I will caveate this list with not having yet ranked #Teotihuacan: City of Gods or #Maracaibo with only two plays of the first and no plays yet of the second. I do think at least one if not both of these might break my top 10. So without further ado...
10. #Terraforming Mars - a great game and well designed with lots of expansion options (I have none but have interest in Venus and Prelude expansions) and a great solo experience. It isn't high on my families interest level but it is a fun game and I will consider doing a playthough with my son and posting on YouTube at some point.
9. #PARKS - This is such a zen game and just a pleasure to play. Becky and I play this fairly often and when we can't figure out what to play or just want something quick and easy this takes about 30-40 minutes to run through. The zen experience give this an edge over Terraforming Mars but only slighty. Decent solo experience.
8. #Everdell - while this is not a perfectly designed game the art is beautiful, the expansions add to the fun, and the interaction between tableau building, hand management, and resource/engine building is engaging. I think PARKS and Terraforming Mars are better overall games but my daughter likes this game and even the base game is quite nice with no expansions. Ok, solo experience.
7. #Viticulture: Essential Edition - While the base game lacks a little umph the Essential Edition has everything. This is a fabulous game with player counts of 4-6 and makes for a great experience around the gaming table. The theme doesn't quite grab the rest of my family and so it has not been played as much during the pandemic but it remains an excellent game I look forward to getting back to down the road. Decent solo experience.
6. #Paladins of the West Kingdom - One of my favorire solo experiences amoung game I own and a fantastically tight worker placement game. Other's may like a more interactive experience such as with #Architects of the West Kingdom (almost made my top 10) but I find myself coming back to the personal satisfacting of playing Paladins. Of the larger games I have, this likely gets the most solo plays and competes with #Wingspan.
5. #Wingspan - The ease of play, number of times Becky and I play this one together, variability of birds, and fun in creating a tableau of birds and getting an engine going along with great art make this a great game. Even though this is not my number one game on this list it might be the one game I'd keep if I had to choose one game to keep (omg that would be a torturous choice!). This game has an excellence solo experience and ranks with Paladins in that regard.
4. #Heaven & Ale - This is another game that I love and can play over and over again. I believe it has tighter play than Wingspan and most of the games in my top ten and provides a great challenge every time I play. I found a set of automa cards on BGG that someone created and was able to print those and play a couple solo games (I lost both) but find the game best with three to four players. Becky and I love this game though and most of our playthroughs are two player runs.
3. #Clans of Caledonia - I have not had this game long and don;t have a lot of plays under my belt as of yet. I love the mechanics of the game and the challenges of obtaining and completeing contracts with each unique clan. The solo experience appears to be well designed and fun as well. Becky and I have one playthrough together and she enjoyed it (she won...again) and I think would enjoy playing again. The resource management is a little bit tougher in this game making it difficult seeing my kids playing until they are a little older. Very well designed game and lots to it given the smaller box size.
2. #Scythe - I struggle between this one and #Gloomhaven for number one as they are both excellent. THere are arguments for both and at the end of the day I think Isaac designed the best game to date among modern boardgames. Scythe is my favorite game to breakout for 5-7 player counts and everytime I've hosted a Scythe game night the experience seems to be excellent for all involved. From theme, to factions, to objective cards the game checks a lot of boxes for most folks and the teach never seems to be to challenging for new players. Sans pandemic this game gets about 5-10 group plays per year. I only played the automa once when I first got got the game but it was enjoyable. I don;t have a permanent setup place for games and so it comes out a little less due to it's sprawling footprint.
1. #Gloomhaven - I questioned getting this for a long time. After "beating" the original game I feel this is the best designed game on the market. I'm not sure any other game gives quite as much bang-for-your-buck as Gloomhaven does. If I had a garage with multiple game tables I'd probably have this set up all the time to run through unique play experiences. I played the game with a friend and the variable characters and character development was so top notch. We are looking forward to Frosthaven when it arrives.
Honorable Mention: #Anachrony was number 11 on my list. Its a bigger game with a more complex theme but fantastic to play and there are modules I still haven't included in my playthroughs because the base game is just so great and doesn't need them. I will say that the #Anachrony: Exosuit Commander Pack is a great add as the exosuits are well designed and make the game more engaging and thematic.
If you read all of this, you honestly deserve a point...lol