Kind of the opposite of my previous list. While I am generally excited to play any game these are games that didn't capture my imagination or sound too good on paper to me but I eneded up enjoying a whole lot:
5) #Istanbul - I had heard plenty about Istanbul before I played it, overwhelmingly positive, but the themeing and mechanisms didn't particularly appeal to me so I never sought it out. Anyway, one day it came out as the least unappealing option at my Board game club so I hopped on that table. It was pretty great, I got a lot more into it than I might have expected, trying to map out routes and predict where you opponents might go was a bunch of fun. The occaisional dice rolls added tension and it was just good fun. As mentioned in a previous list, I did not do well at this game but still enjoyed myself. While it won't be making any it onto a favourites list, it is well worth checking out
4) #Century: Golem Edition - I had no clue about this game before someone pulled it out at the end of a night of gaming, but buying golems with gems didn't peak my interest all too much. While the art work looked great I wasn't exactly enthusiastic (may have also been because I was a little tired). Anyway, this game is an excellent little engine builder that plays in 30-45 minutes, the mixture of hand management and racing other players to get the requirements for various golems was a bunch of fun. Although I don't own it I would happily play it anytime.
3) #Magic Maze - So while I can't say I wasn't intrigued by this game, the themeing seemed very odd (dwarves and wizards in a mall?) and it seemed like it wouldn't be too in-depth. Now, it definitely isn't too in-depth but man is it intense! Trying to keep track of all four characters while also cooperating without talking, all with the added difficulty of a timer, just magical. Also, the passive aggression of slamming down the giant wooden marker to get someone to do something is brilliant. It is a brilliant filler game to freshen everyone up inbetween some heavier games, it is a game that gets better with more people and leads to all kinds of laughter after the game is done.
2) #Chrononauts - I couldn't imagine a game doing a good job of capturing time travel, especially not just with a couple of decks of cards. However, the mechanics of how things 'ripple' are very cool. It has a not insignificant luck factor to it, but if you are lucking for a 20 minute filler with a much more interesting premise and mechanics than you standard quick game then this might be worth looking at. You have to accept that you can't really be 'good' at this game but it does give you an opportunity to kill Hitler or save Lincoln so there could be worse things (there is also then the option for someone else to save hitler and kill Lincoln....so yeah) and I have found it to be generally good for a laugh or too. There is also a #Back to the Future: The Card Game version which uses the same system if you are into that theme.
1) #Coup - I'll admit I didn't think much as someone explained this game to me the first time, I went out early and so wasn't too interested in it. However, a few years later I played it again multiple times in a row and realised the wonderful magic this tiny box can create: it's like rock-paper-scissors but you can just say you 'for sure chose scissors' while hiding a rock behind your back. It is constantly pushing you to try to read your friends, the interplay bewtween the cards is great and it leads to a lot of really hilarious moments when you realise you've been bluffed out of victory. It plays quick and so plaer elimination doesn't matter. It is one of my favourite pub/picnic games