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Popular Deduction Board Games (Mechanic)

These are the board games with the Deduction mechanic.
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Thrift Treasure: Deduction Board Game image
ReviewThrift Treasure: Deduction Board Game (http://www.sahmreviews.com/2020/11/thrift-treasure-deduction.html) [Deduction]Like| 1 comment | [+]
Decrypto Deduction Game and Laser Drive Expansion Overview image
ReviewDecrypto Deduction Game and Laser Drive Expansion Overview (http://www.sahmreviews.com/2020/04/iello-games-decrypto-deduction-and-laser-drive-expansion.html) [Decrypto]Like| 0 comments | [+]
Decrypto Deduction Game and Laser Drive Expansion Overview image
ReviewDecrypto Deduction Game and Laser Drive Expansion Overview (http://www.sahmreviews.com/2020/04/iello-games-decrypto-deduction-and-laser-drive-expansion.html) [Decrypto: Expansion #01 – Laserdrive]Like| 0 comments | [+]
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Got a good variety of plays in this week!

  • #Cartographers: A Roll Player Tale:(physical, solo): This time with coloured pencils.  :)  This is one of my favourite roll and write games and I reviewed it recently...err, I can't seem to find the review on the site. , was it that bad? ;)
  • #AuZtralia (physical, solo): This is a quirky Martin Wallace games with a mix of economics, combat, Australia, and Cthulu!  I don't have anything else quite like it in my collection.  See my review here: R0land's Rambling Reviews: Auztralia | Board Game Atlas
  • #Tales of the Arabian Nights (TTS, Multiplayer): First time playing this game.  It's more or less a story generating engine loosely in game form but it was quite enjoyable for an evening.  I was a bit tired so it was a nice and relaxing game to play.
  • #Welcome to... (Board Game Arena, Multiplayer): Got two games in.  This one is a fun roll & write game.  It's a bit more straightforward than Cartographers, which I prefer, but it's still quite fun and a quick filler.
  • #Marvel Champions: The Card Game (x2) (TTS, Multiplayer): Got my game group to give this one a shot online.  Imported my deck in to the TTS mod for that authentic feel.  It was nice to get that multiplayer synergy going.  Solo is still fun, albeit it a bit swingy, and it's like having 2 really different games in one package.  I also reviewed this one here: R0land's Rambling Reviews: Marvel Champions | Board Game Atlas  (I promise that's the last one!)
  • #Gaia Project (x2) (Physical, solo): Got a great deal on it and it arrived on Friday.  Two solo games so far.  Haven't won either but I really like the system they are using for solo.  Now I need to spend some time really thinking my moves out instead of the system.  Absolutely love this game!  The game is tight but there are tons of paths to victory.  The puzzle of expanding your empire, while having to work around other players, and scrounging up resources to do the things you need, all the while looking at the round and end game objectives is just sweet!  Especially when you pull a plan together that works really well.
  • #The Search for Planet X (TTS, Multiplayer): First game of this.  I'm not a huge deduction game fan but this one I really liked!  The puzzle of searching broad vs narrow, not spending too much time relative to other players, and trying to guess what they are going for is really nice! I might just have to pick this one up myself!
  • #Brass: Birmingham (Physical, solo): I used solo rules I found online.  The solo rules are really smooth so I think I'll be playing this one solo more often.  If you've never played Brass it's another game that I have never quite seen anything like it.  Players build and network among other players, often using the other players resources which helps out both parties.  It's often a question of being able to make the big plays at the right time and making sure that you get more out of the bargain when interacting with other players.  It's hard to explain if you haven't seen it in action but it's well worth checking out!

Good week!

Edit: Looks like the missing review was due to user error!

Nice article. I think my favorite hidden role game is#Secret Hitler with#Werewords Deluxe Edition coming in a close second.

