With 2023 beginning, I wanted to look back on the games that I played in 2022. I used the geekgroup.app to create a lovely grid of all the games that I played in 2022 and I was able to play 89 unique games! That shocked me, to be honest, I didn’t know I got that many unique games in. Although I am slightly disappointed I couldn’t get to 90. And I feel like I was really close to 100. But maybe that’s the goal for 2023.
This post, I want to talk about my 5 most played game and the some of my favorite game highlights from the year!
Bloodborne: The board game
I am not surprised that Bloodborne made it to the top of my most played list. This game was one of the biggest surprises. I didn’t expect to like it as much as I did. We ended up playing this game almost every weekend throughout the year. We tried out different hunters and have made our way through almost all of the scenarios.
Were they all perfect? Absolutely not. Did we have a ton of fun playing? Yup! While some scenarios felt like insane challenges, the story and sprawling / changing map felt like a fun embodiment of the video game.
Bloodborne: The Board game is a cooperative game. There is a lot of encouraged teamwork and ways to get yourself and your team into trouble. I know… I typically lead the charge. But I also know we are nearing the end of our campaign and I’m not sure how much we will revisit the scenarios. Especially after playing the game so much.
root: a game of woodland might and right
I feel like Root always makes it way into my top played games. Root is such a good game, and it is something I cannot get away from. That’s obvious by the Woodland Section of the MCG website. Root is something that has majorly influenced my life. And I know I have a couple of Root crafting projects coming down the pipeline 😉.
For anyone who is curious about Root, keep an eye out for the GuerricSamplesGames Winter Tournament that is starting soon! Who doesn’t love a game about cute woodland animals that want to kill each other?
Arcs is an interesting game to make it onto the list. Especially since this game has not been released! But Leder games has provided a beta version of the game on Tabletop simulator which I ended up playing quite a bit.
I am not sure if the game that I played will be the final version of Arcs. I’m almost confident it won’t be as I think I heard of more changes coming through the grapevine. But I am excited to see the changes and watch the evolution of this new game.
Another classic that I am not surprised to see has made it on this list. Actually, I take that back. I am a little surprised to see Twilight Imperium on this list. Mainly because it is a six-hour game, and I didn’t think I had that much time on my hands. It’s a delightful surprise to see how many games of twilight Imperium I was able to get in last year. I hope this year is the same.
Twilight Imperium is a 4X game with the X’s being: Explore, Expand, Exploit, and Exterminate. With the Prophecies of Kings expansion, the explore portion of the game has really become exciting and new. Landing on planets is not only about the resources you can exploit from them but also what can be explored.
And, of course, you’re expanding into these planets to build your vast and glorious empire! Unless another player is there. Then you will need to exterminate the other players pieces before laying claim to the planet for yourself. Did I do it? I think that covers all four X’s.
john company (second edition)
John Company is one of the new gems that arrives this year. And the third Cole Wehrle game to make it into my top 5 played games… I think I see a habit forming. John Company is a little different from the other games on this list as it is a historical game that shows the journey of the East India Trading Company while also leaning into a bit of the pollical satire of the situation. Or, at least, that’s how I see it.
It’s not exactly a theme that is exciting to get behind, but the gameplay is fun and chaotic. Especially because nine out of ten times, India will mess up the company and close everything down. The game often ends in company failure. And the failure will cause the game to spiral even more out of control.
board game highlights
There were a few games that didn’t make it into my top 5 games, but I thought deserved a shoutout because I absolutely love them.
I did not know anything about Rumble Nation before it showed up at my house. Guerric decided to import the game from Japan and now here we are. I am in love. Rumble nation is a very simple game. You roll some dice and put out some cubes on a map. But that doesn’t mean it isn’t cutthroat.
I really love how this game has appeal to people with a variety of gaming backgrounds. And the game’s modularity makes the game replayable and a constantly shifting puzzle that it very easy to enjoy. Even if you’re not in a winning position.
Trailblazers is a game I have been playing for a while. I first played it back when it was a prototype and I quickly became addicted. I think I was clocking in a five to seven solo game a day for a few weeks. The game finally went to Kickstarter in 2022 and I got an official mod to play with on TTS!
This game is a puzzle with some drafting involved. The winding trails and constantly crossing paths lead to a complete minefield. But this complicated and fun puzzle can fit into your pocket! Or clip onto your belt if you prefer. The designer of Trailblazers specifically want the game to be accessible and easy to travel with.
I cannot wait to get the physical version and go back to play five game a day.
The last game I want to highlight is one I didn’t fully expect to fall in love with: Vijayanagara. Vijayanagara is inspired by the COIN system and takes place in Medieval India (1290-1398) simulating the conflict between three different groups. Well three controllable groups within India and the pressure of the Mongols coming from the outside.
Being apart of the COIN series, each player will have a set of standard action and special actions with the option to choose those actions of the events on the cards. The cards will dictate thew order in which players will be able to take actions.
I love this game because it plays at an odd player count (three) and is a great way to introduce people to the COIN system. The whole system is modified to give choice but less choice than a standard COIN game. But that doesn’t mean this game is only for beginners in the series. There are still plenty of impactful and enticing play. I mean, who can resist hoarding all the horses?