of the Void
After a couple plays, I can’t say that I’ll want to buy a copy, but it was enjoyable. Would still rather play Eclipse.
- Legacy: Gears of Time
I’m a sucker for everything that has to do with time travel. This does it pretty well, but the scoring brings it down for me. Just takes too long to explain and too long to execute.
- Atlantis Rising
This game might move up the list, as I’ve only played it once solo. It was crazy hard. The graphic design is wonderful and there is no other game with a board like this game. I’m interested to playing it more to see if I can figure it out.
- D-Day Dice
With high expectations coming from a hugely successful Kickstarter campaign, this was a bit of a disappointment. I was hoping for more tension and theme integration, but there are a few things that keep it from being a great game.
Because I really got into the Android universe, I picked up a copy of this hoping to recreate some of the Netrunner elements. It kind of worked, but we need to play it again with the mindset of it being like a party game (quick turns, trash talking, risk taking, etc.). Has potential.
- Agents of SMERSH
Too long for what it is. The theme is very cool and underutilized in board games, in my opinion. Wouldn’t work with a family as there are a lot of little rules.
- Dominant Species: The Card Game
After my first play I was ready to throw this game out the window, but I played a couple more times and it didn’t totally suck, like…
- Sentinels of the Multiverse: Enhanced Edition
Ugh. Cannot see why people like this game. Didn’t work for me, didn’t work for anyone in our group.
Here are the 2012 games I or someone in my group owns and have yet to play (in no particular order):• Tzolk’in: The Mayan Calendar
• Mice and Mystics
• Cavemen: The Quest for Fire
• Rex: Final Days of an Empire
• Manhattan Project
• Space Cadets
• Ground Floor (BGG says 2012, but I think it’s 2013 now)
• The Resistance: Avalon
• VivaJava: The Coffee Game
Here’s to 2013!