The only non social deduction games I'm aware of with anything that can kind of be described as hidden roles is#Cosmic Frog or#Cosmic Encounter. You have a special ability in both that you keep hidden until you need it. Not sure if this exactly counts though 

1. Games I thought my wife would enjoy:

  • #Call to Adventure - This wasn't a hard bounce, but after playing a few times, my wife still feels like there should be slightly more to add to the decision making as it's very lightweight and doesn't have much replayability.  The narrative aspect is great, which is what I thought she'd enjoy, but I think we both feel the gameplay is too straightforward to be enjoyable after 3 or 4 plays.
  • #Gloomhaven: Jaws of the Lion - This was because my wife was drawn to the support role description of the voidwarden and that class just doesn't play very well at 2 players for someone new to that type of game.  Our five game sessions were pretty frustrating experiences for her, which, in turn, were frustrating for me.  Neither of us found the card efficiency gameplay to be fun either, which is really the core of the game.  She felt like the voidwarden's cards were so situational that as soon as the board state changed during a round, her choices immediately became significantly worse and limited.  Satisfying turns were few and far between.  I thought that because the card play was based in more of an efficiency puzzle, it'd be a good option for a cooperative, dungeon crawler for her, but we'll likely not play another session.

2. Current high hopes for games I think my wife will like:

  • #Trismegistus: The Ultimate Formula - This game seems to play in a way that is a bit reminiscent of other heavier euro games that she enjoys and that we have enjoyed together.  We found it at a game store we traveled to over the weekend, and our first, slowly-played game last night seemed to go over well.  We'll see how this one goes over the next few plays, but I'm hoping it will ultimately land well.  
  • #The Shipwreck Arcana or #The Search for Planet X or #Mysterium Park - This is really just a spot for a good deduction game, which we don't really have.  The puzzle solving inherent in these games connect a lot with her, so I'm still deciding which of these games would be best.  Once she became more comfortable with trick-taking after playing Fox in the Forest and Pinochle, #The Crew: The Quest for Planet Nine delivered those kinds of deduction success moments. Funny enough, she doesn't seem interested at all in Fox in the Forest Duet, which I think means that it's the deduction of The Crew that's fun for her, not the cooperative trick-taking that's the hook.

These questions are definitely easier to answer for my wife than other friends we play games with.  As soon as I think I know what they might like, there are inevitably some games or preferences or reactions to certain games I find pretty unexpected.  Sometimes it can be hard too because some games need the right context for them to land well.  We have bigger games that we've been wanting to introduce to our friends for a while but we never seem to find larger chunks of time on a weekend to do so.

I'm gonna give some love to perhaps the most inconsistent mechanics in games: hidden powers and social deduction. These games may have a wider deviation in quality, but when I think of some of my favorite beginnings, middles, and endings in games, it's hard not to think about these.

  1. #Deception: Murder in Hong Kong has the strongest opening of any party social deduction game I've played. Right from the get-go, there's plenty to talk about (I play with a house rule where everyone shares their murder weapons and clues in the beginning), and the first round of discussions/accusations escalates quickly. Seeing people's faces go from calm and inquisitive to shocked and defensive is so much fun in this game because there's actual info to be used, unlike a lot of other games in the genre.
  2. #Cosmic Encounter is another game I like to play with an (official) variant in which everyone's powers start hidden and unused until their alien race is revealed. Usually a few turns have passed until the first reveal happens, and I love the anticipation that comes with someone suddenly announcing their power and the rest of the table collectively groaning as the first major wrinkle to the game mechanisms is introduced. Suddenly alliances and negotations are seen in a new light, and on those occasions when one reveal immediately results in others: *chef's kiss*
  3. This is a toss up between a bunch of different social deduction games, in particular ones that end on a final decision/accusation, such as #A Fake Artist Goes to New York, or #One Night Ultimate Werewolf. While it's possible that the hidden fake artist/werewolf is a foregone conclusion, there's often still a lot of tension in the moment that everyone reveals their vote. My additional, non-social deduction submission for this is #Telestrations. Getting to share the journey of how your words/pictures got misinterpreted and arguing with other people about what they did is sure to bring lots of laughs. 
  1. Very interested, and probably yes.
  2. #The Crew: The Quest for Planet Nine, lots of laughs, it's quick whereby you can play ten rounds in a row
  3. #Shogun no Katana, lovely theme, great gameplay, positive player interaction, brain burning puzzle on your player board.
  4. (I) #The Search for Planet X (logical deduction done right, love the theme as well), (II) #Viscounts of the West Kingdom (Shem continues to innovate with seemingly basic mechanism, love how you slide the characters across your board plus the light deck-building aspect, the castle and scribing mini-games are also fun), (III) #On Mars (love me some brain burning Vital Lacerda euro-goodness, love the theme, great artwork, and the level of planning that goes into it as well as the positive player interaction of using other players' tech), (IV) #Merv: The Heart of the Silk Road (plays quick, straightforward rules, positive player interaction, and again great artwork by Ian), (V) #Tekhenu: Obelisk of the Sun (love me some dice drafting. Tascini and Turczi have created something special with the dice availabilities: pure, tainted, forbidden. The mini-games around the board are fantastic and the need to balance your die is a genius idea.

