2016 end of year roundup

2016 saw me play 133 games of 119 different titles and 71 of these were new to me during the year. Comparing this to previous years, the games played are down a lot but I had expected this due to my house move and the consequent loss of my regular game group, family bereavements and illness, and general lack of opportunities to play. Here are the totals for the last several years:

Year Total Different
2016  133     119
2015  314     205
2014  335     219
2013  234     155
2012  239     154
2011  200     156
2010  208    157
2009 229    157

My full list of games played in 2016 is here.







My most played games were Castles of Burgundy; The Card Game and Molkky which both saw 4 plays – first time no single game has racked up five or more plays. 6 games were played three times, 15 were played twice and 98 of them were played just once. My unplayed games list started 2016 at 20 and fell down to zero at one point but is currently sitting at 28. I need to get this down to single figures again fairly soon this year.

My six picks for the best games I played for the first time in 2016 were Pandemic: Reign of Cthulhu, Burgle Bros, Automobiles, Dark Moon, Mystic Vale and Steam Time. As with last year, I’ve also done a six picks of two-player games featuring 13 Days: The Cuban Missile Crisis, Holmes: Sherlock & Mycroft, Matcha, Onitama, Tides of Madness and Hanamikoji. None of the games on either list is a real standout game for me and, as I’ve avoided all the hot Eurogames this year, it’s not been a classic year for gaming for me. Let’s hope 2017 turns out to be a bit better.

As far as the collection is concerned, I sold off another large batch of games in the first half of the year but have acquired quite a few in the last couple of months. Hence the total has come down again from 617 to 561. I’d like to do some more trimming in 2017 so expect to see some geeklist auctions in the near future.

December 2016 roundup

Over the course of December, I managed to play just 12 games of 10 different titles, with 7 of them being new to me. The new games were:


Harry Potter: Hogwarts Battle – 3 plays –  8 
First Published 2016

I purchased this from Amazon US, as it isn’t going to be licenced for release in the UK. A deck builder where you play through the seven books in the series with a new deck to be opened each game (providing you defeat the previous game). The first couple of decks are fairly easy because the game eases you into the gameplay, but the third deck ramps up the difficulty and we were defeated at our first attempt. Very good if you are a fan of the books or films.

Fabled Fruit – 1 play –  8 
First Published 2016

This is a very good worker placement / set collection game from Friedemann Friese where you only play with a fraction of the locations in each game but subsequent games start off from the set of locations that you finished the last game with. Play is very straightforward and very quick as you race to complete your sets or mess with other players’ hands to slow them down. Interested to see how each game changes as you play more.

Hanamikoji – 1 play –  8 
First Published 2013

I’ve been intrigued to try this ever since people got to play it at Essen but it doesn’t look like it’ll appear in the UK for a while so I created a homemade version and really enjoyed the way the game plays although it can be over very quickly if things don’t work out the way you’d planned. I’ll definitely be getting an official copy as soon as I can.

DREIst! – 1 play –  7 
First Published 2016

Simple card game of trying to get rid of your cards before your opponents can, by playing to rows or columns to make a row of three or more cards of the same colour or a column of three or more different colours. The solo game has a neat way for your AI opponent to play cards and my one play was very close.

Limes – 1 play –  7 
First Published 2014

I’ve been curious to try Limes for a while and picked up a copy just before Christmas. Reminiscent of Carcassonne, you’re laying tiles and placing meeples to try and achieve the best score when you have completed a 4×4 grid. Nice puzzle and plays identically as a solo and two player game.

Dice Stars – 1 play –  7 
First Published 2016

This is a very good “roll some dice and mark off things on your score sheet” game. The solo version that I’ve tried was a good challenge as the AI player scores each turn based on what dice you’ve left in the pool, which adds another element to think about when choosing which dice to use yourself.

Exploding Kittens – 1 play –  6 
First Published 2015

I got a chance to play this over Christmas and I quite enjoyed it despite me being first to be eliminated. The card play is fairly obvious but it’s meant to be played fast and you can never be sure of the outcome. I particularly like the fact that the deck acts as both a timer and to add to the tension as it is depleted.


I added 18 new games to the collection: Harry Potter: Hogwarts Battle, Carcassonne: Star Wars, Basari: Das Kartenspiel, Noch Mal, Dice Stars, Legends, Arkham Horror: The Card Game, Limes, Romisch Pokern, X Nimmt, Schwupps, Freaky, DREIst, Sea of Clouds, Pocket Madness, Rent a Hero, The Game: Extreme and Abyss. I also reacquired 1 title so my total collection now stands at 561.

My list of unplayed games has shot up from 15 to 28 and my Game of the Month was Harry Potter: Hogwarts Battle.