Played lots of games with the family this week and a couple with my group and solo:

  • #Exploding Kittens with #Exploding Kittens: Imploding Kittens, #Exploding Kittens: Streaking Kittens, #Exploding Kittens: Barking Kittens (Physical, Multiplayer) x2: Yup, each kid got an expansion so we played a couple of games with everything.  I mean, it's not the best game ever but it got some laughs and enjoyment. Basically play cards to try to get other players blown up by the exploding kittens while avoiding it yourself.  If you allow yourself to just go with the flow it's fun.
  • #Cult Following (Physical, multiplayer) x7: This is a quick little game that one of my kids got me for Christmas.  Added bonus, the publisher/designer lives like 10 minutes from my house.  Each game of this is maybe 10 or 15 minutes.  Basically you get card prompts to make up what will probably be a silly or horrific cult.  The player who is the recruit asks questions based on the cards they get and give the recruit to the cult whose answer they like best.  First cult to two recruits wins. We actually ended up having a lot of fun and laughs playing it but like all games of this style you need the right group and the right mood.
  • #Underwater Cities (Physical, Solo): Got this one for Christmas and I think I really like it!  Played a solo game and some practice rounds.  I'll do a rambling review of it when I get the chance.
  • #Eclipse: Second Dawn for the Galaxy (TTS, Multiplayer): Second play of this lately.  This time with 4.  I REALLY am starting to like this game.  This might be our new go to 4x style of game.
  • #Race for the Galaxy with #Race for the Galaxy: The Gathering Storm (Physical, Solo): Got in a pre-christmas play.  I ordered the gathering storm for the single player aspect but it arrived a bit later than expected.  (Due to christmas rush of course.)  It's a good addition to Race for the Galaxy which has been growing on me as I play it more and more.  Perhaps a quick review of this is in order too.
  • #Treasure Island (TTS, Multiplayer) x2: Not my favourite game but as far as a deduction/finding something on a map game it's pretty fun.  Some interesting moments in there which were entertaining. I likely wouldn't suggest it but I'll play it if someone in the group wants to.

All in all a good week with more gaming to come!

1. What's your interest level on Glory to Rome? Would you ever spend $250 for your "grail game"?

I am quite interested as I like multi-use card games and I keep hearing about this game that is supposed to be so great.  I'd like to see it for myself.  

Honestly though, I would never spend $250 on a grail game.  Gloomhaven/Frosthaven is my limit for the most part.

2. Which game did you enjoy playing the most this year and why?

#Clank! Legacy: Acquisitions Incorporated is definitely my favourite game played this year.  

3. Which game surprised you the most this year and why?

#The Crew: The Quest for Planet Nine.  I played a ton of trick taking games when I was younger and I thought I was done with them but this game blew me away!  I could play this one for hours before getting bored.  Requiring lots of deduction, getting to know the other players, and figuring out when to give that one critical hint is just a blast!

4. As we end 2020, what are your current Top 5 games and why?

Current top 5 (as of this minute because it can change a lot):

So I own this game mainly because I was hoping to find a social deduction type game that we could play more readily. To say it hasn't gone over well is a huge understatement lol. We've played it maybe twice and I'm currently trying to sell it.